Monday, December 3, 2012 This Winter

A few notes on the projects coming up around here over the next couple months:

Midseason Preview. According to my current plan, there will be three big components here:
  • A big scheduling think-piece on each network. I absolutely do not miss doing my old "Five-Spot" columns, but it's left me in a spot where I rarely have an obvious opportunity to say much about scheduling decisions. Perhaps I will figure out a way to do that more regularly. For now, I will let it all out in one big post for each network. I'll be reviewing the fall, revisiting where I went wrong/right in my post-upfronts commentary, and looking ahead to midseason schedules. At the moment, I'm planning on these going up in two weeks (December 17-21). Let's hope ABC has released its midseason plans by then!
  • True2 Power Rankings. These focus on the fall shows heading into midseason, and the more extensive batch of these (as opposed to the weekly editions linked on the right sidebar) is currently skedded to go up January 2-4.
  • Midseason Best Case/Worst Case. The popular new feature introduced late last summer will return to preview all the shows premiering at midseason. Planning to have this coincide with what seems like the first official week of midseason, January 6-12.
The War of 18-49. The last couple years I've had a War of 18-49 "mini-season" in December to review the fall-only seasons just concluded. This year, I'm bumping it back by about a month. The reason for this is the atypically large number of veteran shows scheduled to end sometime in January (Private Practice, 30 Rock, Fringe, Gossip Girl). It will help lighten the summer load somewhat to be able to hit all of those earlier, and plus none of the fall-only seasons (Dancing with the Stars, Survivor, etc.) are coming back right off the bat in the new year anyway. No exact dates yet, but my best guess is this will go down over the last week of January and the first week of February.

Those are the two projects that stretch over many posts, but there are a couple other things that will take up a lot of my time in the next couple months that I wanted to let y'all know about:

A redone Intro to Nielsen Ratings. I've always billed this place as a "next-level" stop for people who are already TV ratings enthusiasts and don't need the basics re-explained daily. But it's still essential to have some good introductory material that helps frame the way I operate around here, and I'm not sure there's a truly definitive introduction to the world of Nielsen ratings out there. I'm not talking about something that just tells you what a "rating" is and what a "share" is and what "Live + Same Day" means. I'm talking about something that helps you to really use the numbers. My current edition scratches the surface on a few essential topics, but (despite the "last updated" date) I'm pretty sure I haven't done a substantial update to that since it was first written over two years ago. I like to think I've made a lot of strides since then and have produced a lot of posts that would be great to link back to. So I'm working on an introductory piece that reflects that evolution.

Besides significantly expanding the sections on why I (almost exclusively) use adults 18-49 and why I (almost exclusively) use Live + Same Day ratings, I really want to address as many facets of the typical ratings conversation as possible: historical declines (integrating my A18-49+ number), broadcast vs. cable, network decision-making, network spin, the (un)importance of most week-to-week declines, timeslot differences (True2), among others.

I don't have a set date for when this will get done, and I've pushed it back already many times. (Initially I wanted it to come out right at the beginning of the fall, but I became so wrapped up in the Best Case/Worst Case posts that it didn't happen.) I'm hoping to make it a high priority this month. I'll work this week on hammering out an outline for the many topics to be addressed, and maybe some of y'all will have some additions to that once it gets done. Any suggestions you may have at this point would also be appreciated.

The Top 10 TV Ratings Moments of 2012. My third annual spin on the year-end top 10 list is currently scheduled for December 27-28, with ten thru six on the first day and five thru one on the second. I've got several ideas written down already, but again, feel free to let me know if there's something big that you think I may end up forgetting.

Anyway... this should get you rather up to speed on what's going down over the next couple months. I say all this in part to point out that the next two weeks will be relatively quiet as I work on this stuff. Unless major inspiration strikes, it'll just be the "regulars."


Spot said...

So happy that you are doing a best case/ worst case scenario again! looking forward to it!

Spot said...

Thanks! Let's hope the predictions will be a little better this time. ;-)

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