[opendtv] News: Scripps Sets Two HD Channels For '06

  • From: Craig Birkmaier <craig@xxxxxxxxx>
  • To: OpenDTV Mail List <opendtv@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Tue, 3 May 2005 08:21:26 -0400

http://publications.mediapost.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=Articles.showArticleHomePage&art_aid=29735

Scripps Sets Two HD Channels For '06
by David Kaplan, Monday, May 2, 2005 3:30 PM EST

AS AN ADDITIONAL SWEETENER TO its other blandishments to advertisers 
and media buyers during the upfront negotiations currently taking 
place, Scripps Networks unveiled plans Friday to air HGTV in High 
Definition in January 2006, followed by the introduction of Food 
Network in High Definition some time in the second quarter of that 
year.

  "Once we started looking at the unique offerings of our networks as 
an overlay to what is currently being offered to viewers in an HD 
format, we shifted our strategy," said John Lansing, president of 
Scripps Networks.

  Lansing noted that Scripps Networks is more than doubling the hours 
of production originally planned to create programming in the HD 
format for the two stand-alone networks, with an excess of 1,000 
hours scheduled.

  The company also plans to create new specials and series for the 
format, Lansing said. Some of the HD titles include "Extreme Homes of 
Europe," "My First Place," "Small Spaces, Big Style," and "Offbeat 
America"--and will contribute to 400 hours on HGTV in High 
Definition, supplemented by about 100 hours of programming from DIY 
Network.

  Furthermore, Food Network in High Definition will feature an 
additional 400 hours of original content.

  The use of HD is designed to help the network get out in front of 
others who are still deciding how to use the visual technology. 
Lansing also pointed to rising demand for HD, citing a March study by 
the Consumer Electronics Association.

  The CEA noted that nearly half of all consumers intend to buy an HD 
set when they make their next TV purchase. The total number of HD 
sets shipped to retailers hit 16.3 million at the end of 2004, 
according to the CEA--a number that should rise to 36 million by the 
end of this year.

Thus, the decision to announce its intentions now was made in order 
to leverage its sales position in upfront negotiations.

"Response has been good," said Steve Gigliotti, executive vice 
president of advertising sales at Scripps Networks. "Advertisers have 
come to expect our brands to provide them with opportunities on a 
variety of platforms, from the linear networks to our Web sites and 
broadband. They recognize that the high-def platform can provide some 
unique ways to showcase their products and services."

  Still, one media buyer who applauds Scripps' adoption of more HD 
hours for its programming said that won't have much of an effect on 
pricing.

  "This is something that everybody is going to have to do, and most 
networks have similar plans in place," said one media buyer. "But a 
lot of advertisers haven't wanted to take the extra expense of having 
commercial spots in both HD and non-HD formats. They should be doing 
both--so maybe if more networks announce similar plans, that will 
ease that reluctance, but it won't make marketers more or less likely 
to advertise with HGTV."


 
 
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