Video: NBC buys Weather Channel

posted at 1:13 pm on July 7, 2008 by Ed Morrissey

NBC Universal announced a $3.5 billion acquisition of The Weather Channel, helped along by Mitt Romney’s firm, Bain Capital.  It doesn’t come as much of a shock; all of the other bidders for the property dropped out months ago, including CBS.  NBC plans to combine its newest cable/Internet asset with NBC Weather Plus, which may be the first time anyone has heard of the operation:

Financial terms weren’t disclosed, but a person familiar with the matter who insisted on anonymity said the purchase price was $3.5 billion in cash. NBC was joined in the deal by the private equity firms The Blackstone Group LP and Bain Capital LLC.

In addition to The Weather Channel, which can be seen by 97 percent of U.S. cable subscribers, the deal also includes several related assets such as weather services for newspapers and radio stations and the widely used Web site Weather.com.

The Weather Channel has been a major advocate for global-warming policies. Combining it with the Keith Olbermann/Chris Matthews network will probably result in a major release of greenhouse gases on its own. Given NBC’s inability to impose even a modicum of balance and objectivity at MS-NBC, we can expect Jeff Zucker to use this new outfit as a platform on which to push even harder for statist policies on energy production and use.


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So much for reliable info. I’m gonna have to start looking out the damn window again, I can just tell…

mojo on July 7, 2008 at 1:16 PM

Great. Time for me to do what I’ve been doing for the last 20 years – not watching The Weather Channel.

They lost their edge (as it were) after John Hope bought his farm…

fiatboomer on July 7, 2008 at 1:16 PM

My cable system actually has NBC Weather Plus, not that I ever watch it. I’ve tuned out TWC for the most part in recent years and opt for the more local weather outlet.

Reportedly they were originally seeking $5 billion for TWC so they got quite the discount.

JammieWearingFool on July 7, 2008 at 1:18 PM

What could go wrong?

Hening on July 7, 2008 at 1:18 PM

Given NBC’s inability to impose even a modicum of balance and objectivity at MS-NBC, we can expect Jeff Zucker to use this new outfit as a platform on which to push even harder for statist policies on energy production and use.

Don’t forget GE and its “progressive” CEO Jeff Immelt. He’s in the hot seat. GE tank has tanked big time. The WSJ today has a piece on Immelt’s problems as head of GE. This won’t help restore GE’s image as America’s prime industrial/technological entity.

In case you haven’t noticed, the libs are grabbing hold of corporate America. It started with the Silicon Valley type co’s, but now reaches into industrial companies. Bad, bad news.

JiangxiDad on July 7, 2008 at 1:19 PM

Of course.

Dr.Cwac.Cwac on July 7, 2008 at 1:19 PM

that should be GE’s stock has tanked.

JiangxiDad on July 7, 2008 at 1:19 PM

It should be noted that I only watch the channel long enough to get the local weather. Why would anyone with a brain watch the channel long enough to get anything political out of it?

Then again, it should also be noted that i don’t have cable. This puts quite a hamper on leftists who wish to indoctrinate me with their garbage. Besides, I get enough of this junk in my college classes.

Will The Weather Channel turn into the PMSWC?

Weebork on July 7, 2008 at 1:22 PM

I bet they are going to rename it the Global Warming Channel.

Maxx on July 7, 2008 at 1:22 PM

I forecast gloom and doom.

Dr.Cwac.Cwac on July 7, 2008 at 1:23 PM

we can expect Jeff Zucker to use this new outfit as a platform on which to push even harder for statist policies on energy production and use.

I’m sure we’ll see that GE jet engines don’t produce CO2 or use hydrocarbon based fuels…..just sayin doncha know.

dmann on July 7, 2008 at 1:23 PM

NBC is the nitwit channel that did Green week. The founder of Weather Channel must be fuming.

jencab on July 7, 2008 at 1:23 PM

Maxx on July 7, 2008 at 1:22 PM

GBC

Goracle
Broadcasting
Channel

Motto: All Goracle, All The Time

His newest foray into global media domination.

