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Disney CEO Suddenly Discovers There Are Too Many Ads on TV; Cutting Ad Load on ABC, ESPN

Phillip Dampier February 15, 2017 Consumer News, Online Video 2 Comments

“I think that in general, there is probably too much commercial interruption in television,” Disney CEO Bob Iger told investors on the company’s first-quarter earnings call.

As some commercial networks cut “hour-long” TV shows to as little as 39 minutes, viewers have taken notice and are tuning out.

TV advertising loads — how many ad breaks and for how long — have been increasing since the 1950s, leaving viewers with less and less of their favorite shows. Networks have gotten creative over the years finding new spaces for advertising content by compressing opening titles and closing credits, telling producers to plan for shorter shows, using product placement to showcase brands and products inside shows, and editing or compressing older programs that can no longer fit in their allotted time slots.

The idea of reducing advertising is a recent phenomena, but one being taken seriously by networks that have watched ad revenue and ratings slip, as viewers learn to bypass or avoid advertising, or watch something else.

Iger promised an unspecified reduction in advertising on Disney-owned ABC and ESPN. It is uncertain if that will result in a slight decline of a minute per hour or something more dramatic. Time Warner, Inc., began opting for the latter in 2015, cutting ad time on certain shows on its TruTV network by half. Viacom and 21st Century Fox followed with experimental ad reductions of their own that same year.

Reducing advertising does not necessarily mean revenue reduction. Earlier experiments raised ad rates to compensate for the reduced number of commercials. Advertisers were reportedly pleased by the experiments because shorter ad breaks encouraged viewers to avoid channel surfing, giving higher exposure to advertising messages.

Currently there are 2 comments on this Article:

  1. Lee says:

    I do not have cable TV and I have never had it. When I have watched it staying in motels, that was all I needed to know I will not have cable TV. I will not pay what they charge for the constant assault of all those adds that all play at exactly the same time on every station.

  2. LG says:

    It’s about time someone noticed. I wonder if Disney has anything to do with Nickelodeon and it’s derivatives. I stopped watching years ago because the ads seemed to be longer than the program. I swear there was an ad bread for an entire 30 minutes. Now if I want to watch a TV series (which is very rare after the ads drove me away), I just use Pirate Bay and watch 0 minutes of ads instead of 30. It’s no wonder advertisers want this as well, considering the audience has gone to Netflix and HULU, leaving the fan base of their shows to either go to P. Bay or endure the psychological trauma of an all-out-assault on their eyeballs and eardrums. One thing not mentioned here is the ever loud ad breaks getting worse, not better over the years since the FCC and congress told them to knock it off a decade ago. I’m sick and tired of grabbing for the remote to turn down the volume every time they cut to the ad break (or a “screaming” break as I call it). I wonder how many more batteries have gone into landfills since they started boosting the volume during these breaks… they’re killing the environment with their greed. They have no respect for us, and no respect for our nations government. Bad citizens lol.







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