NEW YORK (AP) - My Network TV said it will essentially get out
of the business of presenting original programming except for
professional wrestling, a sign of how the economy is hurting the
The network, created for stations left adrift when the old WB
and UPN network combined to form the CW, will also turn its
Saturday night schedule over to the local affiliates and stations
owned by the parent News Corp, it announced Monday.
It will abandon the traditional broadcast television model,
where networks pay a licensing fee to programming producers and
attempt to make money be selling ad time within those shows.
Instead, it will acquire primarily established programs in which
the producers sell half of the advertising time and My Network gets
half the cut.
Except for its "Friday Night Smackdown" wresting series, My
Network's most popular show, the only other series it has committed
to for next fall is two hours of "Law & Order: Criminal Intent"
reruns. My Network will also have a movie night.
"Times are changing," network President Greg Meidel said
Monday. "Let's face it, the advertising environment is not as
healthy as it was six months ago or a year ago and I think we're
out in front of some of our competitors here."
Relatively inexpensive programming already fills My Network's
schedule, including a video collection, "The World's Funniest
Moments," hosted by Arsenio Hall; the reality show "Jail," about
newly incarcerated inmates; and "Breaking the Magician's Code."
It also airs a remake of "The Twilight Zone."
The future of all of those shows are in doubt, unless its
producers want to play by My Network's new rules.
Those rules favor reruns of established shows on other networks.
Shows such as "House" do better in cable reruns than many of My
Network TV's original fare.
Meidel insisted that My Network is not becoming strictly a rerun
(Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)