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OFFLINE   Jimmy James #41

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Posted 17 November 2005 - 08:57 PM

Australia could conceivably be down to two timezones if Howard enacts his power over Weights and Measures to bring Qld and Tassie into line.

So academic has written to the Federal Government asking them to put Qld, NSW and Vic on Daylight Savings at the same time as Tassie (start of October). Bring SA and NT into the EST Time and leave WA 2 Hrs behind.

Not a bad idea I reckon.
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OFFLINE   WorldWide Update #42

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Posted 19 November 2005 - 03:01 PM

Here's how TV timezones work in the US:

Most cable networks have two feeds. The Eastern and Central timezones get the same feed, so if a program airs at 8PM ET, people in the Central timezone will see it at 7PM. So far, so good. The Mountain and the Pacific timezones also get the same feed, but the Pacific timezone is the dominant one in this case because of its larger population, so PT viewers will see the program at the same hour as their ET counterparts (i.e. three hours later in real time). As a result, MT viewers have to add an hour. Therefore, an 8PM program is on at 9PM in the Mountain timezone.

I hope you got this because it gets more complicated...

The broadcast networks (NBC, ABC, etc.) also have two key feeds -- one for the Eastern and Central timezones, and another one for the Pacific timezone. In those areas, the situation is essentially the same as for the cable networks. However, Mountain time stations don't air either the ET/CT or the PT feed live -- that would mean their primetime shows would start either too late (9PM) or too early (6PM) -- but essentially delay the ET/CT feed for one hour, so any network program is seen at the same time it would be in the Central timezone. In other words, an 8PM ET show on NBC will be seen at 7PM CT, 7PM MT, and 8PM PT.

When a poor Mountain timezone viewer hears that a program is on at "8 / 7 Central," she can catch it at seven (her time) if she is watching a broadcast network, but at nine if she is watching a basic cable network. Just to complicate things, news channels and smaller cable networks only have one feed, so in that case, the program will actually be on at six her time. In other words, our viewer would be well-advised to buy a TV Guide before she gets used to the system.

Edited by WorldWide Update, 19 November 2005 - 03:12 PM.

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OFFLINE   Andy B #43

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Posted 19 November 2005 - 05:28 PM

Geez.. that is soo complicated. eyepopping.gif

I have a friend in LA and he sent me this:
NBC (I don't know if KNBC or either if it was the entire west coast feed, cocked up on their PRG graphics) it crashed! hyper.gif hyper.gif
That'll teach em mischievous.gif

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OFFLINE   routemarker #44

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Posted 19 November 2005 - 07:54 PM

QUOTE (Andy B @ Nov 19 2005, 06:28 PM)
I have a friend in LA and he sent me this:
NBC (I don't know if KNBC or either if it was the entire west coast feed, cocked up on their PRG graphics) it crashed! hyper.gif  hyper.gif
That'll teach em  mischievous.gif

hehe, are you sure it wasn't just the animation? The PRG graphics play out nationally from NY, the affiliate has nothing to do with it. It does look like a malfunction of some sort.

It took a while but I finally got to see how CBS implemented their new credit bar. It looks like they were inspired by FOX's 2004 credit look. It's strange that the in-vision box is isolated like that where they could have taken advantage of the whole screen area. They already mentioned that CSI was next in the VO over the production enders so I think its overkill to have it in the credits too...

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Edited by routemarker, 19 November 2005 - 07:58 PM.

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OFFLINE   Andy B #45

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Posted 19 November 2005 - 08:43 PM

He said it was about to do it's usual animation and then it got stuck and flickered for a good 10 mins, before they faded it out, and also the KNBC DOG (the watermark they show when they return to programmes then it fades out and then the network watermark fades in) was on for 10 mins as well. hyper.gif
CBS's look always seems kinda plain.
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OFFLINE   routemarker #46

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Posted 20 November 2005 - 12:12 AM

QUOTE (Andy B @ Nov 19 2005, 09:43 PM)
He said it was about to do it's usual animation and then it got stuck and flickered for a good 10 mins, before they faded it out, and also the KNBC DOG (the watermark they show when they return to programmes then it fades out and then the network watermark fades in) was on for 10 mins as well.  hyper.gif

That's interesting because from what i know the PRG is played out from the national network HQ and affiliates do the rest . Perhaps the stuff up at KNBC screwed with the signal for the PRG?
QUOTE (Andy B @ Nov 19 2005, 09:43 PM)
CBS's look always seems kinda plain.

