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Posts Tagged ‘Brian Roberts’

These Are The Politicians Big Media PACs Donate Campaign Funds To

Media companies are some of the most active companies in the country when it comes to lobbying politicians. A big part of lobbying is donating money to political campaigns. With the DNC and RNC right around the corner, I thought it would be a good time to look and see which politicians the media companies have been donating to during the 2012 cycle through their PACs.

Some disclaimers: different companies donate different amounts of money through their respective PACs. Comcast gave over $2,000,000 this cycle, compared to CBS, which gave a relatively paltry $100,000. In addition, many of the recipients are, not surprisingly, members of the House and Senate committees and subcommittees that oversee media and technology businesses. All of the data was culled from OpenSecrets.org.

Comcast: The owner of NBCUniversal was by far the largest donor in the media space, giving over $2 million to politicians this cycle. It was also very even with regards to where it spent its money, giving $1.06 million yo Democrats, and $965,000 to Republicans. Most of the money went to party leaders in both houses, as well as committee members, and representatives in states where it has a large cable footprint. The CEO of Comcast, Brian Roberts, and the CEO of NBCUniversal, Steve Burke, both donated money to Democratic PACs and politicians.

News Corp: Read more

Brian Roberts On The Comcast/NBC Relationship

Bloomberg Businessweek’s latest edition is the “Interview Issue,” and among those interviewed are Mitt Romney, Disney CEO Bob Iger and Comcast CEO Brian Roberts. Roberts was asked about the relationship he has with NBCUniversal, which is now owned by Comcast, and what role he plays in some of those decisions:

Do you get involved in decisions at the network level? If Savannah replaces Ann, do you make that call?

I knew about it ahead of time, but I do not make that call. I have tremendous confidence in [NBCUniversal CEO] Steve Burke, who worked 12 years for Disney (DIS) and 12 years for Comcast and grew up in broadcast television with his dad. [Daniel Burke was a former president and CEO of Capital Cities/ABC.] So I have the utmost confidence in Steve’s leadership and the team he relies on. I want all the key folks to know I’m involved and I care, but there should be one leader, and Steve is making those hard calls.

You can read more here.

CNBC Looks at the Future of TV

As the TV networks, and increasingly online video networks, prepare to pitch their new shows to advertisers at the annual upfronts, CNBC is looking at the future of the industry. Monday night, CNBC’s Media and Entertainment reporter Julia Boorstin takes viewers inside the companies competing to shape the new connected-TV reality. MTV founder Tom Freston, Comcast CEO Brian Roberts, CBS CEO Les Moonves, Disney CEO Robert Iger, even actor Ashton Kutcher all weigh in on the future of television.

“Stay Tuned…The Future of TV,” premieres Monday at 9pmET/PT on CNBC.

NBCUniversal, Comcast Pledge to Hire 1,000 Veterans As Part Of ‘Hiring Our Heroes’ Initiative

NBCUniversal and Comcast have pledged to hire 1,000 veterans over three years as part of NBC News’ “Hiring Our Heroes” initiative.

“It’s clear that the leaders of tomorrow are the youth of today, and there’s no better youth of today than the people that have been fighting overseas and protecting our country,” Comcast chairman and CEO Brian Roberts (right) told Ann Curry on “Today” this morning.

“Hiring Our Heroes” is a joint NBC News and U.S. Chamber of Commerce initiative focused on helping veterans and military spouses find employment. The “Today” show broadcast this morning from a job fair aboard the Intrepid, one of 400 hiring events that that NBC News has committed to hosting this year.

At CPJ Gala, Dan Rather Criticizes Corporate Media, While Comcast CEO Brian Roberts Promises Journalistic Independence For NBC News

Last night the Committee to Protect Journalists held its annual gala at the Waldorf Astoria hotel in New York City. The bulk of the event was to honor journalists who risked their lives to cover the news, and along the way a few well-known faces showed up. In addition to the international award recipients, Mansoor al-Jamri of Bahrain, Javier Valdez Cardenas of Mexico, Umar Cheema of Pakistan and Natalya Radina of Belarus, former “CBS Evening News” anchor Dan Rather accepted a lifetime achievement award, while Comcast CEO Brian Roberts accepted his first public award since his cable company acquired NBCUniversal.

In his speech, Rather set his sights squarely on corporate media–of which Roberts is clearly a part– and sent a message to journalists to not forget their heritage. He was introduced by First Amendment lawyer James Goodale, who began by defending Rather’s report on former President George W. Bush‘s military service. “All the facts in that particular program were substantially correct,” Goodale said. “He was correct.”

Questions surrounding that report led to Rather’s departure from CBS News.

