After three prime-time interruptions and $30 million in lost ad revenue, the four major networks are thinking of a graceful way to cancel the Barack Obama show.
According to the Hollywood Reporter, TV bosses “are seething behind the scenes that President Obama has cost them about $30 million in cumulative ad revenue this year with his three primetime news conference pre-emptions.”
Now, they are hoping Fox’s rejection of the President’s April 29 presser will be the template to follow going forward and give them the leeway to deny White House requests for air time.
They may try to get Obama to hold his pressers or speeches earlier in the evening, say between 7 and 8, or do daytime events that don’t cut into the primetime schedule. that may not work because the Obama Administration likes the reach it gets in prime time.
The other sensitive issue is that Obama is ratings candy when he appears on an individual show, such as his Tonight Show appearance, so the networks risk screwing their chances of snaring him if they cut off his primetime access.
Here’s a chart from the Hollywood Reporter showing the difference.
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