December 23, 2005

And Then There Were Four

NBC is buying out its partner, Microsoft and taking a controlling stake in MSNBC. This sets up an interesting dynamic. The right-wing narrative says that media bias is crippling the MSM as left-wing reporters turn off their listners/viewers. This is somewhat supported by the end of MSNBC, the fourth US national network not identified as center or center-right.

The alternative narrative of the left is that media fragmentation is really what's going on with high-cost structure national networks being hammered worst of all. This is not discredited by the MSNBC failure as consolidation and cost-saving closings would be a natural thing to do in that sort of environment.

The real proof of the pudding of which narrative is right would be the creation of a new network that would compete with Fox from the right. If such a network would happen and be a success, it's case closed on the question of consolidation v. bias narratives and all the networks would have a great deal of soul searching to do.

Posted by TMLutas at December 23, 2005 12:09 PM