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Media Matters not quite sure how “media” actually works?

September 23, 2009


Apparently, it’s some “Senior Fellow’s” job at Media Matters to watch Glenn Beck’s FOX News show, then report on which companies are still running commercials in his time slot.

Life in the George Soros Steno Pool. Darn, I knew I should have gone to college…

Let’s review, shall we? A group originally co-founded by disgraced ex-Green Jobs Czar Van Jones took exception to Beck’s exposes of Jones’ radical past and beliefs — exposes that led directly to Jones’ ousting from the White House.

The group, Color of Change, organized a boycott of Beck’s sponsors. The boycott is now a few months old, and Color Of Change boasts that it’s been a great success.

Except it hasn’t been. Because it was doomed from the start.

As I’ve documented elsewhere: Color of Change has only succeeded in:

a) alienating potential future allies in corporate America, which is populated by lots of guilt-ridden liberal do-gooders with deep pockets

b) smearing other companies like RadioShack — who’ve never advertised on Beck’s show but were stupidly added to the boycott list

c) looking like idiots, since the companies Color of Change is “boycotting”, such as WalMart, are ones left wing activists never patronized to begin with

d) firing up Beck’s large and loyal fan base, who quickly organized a “buy-cott” of the blacklisted companies.

But wait: there’s more.

Last week, I received an email from a network TV veteran who told me the boycott was even dumber than I’d ever imagined.

I’d still been using expressions like “day parts,” pointing out that Beck’s sponsors had simply shifted their ad buys to different FOX shows. The targeted advertisers may have been forced to douse a few P.R. fires, but FOX itself wasn’t out one red cent.

That’s not the half of it, the broadcasting insider explained to me. You see, the way the cable TV industry is set up, a boycott of its advertisers literally cannot succeed.

He’s allowed me to reprint his message, on the condition of anonymity:

You need to have an insider’s view of why the boycott against Glenn Beck is so laughable.

One of the major differences between broadcast operations and cable networks is how they generate income. For broadcasters advertising dollars rule the day. But in cable it is subscriber fees.

Each cable net charges the cable/satellite operator a fee for carriage. You set a rate and once you reach a certain saturation point you begin to make money. It doesn’t matter at that point if you sell ads or not.

In return the operator gets inventory to sell in the networks. So the operators and the networks get cash directly from the viewers and whatever ad money they generate is mere icing on the cake. Fox News could run PSA’s and AbCruncher spots 24/7 and still make money. (…)

The other laugh is this: 18 million of Fox News Channel’s viewers are on DirecTV… that’s owned by NewsCorp. Those fees go into Murdoch’s pocket if FNC aired a test pattern, let alone Glenn Beck.

In other words: cable tv makes money from viewers’ monthly subscriptions to their services. Any ad revenue they rake in later is just gravy.

But here’s the point: this pathetic Glenn Beck “boycott” is yet another example of a theme I’ve been harping on for some time: the activist left lives in the past. Their entire worldview is past its “best before” date. Yet they persist in deploying the strategies and tactics of a romanticized past — then lash out at the rest of us when these tactics inevitably fail.

  1. Eric Kirk permalink
    September 23, 2009 9:31 am

    Lots of obsession with Media Matters over here. You realize they could use these threads for fund raising?

    • Swemson permalink
      September 23, 2009 9:42 am

      Well that’s intelligent…

      Like they really need this blog to help them make up whatever they they want….


  2. September 23, 2009 9:47 am

    Kathy, you’re right about the outdated nature of this. The Left always thinks it’s the civil rights movement boycotting buses and all-white lunch counters — a boycott that worked because of the collective economic power of those being discriminated against.

    In this case, an effete leftist boycott of businesses its adherents don’t patronize only draws attention to what a tiny minority its die-hards actually represent.

  3. September 23, 2009 9:48 am

    Eric, they don’t do fundraising. They don’t need to. All their bills are paid, believe us.

    • pbrauer permalink
      September 23, 2009 5:26 pm

      If true, why is it relavant? The right has there sugar daddy’s as well. Probably more.

  4. carterthewriter permalink
    September 23, 2009 10:07 am

    It is quite ironic that taxpayer’s money is use to subvert taxpayer’s rights.

  5. Mr. GJG permalink
    September 23, 2009 10:26 am

    The way these boycotts have been working , TV executives are going to go out of their way to put an anti-progressive ,un-pc story line in all of their programming.

    We’ll get sitcoms named: Everybody loves Limbaugh, Hannitys Angels, Walt Disney’s Wonderful World of Coulter, My Three Guns, and the The Malkins.

  6. Bubba4 permalink
    September 23, 2009 3:43 pm

    Can you ask Fox to start showing a test pattern then?

    • AtlanticJim permalink
      September 23, 2009 7:15 pm

      Why would they do that? Judging by their competitions ratings it is not working out for them.

  7. jbtrevor permalink
    September 23, 2009 5:40 pm

    I was looking at mediamatters IRS 990’s to see the salary info – Nice!

    Anyway, I discovered that former Fox News Watch host Eric Burns (or someone with the same name) was on listed on Media Matters 990 as Communications Director starting in 2007.
    In Feb 2008, he left Fox news

    I wonder if there’s a connection….

  8. Tom Trevor permalink
    September 23, 2009 5:46 pm

    I am sure that Fox would rather have advertising revenue than not have it. It look more like there is a boycott of MSNBC and CNN, nobody watches them.

  9. pbrauer permalink
    September 23, 2009 6:07 pm


    Media Matters knows how the media works, don’t kid yourself or anyone else.
    I’ll let you in on a little secret, posting the names of advertisers keeps the issue about what Beck said about President Obama alive. You are correct about boycotting – its of little or no value. The right uses boycotting for the same reason that I just told you, but don’t tell anyone!!! 🙂

    • carterthewriter permalink
      September 24, 2009 7:06 am

      We don’t have to boycott, we are free to choose which programs to watch, maybe that doesn’t suit your cause, though.

      Although your comments are objectionable, we do’t boycott you, just consider the humorous content within your statements

      • pbrauer permalink
        September 24, 2009 8:00 am


        The right wing has recently called for a boycott of GM, it’s not a TV program, but it’s still a boycott.

        I encourage you to watch Glenn Beck because he is the Pied Piper of Hamelin. He is right wing candy and his conspiracy theories, divorced from reality are not good for conservatism.

        • In the know permalink
          September 24, 2009 8:10 am

          Yep, your unbiased judgement makes you an expert on conservatism.

        • Joy permalink
          September 25, 2009 12:32 am

          “Not good for Conservatism?” And how would YOU know? Conversely , I don’t know what’s good for Libtards, either – but if I did, I’d keep it to myself….

    • Joy permalink
      September 25, 2009 12:28 am

      And keeping what Beck said about Obama is a BAD thing?

  10. pbrauer permalink
    September 23, 2009 6:40 pm

    This is hilarious, Media Matters channels the Beckster.

    BREAKING: Media Matters uncovers deep connections

  11. Revnant Dream permalink
    September 23, 2009 10:16 pm

    By the time this is over Beck will own his own Island.
    Another winner Kathy.

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