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The Future of Television

Wednesday, January 18, 2006  |  posted by Hugh Hewitt

Other than “24,” of course.

New Blance –the shoe company– has bought a stake in ExerciseTV. No ads, buts lots of product placement. From the (subscription required, and increasingly necessary):

Exercisetv’s programming lineup initially will consist primarily of numerous varieties of exercise workouts — like yoga and Pilates. Eventually the network will add videos on subjects like shooting basketballs, playing golf or pitching curve balls.

New Balance won’t be running conventional 30-second ads on exercisetv because on-demand services allow viewers to fast forward through both the programs and the commercials. Instead, New Balance will promote its products by getting many of the video participants to wear the company’s shoes and clothing. New Balance also will sponsor graphic overlays that will run during the videos, giving viewers advice on subjects like the best way to warm up for a workout.

I am looking for a way to pitch my new show: “Slow and Old, but Stubborn: Running Into 50 with Bad Knees.”

BTW: “24,” which I watched for the first time on Sunday and Monday nights and to which I am now completely addicted –has there ever been a faster, more compelling drama set in our times?– seemed to me to use a different ad strategy of many more, smaller breaks that keep the viewer in place for fear of missing the opening of the next segment, an opening wherein crucial plot developments could occur.

I don’t know what those ads are selling for, but my guess is that they are sold out.

Question: Given the enormous buzz about the opening of the new season of “24,” how does someone who missed those episodes see them now? It seems to me that a pay-for-view encore would bring in quick cash for the network.

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