The broadcast press is abuzz about the “first truly digital Olympics.” But should ad buyers be robbing their TV budgets to run banners on NBCSports.com? Maybe not. As PaidContent reports, online consumption of the 2012 Olympiad will not be as widespread as NBC predicted: That according to research from the online sports broadcaster Perform Group, in their Global Sports Media Consumption Report 2012.
Perform Group surveyed sports enthusiasts worldwide, to find that:
- Only 9% of UK sports fans and 16% in the US plan to view the Olympiad online
- Just 3% of UK fans and 7% in the US plan to watch any Olympic content over smartphones
- 64% of Brits and 71% of Yanks will watch via regular TV
Interestingly, 70% of Chinese intend to watch the games online. But as WebProNews describes, research groups in every country but China concentrated on a representative sample from all adults, while in China, the survey was taken amongst “tech-savvy” consumers in major municipalities.
BBC Sport in the UK plans to broadcast or stream 2,500 hours of the games across TV, Internet, mobile and tablet forms. And the International Olympic Committee plans to stream the entire event across YouTube. Finally, all 32 sports at the 2012 Summer Olympics in London will be streamed live at nbcolympics.com, as the New York Times reported in April. As PaidContent observes, “we will believe actual online viewing habits when we see them.”
Just short of its 30th birthday, Boston’s independent rock station WFNX (described as "iconic," "legendary" and "progressive" across the press) has been sold to radio giant/clearinghouse Clear Channel Communications. As the New York Times describes it, The deal for WFNX, which broadcasts at 101.7 FM, is pending approval from the Federal Communications Commission.
It is unlikely that new management will keep the old format, as 17 of 21 employees were immediately let go, as RadioInk reports. Three full-timers and one part-timer will keep WFNX on air until the sale completes. As WFNX Program Director Paul Driscoll told New England Cable News, "I think of it as a two month Irish wake, so we're going to send this legendary station off the right way."
Stephen M. Mindich, the chairman and chief executive of the station’s owner, the Phoenix Media/Communications Group, announced the sale Wednesday morning in a memo to employees, which was posted by the Boston Phoenix newspaper (another Phoenix Media property).
“We introduced Nirvana and Pearl Jam to wider audiences in 1991,” claimed Mindich. “Together with the Boston Phoenix we staged the notorious Green Day concert at the Hatch Shell in 1994…for years we broadcast One In Ten, the only program on a commercial radio station in the nation dedicated to the issues and lifestyles of the GLBT community…Here comes the catch....Despite its celebrated history, its cutting edge programming , its tradition of breaking new music, its ardent fans among listeners and advertisers, for some time it has been difficult to sustain the station -- especially since the start of the Great Recession.”
In other words: “Thanks for the memories and you’re fired,” as RadioINK described the notice.
Clear Channel owns 840 stations across the United States, including four in the Boston area: The Top 40 WXKS-FM; WJMN-FM, which plays hip-hop; and two AM stations, the talk WXKS and the “Spanish hits” WKOX.
As the Times observes, rock stations have been on the decline for much of the last decade, leaving independent stations particularly vulnerable. Last year, Emmis Communications sold WRXP in New York to Merlin Media to a former top Clear Channel executive who converted it to a talk format.
Viacom has unveiled the results of a new study exploring the social TV phenomenon through the lens of the viewer. While fairly nascent, social TV and co-viewing trends represent a shift in TV viewing from what Viacom calls a “lean-back” to a “lean-forward” experience. If there is a takeaway for advertisers, it is that those “behind the scenes” streams, additional scenes and blooper reels that networks run on their websites are pretty valuable ad real estate.
Viacom finds that viewers engage in an average of seven different types of social TV activities – online or offline – on at least a weekly basis. The most common activities include watching TV with others (85%), searching for supplemental content (61%) and viewing TV show clips on social networks (58%). The new research reveals that consumers engaging in social TV activities "C's the moment" primarily by communicating, consuming content and checking comments.
The two-phase study involved 24 ethnographies in Boston and San Diego with VMN viewers aged 13-52 that engage in social TV activities on at least a weekly basis. National online surveys were conducted with over 1,500 VMN viewers aged 13-54. When asked what social TV means to them, the most commonly reported words were "interactive," "friends" and "Facebook "or "Twitter." The leading source of discovery of social TV services is through search (38%), followed by social networks (26%) and ads run on shows (22%).
"One of the main goals of this research was to understand how to inspire social TV activity among our audiences," said Colleen Fahey Rush, Executive Vice President and Chief Research Officer, Viacom Media Networks.
Content is king for social TV users. Viewers want something special from their social TV services rather than commoditized content that can be found through online searches. The number one request for content is full-length episodes (88%), followed by sneak peeks of new episodes (75%), and behind-the-scenes extras (71%) and highlight clips (71%).
The majority of TV socializers are interested in rewards with real value, like free merchandise or signed cast photos. When putting aside the material aspect, virtual rewards offer an emotional pay-off, described as being similar to the feeling when 'liked' on Facebook. Trivia and casual games related to a show are of greater interest if they offer some kind of reward. Real fans want to have their knowledge and skills tested, and expect the game to be challenging.
Communicating is a top priority for social TV users. Many respondents described cobbling together unique communication systems to interact with different social circles while watching a show. "When I'm watching Jersey Shore, I have Facebook chats with 10 friends and I'm texting a dozen people, and I can be on the phone to my best friend," said one participant.
There is no one-size-fits-all in terms of chat options. Of those interested in chat features, 56% prefer communicating through the social TV app/service, 53% through Facebook, 50% through individual or group texts and 38% through Skype or Apple FaceTime. For those that use check-in services, 71% check in to a show to let their friends know and 64% check in to let other fans of the show know. Check-in services are a unique way of communicating viewing activities while simultaneously encouraging others to tune-in and join a shared experience.
Smartphones dominate the use of social TV apps at 82%, trailed by tablets at 18%. For services that are delivered via HTML websites and associated apps, 52% of usage occurs on smartphones or tablets, followed closely by desktop or laptops at 48%.
Social TV users check comments about their favorite shows for a variety of reasons. Comments provide a different point of view, can pick up on something a viewer may have missed on their own and most importantly, create a direct connection between fan and show. "I love reading Daniel Tosh's tweets while watching Tosh.0. It gives the show a whole other dimension," said one survey respondent.
Not all sources of comments are equally valued. The number one source viewers want to hear from is a show's cast and crew, followed by the people they know. Audiences are sensitive to the quality of comments from a show's cast and crew – they look for authenticity and prefer the star(s) to be in character.
