news digest


Stakes higher than hockey at NBC Sports

NEW YORK — NBC Sports defended its decision to cut off Saturday's telecast of the Buffalo Sabres-Ottawa Senators NHL playoff game just as it moved into overtime in favor of the Preakness Stakes. The network received criticism in the blogosphere and from viewers for its decision to forgo the final minutes of the game to cover the Preakness live from Baltimore. A network spokesman said Monday that there was not much NBC could do: It was contractually obligated to carry the Preakness telecast. The network threw the hockey game to Versus; only the NBC affiliate in Buffalo, N.Y., remained with the Sabres-Senators game.

States eyeing sex offenders on MySpace

NEW YORK — News Corp.'s MySpace has agreed to provide state attorneys general with data from registered sex offenders who have created profiles on the site, the company said Monday. The portal agreed to turn over the information after receiving subpoenas from 12 states, including Connecticut, where Attorney General Richard Blumenthal has been leading the campaign against sex offenders on the social networking site. This month, using technology developed by Sentinel Tech Holding Corp., MySpace started to identify and remove thousands of profiles of registered sex offenders. Last week, eight state attorneys general asked the site to turn over the information, but MySpace refused at first, citing federal privacy laws.

Flavor Flav roast cooking

Comedy Central said Monday that rapper/reality TV show star Flavor Flav will be its next "roastee." "The Comedy Central Roast of Flavor Flav" will tape in July in Los Angeles and air at 10 p.m. Aug. 12. The roast will be the network's first-ever carbon-neutral event, it said.

Longer shorts: MTV's 'Giant' back for more

MTV has given the green light to a second season of "Human Giant," a comedy series comprising short films. The news follows a stunt during the weekend in which the cast — Aziz Ansari, Rob Huebel, Paul Scheer and Jason Woliner — were challenged by MTV to earn their second season by garnering more than 1 million hits on their Web site within a 24-hour period during a live on-air marathon. From noon Friday to noon Saturday, MTV said, the cast was able to garner more than 1.2 million hits after they were given "full reign" on MTV and MTV2.

Nantucket fills out plans for festival

NEW YORK — The 12th annual Nantucket Film Festival revealed its full lineup of films and programs Monday, with 30 features and 20 shorts on the schedule for the event, which is set to run June 13-17. Included on the schedule is a storytelling session featuring Anne Meara and Peter Farrelly and the "Iconoclasts" event featuring William Monahan, this year's Oscar winner for best adapted screenplay for the "The Departed," and Rachel Grady, nominated for a best documentary Oscar for 2006's "Jesus Camp."

Maitland joins RHI Ent. as sr. vp ad sales

RHI Entertainment has hired Russell Maitland for the newly created position of senior vp advertising sales. Maitland, who is based in New York, will be responsible for leading RHI's sales efforts associated with Ion Media Networks, VOD and additional RHI platforms, both traditional and new media. A 20-year ad sales veteran, Maitland most recently was vp Eastern region at GSN after a six-year stint in senior sales management at Fox Cable Networks. He already has hired a team that includes account executives John Carlo, Stacy Gelt and Andrew Wisnewski.