Hub's future 'murky'

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gmster

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Hub Future Murky Amid Founding CEO Exit - Deadline.com

I continue to hear that Hub, which reaches nearly 73 million U.S. homes, may be re-branded, with its headquarters, currently based in Burbank, potentially moving to Discovery’s home base in Silver Spring, MD. After trying with little success to gain ground in a crowded marketplace dominated by Disney Channel and Nickelodeon while kids advertizing is steadily declining, HUB recently expanded into family-oriented programming, airing movies in primetime and adding older-skewing fare like popular 1990s teen comedy series Blossom. That new direction may be the key to HUB’s future, with sources mentioning Discovery Family as a potential new moniker. That would also be consistent with HUB’s recent rebranding, which added the tagline Making Family Fun to the network’s name.
 

Mandouga

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I will agree that The Hub's future is uncertain with Margaret Loesch leaving, but other than that (and with all due respect to the writer of the article), I just think it's (possibly) paranoid speculation on their part. Remember, this is the website that once claimed that Warner Bros. was going to stop making movies with female leads. Also, "expanded into family-oriented programming"? They've been showing family-oriented programming since they launched on 10/10/10. In any case, I've said this before, but I really do hope that The Hub doesn't start repeating the same mistakes certain other networks have made...

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Silverstar

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Jun 4, 2007
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I have to agree, this sounds more like paranoid speculation than actual fact. But if it is true, there's nothing we can do about it. Networks come, go and rebrand themselves all the time, I tend not to weep over that. I only watch a small handful of shows on The Hub anyway. If they stay around, no complaints.
 

Goldstar Neo

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Networks air whatever makes them the most money. If network executives cared about what I want, Syfy would still be the Sci-Fi Channel and would still air science fiction programming, A&E would still be the Arts & Entertainment network and there'd still be a Tech TV. So, yeah.

My point: if it happens, it happens. We can complain, sure, but ultimately, network execs are going to do what they do, regardless of whether we like it or not. In any case, there's little point in going into panic mode over something before it's even confirmed to be real.

This seems like a case of people running around like chickens with their heads cut off. Sure, with Margaret Loesch (sp?) leaving the network, there may indeed be some changes made, but they won't be instantaneous; they'll occur over time. As for a possible re-naming of the channel, that may be nothing more than speculation at this point. I'd be more inclined to believe this if I could find more than a single article saying that the channel will be getting a new name.
 
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Ed Liu

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I dunno, Deadline.com is a site whose rumors I tend to take a bit more seriously. Their batting average is better than the norm, and there have been enough times where they've been right that I won't dismiss what they have to say out of hand. Not seriously enough to take as News until it's corroborated by a primary source, but also not something I completely ignore.

This report also fits a long-running trend that suggests simmering problems at the network (reported on-the-record by the Los Angeles Times with a lead-in when SheZow premiered), some of which are the product of trying to hammer out an identity in a very crowded and highly competitive marketplace and some of which seem due to behind-the-scenes corporate dysfunction. In some cases, it seems like that dysfunction has a perfectly plausible explanation, which may even be the right one, but regardless of the cause, it seems that the dysfunction is real (or at least is something that other established networks like Disney and Nick don't have to deal with; Cartoon Network is a case all its own because WB is famous for putting the "fun" into "corporate dysfunction").

Undisputed by anybody is that the Hub is finishing a distant fourth or further behind all the other kid/family-oriented networks. There are a number of reasons for that, which is a shame because a whole lot of their shows are really good.

Remember, this is the website that once claimed that Warner Bros. was going to stop making movies with female leads.
Not sure I'd hold that against Deadline, especially considering the number of movies released with female leads in them. This is also not something that is unique to Warner Bros. It's impossible to know whether the decree was real and would have been borne out by the studio's releases in the future, I still notice that many of the WB releases with female leads since that 2007 report were sequels or established properties (like Sex and the City). If it wasn't official policy of Jeff Robinov, it might as well have been.
 

Silverstar

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Admittedly, the kids' channel market is pretty saturated right now, and the current Hub is decidedly vague as to what it seems to want to be right now. They have MLP, sure, but they can't rely on just that.

If it were me, I'd try to focus on the untapped markets that no one else is really trying to capitalize on: during the daylight hours, I'd make The Hub a focus for Hasbro's toy properties, both the girl-centric and younger-skewing ones as well as the more action-oriented properties, since no one's really showing kid-friendly action cartoons any love right now aside from Disney XD, some animated action shows and maybe even some Super Sentai titles, and toss in some time-tested reruns and 3rd party acquisitions and some E/I shows for edutainment value (maybe some of the better received Discovery Kids shows even). At night I'd have the channel switch gears and become a more adult-focused network with the emphasis on comedy, particularly alternative comedy (riff shows, sketch shows, hidden camera prank shows, etc.), consisting of both original shows and reruns, but far less raunchy than Adult Swim; I was thinking along the lines of an early Nick@Nite/HA! hybrid. Maybe add some action/fantasy/drama shows and even an anime or 2 in there for a point of variety. But that's just what I'd do.
 