Social TV Users "C's the Moment" During Live Viewing
"Viewers C's the Moment" reveals that live TV show viewing unlocks the real value of social TV services and co-viewing activities. Features relating to communication, content and comments are twice as likely to be used during live than time-shifted viewing. Social TV enthusiasts reported feeling "left out" of the conversation if they missed a live airing.
One respondent said, "I'm most likely to engage with Social TV networking when it's live. So when a new show comes on, I'm very likely to check-in just before the show, see comments from other people, [and] make my own comments during the show as well."
Social TV activities also increase directly after a live show, when viewers can access exclusive content like sneak peeks without interrupting the live viewing experience. "I go to the website and watch the director's cut…after it airs as I like the extra scenes. I like to feel that I am getting something extra and it extends the show," said a participant.
Social TV can also help foster show discovery. Features like check-ins, viewer comments and shared video clips help viewers discover shows, incentivize them to watch and encourage them to join the live conversations.
truTV delivers some edgy stuff, like “1,000 Ways to Die” (who knew one could be decapitated by an exploding tire? Or eviscerated by one’s own killer robot?). The network promises to be even “Bigger, bolder, broader” in the 2012-2013 season, placing a strong emphasis on comedic and action-packed “actuality” programming designed to appeal to its young adult and young-male-skewing audience.
Projects in the works include a unique new game show set on an airplane, which is being developed by Howie Mandel and his production company, Alevy Productions. truTV has also ordered a pilot starring NBA star Shaquille O’Neal and developed by Fishbowl Worldwide Media, with “America’s Funniest Home Videos” creator/executive producer Vin Di Bona and Tosh.0 co-creator Mike Gibbons among the executive producers.
“truTV has firmly established itself as a leader in TV’s fastest-growing genre, delivering on the promise of outrageous, fun television with truTV’s unique spin,” said Marc Juris, executive vice president and chief operating officer of truTV. “We’re also programming with an eye towards creating content that works across multiple screens and establishing ourselves as a truly multi-platform brand.”
Since its re-brand in 2008, truTV has been on a tear when it comes to ratings growth and competitive position. After scoring its best year ever with key demos in 2011, truTV just charted its best quarter ever in Q1 2012. truTV has also planted itself among basic cable’s Top 10 networks with men 18-49:
With a median age of 41, truTV claims the youngest primetime audience of such direct non-fiction competitors as Discovery, History and A&E.
truTV’s dedication to “actuality programming” has paid off with shows that deliver ratings success every night of the week. Six of truTV’s primetime series rank in the top 10 for their time period with key adult and male demos. In addition, nine truTV series average more than 1 million viewers, while several truTV shows – including “Hardcore Pawn,” “Lizard Lick Towing” and “Impractical Jokers” ranked among basic cable’s Top 50 unscripted series for the first quarter.
For this year’s Upfront, rather than putting on a splashy press event in New York, truTV hit the road to conduct in-person meetings with small groups of key clients. “Given the rapidly changing media environment, we decided the big budget upfront presentation does not provide the opportunity to sit down and develop unique solutions for our clients,” Juris said. “This year we don’t want to pitch. We want to partner.”
“truTV has experienced record-breaking growth and a desirable young adult audience, catching the eye of over 30 new advertisers this year,” said Joe Hogan, executive vice president, Young Adults Ad Sales, Turner Broadcasting. “We have enjoyed sharing this success story with clients the last several weeks, and look forward to attracting more marketers to the network this Upfront through customized multi-screen opportunities.”
Looking ahead, truTV is working in the development arena to craft additional on-target series for the network’s audience. truTV is specifically focusing on the comedic reality genre, with an eye toward shows that tap into the network’s recent success with the acquired hit Wipeout.
Here’s a rundown of what truTV has coming down the pike:
Killer Karaoke – New series premiering later this year
Unlike anything else on TV, popular comedian and "Jackass" star Steve-O hosts this outrageous singing contest that challenges contestants to break out in song in the midst of extreme, hilarious and sometimes skin-crawling physical challenges. The hits just keep on coming as contestants try to carry a tune under fire. Killer Karaoke comes to truTV from Zodiak USA, producer of the network’s popular Hardcore Pawn and Lizard Lick Towing.
Guinness World Records Gone Wild – New series premiering later this year
A new series that challenges everyday people to push themselves to do astonishing things for their place in history. Among the records the show will set out to break are the most panes of glass run through in one minute, fastest time to jump over three oncoming cars and the highest dive into 12 inches of water. Guinness World Records Gone Wild is produced for truTV by High Noon Entertainment (“Cake Boss,” “Tough Love”).
Container Wars – Cast-contingent series
This auction show is unlike any other auction show on television, because this one takes place in a commercial shipping port. The cast will compete against each other to buy the contents of huge shipping containers that have come from all around the world. They have no idea what’s inside the containers until the doors are opened. They then have only have a few minutes to assess what’s visible and decide whether to bid. The winner of each container then checks the contents in greater detail and decides on the amount of profit or loss they are likely to make. “Container Wars” comes to truTV from T Group Productions.
Hardcore Pawn: Fort Bragg – New series premiering in July
Guns Plus is a truly unique pawn store that is a favorite of the thousands of soldiers stationed at Fort Bragg, as well as their proud families, friends and supporters. Located next to the legendary military base, Guns Plus is staffed by military veterans, including ex-Marines and Special Ops soldiers, who have an amazing first-hand knowledge of the rare and collectible weapons that come through their doors on a daily basis. For this series, viewers will be taken behind the scenes for very different look at the pawn business, focusing almost entirely on weapons and military equipment. Hardcore Pawn: Fort Bragg comes to truTV from Zodiak USA, producer of the network’s popular “Hardcore Pawn” and “Lizard Lick Towing.”
Upload with Shaquille O’Neal (working title)
truTV has ordered a pilot of this new series from the producers of “Tosh.0” and “America’s Funniest Home Videos.” Basketball superstar and TNT NBA analyst Shaquille O’Neal and friends will round up the week’s online video clips, as well as create their own viral videos and comment on and parody current pop culture stories. This pilot comes to truTV from Fishbowl Worldwide Media founded by entertainment industry veterans Vin Di Bona and Bruce Gersh, with the creative team led by Susan Levison. Di Bona, Gersh, Levison and Beth Greenwald serve as executive producers, along with “Tosh.0’s” Mike Gibbons.