Not all the time, I think this is the year where networks thought about making credits very plain and un-noticable. In the past they have implemented very visually appealing animations, but they're learning that it's best to ensure the viewer watches the content and not the animations.
CBSs 2005-06 look doesn't seem that bad, better than NBCs by far. All I really have to go on is a couple of multi-show promos I saw at CBS.com which had a generic look to it.

Edited by routemarker, 01 December 2005 - 05:27 PM.

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OFFLINE   routemarker #47

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Posted 01 December 2005 - 05:43 PM

Here's a vid of CBS' ecp, a very fast paced CBS thursday promo for CSI and Without a Trace. The end tag is in the network look and it seems "everybody's watching" is their new slogan.
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OFFLINE   Jimmy James #48

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Posted 01 December 2005 - 08:50 PM

I really like not only that slogan but also the whole look of that CBS Ad - even the way those eye logos flash across the screen looks like something Nine could try with their dots!
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OFFLINE   routemarker #49

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Posted 01 December 2005 - 09:51 PM

QUOTE (Jimmy James @ Dec 1 2005, 09:50 PM)
I really like not only that slogan but also the whole look of that CBS Ad - even the way those eye logos flash across the screen looks like something Nine could try with their dots!

I've been thinking the exact same thing, it makes for a great animation and transition sequence.
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OFFLINE   Mr Q #50

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Posted 02 December 2005 - 01:50 PM

Well, having just come back from a couple of weeks holiday in the US, I've got some thoughts to share on US television...

I guess my perception from watching some American things (Fox News Channel especially) is that presentation wise, everything is over the top. But that's simply not the case. Cable channels like TNT and TBS have fantastic yet simple presentation styles. I was really impressed actually.

Local news in the US is funny. biggrin.gif I was forever seeing promos for special reports and exclusive investigations on major issues such as how safe elevators are, the risk of bird flu from eating turkey on Thanksgiving, and how easy it could be for a paedophile to get hired as a shopping centre Santa. Crazy stuff. I was also amazed by just how much local news there is. 5-7am for early news, 11am for morning news, anywhere from mid-afternoon right through until early evening for more news, and to cap off the night, 10 or 11pm for the flagship local newscast.

Specific to LA, I was surprised to see the local CBS affliate (KCBS 2) and the independent KCAL 9 share news resources. They had the same reporters, at times the same presenters, and the same graphics. On some of the OB microphones, you'd see on the labels there on one side a KCAL 9 logo and on the other a CBS 2 logo. KCAL would do news from early afternoon for a couple of hours, then after 30 minutes or so, CBS 2 would start their local news and that would run through until early evening. Then from 8-10 or so KCAL 9 would do local news and then at 11, CBS 2 would do their local news. I found it really weird, but strangely logical - it made the most of that news operation by sharing it across channels.

I also took the opportunity to watch some cable news. Now, my hotel didn't have Fox News Channel, so sadly I didn't get to watch any more of that delightful news operation than I do here biggrin.gif , but I did get to see CNN US, CNN Headline News and MSNBC. First of all, CNN US is absolutely shocking. The Situation Room I can just about tolerate (apart from Wolf Blitzer's need to SHOUT THE NEWS at viewers). Paula Zahn Now is just painful to watch, while Larry King needs to retire or be retired. Anderson Cooper 360 is OK - but I much preferred the old NewsNight. I was relieved to have CNN US simulcasting an hour of CNN International's Your World Today - I actually got a chance to find out what was going on in the world.

