Brian Steinberg
Brian Steinberg
Brian Steinberg covers the business of advertising, media and television as Senior TV Editor for Variety, which he joined in 2013. He has more than two decades of experience on the media beat, having worked for Advertising Age, The Wall Street Journal and Dow Jones Newswires. His work has appeared in the Boston Globe and Salon, among other publications. He holds degrees from Columbia University’s Graduate School of Journalism and Yale University.Source
New York
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Is TV News Good For You? ‘Nutrition Labels’ Served to Advertisers

Is TV News Good For You? ‘Nutrition Labels’ Served to Advertisers

Anchors and TV-news producers have long looked to Nielsen ratings to measure the success of their programs. What if another yardstick became available?NewsGuard, a company that got its start examining the veracity of news content on digital sites and the ways in which it is produced, is making a move to gauge the quality of TV news programing as well. After licensing its reports exclusively to Interpublic Group’s Magna, a large ad-buying firm, for 2022, the company now is in talks with other big Madison Avenue media agencies and advertisers about using its services to determine how accurate...

Dec 1
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TV's Unsung Heroes: How Skeleton Crews Are Still Keeping Networks Like CBS on the Air

TV's Unsung Heroes: How Skeleton Crews Are Still Keeping Networks Like CBS on the Air

Normally, around 1,600 people work out of the Broadcast Center on West 57th Street in New York. But these aren’t normal times. Just about a dozen key staffers are still coming into the office, keeping the lights on as most everyone else works from home.“Things have definitely changed,” says Glenn Oakley, CBS executive VP of global media technology operations. “We have reduced staff, down to skeleton crews virtually everywhere. We have definitely removed people going in to essential personnel only.”These are the unsung heroes of TV: the broadcast, cable and local TV staffers who are...

May 7, 2020
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Fox News Launches Streaming Weather Service for Climate-Change Cycle

Fox News Launches Streaming Weather Service for Climate-Change Cycle

There’s a new wind blowing through the building that houses Fox News Channel.Amy Freeze and Craig Herrera spent a recent weekday afternoon in a TV studio at the company’s New York headquarters rehearsing, but not for a new opinion program or roundtable show, but for They talked about oil spills, wildfires and abrupt changes in temperature. At one point, the duo discussed the Biden administration’s support of wind power, noting that it would likely help Americans recover more quickly from power outages. A chyron imposed on a screen that captured their exchange read: “Biden administration...

October 21, 2021
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President Biden Set for Super Bowl Pre-Game Interview With Norah O'Donnell

President Biden Set for Super Bowl Pre-Game Interview With Norah O'Donnell

President ’s first formal interview as the Commander-in-Chief will take place during a uniquely American event: the Super Bowl.Biden will sit down at the White House with “CBS Evening News” anchor and managing editor Norah O’Donnell,  preserving a recent tradition that has the occupant of the Oval Office take a few minutes to speak with the news division of the network airing the Big Game. But it will not be broadcast live, as it was under President Barack Obama, who helped make the Super Bowl meeting a mainstay element of the extravaganza.CBS will televise Super Bowl LV, featuring the...

February 3, 2021
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CNN Grounds Its Long-Running Airport Network

CNN Grounds Its Long-Running Airport Network

Airport, a long-running out-of-home media operation that became an integral part of the traveling experience for people flying through Chicago’s O’Hare, Dallas’ Love Field or even Fresno-Yosemite International Airport, is shutting down, the victim of shifts in consumer behavior that are moving more quickly than a Boeing 737.CNN said the operation, which aired a mix of news from CNN and snippets from other networks in 58 different airports in the U.S., would close as of March 31.“The steep decline in airport traffic because of  COVID-19, coupled with all of the new ways that people are...

January 12, 2021
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Jim Carrey Resigns From Joe Biden Duties at 'Saturday Night Live'

Jim Carrey Resigns From Joe Biden Duties at 'Saturday Night Live'

The nation has a president-elect. But who will play him on “” as he prepares to be sworn into office?The question is open anew after actor took to Twitter Saturday to tell fans he was leaving behind the impression of he has offered over the course of the  first six episodes of the show’s 46th season. Carrey has not appeared in sketches in “SNL’s” last two broadcasts, nor has Alec Baldwin, who has portrayed President Donald Trump for the past four seasons and the early part of the current one.“Though my term was only meant to be 6 weeks, I was thrilled to be elected as your SNL...

December 19, 2020
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After Years of Watching 'Trump Show,' TV News Starts to Turn It Off

After Years of Watching 'Trump Show,' TV News Starts to Turn It Off

The sight of President Trump’s personal attorney, Rudy Giuliani, throwing off conspiracy theories and hair dye yesterday in TV’s once-humdrum daytime hours, would not too long ago have proven to be catnip that no TV-news outlet could resist. Yesterday, many of them did.Few if any of the nation’s TV-news outlets aired live Thursday’s press conference from the legal team spearheading the president’s efforts to overturn the election. And Fox News, which did, followed it up with reporting from Kristin Fisher, a White House correspondent, who noted: “Well, that was certainly a colorful news...

November 20, 2020
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Why Bret Baier Calling Biden 'President Elect' on Fox News Is Such a Big Deal

Why Bret Baier Calling Biden 'President Elect' on Fox News Is Such a Big Deal

Two simple words uttered on Friday morning gave its audience obvious facts — and may have served to quell a nascent controversy about how the network intends to cover Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden if he should prove victorious in the 2020 election.After reported Friday morning thatshould stay away from calling him [Biden] ‘President-elect’ for the time being.” Another “email message” told recipients “we will not be calling Biden the president elect. Or using any of the whizbang graphics that say so.” CNN’s report does not specify the executive or executives from whom the...

November 6, 2020
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WarnerMedia Layoffs Expected to Hit Warner Bros., HBO

WarnerMedia Layoffs Expected to Hit Warner Bros., HBO

is expected to let go of at least 800 staffers at its Warner Bros. and operations as part of a broad restructuring put in place by the unit’s CEO, .Warner Bros. is expected to commence layoffs of around 650 people starting Monday, according to people familiar with the matter, while HBO is seen shedding between 150 and 175 staffers. A WarnerMedia spokesman declined to comment.The layoffs come after Kilar on Friday unveiled a significant reworking of the media company’s operations, ousting the top programming leaders at HBO Max, Robert Greenblatt and Kevin Reilly and rolling all over...

August 9, 2020
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Jonathan Swan Interviewed Trump in 2018, and Critics Frowned. Now They're Cheering

Jonathan Swan Interviewed Trump in 2018, and Critics Frowned. Now They're Cheering

An interview between Axios reporter and President Donald Trump that aired Monday on HBO has drawn the kind of social-media huzzahs accorded to a heartwarming meme or the drop of a Taylor Swift album.In a conversation taped Tuesday, July 28, Swan questions Trump’s use of statistics to describe how the nation is grappling with coronavirus, suggesting U.S. efforts are working better than those of other countries. “You can’t do that,” Trump says after Swan cited pointed the number of US Covid-19 deaths as a percentage of the U.S. population. In the interview, Swan also queries Trump on Rep....

August 4, 2020
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