Jeff & Curtis Lose Weight (working title)
This new series takes the weight-loss concept and puts a truTV unique spin on it. Comedy duo Jeff Sloniker and Curtis Rainsberry are struggling to maintain their diets and workout regime as they battle the bulge…and each other. Guided by their trainer, they will try extreme diets, attend absurd exercise classes and generally humiliate themselves physically in public for the sake of losing a pound or two. At the end of each episode, the guys will weigh in, and the loser will have to perform a humiliating task drawn from the “Bowl of Pain.” “Jeff & Curtis Lose Weight” is being developed for truTV by Rive Gauche Television.
Turbulence (working title)
truTV takes off for one truly outrageous game show in the sky. As contestants fly from one location to another, they must answer questions. Every correct answer banks money for a big weekend blowout in Las Vegas. And every wrong answer makes the flight a little bit bumpier. “Turbulence” comes to truTV from Howie Mandel’s Alevy Productions. Mandel says, “I couldn’t be more excited to be working with truTV on a project that I am really passionate about.”
World’s Dumbest… – Season 14 begins Thursday, June 7, at 9 P.M. ET/PT
Operation Repo – Season 10 begins Wednesday, June 6, at 9 P.M. ET/PT
Lizard Lick Towing – Season 2 returns Monday, June 11, at 10 P.M. ET/PT
Storage Hunters – Season 2 premieres Tuesday, June 12, at 10 P.M. ET/PT
Hardcore Pawn – Season 6 coming in July
Vegas Strip – Season 3 coming in July
Nearly six in 10 core radio listeners (57%) start their day with another medium or gadget, rather than turning on the radio, reports Inside Radio. That according to media analyst and consultancy Jacobs Media, in their Techsurvey8 report.
The 18-34 year old demo is more likely to engage with email or Facebook as their first media interaction of the day, along with their first cup of joe.
The Techsurvey8 results were gathered online from January 31-February 15 from listeners of 170 broadcast stations across the U.S. and Canada, contributing 57,358 total respondents. Jacobs Media surveyed 170 stations, 12 radio formats and 57,358 radio listeners, claiming it is the “largest technology survey ever conducted for radio.”
As a format, radio is hardly dead, but, is a more high-touch medium which, like TV, is finding itself having to meet digital natives wherever they listen.
Why AM/FM Radio still matters: While "favorite songs" and personalities rank highest, there are four emotional triggers that listeners value:
1. Having a radio on while they work
2. Putting them in a better mood
3. Providing a feeling of companionship
4. Offering an escape from the pressures of everyday life
Pandora is a (pure) player: By far, Pandora is the most popular pure-play Internet option, as nearly half (45%) of "streamies" listen to some extent, easily besting competitors like iHeartRadio (19%), Spotify (7%), TuneIn Radio (7%), and Slacker Radio (5%).
However, Pandora users are split as to whether the Internet pure play should be considered "radio" – 43% "yes" – 49% "no."
Protecting The In-Car Listening Franchise: More than half of all respondents say that most of their radio listening takes place in cars. One in ten (9%) now drives a car equipped with a system like Ford's Sync, especially fans of News/Talk and Sports/Talk.
Smartphones, Apps and Tablets coming on strong: More than half (52%) own a smartphone.
Tablets are becoming a significant part of the digital story. One-fourth say they own one (24%), and iPad has a big lead over its competitors.
The Social Media tidal wave: Eight of ten are on Facebook. More than one-fifth use Twitter, and Sports/Talk emerges as the format where Twitter rules.
Nielsen Company released some intriguing demographic data, from part 2 of its “State of the Media Spring 2012” report—this part presenting an in-depth look at usage by demographic (ethnicity, gender and age).
White TV viewers use their DVRs at twice as much as any other group on a daily basis for time-shifted viewing; yet Asians watch the most timeshifted content as a share of overall TV time.
Among the online destinations for streaming TV content, Hispanics are most likely to watch on Netflix (still no advertising opportunities), where Asians are most likely to watch on Hulu and black viewers on YouTube (both ad friendly).
- Teens used a gaming console for an average of eight minutes during primetime, more than twice as much as the general TV population.
- When watching TV and using their tablet computers simultaneously, male tablet users were more likely to look up information related to a TV program, and females were more likely to up look info related to a TV ad.
- Females spend 61.2% of timeshifted viewing during primetime to watch dramas.
- Females spend 46.9% of real-time viewing watching drama, versus 34.5% for men.
- Females spend 13.5% of their time viewing sports, versus 32.7% for me.
- Online adults aged 25-54 are 23% more likely than the average U.S. Internet user to follow a brand via social networking and 29% more likely to purchase a product online that was featured on TV.
That eight-minute figure for teens and gaming seems low, frankly. Few games can be played in eight minutes. Presumably, that average is dragged down because teens who spend zero minutes on gaming outnumber those who spend hours at a time.
Driven by a somewhat improved economy, and stronger-than-expected results across digital media, total U.S. communications industry spending increased 4.2% in 2011 and is on pace to grow at an accelerated 5.6% in 2012, to reach $1.185 trillion. That will outpace gross domestic product growth (GDP) by 4.4%, according to Veronis Suhler Stevenson (VSS), a private equity firm serving the communications, media, information, education, and business services industries in North America and Europe.
VSS in its VSS Forecast Mid-Term Update projects that several industry segments are projected to outperform GDP growth of 4.4% in 2012, including Pure-Play Consumer Internet & Mobile Services (18.1%), Public Relations & Word-of-Mouth Marketing (14.6%), Broadcast Television (9.3%), Subscription Television (7.7%), and Branded Entertainment (7.5%).
“While the VSS Forecast Mid-Term Update clearly shows the strong growth momentum of digital media in such segments as Pure-Play Consumer Internet & Mobile Services, and Branded Entertainment, it also highlights the impact of a strengthening economy,” said John Suhler, Co-Founder and President of VSS. “What’s resulted is an increase in spending within the U.S. Communications Industry as both consumers and businesses begin to expand their use of a variety of communications platforms and tools such as mobile devices and tablets. Bottom line: This is the best news for the industry in several years.”
Industry Sectors with the Biggest Gains
While growth estimates for five of six Industry Sectors – defined as groups of industry segments sharing characteristics based on primary revenue streams – outpaced expectations for 2011 and 2012, Sectors with the most dramatic changes included Targeted Media and Traditional Marketing.
Spending on Targeted Media in 2012, which includes direct marketing, branded entertainment, outsourced custom content, pure-play consumer internet & mobile services, and business-to-business (B-to-B) media, has been revised upward from the original 7.7% growth projection in the annual VSS Forecast to 8.1% in the VSS Forecast Mid-Term Update. The upward revision was driven by strong performances in all segments except branded entertainment and outsourced custom publishing. VSS adjusted the 2010-2015 CAGR from 7.9% to 8.4%, reaching $278.4 billion to reflect expectations of stronger growth for most digital components within the sector, including e-custom publications, e-media in B-to-B media, and the entire pure-play consumer internet & mobile services segment.