Dr.Cwac.Cwac on July 7, 2008 at 1:24 PM

bet they are going to rename it the Global Warming Channel.
Maxx on July 7, 2008 at 1:22 PM

You beat me to it.

JustTruth101 on July 7, 2008 at 1:25 PM

Maybe Heidi Cullen will have a segment on Keith Olbermann’s show:
“Worst Global Warming Denier In The World!!!!”

eeyore on July 7, 2008 at 1:25 PM

I wonder if the cozy, Atlanta-centric banter found on the Weather Channel is also headed for the scrapheap. If so too bad – I kind of like it actually…

RD on July 7, 2008 at 1:25 PM

I bet they are going to rename it the Global Warming Channel.

Maxx on July 7, 2008 at 1:22 PM

You got that right……instant bullhorn to prognosticate climate change disaster PROPAGANDA!

wildweasel on July 7, 2008 at 1:28 PM

Anyone else think that Jeff Zucker looks like Jay Bush (from Bush’s Baked Beans)?

Dr.Cwac.Cwac on July 7, 2008 at 1:29 PM

I record the Weather Channel, to see all the weather I missed during the week.

Rhinoboy on July 7, 2008 at 1:29 PM

I question the timing.

And the forecast.

wccawa on July 7, 2008 at 1:31 PM

The mute button on your tv remote is probably the best invention of the last half century. Never thought I would use it on the Weather Channel, but if you happened to look at a lot of their programming you would already know they are very much in the tank for climate change. It just disgusts me that something as beneign as the weather can be politicised

Just A Grunt on July 7, 2008 at 1:34 PM

Wow I can’t wait to find out how Bush made today Rain, or Condi was the reason for 98 degree temps or how Dana Perino’s Lies have dumped 22 inches on snow on us.

I’m on the same bus as Mojo, I’ll stick my head out the window for the weather info.

Rbastid on July 7, 2008 at 1:34 PM

oh that’s just great. Now, the weather forecasts will STILL be inaccurate, but it will be George W. Bush’s fault.

My collie says:

Bush hates nice weather ya’ know.

Et tu collie?

CyberCipher on July 7, 2008 at 1:35 PM

With the advent of digital broadcasting, the networks now have three channels (ex: 4.0, 4.2, 4.4). They’ve been using the other two to run 24-hour news and 24-hour weather. That must be NBC’s Weather Plus.

Spolitics on July 7, 2008 at 1:35 PM

Don’t know how much more damage even NBC can do to TWC.

TWC lost us when it started with the likes of “Storm Stories” and preachers like Heidi Cullen. What was the point of a weather channel if you don’t know when/if you’ll get the weather forecast? Faster and easier to use the web.

obladioblada on July 7, 2008 at 1:35 PM

The Paint Drying Channel is also purportedly up for sale.

Seriously, there’s a Weather Channel?

Rhinoboy on July 7, 2008 at 1:35 PM

HEADLINE…
Tornadoes Rake Midwest – Bush Administration Policies Faulted.

whitetop on July 7, 2008 at 1:38 PM

The Paint Drying Channel is also purportedly up for sale.

Seriously, there’s a Weather Channel?

Rhinoboy on July 7, 2008 at 1:35 PM

No, PDC merged with the Grass Growing Channel years ago and was eventually bought and made into MSNBC.

carbon_footprint on July 7, 2008 at 1:38 PM

Heidi Cullen will now get to fire all the meteorologists who don’t believe in Global Warming. But will anyone be left to tell us whether it will rain or snow tomorrow?

I work with a company who employs lots of people with meteorology degrees. Not one of them believes in Global Warming.

Steve Z on July 7, 2008 at 1:40 PM

Forecast tomorrow: BDS

Limerick on July 7, 2008 at 1:41 PM

This is the point that FOXNEWS needs to create a competing Weather Channel.

“The Weather Changes”. Observance of and predictions for the infinitely variable atmostphere of our planet.

Motto: Cyclones are the only Spin you’ll get here.

babylonandon on July 7, 2008 at 1:42 PM

Faster and easier to use the web.

Prezactly.

Watts Up With That notes that the new name will be “The Disaster Channel.”

