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Inside Move: ABC, CNN in prime Times

Gray Lady gives advertisers good ink

ABC News and CNN got good play in Wednesday’s New York Times in a section called “The Changing Face of TV News.”

They were also the advertorial section’s only two advertisers.

The section carried three features: one on broadcast, one on cable and a third on Comedy Central’s “The Daily Show.”

ABC and CNN dominated the broadcast and cable stories; nevertheless, the writer made an attempt to get all the nets involved. Fox News Channel and NBC News declined to participate.

The New York Times said there was no quid pro quo as far as which execs — advertisers or not — got prominent placement. However, at least one newsie got an email from writer Andrea Kahn, advising, “I am including everyone who is relevant to the story — those who advertise, however, will undoubtedly get more space in the piece.”

ABC News senior VP Paul Slavin got the lion’s share of ink in the broadcast piece — seven quotes in all. ABC was the only network advertiser, taking the back page for an estimated $72,000.

With less than two pages of advertising, the section appears to have fallen short of expectations.

Networks were told the section would be a stand-alone eight-page insert, but that was reduced to five, tacked on the end of the stock tables.