Headline News was interesting... It's much closer in style to CNNI than CNN US, which is a good thing. I really like the set they have and while I'm not too keen on the graphics, they're certainly better than anything else on either CNNI or US. At night though, Headline News changes to a primetime format, with Showbiz Tonight (didn't watch), Nancy Grace and a prime-time newscast. Nancy Grace is... well... eyepopping.gif . I mean, I thought the Fox News Channel could be bad - but here there's no effort to look at the facts, it's really an hour of Nancy Grace jumping to conclusions and showcasing her emotions. One night as she closed the show, she was practically crying at viewers - I couldn't figure out if it was desperation or bad acting to be honest. The prime-time newscast was good, but nothing to write home about.

MSNBC is a real innovator though for my money. It may lag behind FNC and CNN, and occasionally even get beaten by Headline News, but I think they've got some great programmes. Countdown with Keith Olbermann is fantastic. It's a great cable news show in my view - it covers the top stories, does interviews and analysis, but also has fun. The format is clever, and the presentation is edgy. Apparently it's been known to out-rate Paula Zahn Now, and frankly, I'm shocked it doesn't beat CNN all the time in that slot, because it is simply far better than any primetime show CNN has. The Situation with Tucker Carlson is really good as well from what I saw. Once again, an innovative format, and some interesting ideas. It's a bit Fox News in some respects - Tucker Carlson is very much a right-wing host... Although he's happy to admit that, which is something Fox News presenters tend to deny in their claim to being "Fair & Balanced". It's a good late night cable news show - and once again, I think it's better than Anderson Cooper over on CNN. That having been said, MSNBC has some pretty bad shows too and needs a lot of work before it could ever be a serious contender in the cable news game.

Finally, there are some great shows that Australian viewers can expect for next year - but some real turkeys as well. Some of the new shows I watched were Out of Practice, Bones, Close to Home and Criminal Minds..... Out of Practice (sitcom) was great, Criminal Minds (psychological crime drama) looks like it could be good - although I wasn't impressed by the episode I saw, Bones (forensic crime drama) was midly OK, and Close to Home (legal/crime drama) is typically formulaic and badly executed.
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OFFLINE   Andy B #51

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Posted 02 December 2005 - 07:12 PM

I know it's hillarious how they do local news, and those promos, did you manage to check out KTLA News (Morning/10pm), Mr Q?

Edited by Andy B, 02 December 2005 - 07:12 PM.

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OFFLINE   Mr Q #52

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Posted 02 December 2005 - 07:22 PM

QUOTE (Andy B @ Dec 2 2005, 08:12 PM)
I know it's hillarious how they do local news, and those promos, did you manage to check out KTLA News (Morning/10pm), Mr Q?

I did catch a bit of the WB's affliate - however the hotel had really bad reception of it for some reason, so I didn't watch it for too long. What really got me was the massive watermark they have on that channel... It's not enough for them to have KTLA and the WB logo, but they also have two swoosh devices above it as well - it's ridiculously oversized.
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OFFLINE   Andy B #53

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Posted 02 December 2005 - 07:48 PM

QUOTE (Mr Q @ Dec 2 2005, 10:22 AM)
I did catch a bit of the WB's affliate - however the hotel had really bad reception of it for some reason, so I didn't watch it for too long. What really got me was the massive watermark they have on that channel... It's not enough for them to have KTLA and the WB logo, but they also have two swoosh devices above it as well - it's ridiculously oversized.

I know, and another thing I hate is they use the same station font for everything, news, animated banners during programmes, promo, it starting to look ugly. scared.gif
Though I do like ktla news, it's more down to earth especially the morning show, when I was there, I heard from my friend over in LA, that they just started using watermarks 2 months ago.

Another thing I hate about USTV is the watermarks, most are embossed. (ABC, CBS, NBC, UPN, i (Pax)) the best has to be Fox, notice how the WB's network watermark is almost solid. crazy.gif

Edited by Andy B, 02 December 2005 - 07:51 PM.

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OFFLINE   Big Dan #54

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Posted 02 December 2005 - 08:57 PM

QUOTE (Mr Q @ Dec 2 2005, 01:50 PM)
Local news in the US is funny.  biggrin.gif I was forever seeing promos for special reports and exclusive investigations on major issues such as how safe elevators are, the risk of bird flu from eating turkey on Thanksgiving, and how easy it could be for a paedophile to get hired as a shopping centre Santa. Crazy stuff. I was also amazed by just how much local news there is. 5-7am for early news, 11am for morning news, anywhere from mid-afternoon right through until early evening for more news, and to cap off the night, 10 or 11pm for the flagship local newscast.