Traditional Marketing, which includes consumer promotions, B-to-B promotions, public relations and word-of-mouth marketing, has been revised upward from 3.1% to 3.8% in 2012, as businesses are expected to continue to increase spending for all three segments, especially B-to-B promotions. VSS raised the 2010-2015 CAGR for Traditional Marketing from 3.6% to 4.2% to reflect anticipated acceleration in spending on Traditional Marketing during the latter part of the forecast period, reaching $86.6 billion.
Entertainment & Leisure Media, which includes subscription television, entertainment media (TV programming, home video, videogames, recorded music, box office) and consumer book publishing, is the only industry sector to be downgraded in the VSS Forecast Mid-Term Update for 2012. VSS found that while there will be gains in box office and branded digital platforms, such as online and mobile videogames, it will not be enough to help offset prolonged weak results in the printed book market. As a result, the growth rate of 5.8% forecast for the sector in 2012 was trimmed to 5.7%. The 2010-2015 CAGR was also cut from 5.6% to a 5.5%, reaching $353.9 billion, as strong growth in videogames, driven by the release of new console hardware during the forecast period and a faster-than-expected stabilization in the recorded music industry, will help mitigate the projected deeper declines in print consumer books.
VSS did not change the projected 2.6% growth rate for 2012 spending on Traditional Consumer Advertising Media, which includes broadcast television, newspaper publishing, consumer magazine publishing, broadcast & satellite radio, local consumer directories, and out-of-home media. While the ad market in the first half of 2012 is expected to remain sluggish, record-breaking political and Olympics advertising will drive growth for the remainder of the year. The 2010-2015 CAGR was also left untouched at 1.9%, with spending reaching $160.4 billion because although the projected decline in print advertising will be deeper than initially expected, it will be offset by increases in internet and mobile advertising offerings of branded traditional media.
It’s an eclectic mix. TLC is offering a 2012-2013 slate that includes 55 new and returning series, offering everything from spoiled live-at-home Bronx guys to supernannies and female preachers.
With 29 series delivering over one million viewers, TLC continues to rank among the top 10 ad-supported cable networks among women in primetime – and the network shows no signs of slowing down. This Upfront season, TLC builds on its established momentum, announcing more than 55 new and returning series to air in 2012-2013.
“TLC’s sweet spot lies in our ability to open doors into the lives of relatable, remarkable people and connect them with viewers across the country – many of whom have become television’s most beloved personalities and families,” said Amy Winter, general manager for TLC. “With over 55 new and returning series programmed within our most popular genres, this Upfront promises a robust slate of exciting original programming, as well as brand new adventures with our audience’s favorite faces.”
TLC continues to go behind-the-scenes into rarely seen worlds with “Breaking Amish” (working title), a 10-part series following the lives of Amish men and women as they experience life – for the first time – outside the Amish community; and “Preacher Ladies” (working title), a candid look into Atlanta-area churches’ first ladies in their work with their congregations and at home.
Friday remains “Bride-Day” – a top destination for wedding programming – as TLC presents three new series for viewers to fall in love with, including “Ultimate Dress Quest” (working title), where brides come far and wide to have their ultimate dress fantasy fulfilled; “Brides of New Jersey” (working title), centered around a New Jersey bridal shop that caters to loud and proud brides as they hunt down their perfect dress while dealing with their very opinionated friends, fiancés and family members, and “Maids of Dishonor” (working title), where your best friend may easily become your biggest nightmare. In addition, the network will add another celebrity wedding special to its slate, joining Mario Lopez and Courtney Mazza as they celebrate their marriage with their family and friends.
Family continues to grow at TLC with “Mama’s Boys of the Bronx”, a look inside the lives of five proud Italian-American men who unapologetically still live with their mothers and the “Bates Family Series” (working title), eight 30-minute episodes following Gil and Kelly Bates, and their 19 children as they share what it takes to manage life with such a large family.
Additional highlights of TLC’s 2012-13 upfront schedule include the following:
American Wifestyles (working title)
There is no typical way to be a wife. From arranged marriages, to women obsessed with being the perfect 1950′s style of homemaker, to the trophy wives who are proud to be kept women, wives in America come in every shape, size, and ideology. This revealing anthology series will go deep inside the lives of the diverse, complicated, hilarious and often shocking REAL lives of wives across America. (Q3, 2012)
Bates Family Series (working title)
The Bates family just welcomed baby 19, which means Gil and Kelly Jo now have 10 girls and 9 boys. See how they manage life with such a large family that includes up to 20 loads of laundry, 7 gallons of milk and 9 loaves of bread every week. Their back to basics life in the hills of Tennessee is free of distractions like television and video games, but full of activities like chores, singing and spending time with each other. We’ll follow the family as they share their love of music and family values, and see for ourselves how they pull it all off. (Q2, 2012)
Big Brooklyn Style
A half-hour workplace docu-soap following larger than life plus-size designer Lisa Dolan and her husband/partner Jim Dolan, as they set out to conquer the plus-size fashion world, one beautifully designed dress at a time. The series will follow the family run business on their mission to combine style with plus size clothing, to make women of any size feel confident and fashionable. Each week, we follow the comedy and drama as Lisa and Jim navigate the complex world of plus-size fashion on their mission to help transform their customers’ lives. (Q2, 2012)
Big Tiny: Life with the Jordans
Anew series about the extraordinary life of the world’s smallest siblings. In September 2011, 22-year-old Bridgette Jordan was crowned the “World’s Shortest Living Woman.” Weighing only 18 pounds, she stands a diminutive, beyond-belief size of 28,” about the size of a six month old baby, while her younger brother Brad, weighs only 35 pounds and stands just 38″ tall – making them the world’s shortest living brother and sister. (Q2, 2012)
Breaking Amish (working title)
An unprecedented look into a rarely seen world, following five Amish men and women and one Mennonite woman as they make the most important decision of their lives – to join the church and fully embrace the Amish and Mennonite lifestyle, or leave for good and follow their dreams outside of their communities. The stakes are incredibly high as each of them face complete and total rejection, criticism and even exile from their family’s homes and their community. However, all of them feel they will never be at peace in their community unless they know what lies beyond. They are inviting viewers to come along on their bold and courageous decision to put their lives on hold and leave religious dress, head coverings, horse & buggies and the simple life behind as they trade it in for a journey of firsts. The innocence and joy of watching these men and women experience things we take for granted for the first time will be unforgettable. (Q3, 2012)
