News Briefing for Thursday, May 22, 2008 The prison sentences of John Rigas, founder of Adelphia Communications, once a top 10 cable operator, and his son Timothy, will be reevaluated today in New York, Reuters reports. The Rigases, after losing an appeal in March 2007 seeking to overturn corporate fraud convictions, began serving prison terms last year. Today’s resentencing stems from the overturning of one aspect of their convictions. The Rigases will not appear in the Manhattan court. [Reuters]
The nearly $11 billion dividend to be paid to Time Warner Cable shareholders as part of the cable unit’s split from parent Time Warner Inc., and the resulting new debt load, will increase the pressure on Comcast chief Brian Roberts to “reconsider the company’s capital structure,” the Wall Street Journal reports. [Wall Street Journal]
BusinessWeek reports on the U.S.’ pathetic record of broadband availability. [BusinessWeek]
Some hacks have all the luck. New York Times op-ed columnist Frank Rich made a deal with HBO to help the premium network develop new programming. Rich will continue to write his column on politics for the Times while serving as a creative consultant for HBO. As part of his agreement with the paper, Rich will avoid writing about HBO or its parent company, Time Warner. Before he began writing about politics, Rich had been a theater critic at the Times. [New York Times]
Univision’s video-on-demand service will make its debut without content from Televisa, Variety reports. [Variety]
Dick Sutcliffe, co-creator of the spooky Christian-themed stop-motion animation series Davey and Goliath, passed away. [Variety]
TST is out at Multi, ousted by a press release that gives no details as to why he’s left the company. In his place will be B&C editor Mark Robichaux, who will inherit Tom Steinert-Threlkeld’s portfolio if not his title as editorial director. Robichaux will oversee Multi and its digital sites, the release said. Ben Grossman of B&C takes Robichaux’s spot.
Our sister pub min honors a quartet of TV industry folk during a June 11 breakfast in New York City at its Sales Leaders of the Year event. Finalists for TV Network Sales Team Leader of the Year are: Paul Brennan, VP, Sony Pictures Television; Michael B. Fox, VP, ESPN; Trisha Pray, SVP, Univision; and Peter Vesey, VP, Fuel TV. [min] Wednesday’s Top Stories
Visit Cable360 to respond to the current poll question: Which political party are cable operators, satellite distributors and telcos more likely to contribute to in the general election for the presidency?
What are the best companies to work for in the cable industry? Help CableFAX: The Magazine decide by nominating the companies you think should be on our list of the Top 10 Places to Work in Cable by completing our online nomination form. We will run the Top 10 Places to Work as a Web exclusive on Cable360.net, on CableFAX: The Magazine’s home page and in our Top Operators edition of CableFAX: The Magazine.