NeighborhoodCatLady on July 7, 2008 at 1:43 PM

Even though I live in a small city (120K), two of the local news channels have 24 hour weather channel on the local cable system.

A big advantage is that I don’t have to wait through the rest of the countries weather in order to find out what is happening locally.

MarkTheGreat on July 7, 2008 at 1:43 PM

Par for the course with these media geniuses. NBC paid top dollar for a property IT WILL NEVER recoup its investment in. We’ll hear for years to come about “synergies” and “value-added.” Bunk. NBC shareholders should be furious.

Sugar Land on July 7, 2008 at 1:44 PM

Given NBC’s inability to impose even a modicum of balance and objectivity at MS-NBC, we can expect Jeff Zucker to use this new outfit as a platform on which to push even harder for statist policies on energy production and use.

A global tax is the ultimate aim. If Obama wins, this will be one of the major objectives. You read it here, as I repeat myself on some topics.

Entelechy on July 7, 2008 at 1:45 PM

So how many Nothing But Crap channels will this make?

Anyone else notice the weather channel temperature maps are being recalibrated, making them appear more orange-red. The shift seems to come by making the inflection point about 70 instead of about 75, Subtle propaganda, now the whole US map appears orange or red in the summer.

How soon before they all get the orders?

I wonder why they are doing that? I notice our local channel still has the old style ‘cooler’ maps where about a third of the country appears blue-green.

tarpon on July 7, 2008 at 1:45 PM

Watts Up With That notes that the new name will be “The Disaster Channel.”

NeighborhoodCatLady on July 7, 2008 at 1:43 PM

Indeed, to make us all feel guilty – embrace our global tax. India and China told the G8 today to stuff it, to pay first, as they ‘develop’.

If we let it happen, we are the lemming fools, and we fully deserve it.

Entelechy on July 7, 2008 at 1:48 PM

But … but … I have been assured repeatedly by my Bush hating lefty friends that The Blackstone Group is nothing more than a front for W’s warmongering, neocon, oil buddies dutifully carrying out their charge in the name of Israel.

Yet now, I’m to believe they’re in bed with NBC and the global warming zealots?! Will Rove’s machinations never end?

Blacksheep on July 7, 2008 at 1:49 PM

What a surprise, Bain capital working with NBC…

right2bright on July 7, 2008 at 1:51 PM

NBC and the Weather Channel. 2 peas in a pod. They both just “make shit up”.

GarandFan on July 7, 2008 at 1:51 PM

And here’s Lefty McSlant with the forecast! Lefty– are we in for nice weather?

Well, ha-ha, not for a few days, Keith! Today, it looks like the melting Polar ice caps have produced some additional moisture, and as the jet stream brings that down our way, look out for some rain. Tomorrow, expect the kind of chill you get from reading about Republican environmental policies. Wednesday, however, is shaping up as a nice day, with global warming finally taking its toll and upping the temperature to a terrifying 72 degrees. No point in reporting about Thursday, as Bush’s failed presidency will probably have killed us all by then, anyhow. Back to you, Keith!

morganfrost on July 7, 2008 at 1:53 PM

Transcript of a future Today Show forecast.

Matt Lauer: And now the weather with Al. What’s it gonna be, Al?

Al Roker: It’s hot! Damn hot! Real hot! Hottest things is my shorts. I could cook things in it. A little crotch pot cooking.

ML: Well, tell me what it feels like.

AR: Fool, it’s hot! I told you again! Were you born on the sun? It’s damn hot! It’s so damn hot, I saw little guys, their orange robes burst into flames. It’s that hot! Do you know what I’m talking about?

ML: What do you think it’s going to be like tonight?

AR: It’s gonna be hot and wet! That’s nice if you’re with a lady, but ain’t no good if you’re in the jungle!

ML: Thanks, Al. For this and the forecast for your area check out http://www.globalwarmingforabettertan.mstwnbc.com.

Dr.Cwac.Cwac on July 7, 2008 at 1:53 PM

Yet another reason why I should have sold my GE stock last year.

aquaviva on July 7, 2008 at 1:57 PM

Forecast tomorrow: BDS

Limerick on July 7, 2008 at 1:41 PM

Good one!

