Network executives hope that the new strategy will prevent viewers from fleeing to other stations during the promotional breaks between programs, some of which can last up to eight minutes...
This is sad for two reasons. First, nobody wants to snap out of the Ken Burns zone for even a few seconds. As The Times points out in their coverage, PBS's chief selling point to both audiences and sponsors was the unbroken programming, a format that both felt more authentic and supports the in-depth focus of shows like Frontline or any of the network's many documentaries about everything you didn't think was so exceedingly interesting until you sat down and leaned in for an hour...
Second, this latest shake-up draws further attention to how [PBS] is in trouble. Last week, on the heels of the same meeting during which executives unveiled the new interrupted programming structure, The Times also reported how a number of stations were withdrawing from the network because of record high dues, in some cases to be replaced with programming from religious networks.
01 June 2011
Commercials coming to PBS