THE WRITERS GUILD contract expired this morning and no new agreement has been signed. A strike could be ordered at anytime. Last night, in last-minute meetings, the companies and producers told the WGA to withdraw its demand for higher residuals from DVD sales. WGA negotiators rejected the order and halted the negotiations. The Guild has told its writers to remove their personal belongings from offices at the end of work today.
ESPN will simulcast all of its 72 NBA games on ESPN360.com, a free site available to 17 million homes with participating broadband providers. Regular season games start tonight and NIKE will be the sole sponsor for the inaugural ESPN360 double-header, running commercials for a new Lebron James sneaker. Games will also be available on ESPN Mobile.
THE FCC has officially ordered cable companies to cancel exclusive contracts with apartment buildings and condos. The move will create more competition from other TV providers, such AT&T and VERIZON. The ruling is expected to be challenged in court.
NBC UNIVERSAL will reportedly shutdown DotComedy in the near future. The site has struggled to gain an audience, twice falling short of Nielsen Online’s minimum reporting threshold for Internet traffic. Executives have declined to comment and the future of the original DotComedy content is uncertain.
SPECIFIC MEDIA has raised $100 million in funding. The company sells online targeted advertising to clients such as Ford, Unilever, Verizon, and AT&T, as well as sites run by major networks and MLB.com. The financing is another sign of the high expectations for online advertising, which pushed Google’s stock above $700 in trading yesterday.