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Award-Winning Television Historian Tim Brooks Announces Retirement as Lifetime Networks Head of Research Effective at End of Year(May 22, 2007)
Brooks, whose career has spanned senior positions at NBC, USA Networks and NW Ayer, joined Lifetime in
Said Brooks, "Whether it's 'Gunsmoke,' '
In reviewing the evolution of television in recent years, Brooks has a few observations:
-- The last 20 years have seen a fundamental shift in television from the one-size-fits-all of TV's first four decades to branded, personal "for me" channels. It began with the rapid rise of cable in the 1980s, which introduced the very idea of branding to television (Nick for kids, MTV for teens, Lifetime for women, many individual channels for fans of specific program types such as sports, news, sci-fi, etc.). It accelerated with the vast increase in high-profile original production aimed at specific audiences on cable in the 1990s and 2000s. -- The single most influential program of the past 20 years is in my opinion "Survivor." It turned TV's historic stars-talking-to-you model on its head, and made "us" the stars. The "Survivor" "cast" was not only made up of real people but a cross section of people that all could identify with, younger, older, male, female, different races, etc. It has ignited a vast wave of "real" (though heavily orchestrated) shows across both broadcast and cable, and dovetails with the rise of new entertainment technologies that are similarly centered on "us" - YouTube, Myspace, DVRs, etc. -- "Survivor" was not literally the first show ever to do this, but it was the smash hit that made the difference.
Prior to Lifetime, Brooks was Senior Vice President, Research for USA Networks, where he helped structure the programming plan for the launch of the Sci-Fi Channel and USA's Latin American and European networks. He joined USA Networks as Vice President in 1991.
Before joining USA Networks, Brooks was Senior Vice President/Media Research Director for NW Ayer from 1989 until 1990. Brooks was at NBC from 1977 to 1988, holding various positions, including Director, Program and Advertising Research, and Director, Television Network Research.
A member of the CTAM Board of Directors, Brooks is also Chair of the Video Electronic Media Council of the Advertising Research Foundation (ARF) and was the cable industry's first representative to be elected Chairman of the Board of both the Media Rating Council (MRC) and the ARF. He is a recipient of the Cable Advertising Bureau's
Brooks was an adjunct professor of communications at Long Island University. He holds a bachelor's degree in economics from Dartmouth College and a master's degree in television-radio from
LIFETIME is the leader in women's television and one of the top-rated basic cable television networks. A diverse, multi-media company, LIFETIME is committed to offering the highest quality entertainment and information programming, and advocating a wide range of issues affecting women and their families. LIFETIME Television, LMN, Lifetime Real Women and Lifetime Digital (including LifetimeTV.com) are part of LIFETIME Entertainment Services, a 50/50 joint venture of The Hearst Corporation and The Walt Disney Company.
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