Robert Gates The Secretary of Defense will continue in that position in the Obama administration for at least another year, a Pentagon spokesman said Thursday. "Secretary Gates met with the president just before Christmas and gave him a commitment to stay on the job for at least another year," Geoff Morrell, deputy assistant secretary of defense and Pentagon press secretary, told CNN. Gates served as Secretary of Defense in the last two years of the Bush administration and stayed on in the post when President Obama took office. According to his biography, Gates is the only defense secretary in U.S. history to be asked to remain in office by a newly elected president. Gates once served as president of Texas A&M University.
For just shy of one month way back in 1995, the Walt Disney Company was poised to become the world's biggest media company after announcing it was buying ABC/Capital Cities. But mere weeks later, Time Warner announced it was buying Turner Broadcasting, putting itself back into the lead dog position among the media pack as measured by revenue, a position it held through its wayward combination with America Online and up to this week.
I am not standing near enormous platters of shrimp and sushi under a tent at Lincoln Center. I am not listening to Maroon Five play while the stars of "Gossip Girl" glow and mingle. I am not at the annual television upfronts because, as you may have heard, they don't really exist any more. They are over, a relic of the past like drive-in movies or bolo ties or Cabbage Patch dolls.
When Fox and NBC Universal announced last March that they would join forces to put their TV shows online, the pundits of Silicon Valley howled with derision. Old media doesn't get the Internet, they said. Michael Arrington, the influential editor of TechCrunch, rattled off the reasons the project would never succeed and suggested that Fox and NBC quickly name their joint venture before it got stuck with the moniker insiders at Google had reportedly given it: Clown Co.
On the surface, the Writers Guild strike was a showdown between writers and suits over compensation from new methods of distributing content. But, looking back over the three-month walkout, it also provided handy cover for the powers that be to derail the creative community's gravy train and rethink the way TV shows are made.
Amidst the maelstrom of must-dos hitting NBC Universal's new CEO - boot Don Imus, manage Alec Baldwin, turn around NBC, determine the company's digital future - Jeff Zucker has been trying to get to know his 16,000 employees. He's been holding monthly lunches and breakfasts with small groups.
MARKETS: Business is Back! April was such a charm! And here we are in May and the beat goes on. Like this on Wednesday: "Orders to U.S. factories surged in March by the largest amount in a year..." (Business is back!) TWX and YUM earnings were tasty and so we have another record for the Dow, crossing (Jordan) 13,200 for the first time. What was really nice to see was that the NAZ and S&P outpaced the Dow, because so much of the rally recently was big stocks outperforming (and playing catch up really with) the rest of the market. Finally the folks who've been saying that big caps looked cheap are looking smart.....Third time's a charm with Cablevision, right? Dolans are paying out $36.26 a share. Can you believe they originally offered $27 last fall? Good for the board to get up, stand up, get up for your rights!....Hey what are you doing this weekend, The (Kentucky) Derby or BRK's annual meeting? Hard to do both, trust me.....
In early April, shortly before Alec Baldwin committed his voicemail eruption (calling his 11-year-old daughter a "rude, thoughtless little pig"), the star of NBC's 30 Rock yukked it up with NBC Universal CEO Jeff Zucker on the 52nd floor of the real 30 Rock - Manhattan's GE Building.
If you were scripting a Wall Street movie, what kind of characters would you include? Perhaps a perfectly tanned, hard-charging executive with a reputation for wearing his ambition on his sleeve, or a struggling CEO stuck in the shadow of his predecessor, or a glamour-puss anchorwoman who worked her way from cloakroom girl to worldwide celebrity, or a Saudi prince, or a billionaire media magnate plotting a new power play? Add a corporate jet and whispers of shenanigans at 35,000 feet, and you've got a certified blockbuster.
Nielsen Media Research, the firm that calculates national television ratings for shows, will start providing a reading on how many people are watching the commercials starting this November, according to a report published Tuesday.