Hosted by Tori Spelling, pits creative and genius crafters against one another in inspiring and tough challenges. Our crafters create cool, eye-popping pieces that will leave the viewer amazed and asking themselves, “how’d they do that!?” Each episode invites three craft experts to our arena to compete in two rounds of intense, timed competition. The first round, called the “Pop Craft,” challenges our competitors to create a more traditional and functional craft – but with some rather unusual materials – that the crafters must create in only one hour. After the end of Round 1, our panel of judges, each an esteemed craft expert, will eliminate one crafter and the remaining two will face off in the final “Master Craft” round, a five-hour no holds barred contest to create the most imaginative large scale craft they can dream of. In the end, the craftiest crafter will walk away with $10,000. (Q3, 2012)
An insider’s look at the most extreme money saving people around. Prepare to be amazed at their inventive and outrageous ways to save a buck as we reveal the saving (and spending) habits of – America’s most “Extreme Cheapskates.” (Q3, 2012)
Irish Dancing Special (working title) – Q3, 2012
Irish Dancing Series (working title) – Q1, 2013
This one-hour special and eight-part series gives viewers a rare look behind the scenes of the world of competitive Irish dance. We follow the lives of American girls and boys, their families and their teachers as they all prepare for the biggest event of the year: The World Championship competition. In the weeks leading up to the “Worlds,” they endure the physical and emotional stress of a rigorous practice schedule. In a world where every detail of the performance is planned as much as the steps, from the intricate costumes to hair design and makeup, these contestants have one goal in mind – returning home a world champion. It’s a compelling story of heart, discipline and fierce competition. (Q1, 2013)
Untitled Jo Project (working title)
TLC has signed a development deal with the original Supernanny, Jo Frost, to put her back to work fixing troubled families. She’s already tamed screaming toddlers, and now she’s tackling some of America’s toughest families and modern parenting challenges. From out-of-control teenagers, to interfering in-laws and battling school bullies – America’s families need help – and fast. (Q1, 2013)
Mama’s Boys of the Bronx
Forget about fresh baked bread, pasta and cannoli - Arthur Avenue is the place where growing up means never having to leave your mama. TLC shares a slice of the real Little Italy with “Mama’s Boys of the Bronx”, an eight-part series that follows five proud Italian-American men who grew up together and have plenty in common – they’re attractive, employed, in their 30′s…and unapologetically still live with their mothers. (Q2, 2012)
May the Best House Win
A home is a direct reflection of its owner…right? Well, when four very different homeowners take turns to host a tour of their homes, we’ll find out just how accurate saying ‘you are where you live’ actually is. Going through the keyhole of homes as weird and wonderful as their occupants, the other contestants will get a chance to snoop around before giving their frank opinions and rating the home, each hoping that at the end it’s their house which will come out on top to win the $10,000 prize. (Q3, 2012)
On The Fly
Follows the folks whose daily challenge is getting thousands of passengers to their destinations on time and in a happy mood. In each episode, we introduce the engaging airline employees of Southwest Airlines, who must think on their feet as they cope with the chaos of weather delays, irate passengers and more surprising and unusual situations that only occur while flying. Focusing on airports in Chicago, Baltimore, Denver, New Orleans, Fort Lauderdale and Tampa, we get an inside look at the dramatic, funny and uplifting moments flying the largest domestic airline in the U.S. (Q2, 2012)
Preacher Ladies (working title)
A candid look into the lives of the dynamic southern belles who walk a path only a chosen few can follow. We’ll watch each week as these ladies shatter stereotypes of what an old-fashioned preacher’s wife is expected to be with the 21st Century reality of these high-powered women who hold court in Atlanta’s world of mega-churches, multi-million dollar empires and high priced perfection. We’ll see our “First Ladies” as they navigate between the family home and the high and mighty pulpit, from the front cover of the papers to television screens across the nation, and from intimate prayer meetings to stadiums filled to capacity. (Q4, 2012)
Randy to the Rescue
“Say Yes to the Dress” breakout star, Randy Fenoli, is throwing the ultimate bridal truck show! On every episode of this splashy new series, Randy will roll into a different city in a tractor-trailer packed to the gills with wedding dresses. Eager brides line up around city blocks for their chance to get advice from the most trusted name in wedding dress retail. Inside the ballroom, Randy will have a team of consultants, working various fitting stations, to help each bride find the perfect dress. The hour-long television show will focus on Randy’s work with three particularly interesting brides. Doing much more than helping women find the right dress, he’ll design their entire look from “head to hem” (dress, hair, makeup, bouquet). (Q2, 2012)
Southie Pride (working title)
As one of the nation’s most historic neighborhoods, South Boston is known for hard-working residents who display an outrageous passion for life, family and town. Now, TLC takes viewers into this tight-knit community in the new TLC series “Southie Pride” (working title), going inside the homes of five South Boston women as they struggle to make a life for their families and protect the people they love the most. (Q3, 2012)
In each episode, three new students go to The World’s Only Tattoo School in colorful Shreveport, Louisiana to experience an intensive two-week “sink or swim” program. Every time these tattoo-artists-in-training put needle to skin, there’s the potential for a work of art…or an unnatural disaster, all under the watchful eye of Dr. Bill Pogue, the founder and lead instructor of “Tattoo School.” Using his 40 years of experience in the business, he takes only two weeks to teach what most tattoo artists spend years learning. And for the student who does the best tattoo on the final exam, there’s the Golden Gun, a high-end tattoo machine that will get them started on their tattooing career. (Q2, 2012)
9/11 Emergency Room (working title)
This one-hour special is the moving and inspiring story of the emergency service workers who treated the injured around the World Trade Center as the jets crashed and the towers fell. On 9/11, few inside the World Trade Center escaped unharmed. Thousands of evacuating office workers, innocent bystanders and emergency responders were harmed in some way. When the first plane hit the Twin Towers, the New York emergency units sprang into action saving lives despite the hardest of circumstances. Quick-response triage centers were under threat from collapse as they were positioned so close to the towers and many of the injured had to be ferried across the Hudson River to safety. “9/11 Emergency Room” looks at the incredible response from the medical professionals on the ground as the horror unfolded and the impact their service had on so many people that day. (Q3, 2012)
Birth Moms (working title)
