Chapter 3. The Media Business: Consolidation, Globalization, and the Long Tail
Ken Auletta and Media Synergy (pg. 83-84)
- Ken Auletta’s Web Site
- I Want Media’s Interview With Ken Auletta
- Media Bistro’s Interview With Ken Auletta
- Synergy and the Chicago Tribune, by Ken Auletta
- Transcript of Speech by Auletta on his book Backstory
Who Owns What (pg. 80-101)
Want an up-to-date list of what all of the major media companies own or control? Columbia Journalism Review’s Who Owns What site is perhaps the most informative of the group, giving detailed, up-to-date information about the top six media companies, and many of the slightly smaller ones as well.
Time Warner (pg. 82-86)
You know the various Time Warner media sites, but here is the company’s corporate site. This site contains a mixture of corporate news, financial data, and previews of upcoming Time Warner products.
Disney (pg. 86-89)
Go beyond Mickey Mouse for the inside look at the Disney Corporation. Disney is somewhat unusual in that it doesn’t separate it’s corporate site from it’s content promotion site, though Disney as a brand is much more significant and known to the public than any of the other major media companies. Disney has an well-developed internship program that many business and journalism majors will be interested in.
News Corporation (pg. 90-92)
Rupert Murdoch’s News Corporation is truly global in scope, as the brand logos on the News Corp. homepage so clearly illustrate. The News Corporation site has links to the company’s various properties ranging from the racy London tabloid the Sun (Check out Page 3 on the Sun if you’re curious; I won’t give you the link. What you see there will be NSFW), to the Fox broadcasting services. News Corporation also owns the Wall Street Journal, one of the most important newspapers in the United States.
Viacom & CBS (pg. 93-95)
Get the latest on the business side of MTV and Nickelodeon. Along with the standard business information, there is a fascinating page here that lays out all of the Viacom properties. (You can see the CBS properties here.) It provides a wonderful illustration of the range of media controlled by one company. Viacom and CBS trade as separate stocks these days, but the two companies have essentially the same ownership.
Bertelsmann (pg. 95-97)
Chances are very good that most of you will not be familiar with Bertelsmann as a company, though you read their books, watch their television shows, and listen to music they publish. As of 2010, Bertelsmann was 175 years old.
General Electric/NBC-Universal (pg. 97-100)
Cable giant Comcast and NBC Universal have announced their $30 billion merger. Comcast will buy 51 percent of the broadcast network/movie studio from General Electric, which will remain a minority owner of the NBCU for the time being. The merger/acquisition will create a media giant. As you read about all of this, keep in mind the following issues:
- Comcast is the nation’s largest cable and and Internet service provide, serving 25 percent of U.S. homes.
- Overall, Comcast would own more than 20 percent of all television viewing hours. NBCU owns the Telemundo Spanish-language broadcast network, and cable channels USA, CNBC, MSNBC, SyFy, Bravo, Oxygen, and my personal fave – The Weather Channel. Comcast already owns E! Entertainment Television, Versus, Style, the Golf Channel, and the Major League Baseball channel.
- The merger may result in the most popular television programs being put behind a paywall on the Internet.
- Mergers of pipeline providers and content providers don’t always work out.
Revenue and American Idol (pg. 99-100)
Get the full, in-depth story from MSNBC
The Long Tail (pg. 101-107)