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Comcast reduces The Word network footprint because “not owned by African Americans”

Cable operator says it reduced carriage to boost that of African American-owned Impact 12/06/2016 01:33:00 PM Eastern By Joh The Word Network has filed complaints against Comcast at the Federal Communications Commission and Federal Trade Commission over Comcast’s reduction of its carriage, a representative for the network confirms. Word Network wants the FCC and the FTC to investigate “[t]he unjust removal of The Word Network,” as well as diversity and retrans-related issues. The Word Network is a religious network targeted to African Americans. In a press release announcing the complaints, the network said after it contacted Comcast about the carriage reduction and asked the reason, it was told “because we are Comcast, and we can.” Comcast executives speaking on background said that was not accurate. “We continuously evaluate the content we deliver to our customers,” Comcast said in a statement. “As part of this ongoing process, we determined that The Impact Network provides a broader array of programming than The Word Network, which led us to our decision to increase Impact’s distribution. We are also continuing to carry The Word Network to millions of our customers in the Midwest and South based on its appeal in those regions.” The execs, who had not yet seen the complaints, said that 1) Impact was minority-owned, while The Word is not; 2) The Word Network’s content is largely ministries, with many ministers also appearing on other networks; and 3) Impact has family programming, financial planning, and entertainment programming, and that, looking at both, they made a business decision to reduce The Word Network’s carriage and increase Impact’s... read more

Mexican conglomerate Univision continue to buy and control Black media while Black viewer are oblivious to how this affects their world

Univision’s history of racism and colorism may not bode well for TheRoot | All Digitocracy TV Network’s history of racism and colorism may not bode well for website formerly owned by The Washington Post Company By Jillian Báez Two weeks ago Spanish-language television giant Univision announced its acquisition of TheRoot.com, one of the top African American news websites. Coverage of the merger was quite celebratory and echoed co-founder Henry Louis Gates’ statement that “This bold new partnership between Univision and TheRoot underscores the ties that have long bound people of color together throughout the Western Hemisphere and is a sign of even greater levels of communication, collaboration and exchange between these culturally vital groups of people.” But while Gates is obviously optimistic about the venture, I’m a little skeptical. Univision has some issues that no one has talked about that might impact things. For one thing, it’s digital presence, Fusion, is struggling to get traffic to its own website. Secondly, the parent company’s history as a serial consolidator and nasty habit of broadcasting racist content makes me cautious about this venture. Under Univision’s ownership, BounceTV now offers original programming including two sitcoms, a comedy show and soon its first scripted drama. Univision is the largest Spanish-language television network in the U.S. and the fifth largest network overall. A look into Univision’s history helps to make sense of the network’s acquisition of The Root. Univision emerged from a consolidation of Mexican tycoon Emilio Azcárraga’s Spanish International Network (SIN) and the Spanish International Broadcasting Corporation in 1987. Hallmark purchased Univision in 1988 and sold the network to entrepreneur Jerrold Perenchio, owner of  Mexico’s... read more

Gwen Ifill, veteran journalist dies at 61

by John Eggerton November 14, 2016 Gwen Ifill—moderator and managing editor of Washington Week and co-anchor and managing editor for PBS NewsHour—has died at the age of 61. She had taken a leave of absence back in May to deal with “medical issues,” essentially the same reason NewsHour gave last week when she was not able to cohost election night coverage as initially planned. “It is with extremely heavy hearts that we must share that our dear friend and beloved colleague Gwen Ifill passed away this afternoon following several months of cancer treatment,” said PBS in a statement. “She was surrounded by loving family and many friends whom we ask that you keep in your thoughts and prayers.” “Gwen was a standard bearer for courage, fairness and integrity in an industry going through seismic change,” said PBS NewsHour executive producer and WETA senior VP Sara Just. “She was a mentor to so many across the industry and her professionalism was respected across the political spectrum. She was a journalist’s journalist and set an example for all around her. “So many people in the audience felt that they knew and adored her. She had a tremendous combination of warmth and authority. She was stopped on the street routinely by people who just wanted to give her a hug and considered her a friend after years of seeing her on tv. We will forever miss her terribly.” President Obama offered his and the First Lady’s deepest condolences on the death of Ifill. At a press conference before his final trip abroad as President, he said that she was a friend, and a... read more
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