Rhinoboy on July 7, 2008 at 1:58 PM

Why GE keeps Jeffrey R. Immelt as their CEO is a miracle.

Entelechy on July 7, 2008 at 1:59 PM

it’ll be like MTV which rarely shows music videos…the Weather Channel will rarely report the weather but instead be a propaganda outlet of Global Warming.

which is surely GE’s intent, since they stand to profit from Global Warming hysteria considerably.

Liberal Fascism

jp on July 7, 2008 at 2:00 PM

I bet they are going to rename it the Global Warming Channel.

Maxx on July 7, 2008 at 1:22 PM

You read my mind.

CP on July 7, 2008 at 2:02 PM

I started to write, at least we’ve still got Weather Underground, but it seems they’re drinking the global warming koolaid too – repeatedly citing the IPCC as a credible source in their new Global Warming section. Intellicast, at least, still seems to have their mind on weather, not politics.

Laura on July 7, 2008 at 2:06 PM

Laura on July 7, 2008 at 2:06 PM

Heh. The Weather Underground Channel.

Bill Ayers needs his own show. He’ll be as popular as Olby!

Rhinoboy on July 7, 2008 at 2:10 PM

“GE, we bring good things to life.”

Rick on July 7, 2008 at 2:23 PM

Doubling down on drawing the left side of the ideological spectrum. Takes cojones.

Theworldisnotenough on July 7, 2008 at 2:30 PM

Take heart, fellow conservatives. Not all meteorologists drink the global warming kool-aid. Joe Bastardi does not, and you can see his blog and get forecasts on http://www.AccuWeather.com.

Special K on July 7, 2008 at 2:33 PM

As a hardcore weather junkie, I hope that this will improve The Weather Channel and push it back in the direction of hard weather.

One thing that NBC Weather Plus does right is hard weather coverage–and also intergrates that with local weather coverage from the market’s NBC affiliate. This is usually available as a digital cable channel or over the air on XX.2 frequency.

However…NBC Weather Plus, when it isn’t doing the weather, does a lot of climate change stories as part of NBC Universal’s “Green is Universal” agenda.

I would like to see The Weather Channel return to 24/7, ditch the documentaries and agenda and even hopefully introduce regional/local coverage as well. And, bring back those cool mid-90s graphics too, please! :P

American_Pride1701 on July 7, 2008 at 2:34 PM

American Pride

don’t hold your breath , I expect the TWC to go hard left… even more so than before… sadly.

MNDavenotPC on July 7, 2008 at 2:44 PM

Sorry to say but that’s the last time I’ll watch it.

roux on July 7, 2008 at 2:47 PM

The perfect storm, weather channel feeds the global warming / catastrophe mode…..sell more expensive mercury bulbs from GE!

Awesome

Dpet on July 7, 2008 at 2:49 PM

Also cool:

Cracked -Dry Land = Global warming

Flooded Land = Global Warming

What a scheme…..I wish I could have thought of that.

Dpet on July 7, 2008 at 2:49 PM

I think it’s a natural. The Greenhouse Gasbag Channel.

Patrick S on July 7, 2008 at 3:00 PM

After the Olympics NBC might be available for a like amount was shopped by GE a few months back.

i b squidly on July 7, 2008 at 3:02 PM

This won’t help restore GE’s image as America’s prime industrial/technological entity.
JiangxiDad on July 7, 2008 at 1:19 PM

America’s prime re-seller of Chinese junk machines. I avoid like a plague any small appliance with ‘GE’ on it. I can buy garbage direct from the Chinese without paying GE to design the packaging.

It is hard enough already to get the weather on the Weather Channel. I hate the car accident reports which are better left to talk radio so people driving cars can be informed

Cable was such a great idea. Now we pay through the nose to be fed advertising that used to be free. Build an audience. Sell the market to a conglomerate. Brainwash the audience until it squeaks and flees. Find a new station to ruin. The endless cycle of cable

NBC – Noxious Botox Club

What if there was a real Weather Channel?

entagor on July 7, 2008 at 3:09 PM

NBC Universal announced a $3.5 billion acquisition of The Weather Channel, helped along by Mitt Romney’s firm, Bain Capital.