A real raw human drama, “Birth Moms” (working title) looks behind the agonizing dilemma that begins every adoption story. This one-hour special focuses on the lives of three birth moms living at an adoption center in Utah and struggling with the decision to put their babies up for adoption. Tensions run high as this diverse group of women from around the country interact during this tumultuous time. As each mother is introduced, we’ll find out what brought her to the center and follow her journey through childbirth. We’ll witness face-to-face meetings with prospective adoptive parents who desperately want these children, and be present for the gut wrenching moment when each birth mom must finally decide if they will give their baby up for adoption. (Q2, 2012)
Brides of New Jersey (working title)
Every bride-to-be has a vision of her dream gown, but for these brides, the dream is a little bit bigger than average. Welcome to “Brides of New Jersey” (working title) – from big hair, plunging necklines and massive amounts of bling, these brides are doing it up Jersey style. This special goes inside a bridal shop in New Jersey that caters to loud and proud brides as they hunt for their perfect dress while dealing with their very opinionated friends, fiancés and family members. It’s love, marriage and happily ever after – Jersey style. (Q3, 2012)
The Bubble Man (working title)
Chandra Wisnu’s skin has been so badly ravaged by tumors he is known as “The Bubble Man.” His horrible condition has taken over his life and now symptoms of this condition are appearing in his two adult children. World-renowned dermatologist Dr. Anthony Gaspari travels to Indonesia to try to find a cure for Chandra and save his children from the affliction that he has endured for the past 36 years. (Q3, 2012)
DC Cupcakes: Mommy’s Birthday Bash
It’s Mommy’s 60th birthday and Sophie and Katherine want to honor her in the best possible way – with a surprise birthday party, complete with a life-size Greek statue of Mommy made out of cupcakes. But before they can prepare for the party, the sisters must handle one of the busiest weekends in Georgetown Cupcake history, filling orders for eight weddings. Stress and tension mount as Sophie and Katherine must find time to run their business and make the elaborate preparations for Mommy’s surprise party. (Q2, 2012)
DC Cupcakes: NY Store Opening (working title)
The sisters of Georgetown Cupcake are expanding and they’ve got their sights on the Big Apple. Watch as Sophie and Katherine set out to find their newest location, build it out and train an entire new staff in less than four weeks. And to make a big splash of their arrival in New York, the sisters agree to make a life-size New York City taxi made out of cupcakes for an annual doggie-fashion show for the charity Angels on a Leash. (Q2, 2012)
Little People, Big World Specials (working title)
2012 is a big year for the Roloff family and the TLC cameras will be there to capture their new adventures: Molly will be graduating from high school and going away to college, Zach will finally be moving off the farm and into his own place, Jacob turns 16 and learns how to drive and Amy will turn 50, which Matt plans to mark with a surprise trip retracing their romantic steps on a nostalgic recreation of their honeymoon in San Francisco and along the California Coast. (Q2 & Q3, 2012)
Maids of Dishonor (working title)
One thing is certain – planning a wedding is no piece of cake! As a bride-to-be, you have multiple events to organize, tons of decisions to make, and endless fires to put out. So to help maintain your sanity, you ask your best girlfriends to be your partners in (wedding) crime, and become your bridesmaids. But what happens when your ‘ladies in waiting’ aren’t the solution to your stress; they’re the cause of it? (Q3, 2012)
Dr. McKinnon Tumor Specials (working title)
They are some of the most bizarre and extreme tumors ever encountered and there’s only one surgeon in the world who is both willing and qualified to take the cases. Join Dr. McKay McKinnon as he attempts life-saving surgeries for four unique patients. (Q2, 2012)
Mario Lopez Wedding Special (working title)
TLC is partnering with Mario Lopez and his fiancé Courtney Mazza to follow along as they prepare for their perfect wedding. The network will join the couple as they navigate through the planning process, discover the perfect dress and celebrate their love at their wedding with their family and friends. The entire experience will air as a special television event shortly after the ceremony later this year. (Q4, 2012)
My Mother Diana
Nearly thirty years after his parents exchanged their wedding vows, Prince William walked down the aisle at Westminster Abbey with his new bride. “My Mother Diana” looks at how Diana’s life, her relationship with the House of Windsor, the media and the public have shaped her eldest son, Prince William. When a twenty-year-old Lady Diana Spencer married Prince Charles, the heir to the throne, their wedding at St. Paul’s was watched by billions. But that relationship would develop into a romantic tragedy, whose effects would be more profound than anyone could have imagined. (Q2, 2012)
Obese & Expecting
Maria, Alissa, Denise and Jeanette are four moms-to-be with a common problem: morbid obesity. This hour-long special dives deep into their pregnancy struggles and their hopes of delivering healthy babies. Through major health crisis, excessive weight gain and relationship drama, they share it all. These women are challenging the perception and the odds of obese pregnancies as they become moms, no matter their size or complications. (Q2, 2012)
William & Kate: One Year Later (working title)
Charts the life of the pair since their marriage on April 29, 2011, exploring their Royal engagements and private moments that have kept Britain and the world enthralled. The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are the very definition of a modern Royal couple, charming everyone they meet with their unfussy style, down to earth values and impeccable manners. They’ve been busy encouraging patients on hospital visits and rubbing elbows with Hollywood stars. (Q2, 2012)
Ultimate Dress Quest (working title)
At Vows, a designer bridal outlet in Boston, bridal bargains are big business and no one works a deal like owners Leslie and Rick DeAngelo – the Nation’s premier scavengers of designer wedding dresses. Hunting through factory attics, boutique back rooms and department store warehouses, these two leave no gown unturned. Whether it’s to please a bargain-hunting bridal fashionista or a budget bride in need of a much deserved break, Leslie and Rick will do just about anything to find those diamonds in the rough and figure out how to turn damaged gowns into dollars and dreams. (Q3, 2012)
“Taking audiences into unknown worlds,” Discovery Channel announced its 2012-2013 upfront slate highlighted by landmark history event specials, epic natural history programming, bold new series and hit returning favorites.
“Last year was a record setting year for Discovery. In 2012 we have already delivered double digit audience increases and we focusing on an Upfront programming slate that is revealing, provocative and fearless,” said Eileen O’Neill, president of Discovery Channel and TLC Networks.
The highlights of Discovery Channel’s 2012-13 Upfront schedule include the following:
Sweeping across some of the most diverse landscapes on the planet, “North America” takes viewers from the silent grandeur of lofty snowcapped peaks to fertile forests and dramatic windswept coasts. The continent’s unique geography creates some of the most extreme weather on the planet. Wild animals living in these astonishing and sometimes brutal habitats must be fiercely resilient – sharing that human spirit the continent is known for. From jaguars to spinner sharks, wolves that fish to wolverines high in the mountains, this is NORTH AMERICA.
