On the Call: Viacom CEO on weakness in repeats

AP News
Posted: Nov 10, 2011 10:28 AM
On the Call: Viacom CEO on weakness in repeats

Viacom Inc., which owns Nickelodeon, MTV and other TV networks, said that repeats of shows aren't doing as well as they have been. On a conference call with analysts and investors, CEO Philippe Dauman was asked if this is because of the encroachment of Internet video.

QUESTION: Is the money you make from licensing your shows for Internet video coming out of the money you make from licensing them for TV?

RESPONSE: In terms of our programming that we own, that we are selling to digital outlets, it is incremental because we have been very carefully managing the "windows" (when the shows are available) on our owned content.

... If you look at what all the networks are doing now, there is more original programming on a number of channels, whether you have dramas on AMC or original investments in many other networks out there, so there is a lot of choice and people expect more fresh original programming.

And obviously a taste in genres evolves. When people feel uncertain they gravitate to comedies and that is why you have seen a resurgence in comedies. So there is clearly something going on because of the availability of programming, not just on digital, but on traditional distribution modes where repeats are just not playing as well. Not necessarily the second, third or fourth repeat, but the 15th or 20th repeat of a show that we used to be able to do.