This is like saying that Cheney is still with Haliburton. Mitt has not been with Bain Capital, which he founded, since 1998.

Buy Danish on July 7, 2008 at 3:12 PM

I actually got called by the Weather Channel when they were testing out their ideas for exciting new weather programming. I couldn’t believe they thought anyone would be interested in programs about weather. I gave them all a score of 1, as in “not in the least interested”, except when they got to Storm Stories. I was feeling bad about being so harsh, so I gave it about a 5 or 6. So, my fault. Sorry.

NellE on July 7, 2008 at 3:16 PM

I used to enjoy the Weather Channel. That is, until 30 minutes of every hour constituted commercials.

OhEssYouCowboys on July 7, 2008 at 3:22 PM

Looks like Marxists are even taking over the weather…If Fauxbama does get into the White House, I’m going to feel like I’m in the middle of “Invasion of the Marxist Body Snatchers” Isn’t anyone going to expose this fraud???? Where’s my country indeed………..

adamsmith on July 7, 2008 at 3:28 PM

Special K on July 7, 2008 at 2:33 PM
Nope, Accuweather is drinking the Koolaid too, just less than the Weather Channel:

Global climate change is a matter of intense concern and public importance. There can be little doubt that human beings influence the world’s climate.

Laura on July 7, 2008 at 3:31 PM

The actual founder of the Weather Channel doesn’t buy into the Global warming BS. Of course he is no longer involved with the WC. I wonder why.

eplain on July 7, 2008 at 3:41 PM

This is the point that FOXNEWS needs to create a competing Weather Channel.

babylonandon on July 7, 2008 at 1:42 PM

Fox Weather Channel: We report the weather, you decide whether or not to go out.

James on July 7, 2008 at 3:47 PM

Another reason for me to continue to NOT watch TV.

Fox Weather Channel: We report the weather, you decide whether or not to go out.

Good’un!

Bob's Kid on July 7, 2008 at 3:56 PM

Maybe BET will start a channel. I’m sure they could hire Ollie Williams.

Dr.Cwac.Cwac on July 7, 2008 at 3:56 PM

This as I predicted when it was announced months ago that TWC was up for sale.

Be prepared for Hiedi Cullum, global warming gurrette, to become at least a vice president.

I, for one, have dropped TWC and am using AccuWeather.com for my weather info.

Weather is now going to become another political tool for NBC. And as its other oulets, NBCNews, MSNBC, and CNBC, it will fail.

pocomoco on July 7, 2008 at 4:15 PM

Maybe NBC should buy Court TV? …..and that COPS show!

eplain on July 7, 2008 at 4:19 PM

Less weather reporting, more shows telling us how the world is burning up. Sort of like how MTV used to be a music-video channel then went to dumb-ass faux “looking for love” shows and more dumb-ass faux “looking for love” shows.

ThePrez on July 7, 2008 at 4:48 PM

Maybe NBC should buy Court TV? …..and that COPS show!

eplain on July 7, 2008 at 4:19 PM

Yeah, then Court TV could have an exclusive on James Hansen’s crimes against humanity trial for global warming skeptics.

Buy Danish on July 7, 2008 at 5:00 PM

wait dosnt GE own nbc/pmsnbc and now TWC and dosnt GE also have a lot of toxic waist dumps around the country they have refused to clean up. like the Hudson with all the pcb they left there . So if they are going to tell me i have to change my life to stop global warming , I will do that right after they clean all their own messes up .
Until then STFU GE/NBC/PMSNBC/TWC ect

Mojack420 on July 7, 2008 at 5:10 PM

Wait and watch:

NewsCorp will soon have its own Weather Channel.

