Will Nikki Finke soon be furiously calling or emailing a graduate student in the state of Wisconsin? It’s quite possible given his Antenna article “Campaign Contributions: “Mainstreaming” the Emmy Race.”
Myles McNutt, a graduate student in media and cultural studies at the University of Wisconsin-Madison as well as a TV critic for Cultural Learnings/The A.V. Club, takes a look at how Deadline.com and Entertainment Weekly have increasingly surrendered their pages to veiled promotional Emmy season content:
Why is EW willing to become an outlet for what amount to puff-pieces designed to promote specific contenders? It’s likely the same reason Deadline is producing six AwardsLine print edition in the buildup to the Emmy Awards – in addition to their online coverage – that award voters can have sent directly to their door for free: by producing content related to the race for Emmy nominations and eventually an Emmy victory, and by explicitly aiming that content toward Emmy voters, publications have a better chance of drawing the “FYC” advertising dollars being spent by the networks.
McNutt rightly notes that the standard intro for EW’s “Emmy Watch” column was geared more as a reminder of the June 28 voting deadline than as a straight consumer frame. It would have been nice if the article had included some interview quotes, but still – a lucid bit of media criticism from the heartland.
[Pictured: AwardsLine June 13 issue]