Local news programming makes inroads against CCTV

The 13th Shanghai Television Festival concludes today. The festival's Magnolia Forum (白玉兰论坛), which brings together industry professionals and academics from a number of countries, issued a Report on the Chinese TV News Program Market 2007-2008. The report, edited jointly by the Shanghai TV Festival and CCTV Softres Media (CSM), follows earlier papers on other areas of programming.

As might be expected in today's regulatory climate, the report warns news programs about stretching the bounds of taste, and looks to the most recent crop of reality talent shows for lessons.

However, the Mirror finds evidence of a major change in the television news landscape:

During the last year, news programs have become one of the leading formats for attracting advertisements. CCTV holds 3/4 of the market, but in regional markets CCTV has met with unprecedented challenges from local stations.

In 2006, news programming amounted to a total of 640,000 hours. General news made up half of programming; arts, sports, and legal news showed growth. General arts and entertainment news made up more than 10% of programming. Viewers watched an average of 22.8 minutes of news every day.
The Report says that in the future, the country's news programming will exhibit a few changing trends.

CCTV, using its advantages of position, resources, and policies, occupies a leading position. Minority cable stations use financing, technology, and innovation to compete with CCTV in certain time slots.

In regional markets, local stations have used "locally-targeted news" (民生新闻) to break out and occupy a relatively large share of the viewership. The Report predicts that in the next few years, "locally-targeted news" will become a major player and may approach or even replace the traditional broadcast position of CCTV's news.

CCTV has its own spin on this: Wang Lanzhu, general manager of CSM, said:

A program that could run for two years has too serious a problem with homogeneity, and if it is broadcast too frequently, it may be scuttled in a very short time. A classic example is the "locally-targeted news," because some cities have run too many repeats, leading to declining ratings; exhaustion occurs very quickly.

This article from the Washington Post in March is also relevant.

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There are currently 1 Comments for Local news programming makes inroads against CCTV.

Comments on Local news programming makes inroads against CCTV

Held in Shanghai, appropriate because SMG's news shows are so much better than CCTV's. I watch the 7pm news on Hunan TV for kicks, then get the *real* stories from SMG's news channel.

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