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News Television

NewsNation, Verizon Contract Ends Friday

Verizon serves several million customers along the east coast. Nexstar owns almost 200 local stations across the U.S.

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NewsNation is in danger of losing potentially millions of viewers by the end of the week.

Justin Baragona reported Wednesday in the Daily Beast that Verizon and Nexstar, which owns NewsNation, are still in talks about renewing a contract that is currently scheduled to end on Friday.

“Our contract with Nexstar ends on October 14, 2022 and your Fios TV package contains Nexstar channels,” Verizon said in a statement. “We are working hard to negotiate with them to reach a new agreement. However, Nexstar has proposed charging over 64% more for its programming. Verizon remains committed to making these channels available to our customers, but simply cannot agree to such unreasonable increases.”

According to Baragona, Verizon serves several million customers along the east coast. Nexstar owns almost 200 local stations across the U.S. In a statement from Nexstar spokesperson Gary Weitman, the company wants to act fairly in negotiations with Verizon.

“We have a long track record of negotiating fairly and avoiding service interruptions in our markets and we hope to reach agreement with Verizon FiOS. We don’t want the viewers in our local markets to miss any of this weekend’s college or NFL football games, or any of the other valuable programming we provide.” A Verizon spokesperson countered, saying Nexstar wants to charge too much.

“For nearly two decades, broadcasters like Nexstar have been charging cable and satellite providers—and their customers—unreasonably high fees to access local stations. Broadcasters often remove their channels from consumers until TV providers agree to pay more—even though the same channels are available for free over the air.”

NewsNation is the new TV home for former CNN host Chris Cuomo, who launched a new primetime show earlier this month.

News Television

Chris Licht: CNN’s Competition Isn’t MSNBC, Fox News

In a recent appearance on the podcast “On With Kara Swisher,” Chris Licht explained that his competition for the cable news channel isn’t Fox News or MSNBC.

Eduardo Razo

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CNN’s Chris Licht took over the role of Jeff Zucker and in a recent appearance on the podcast “On With Kara Swisher,” Licht explained that his competition for the cable news channel isn’t Fox News or MSNBC.

“I’m not looking at it through trying to appeal to ‘lean into the left’ or ‘try to appeal to more people on the right.’ I think that that’s not a good business model because you’re fighting for a bigger slice of a shrinking pie,” Licht said.

“The competition for me in cable is not MSNBC or Fox. Hopefully, what we’re doing is so different and unique that we are attracting people who perhaps have found cable news to be irrelevant in their lives.”

Additionally, Licht laid out who he was competing against and didn’t name any news outlets; his response will surprise many as to who he wants CNN to compete against under his tenure.

“My competition is frankly Kathleen’s HGTV and Netflix,” Licht said. “I’m fighting for people in down news times. I’m fighting for people’s discretionary attention. And I don’t believe that the way to the future is to try to steal people from Fox.”

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News Television

Tucker Carlson: Social Media Ban Is Attack On Democracy

Carlson is sounding the alarm on existing social media bans to people like former President Donald Trump calling such bans “attacks on democracy.”

Ryan Hedrick

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Fox News host Tucker Carlson is sounding the alarm on existing social media bans to people like former President Donald Trump calling such bans “attacks on democracy.” 

Big Tech moved to ban Trump from all social media platforms including Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube following the Jan 6th riots at the U.S. Capitol. 

Carlson told his audience Wednesday that it really doesn’t matter what you think of Trump or his policies on fentanyl or anything else. 

“If you’re an American, you have to acknowledge that in order for our democracy to function, candidates for office — political candidates — have to be allowed to speak in public,” Carlson said in a transcript published on Breitbart

Carlson stated that if political candidates can’t speak in public then this can’t be a democracy. 

“He is still banned despite Elon Musk’s takeover,” Carlson said. “Trump is still banned from Twitter tonight, one of our premier social media platforms. Parler, you’ll remember, was pulled off the internet for giving Donald Trump an account.”

“So, you have to wonder now, where are the defenders of democracy? People were yelling last week about democracy is dying. If there are not calling for Trump to be re-platformed, you will know for certain they’re not defenders of democracy. They’re totalitarians,” he added. 

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News Television

Chris Licht: Media Coverage, Analysis Doesn’t Belong on Linear Television

Many questions remain regarding CNN boss Chris Licht to the abrupt cancellation of “Reliable Sources” and the subsequent exit of host Brian Stelter.

Ryan Hedrick

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Many questions remain regarding CNN’s unceremonious cancellation of “Reliable Sources” and the subsequent exit of host Brian Stelter. The network under CEO Chris Licht has undergone several changes and there’s more to come.

Recently, Licht sat down with journalist Kara Swisher on her podcast to discuss a bevy of topics related to the network, a network that Licht has promised to steer in an entirely different direction than his predecessor Jeff Zucker.  

Licht touched on Stelter’s departure, citing the need for CNN to take a different approach when it comes to covering what’s happening in the media. “Reliable Sources” focused on the analysis of and commentary from the American news media. 

“I want to do media coverage in a different way,” Licht told Swisher. “I think you can see Sarah Fisher who we just brought over as a contributor, who still works for Axios, and my vision for media coverage is that it doesn’t really have a place on linear television.” 

Stelter came to CNN after working as a media reporter for The New York Times. Stelter had agreed to host a daily episode of Reliable Sources on CNN+, but the streaming platform was disbanded shortly thereafter.

Licht said he prefers that CNN do media analysis and commentary on its digital platform which reportedly reaches 180 million unique users. 

“When it makes sense to be on television, we put Oliver Darcey on or we put Sarah [Fisher] on,” he added. 

Stelter reportedly had three years left on his contract when he was let go by CNN. Swisher reported during the conversation that Stelter had told friends that he felt like a sacrificial lamb. Swisher asked Licht why he didn’t offer Stelter a position elsewhere in the company. 

“I don’t really want to get into specifics on that,” Licht stated. “It’s not fair to Brian.”  

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