Specific to LA, I was surprised to see the local CBS affliate (KCBS 2) and the independent KCAL 9 share news resources. They had the same reporters, at times the same presenters, and the same graphics. On some of the OB microphones, you'd see on the labels there on one side a KCAL 9 logo and on the other a CBS 2 logo. KCAL would do news from early afternoon for a couple of hours, then after 30 minutes or so, CBS 2 would start their local news and that would run through until early evening. Then from 8-10 or so KCAL 9 would do local news and then at 11, CBS 2 would do their local news. I found it really weird, but strangely logical - it made the most of that news operation by sharing it across channels.


In relation to the KCBS-KCAL news sharing thing...do you realise that they're owned by the same lot? (CBS Corporation) yes.gif Actually, a lot of the news operations in areas where two stations are either owned by the same company, or has an LMA in operation share resources.

And as for the local news...yeah, how crazy is it? Although, you should watch WSVN-7 in Miami...WAY over the top. I got a tape of their bulletins off one of MS's favourite sons (guess who it is wink.gif) biggrin.gif
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OFFLINE   routemarker #55

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Posted 03 December 2005 - 04:30 PM

Oh so much news talk silly.gif

So MrQ what other facets of US network presentattion did you find interesting (besides the local news) i.e, where were station idents played, how were commercial breaks structured, sponsor billboards and what ads (if any) were played between shows, did nets have short "NOW" stings or did they just get right into business?

Well here's an interesting ident, try to see if you can identify all the animated CBS personalities. Happy Holidays from CBS.

Edited by routemarker, 03 December 2005 - 07:18 PM.

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OFFLINE   Mr Q #56

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Posted 03 December 2005 - 04:54 PM

QUOTE (routemarker @ Dec 3 2005, 05:30 PM)
Oh so much news talk  silly.gif

So MrQ what other facets of US network presentattion did you find interesting (besides the local news) i.e, where were station idents played, how were commercial breaks structured, sponsor billboards and what ads (if any) were played between shows, did nets have short "NOW" stings or did they just get right into business?


Presentation wise, I think I only saw an ABC ident once - following Nightline into Jimmy Kimmel Live. Apart from that, I don't remember seeing any station IDs. I probably watched CBS the most - they generally had the shows I was most interested in seeing (I wasn't going to watch Desperate Housewives or Lost over there given that for both those shows, each episode builds on from the last). To that end, I can't really comment much on ABC, FOX or NBC's presentation styles - I think I only watched one non-news show on NBC, two on FOX, and I don't even remember watching one non-news show on ABC. What I did notice was that it was pretty common for networks to go to an ad break right at the end of a show before coming back to run a preview of next week's show along with the credits. I thought CBS's ECP was a little messy - you'd have one line telling you what the next programme was, but then in the box directly above it, you'd have a preview for another show entirely. So I didn't think that was thought out too well. In general, I sort of felt CBS's presentation elements were a bit bland - they didn't really scream "This is CBS" to me... Although I did notice they regularly ran promos to hammer home the message that they're America's number 1 rating network - saying they hadn't lost a ratings week this year, and that they had the number 1 shows for various nights of the week, the number 1 new shows in different categories and the number 1 show overall - CSI.

In terms of ads, I was really suprised at just how many ads for pharmaceuticals there are - and furthermore, with those ads for drugs, they had to announce what all the possible side effects were. So you'd have potentially an ad for a type of medicine where most of the time is spent warning consumers of the possible adverse reaction they might get, with very little time to actually sell the benefits of the medication. Pretty strange. In general though, their mix of ads just seemed very different to anything we get here... I can't describe it, but as an example, I don't remember seeing an ad for any alcoholic beverages while I was there - back here, we routinely get ads for beer. I was also surprised at how many well known actors star in TV commercials. Patricia Heaton from Everybody Loves Raymond was in an ad for a supermarket, John Lithgow was singing and dancing in an ad for soup, and plenty of B-list celebrities star in infomercials.
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OFFLINE   routemarker #57

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Posted 03 December 2005 - 05:17 PM

I suspect the drug market is big over there, you will always get another ad for advil, tylenol or ambien.