From the acclaimed filmmaking team of brothers Gedeon and Jules Naudet (“9/11,” “In God’s Name”), Peabody Award-winning news producer Chris Whipple (“60 Minutes,” “ABC News”) and Pulitzer Prize winning White House photographer David Hume Kennerly comes an unprecedented series looking at the key moments, the quiet conversations, back room bargains and heated debates that made history and have never been heard before until now. Called the world’s second toughest job – and also the world’s worst, the White House chiefs of staff translate the presidents’ policies into reality – or disaster. They are the inside eyewitnesses to history, and the confidants with whom the president, and the first lady, share their secrets. “The Gatekeepers” spans nine administrations with interviews from former Presidents Jimmy Carter and George H.W. Bush and former chiefs of staff including Rahm Emanuel, Donald Rumsfeld, Dick Cheney, James A. Baker III, Ken Duberstein, John Sununu and Mack McLarty.
All The President’s Men Revisited
Discovery Channel and award-winning actor/director Robert Redford present a landmark television event looking back at Watergate – the original game changer of America politics. How has Watergate changed the Presidency? What effect has the scandal had on our political leaders? And has hope and optimism forever been replaced in our national dialogue by doubt and cynicism? 2013 marks 40 years since 1973 – Watergate’s most pivotal year. Reporters Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein doggedly investigated the scandal exposing the long, twisted trail of cover-ups and lies. In “All The President’s Men Revisited,” Redford, who famously portrayed Woodward in the iconic 1976 film All the President’s Men, returns to the scandal that broke all the rules of press and politics, brought down a President and changed the country forever.
History of the World
A global television event with spectacular images, compelling characters and gripping stories “History of the World” bringsthe whole of human history to life. A breathtaking journey through time, re-visiting the major turning points of 20,000 years of history from the ancient China to the Aztec empire; from African tribes to European wars; from religious upheaval to the Industrial Revolution.
Everybody loves “Shark Week.” Every summer they return, slashing through a sea of competition to rack up new ratings successes. Grab your scuba gear and climb into the cage, because it’s time for “SHARK WEEK! Great whites. Hammerheads. Whale sharks.” This consistent audience pleaser never fails to reveal remarkable new insights into these magnificent and elusive creatures.
One of the last great mysteries of the 20th century … join the exclusive expedition to finally find out what happened to the fames aviator.
Osama: A History
From award-winning author Mark Bowden – the story of the man who would forever change geopolitics and the world we live in.
What was really going on within the secretive Roswell New Mexico sector known as Area 51 – a revealing history of aliens and alien cover-ups in America.
Friday night’s number one show in all of television (claims Discovery), “Gold Rush” returns for a brand new season of risk and riches. Can someone still make it in America? Down-on-their-luck men, in the face of an economic meltdown, risk everything to strike it rich mining for gold in Alaska. Inspired by his father Jack, Todd Hoffman leads his team of miners hoping the mother lode awaits deep in the Klondike.
Bering Sea Gold
Nome, Alaska: Every summer, as the glacial ice melts around this frozen and isolated port, a handful of fortune seekers hunt for gold in the most unlikely of places: the bottom of the Bering Sea. From the producers of the Emmy-winning “Deadliest Catch” comes a new season of “Bering Sea Gold” – Discovery’s breakout hit of 2011. Meet the salty and eccentric characters who spend hours on the rocky, frigid ocean floor, hunting gold from custom built, sometimes barely seaworthy rigs. From the desperate to the diabolical, the Nome gold fleet takes on all comers, the brutal Bering Sea does the rest.
Alaskan crab-wranglers fight the most dangerous working conditions, including 40-foot waves and 80-mile-per-hour winds, in the gripping 10-part series “Deadliest Catch.” Far in the Bering Sea’s frigid waters, 250 boats tempt fate and nature in “The Last Rodeo” season trying to bring in a season’s catch of the highly coveted and lucrative Alaskan king crab.
Flying Wild Alaska
In the wildest regions of Northern Alaska, the only way in — and the only way out — is by bush plane. It’s a world of dangerous weather, harsh conditions and small communities bonded by native customs, whose very survival depends on air travel. Here, the Tweto family operates Alaska’s largest regional airline, Era Alaska. The Twetos – husband Jim, wife Ferno and their daughters Ariel and Ayla — return for the second season of “Flying Wild Alaska.”
What was once a family business is now a family feud. All bets are off for what new fireworks await in “American Chopper: Senior Vs. Junior.” Paul Senior builds world famous custom bikes at Orange County Choopers while Paul Junior operates his competing shop, Paul Jr. Designs, just a stone’s throw down the road, with brother Mikey and former OCC employees firmly by his side. Will the family be made whole again? And what new out of this world build assignments will they take on to stretch their teams creatively and mechanically?
Alaska: The Final Frontier
Welcome to the Kilcher family and their isolated community outside Homer, Alaska. The Kilchers, led by patriarch Atz Kilcher, have cultivated and lived on their homestead for four generations. These men and women of the wild live off the land, spending the limited months of summer and fall gardening, hunting and fishing for food, gathering supplies from the land and preparing their animals’ safety in preparation for surviving the harsh Alaskan winters. Most live completely off the grid, with no running water and no electricity – and are proud of it.
Host and everyman Mike Rowe gets the grimy scoop on downright nasty, but vital, occupations in “Dirty Jobs.” Rowe could be processing smelly seafood in a fish factory, collecting bat guano for prized fertilizer or cleaning septic tanks to maintain a fresh-smelling environment. His apprenticeship never ends as he learns from those who keep our world running smoothly.
The monster hit of 2011 is back for a brand new season – “Moonshiners.” Think the days of bootleggers, backwoods stills and “white lightning” are over? Not a chance! It’s a multi-million dollar industry. But perhaps more importantly to the moonshiners, it’s a tradition dating back hundreds of years, passed down to them from their forefathers. It’s part of their history and culture. While this practice is surprisingly alive and well, it’s not always legal. Meet those who brew their shine – often in the woods near their homes using camouflaged equipment – and the local authorities who try to keep them honest.
Back and better than ever, “Mythbusters” continues its mad scientific quest to discover the truth behind popular myths and urban legends. Hosted by quirky special effects experts Jamie Hyneman and Adam Savage, this mentally tantalizing series takes on the myths and uses modern-day science to show what’s real and what’s fiction.
From the visionary mind of Discovery’s iconic founder John Hendricks comes season two of this unprecedented special series. “Curiosity” brings the ‘I wonder?’ moment to television with a unique array of provocative subjects. From the future of robots to the science of plane crashes to unlocking the secrets of Yellowstone’s natural power to the unsolved mystery of Amelia Earhart’s disappearance.
The Odd Couple of the Survival! “Dual Survival” takes two survivalists into the most forbidding terrains in the world where they must overcome all obstacles in order to survive using intuitive tactics and finely tuned skills. Finding food, water and shelter are nothing compare their toughest challenge of all: getting along with one another.
