news digest


Google joins bidders for C-Block

NEW YORK — Google said that it will participate in the FCC's January auction to acquire wireless spectrum in the 700 MHz band. The piece of spectrum that Google will bid on is called the C-Block and is expected to sell for $4.6 billion. The deadline to apply for the auction, which begins Jan. 24, is today. Google likely will square off against AT&T and Verizon Wireless in the auction.

'Magic' tricks for Jackson, Marsalis, Paul

NEW YORK — ESPN's basketball documentary "Black Magic" has cast Samuel L. Jackson, Wynton Marsalis and NBA star Chris Paul as narrators. The movie, directed by Dan Klores, examines the civil rights movement through the prism of hoops programs at the country's historically black universities. The four-hour docu will debut in the coveted slot behind the NCAA Tournament selection show March 16, with the second part to air March 17.

Honor of a Lifetime for student pair

Liliana Greenfield-Sanders of New York and Jessica Marie Sutherland of Berea, Ohio, have been named the inaugural winners of the Lifetime Movie Network Student Filmmaker Competition. The pair will be honored Tuesday in Los Angeles at the 2007 Women in Entertainment Power 100 Breakfast, hosted by Lifetime Networks and The Hollywood Reporter. Greenfield-Sanders' first-place film, "Anna," will premiere Dec. 11 on Lifetime Movie Network and also will be webcast on

Red Light, Vector in Chrysalis deal

NEW YORK — Two competing artist management companies, Red Light Management and Vector Management, have joined forces with indie publisher Chrysalis Music to form Crossfire3, a three-way partnership based in Nashville. The stature of the executives running these companies, the built-in network of artists and songwriters represented by the partners and the access they will have to one another's companies add up to an unprecedented publishing venture.

Analyst sees retrenchment in ad market

NEW YORK — The U.S. advertising market is in the early stages of a slowdown and will be under much pressure through 2009, BMO Capital Markets analyst Lee Westerfield said in cutting his ad growth estimates. That likely will continue to hurt media and entertainment stocks over the near term, he said. "Analysis of historical cycles suggests that during the early months of a U.S. advertising slowdown, media multiples will be at risk of compressing about 15%-20%," Westerfield wrote in a report Friday. "An advertising cycle downturn now overshadows the media marketplace. The waning ad cycle is now in its early stage." His analysis led him to the conclusion that "the ad cycle retrenchment will likely stretch through 2009."

Star in pact for Mandarin-language channels

News Corp.-owned Star and KyLinTV have inked a deal to launch three Mandarin-language channels in North America on KyLinTV's IPTV platform. Star Chinese Channel, an entertainment network in Taiwan, debuted Saturday on KyLinTV's premium package. The channel features programming in a range of genres, including talk shows, game shows, contemporary and costume drama series, lifestyle and variety shows. In addition, music network Channel [V] Taiwan as well as a channel dedicated to classic Chinese movies will join Star Chinese Channel on KyLinTV in the coming months.