I think CBS approached the new style of the credit bar all wrong. I say they should have kept it like last years, the viewing box is not that much bigger than before. CBS have a hard time croping promos to the extent of ABC or FOX and will never squeeze them like NBC to ensure the whole 75% above the screen is all about the promo.

It does seem like information overload, they have a voiceover over the prod enders and feel the need to re-enforce it with text while playing the credits and a promo all in 20 seconds.

But CBS does have somthing to be proud of, they are a powerful network with solid nights and in the highly competitive US TV market, you need to get that message out there.

QUOTE (Mr Q @ Dec 3 2005, 05:54 PM)
What I did notice was that it was pretty common for networks to go to an ad break right at the end of a show before coming back to run a preview of next week's show along with the credits.

I think only CBS retains that practice. As far as I know FOX, NBC and ABC have a 6 act hour so they've closed that extra break and just get straight into the preview and then the next show.

I must say CBS must be very confident, for example Amazing Race has like 10 seconds of in show credit before having a "stay tuned for scenes from our next episode" sting which is just too long in my book and I'm surprised CBS are comfortable with that, let alone that its not certain viewers will "stay tuned" as trailers are at time's spoilerish.
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OFFLINE   Andy B #58

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Posted 05 December 2005 - 05:08 AM

I'm glad you noticed the amount of adverts that are medical, I find it strange they advertising and telling you he downside to taking the medicine, (to avoid a lawsuit?), it pointless advertising it then. crazy.gif And I think ABC is the only network I've seen that they has shown a quick ident during the ads or coming back to the programme. no.gif

I don't know if you watched KABC's graphics (news/station graphics) look pretty old, out dated like it's stuck in the 90's, and that horrid font! crazy.gif

(P.S. I'll be in the USA soon so I'll send some screengrabs off my camcorder)

Edited by Andy B, 05 December 2005 - 05:09 AM.

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OFFLINE   ehben #59

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Posted 06 December 2005 - 03:21 PM

Interesting developments in the US at the moment. Along with the announcement of the new ABC news anchors, it seems NBC's Katie Couric may be departing for CBS to present its Evening News.

She's contracted to 30 Rock until May, but the CBS News boss has told colleagues a decision may be known this week.

While she'd be the first solo female network news reader, it's not quite the revolution we were promised.

Funny article I read from google news suggested that US Nightly News casts would exist until the audience shrinks to the point that Brian Williams is driving around to people's homes to deliver the news direct. biggrin.gif

Edited by ehben, 06 December 2005 - 03:22 PM.

And now the news...

OFFLINE   Mr Q #60

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Posted 06 December 2005 - 04:58 PM

QUOTE (ehben @ Dec 6 2005, 04:21 PM)
Interesting developments in the US at the moment. Along with the announcement of the new ABC news anchors, it seems NBC's Katie Couric may be departing for CBS to present its Evening News.

She's contracted to 30 Rock until May, but the CBS News boss has told colleagues a decision may be known this week.

While she'd be the first solo female network news reader, it's not quite the revolution we were promised.

Funny article I read from google news suggested that US Nightly News casts would exist until the audience shrinks to the point that Brian Williams is driving around to people's homes to deliver the news direct.  biggrin.gif

See to me the appointment of Vargas and Woodruff isn't the big news here... It's what they're going to be doing that people should pay attention to, I think. They're not just doing one broadcast - they're doing three... An afternoon netcast, the evening news for the east coast and another edition for the west coast. ABC is clearly determined to get the most out of their presenters.

NBC recently launched the Nightly News Netcast - they basically put NBC Nightly News up on MSNBC.com with a special intro from Brian Williams (or whoever is presenting that day). Now, I thought that was pretty big - but to have ABC come out with an exclusive internet broadcast, on top of providing a fresh edition for the west coast really suggests to me a massive shift in attitudes. There is clearly a recognition that the media landscape is changing, and I'm quite impressed with how American networks are adapting - I think they really are leading the field with new media.
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