Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Stephen Colbert: The totally non-ideological business decision from inside the liberal media bubble

NPR’s On The Media:

Let’s just assume that CBS, a profit-making enterprise, isn't actually plotting to alienate exactly half of the network’s late-night audience.
CNN’s Reliable Sources:

STELTER: Now, as a media reporter, I view this as a business decision by CBS, not an ideological one. But the politics here are awfully interesting. So, I want to get into that in just a minute.

But since it's business, whenever I want to know whether TV programs going to work or not, where do I look? To the demo, of course, the demographic. That's TV shorthand for the younger viewers who when they watch bring in more advertising revenue, more advertising dollars for channels like this one. Let me share two numbers with you that explain what's going on. The median age for "The Colbert Report's" audience is 42. The median age of Letterman's "Late Show" audience is 58.
Kind of surprising to see left-wingers appeal to the marketplace as the final arbiter of wisdom.

See conservatives are wrong about CBS and Colbert because business executives said so!
Of course, the possibility that a bunch of liberal executives might make bad decisions because of their cultural blindspots or ideological blinders is a question not worth discussing.

Because PROFIT! Markets!
Quite a difference from the crtitic’s usual refrain. One of the main arguments for corporate and newsroom diversity is that heterogeneous groups make better decisions and will avoid mistakes like Grantland’s “Dr. V” fiasco.

Diversity is always Good! Except for ideological diversity.

Two big time examples of bad decisions due to cultural blindspots: Hollywood missed the boat on both The Passion of the Christ and Jeff Foxworthy’s Blue Collar Comedy Tour.

Hollywood, Markets, and Cultural Blinders

Market as God, Pundit as Priest
On the media’s convenient obsession with “The Demo”:

CBS, Colbert and Contempt for America

Marketing’s repeated folly

Why do marketers hate old people?
This is as true now as when I first wrote it:

As with most advertising-driven "research" the groups identified as most desirable and/or cutting edge tend to be groups that are over-represented in advertising, publishing, and media. That is why straight men getting facials in LA and New York gets discussed on TV and in major papers. It is perceived as some sort of harbinger in a way that 1,000,000 home-schooled children or 33 states with "shall issue" concealed carry laws are not.

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