From vampire killing kits and T-Rex fossil teeth, to pink Cadillacs and hot air balloons, each half-hour episode of “Auction Kings” follows Atlanta auction house owner Paul Brown and his team as they hunt for and sell some of the most unusual items in America. Get to know the sellers, then watch their rarities hit the auction block as Paul and his intrepid crew dazzle bidders for top dollar. “Auction Kings” is a roller coaster ride filled with thrills and disappointments, where one person’s trash becomes another’s treasure and you never know if it’s buyer or seller who will get the deal.
Who has the right stuff? Discovery takes audiences into the fun and far reaches of science and technology with this world premiere competition series. “Top Engineer” searches for America’s brightest, boldest, out-of-the-box thinkers and pits them against one another. With innovative solution to the challenges they are tasked with, competing teams are sure to blow minds as well as a few other things along the way.
One Car Too Far
It’s all about the drive to survive. What happens when you ‘MacGyver-ize’ a car? In “One Car Too Far” former British Special Forces operative and an American car junkie are dropped into incredible landscapes and forced to work together to survive and ultimately escape to safety. The twist – they will have to take a small red car with them. It’s the perfect combination as one knows how to drive and the other knows how to survive. With no proper roads and no real supplies, the two must rely on instinct and expertise alone to make it out. From the treacherous slopes and near-freezing temperatures of a mountain top, to the wet, dense vegetation of the rainforest, they use whatever supplies they can find to turn a regular car into an all-purpose vehicle to get them over, under and through just about any obstacle in their way.
Mark Burnett’s Alaska
From television maestro of reality storytelling, the colorful people, amazing history and unforgettable places that make Alaska a world apart.
Fast and Loud
These guys cruise for the classics. Meet self-described “petrol-sexual” motorhead Richard Rawlings and mechanical prodigy Aaron Kaufmann as they search far-flung corners of the country for forgotten and derelict classic cars to restore at their Gas Monkey Garage. Heaps of rust are transformed into gleaming road warriors and sold to the top bidder.
The National Football League (NFL) yesterday announced the national television schedule for its 2012 preseason, with ten games across NBC, Fox Sports and ESPN.
NBC SUNDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL
The SNF preseason kicks off on Sunday, August 19 when Ben Roethlisberger and the Pittsburgh Steelers host the Indianapolis Colts, who own the first pick in the upcoming NFL Draft.
The other Sunday Night Football preseason tilt announced today has Mark Sanchez, Tim Tebow and the New York Jets hosting Cam Newton and the Carolina Panthers on Sunday, August 26. Coverage for both games begins at 8 P.M. ET on NBC. Al Michaels (play-by-play), Cris Collinsworth (analyst) and Michele Tafoya – all nominated for 2012 Sports Emmy Awards – will call the games.
Sunday Night Football, which has won three consecutive Emmy Awards for Outstanding Live Sports Series, ranks as the most-watched (persons 2+) and highest-rated primetime show, and the No. 1 program across the key demographics of Adults 18-49, 18-34, 25-54 as well as Men 18-49, 18-34 and 25-54, based on Nielsen live + same day data. Additionally, SNF is the No. 3 show among Women 18-34 and the No. 4 show among Women 18-49.
NFL on FOX
The 2012 NFL on FOX season kicks off with three exciting preseason games featuring six playoff teams, including the 2011 NFC West Champion San Francisco 49ers taking on Peyton Manning’s new team – the Denver Broncos.
Action gets underway with back-to-back prime time coverage starting Thursday, August 16 (8:00 P.M. ET). Andy Dalton and A.J. Green look to build on their rookie success as the Cincinnati Bengals head to the Georgia Dome to take on Matt Ryan, Michael Turner and the Atlanta Falcons. That game is followed up the next night with the reigning AFC North Champion Baltimore Ravens hosting Matthew Stafford and Ndamukong Suh’s Detroit Lions on Friday, August 17 (8:00 P.M. ET). FOX Sports’ preseason coverage wraps up on Sunday, August 26 (4:00 P.M. ET) with the new-look Denver Broncos hosting Alex Smith and the 49ers.
Following its coverage of the NFL’s prestigious NFC regular season schedule, FOX Sports presents exclusive live postseason coverage including an NFC Wild Card Game, the NFC Divisional Playoffs and the NFC Championship Game.
Fox Sports 2012 NFL Preseason Broadcast Schedule
- Thursday, August 16 Cincinnati Bengals at Atlanta Falcons 8:00 P.M. ET
- Friday, August 17 Detroit Lions at Baltimore Ravens 8:00 P.M. ET
- Sunday, August 26 San Francisco 49ers at Denver Broncos 4:00 P.M.ET
ESPN 2012 MONDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL PRESEASON
ESPN will televise four NFL games as part of its 2012 Monday Night Football preseason schedule. Play-by-play commentator Mike Tirico and analyst Jon Gruden will call every game in anticipation of ESPN’s MNF regular-season opener on Monday, Sept. 10. All MNF preseason games will begin at 8 P.M. ET.
The season kicks off Thursday, August 9, when Aaron Rodgers and the NFC North champion Green Bay Packers travel to San Diego to face Philip Rivers and the Chargers at Qualcomm Stadium.
The ESPN crew then heads up the California coast four days later to the Bay Area when Carson Palmer and the Oakland Raiders host Tony Romo and the Dallas Cowboys on Monday, Aug. 13. The game will be a homecoming for Gruden, who served as head coach of the Raiders from 1998-2001.
On Monday, Aug. 20, Tom Brady and the AFC champion New England Patriots host Michael Vick and the Philadelphia Eagles at Gillette Stadium in Foxboro, Mass.
ESPN will conclude its preseason schedule when Larry Fitzgerald and the Arizona Cardinals face Chris Johnson and the Tennessee Titans at LP Field in Nashville on Thursday, August 23.
ESPN Deportes, ESPN’s 24-hour Spanish-language domestic sports network, will once again offer a Spanish-language production of MNF preseason and regular season games in 2012.
The 2012 ESPN MNF regular season schedule is expected to be announced in the coming weeks.
ESPN’s MNF 2012 NFL Preseason Schedule:
- Thursday, Aug. 9, 8 P.M., Green Bay Packers at San Diego Chargers
- Monday, Aug. 13, 8 P.M., Dallas Cowboys at Oakland Raiders
- Monday, Aug. 20, 8 P.M., Philadelphia Eagles at New England Patriots
- Thursday, Aug. 23, 8 P.M., Arizona Cardinals at Tennessee Titans