Raycom-owned CBS affiliate WAFB-TV in Baton Rouge, La., and WWBT-TV in Richmond, Va., could be dropped by area Cox Communications systems if a retrans agreement isn't reached by midnight tonight. Time is running out on several other retrans deals between Raycom and smaller cable systems.
Because credit remains tight, analysts are speculating what media companies could enter crisis mode next year, following the Tribune Co. bankruptcy filing. National Amusements has passed a deadline on its debt load, Charter Communications is the cable company with the most debt, and Univision Communications may have trouble paying off a $500 million asset sale bridge loan.
During a phone-in meeting among FCC members Tuesday, Commissioner Jonathan Adelstein voiced fresh concerns about the country's transition to all-digital TV signals in February. Adelstein, who was attending a DTV informational meeting in Phoenix at which some people apparently weren't even aware they could get a coupon to help pay for a converter box, said: "I'm afraid the DTV transition isn't ready for prime time yet. I'm afraid it's going to be messy."
CBS Interactive is launching a Web series called "Heckle-U" in February, timed to coverage of the NCAA men's basketball tournament. The 10-episode series, starring Tom Arnold and Owen Benjamin, will have product integration from Procter & Gamble and will be distributed across the CBS Audience Network.