Sir Andrew on July 7, 2008 at 5:30 PM

Forecasts are about to take a turn for the worse. Mr.
Zucker and Mr. Capus now will control the weather, too.

d1carter on July 7, 2008 at 5:56 PM

…so they can tell us the sky is falling and we’re all going to burn in global warming hell.

maverick muse on July 7, 2008 at 6:26 PM

I used to faithfully watch TWC until I began to notice the sudden tilt to the left. Ice caps melt in the summer? SHOCKING!

Now I prefer accuweather.com or wunderground.com

SouthernGent on July 7, 2008 at 6:30 PM

Time for FOX weather.

Wise Golden on July 7, 2008 at 7:18 PM

Well of course the Weather Channel thinks the planet is getting warmer! They’re located here in Atlanta, for goodness sakes!

Seriously, I hope they stay here and don’t move the whole damn operation to NYC.

radjah shelduck on July 7, 2008 at 7:43 PM

Is Jeff Zucker Homer Simpson’s identical twin, or what.

AUINSC on July 7, 2008 at 9:26 PM

Now they be able to make up the evidence to back them up.

Did you also know there is a tornado and a flood in a black neighborhood every time Bush speaks?

- The Cat

MirCat on July 7, 2008 at 10:39 PM

Maybe Heidi Cullen will have a segment on Keith Olbermann’s show:
“Worst Global Warming Denier In The World!!!!”

eeyore on July 7, 2008 at 1:25 PM

I know I’m late to this party but as I read about this I was trying to think how to get KO a spot. eeyore beat me to it.
So how about this, KO gets a spot on TWC and does a show called “Worst Weather in the World!!” Yeah, and he could tell us how it is all GWB’s fault too.

JohnnyD on July 8, 2008 at 12:26 AM

Once upon a time:

* MTV aired music videos (not the youth sex romp du jour show)
* Headline News showed the news every 30 minutes (not OJ tv or southern emotional lawyers are us marathons)
* HBO showed movies (not original series)
* The Weather Channel showed the weather radar and forecast constantly

So much for progress…

cannonball on July 8, 2008 at 12:39 AM

Great news! Now we’ll get global warming BS 24-7. Terrific. Maybe Al Gore will have his own show.

Travis1 on July 8, 2008 at 10:32 AM

I’ve tuned out TWC for the most part in recent years and opt for the more local weather outlet.

Anyone who’s done this should bug your cable provider into giving you access to TWC’s companion product, WeatherScan. It is simply an automated product that runs on a loop: local weather, forecasts, and radar. I find it much more useful than TWC – I get to see my local weather when I want, instead of just on the 8′s.

And I don’t have to hear Heidi Cullen tell me what an evil bastard I am because I’m not a AGW fan. Tho living in Florida, I’ll still tune into TWC when it’s tropical update time when appropriate.

I R A Darth Aggie on July 8, 2008 at 10:35 AM

Thomas Eddison would be outraged that GE’s stock is so low.

As a shareholder, I know I am. I bought into the company that makes light, that makes the engines for the Boeing 787, the Best Nuclear generation system producer in the world… GE. (too bad all GE’s modern nuclear plants are in Japan.)

Only to have the devil’s own media unit drag down the whole company’s stock.

I remember when NBC didn’t suck (Pre 2000) when MSNBC actually was interested in presenting live news, and not just talking heads….sigh…

I remember seeing Ashleigh Banfield at ground zero on 9/11 only to go cross-country through pakastan shortly thereafter…

Of course they fired her.

I can live with liberal reporters if they present the facts in a fair way. For instance John Hockenberry is one of the most nut-job liberals I’ve ever seen, but when it comes to investigative reporting, he was phenominal. NBC Canned him.

And now the only people left I can stand on NBC/MSNBC are Al Roker, Ann Curry, and Chris Hanson.

I refuse to watch Bryan “Captain Hyperbole” Williams, or ANY anchor on MSNBC. (It’s almost a pity that the best local news station happens to be an NBC Affiliate… I bet it’s the affiliates’ quality that’s keeping the Today show alive, and not the Today show’s own “quality”)

If their dividend wasn’t still holding up, I would sell… but if the media division infects the rest of the company with “stupid” I’ll sell the mess and cut my losses.

Jones Zemkophill on July 8, 2008 at 6:55 PM