Population Statistic: Read. React. Repeat.
Tuesday, January 10, 2021

ad bowl
I guess reports of slack ad sales for next month’s Super Bowl served as a starter’s gun for a pre-Christmas rush. Ad inventory for the game is close to sold out, and yet another 30-second-spot price record is on the way:

Executives say that ABC is 85 percent to 90 percent sold, with anywhere from 7 to 10 30-second units left to sell. [ESPN/ABC Sports exec Ed] Erhardt would only say: “We have one 15-second spot in the first half, and some availability in the fourth quarter.” He added that ABC is on the same pace now as when it had the game three years ago.

“If they have ten spots left now, it’s nowhere near an emergency yet,” said Larry Novenstern, executive vp and director of national electronic media, Optimedia International. “That’s standard.” “Super Bowl XL” will take place February 5 in Detroit.

Executives close to ABC say this year’s Super Bowl has seen a price hike of some 5 percent to 7 percent from the 30-second commercial price of $2.4 million that Fox received when it had the game last year. This year’s game would hold a new record average price of $2.52 million to $2.57 million for a 30-second Super Bowl commercial.

The media economy continues apace. No real surprise, of course. Even with the Olympics raking in nearly a billion dollars for NBC, the Super Bowl was still going to be the cash cow it’s always been. If anything, there are simply more players at the table now; the void left by those pulling out or reducing their Super Bowl presence is being filled by new advertisers.

- Costa Tsiokos, Tue 01/10/2021 03:45:52 PM
Category: Advert./Mktg., Football | Permalink | Feedback


Ever since the dot-com boom, venture capital firms have strained to cast themselves as loosey-goosey hipsters, the better to put start-up kids at ease. It’s rarely a convincing act.

OVP Venture Partners may be perpetrating an act too, but it’s a damn entertaining one. Any VC shop that points out its missed ground-floor opportunities with Starbucks and Amazon, and does it in such a funny way, gets a thumbs-up from me:

The Internet boom was just beginning. Amazon had sales of $4M a year. We had a handshake on a term sheet with the CEO to put $2M into Amazon for 20% of the company (a $10M post money value). At the eleventh hour, some guy named John Doerr flew up and offered $8M going in for 20% of the company (a $40M post money value). Handshake? What handshake?

To get even, we buy all our books at Barnes & Noble. We don’t think Amazon has noticed.

If that’s not enough, they provide a secret glossary of code phrases commonly used in venture capital circles:

Upgrading the management team - The organization is in complete disarray

Well below plan - An outright, unmitigated disaster

Window of opportunity - Without more money, the company is dead

Work closely with the management - Talk to them on the phone once a month

I’m sure OVP’s braintrust shovels it as much as any financial speculators; pointing out the obvious doesn’t change that. But at least they provide an intentional giggle.

- Costa Tsiokos, Tue 01/10/2021 02:58:20 PM
Category: Comedy, Business | Permalink | Feedback


Watching Jackie Brown right now, for the first time in years.

Has anyone ever done a count of the number of times the word “nigger” is used in this film? To my ear, it’s a lot. And probably 95 percent of the time, it’s coming out of the mouth of Samuel L. Jackson’s character Ordell. I find it more tiresome than offensive; definitely overdone.

I’m willing to bet it’s on the order of magnitude of the 218 times the word “fuck” is dropped in Scarface.

An aside: Jackie Brown might mark the beginning of Robert De Niro’s descent into hackery. He looks like he’s barely interested in even being onscreen. (I realize he sold out prior to this, notably for The Fan and even the stunt-casted Heat; but I don’t think it was until this performance that he converted those slumming forays into a permanent mail-it-in resting of the laurels.)

- Costa Tsiokos, Tue 01/10/2021 02:01:26 PM
Category: Movies | Permalink | Feedback (1)