SBD/September 12, 2012/Media

CBS Adjusting Start Times Of Fall TV Series To Accommodate NFL Broadcasts

Changes in start times for CBS shows will only affect viewers on the East coast
CBS is "tweaking its fall schedule to better accommodate NFL overage on Sunday nights," according to Michael O'Connell of the HOLLYWOOD REPORTER. The net yesterday announced that it will shift start times for its Sunday series "by a half-hour on days that it airs an NFL doubleheader." The affected shows are "60 Minutes," "Big Brother," "The Amazing Race," "The Good Wife" and "The Mentalist." The change begins this Sunday and "will only affect viewers on the Eastern half of the U.S." CBS has opened up Eye-lerts, an SMS text alert system to inform viewers of adjusted start times (HOLLYWOODREPORTER.com, 9/11). USA TODAY's Michael Hiestand writes the shift "should give CBS Sports breathing room." When events "run long, such as Serena Williams winning the U.S. Open on Sunday ... CBS Sports regularly zooms off air to get to the iconic news show as quickly as possible." However, there is "an obvious solution that would serve sports viewers and those tuning in for '60 Minutes': As CBS airs '60 Minutes,' continue the sports event coverage on the CBS Sports Network cable channel" (USA TODAY, 9/12).

UP CLOSE AND PERSONAL: NFL Network said that it is "working on putting tiny cameras in the pylons at the ends of each goal line, giving an up-close look at scoring plays." PRO FOOTBALL TALK's Michael David Smith noted the logistics of getting the cameras in the pylon "are still being worked on but could be in place" for tomorrow night’s Bears-Packers game. NFL Net Senior VP/Production & Programming Mark Quenzel said, "We’re still working out some kinks on the pylons, that allow us to see goal line stands, those types of things, and we’re going to add a couple of cameras for isolating players." If the "technology works, this is a development that would improve officiating, and should be adopted for every NFL game" (PROFOOTBALLTALK.com, 9/11).

LEFT IN THE DARK: In DC, Sarah Kogod noted NFL RedZone channel customers all over the U.S. who "use Verizon for their cable service were getting error messages and splash screens instead of live football action" on Sunday. Some people who "attempted to activate the channel per Verizon's instructions were shown an error page, with a customer service phone number to call." That phone number "led to even more problems." Kogod: "I was sent other stories by readers who had the same issue. Waiting on hold, being transferred and then disconnected" (WASHINGTONPOST.com, 9/11).

RECORD RATINGS: The Patriots' 34-13 win over the Titans on Sunday drew the highest daytime season-opener local rating in franchise history. The 33.5 local rating in the Boston market saw nearly 800,000 watch on WBZ-CBS. Sunday's game also was the third highest-rated regular season opener in franchise history (Patriots).
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