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ABrown

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I've really enjoyed what The Hub has had to offer in their short existence. I hope they're here to stay.
 

Goldstar Neo

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If Hasbro gets booted off the network, there's always Netflix.
How can Hasbro get booted off a network that they co-own? Especially when the most popular shows on Hub Network (My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic, Transformers Rescue Bots) are Hasbro properties? That seems about as likely to happen as Warner Brothers getting booted off of Cartoon Network.
 

ILDC

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How can Hasbro get booted off a network that they co-own? Especially when the most popular shows on Hub Network (My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic, Transformers Rescue Bots) are Hasbro properties? That seems about as likely to happen as Warner Brothers getting booted off of Cartoon Network.
From the Deadline.com article:

Of course, all this is contingent on partners Discovery and Hasbro reaching an agreement on what to do with HUB. The toy manufacturer, which put down $300 million for a 50% stake in the new network five years ago (plus another $150 million-$200 million to ramp up HUB supplier Hasbro Studios), has not given indication that it plans to pull out. One scenario has Discovery has Hasbro remaining a partner, with HUB’s successor airing the contractual amount of Hasbro programming until that contract is over, after which Hasbro would not have any involvement in the operation of the joint venture. Other sources don’t discount the possibility for Hasbro departing but that would involve Discovery writing a check, probably for less than Hasbro’s original $300 million investment but still a very significant amount. (Hasbro recently reported HUB turning profit for the first time after posting losses of $6 million-$7 million for the past couple of years.) The two sides are likely trying to sort all that out. Meanwhile, witnesses compare the HUB offices to a ghost town.
 

Pac-Attack

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May 20, 2013
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Eh, I never watched The Hub much in the first place, so I'm fine with any change. It's not like they are doing any better right now anyways IMHO.
 

Trombone77

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I think it is like what someone else said before, Hub Network has little to no passion right now. It is nice that they have an identity of a family channel, but Hub should not limit itself to just this type of programming. It still needs to air some series from as many genres as it can do so that way it can establish some hits that will get it noticed.
 

M622

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If discovery and hasbro separated what will happen to the hasbro shows? (MLP FIM ,family game night and littlest pet shop) will they be canceled?,moved to another network? Or will hasbro create their own Saturday morning block?
 

Silverstar

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I think it is like what someone else said before, Hub Network has little to no passion right now. It is nice that they have an identity of a family channel, but Hub should not limit itself to just this type of programming. It still needs to air some series from as many genres as it can do so that way it can establish some hits that will get it noticed.
Thank you. I've been saying this since Day 1.

M622 said:
If discovery and hasbro separated what will happen to the hasbro shows? (MLP FIM ,family game night and littlest pet shop) will they be canceled?,moved to another network? Or will hasbro create their own Saturday morning block?
"Would", not "will". It's not concrete that Hasbro and Discovery are definitely going to split; this is all just speculative at this point.

Anyway, if that were to happen, Hasbro's best bets would be to partner up with another network or take their shows to the net, like ILDC suggested. Just creating their own block would be suicide unless the plan would be for them to start their own network (which is unlikely), since the syndicated market is all but dead in the US.
 

Mandouga

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I'm sorry, but I have to disagree. The Hub should not have an [adult swim]-like block, nor should it go the ABC Family route and add TV-14 programming that technically meets the criteria even though it really doesn't. It should remain purely a family channel. It needs to avoid making the same mistakes other (nameless) networks have made. Some people may not agree with me, but that's how I feel about it.

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C

Celimation

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I too wouldn't like to see the Hub go the way of ABC Family or add an Adult Swim block(although an anime block might work). I think they should get a time shift for those on the west coast, have a consistent schedule, and show more films(especially this). Hub Network seems mixed in the films they show with them being great to terrible. If they can show more of the better films, I think they could have a solid way to increase viewership on weekends. I saw Who Framed Roger Rabbit for the first time in a while when it was on the Hub, and it is also where I watched Zathura for the first time. If they can show films like these that are decent to great, and aren't on TV much anymore, it might offer a nice alternative to what the other networks are doing. The only other suggestion I have is advertise on the other Discovery Network channels, and show that the network is more than just cartoons(focus on the movies and TV shows that aren't shown elsewhere).
 

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