“As you know, we are living in an age when big money owns everything…including the news,” Rather said. “That cash bought a lot of silence for a long time. Enough time for unchecked power to get this country tangled into messes all around the world. We all know that money talks. But, so do the people…

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Pres. Obama Drops By Martha’s Vineyard Home of Comcast CEO

After golf and before his statement on Libya, Pres. Obama stopped by the Martha’s Vineyard home of Comcast CEO Brian Roberts. That’s the motorcade, right. Comcast is the majority owner of NBCUniversal. From the pool report, on Politico:

The presidential motorcade on Martha’s Vineyard peeled out of Blue Heron Farms at 5:15 p.m. with the president and Valerie Jarrett in tow. …Obama and Jarrett arrived at West Tisbury home of their friends, Brian and Aileen Roberts, spokesman Josh Earnest informs us. It was 5:30 p.m. Roberts is chairman and CEO of Comcast.

Comcast CEO Brian Roberts Speaks Out on Bloomberg FCC Complaint, NBC News

At a breakfast discussion hosted by Fortune, Comcast CEO Brian Roberts addressed the FCC complaint filed by Bloomberg TV, as well as his thoughts on the state of NBC News.

Bloomberg filed a complaint with the FCC arguing that Comcast is not living up to the promise it made in order to complete the NBCU acquisition. Bloomberg argues that the “neighborhooding” clause means that in areas where Comcast currently places news channels together in a group, Bloomberg should be included. Comcast argues that the clause applies to future decisions, not prior ones.

Roberts–who appeared on Bloomberg from The Cable Show last week–briefly addressed Bloomberg’s complaint this morning:

“Whatever the condition was, it was set up based on market forces that pre-date the merger,” Roberts said. “Whether by choosing to merge that should cause us to disrupt a lot of consumers by putting [a channel] over here, move something over there or move that to somewhere else, it is the single most noisy thing to do. None of that was done with the kind of market conditions they potentially described.”

As for NBC News, Roberts reiterated previous comments he has made about how important that part of the company is in terms of brand equity. At the breakfast, however, he also argued that NBC News, MSNBC were a powerful business opportunity as well:

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MLB Rejects Frank McCourt's Deal With Fox

The Los Angeles Dodgers suffered another setback Monday when Major League Baseball rejected a proposed Fox television contract.

Under the proposed $3 billion deal, owner Frank McCourt would have received $385 million upfront. The Dodgers have struggled to meet payroll all season and reportedly doesn’t have enough cash to meet his June 30 obligations. Below is the statement released by MLB regarding the proposed deal:

“Pursuant to my authority as Commissioner, I have informed Los Angeles Dodgers owner Frank McCourt today in a detailed letter that I cannot approve the club’s proposed transaction with FOX. This decision was reached after a full and careful consideration of the terms of the proposed transaction and the club’s current circumstances. It is my conclusion that this proposed transaction with FOX would not be in the best interests of the Los Angeles Dodgers franchise, the game of Baseball and the millions of loyal fans of this historic club. Read more

Couches, Cobi and Comcast at the Cable Show

The 2011 Cable Show is in full gear in Chicago, and as usual a number of high-profile TV news personalities are in attendance to moderate panels, host shows and sign autographs.

Fox News Channel’s Steve Doocy made an appearance at the Fox networks booth, where he signed miniature couches for guests (pictured right). Fox Business Network’s Lou Dobbs was also signing autographs earlier this week, though according to one report his Fox Soccer colleague Cobi Jones had the longer line.

CNN had Candy Crowley and Erin Burnett in town to sign autographs and moderate panels, while MSNBC’s Tamron Hall broadcast her program live from the show floor.

On CNBC, Becky Quick interviewed her boss, Comcast CEO Brian Roberts, who was o the Cable Show floor:

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Media Meshes at Mirror Awards Ceremony

Photo Courtesy: Newhouse School

Yesterday the Newhouse School of Communications at Syracuse University held its fifth annual Mirror Awards ceremony, honoring the best in media reporting. You can read about the winners from FishbowlNY, here.

MSNBC hosts Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski hosted the event, which also presented special awards to Foursquare co-founder Dennis Crowley and Comcast CEO Brian Roberts.

Scarborough opened up the event with a friendly jab at his former executive producer, Chris Licht, who was in the audience.

“Our connection to the Newhouse school is through our executive producer Chris Licht. We have found working with him through the years that not only do you teach your students how to get out there in the media world and do it better than anyone else, but we have to say the trait that you instill that really means more than any other is loyalty. Sticking together through the years no matter what. How is CBS Chris?”

Time Warner CEO Jeff Bewkes was to present the award to Roberts. The Comcast CEO was unable to attend as he was in Switzerland securing the rights to the 2014, 2016, 2018 and 2020 Olympics for NBC. Bewkes took the opportunity to poke fun at his business partner… and now competitor:

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