Fox Cancels “The X Factor”

Even “The X Factor” doesn’t have the X factor. Or maybe now it is the ex-factor. (See what I did there?) Late Friday evening, Fox announced that the struggling reality competition series will not return for a fourth season.

“American Idol” remains Fox’s sole singing competition. With the news, Simon Cowell, the ex-Idol judge who brought the UK series to America, released a statement.

“I’ve had a fantastic time over the last 12 years, both on The X Factor and American Idol. And apart from being lucky enough to find some amazing talent on the shows, I have always had an incredible welcome from the American public (most of the time!). Last year, for a number of reasons, I had to make a decision to return to the U.K. version of ‘The X Factor’ in 2014. So for now, I’m back to the U.K. and I want to thank FOX for being an incredible partner and I also want to thank everybody who has supported my shows. America, I’ll see you soon!”

Is it just me or is Cowell trying to make it sound as if it’s because he chose to return to the UK and not because Fox chose to cancel the show? The statement from Kevin Reilly, Fox pres, seems to sing a tune along those lines. “To all of us at FOX, Simon is more than one of the most prolific TV personalities of our time –he’s part of our family. A consummate showman and partner, there’s no one more passionate or creative than Simon, and we feel so fortunate to have enjoyed such a wonderful, collaborative relationship with him over the past 12 years. Unfortunately, there is no X FACTOR USA without Simon Cowell, but we understand and support his decision to focus on the international formats and on the next phase of his personal life. We wish him the very best, and it’s our sincere hope that we work together again soon.”

Will you miss the singing competition? Sound off below!

Carl Sagan’s Cosmos Hosted by Neil deGrasse Tyson

A show I am really looking forward to, Cosmos, hosted by the great Neil deGrasse Tyson Premiers on Sunday, March 9th on FOX. Watch the trailer below and let us know in the comments if you will be watching!

According to Fox:

More than three decades after the debut of “Cosmos: A Personal Voyage,” Carl Sagan’s stunning and iconic exploration of the universe as revealed by science, COSMOS: A SPACETIME ODYSSEY sets off on a new voyage for the stars. Seth MacFarlane (FAMILY GUY, AMERICAN DAD) and Sagan’s original creative collaborators – writer/executive producer Ann Druyan and astronomer Steven Soter – have teamed to conceive a 13-part docu-series that will serve as a successor to the Emmy and Peabody Award-winning original series.

Hosted by renowned astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson, the series will explore how we discovered the laws of nature and found our coordinates in space and time. It will bring to life never-before-told stories of the heroic quest for knowledge and transport viewers to new worlds and across the universe for a vision of the cosmos on the grandest scale. COSMOS: A SPACETIME ODYSSEY will invent new modes of scientific storytelling to reveal the grandeur of the universe and re-invent celebrated elements of the legendary original series, including the Cosmic Calendar and the Ship of the Imagination. The most profound scientific concepts will be presented with stunning clarity, uniting skepticism and wonder, and weaving rigorous science with the emotional and spiritual into a transcendent experience.

Carl Sagan’s original series “Cosmos: A Personal Voyage” was first broadcast in 1980, and has been enjoyed by more than 750 million people worldwide.


SYTYCD – Interview with Hayley and Paul, last 2 to be eliminated before the finale!

With the Season 10 of So You Think You Can Dance winding down, with the finale next week… this weeks episode was a great one. There were no bottom 2 guys & bottom 2 girls… they all danced a solo in addition to dancing one routine with an all-star & one being pared up with one of the top 6.

Top 6


Jessie Tyler Ferguson was the guest judge this week & he was not disappointed… especially after we learned he has had a crush on dancer Aaron!! After all the contestants danced their hearts out, Cat Deeley delivered the news of who had made it into next weeks finale… Aaron Turner, Amy Yakima (how can you NOT root for her, she has Yak in her name!!), Fik-Shun & Jasmine Harper made up the top 4… Leaving Paul Karmiryan & Hayley Erbert to say their goodbyes, just short of the finish line.

Paul & Hayley

Going this whole process and getting so close to the finale, what are the emotions like now?  Is it joy because you made it so darn far in the competition and you had so much praise, or is it just frustration that you were one step away from the finale?

Hayley: It’s a really bittersweet moment at this point, because we were so close to the finale.  But I am so proud of Aaron, Fik-Shun, Jasmine, and Amy for making it, because they’re just amazing, obviously at dance, and they’re just like incredible human beings too, because I got so close with them over the week.  But, yes, I’m really upset that I didn’t get to show America my last bit, but I’m still so happy that I even made it this far because I had never expected that I would make it this far to begin with so I’m just so blessed to have even gotten this opportunity at all.

Paul: It’s practically the same thing.  Of course it’s everyone’s goal to make it to the finale and to make it all the way.  But just thinking back to, for me the L.A. auditions and just the journey I made from L.A. to now, it’s amazing even thinking that I’ve come this far.  And I have no regrets, and I think that’s the most important thing, and it’s just been such a great journey and such a great experience and I’ve learned so much and grown as a person.  Of course it is bittersweet, like Hayley said, where you would want to go all the way to the end of the experience and actually have the full potential of dancing each possible dance that you could have on the show, but then again everything happens for a reason and Fik-Shun, Aaron, Amy, and Jasmine, they all deserve to be there, and it really was a hard decision for America, I think.  This season has been so strong, and I wish them the best.  Yes, no regrets.  No regrets.


What are your plans for the future now that you have this experience under your belt?

Hayley: Well, I’m planning on moving out to L.A. to start my dance career and whatnot, and I’m going to try to sign with an agency and just kind of figure out my dancing career in that way.  And also I’ve always wanted to try to get into the acting field and be in movies, or even commercial work or anything, so I would love to go into acting.  But I would also love to be a backup dancer for Justin Bieber or someone, just really anything right now.  The show has opened a ton of doors, but I’m just kind of excited to see what my future is going to be like now after this.

Paul: I would definitely want to continue dancing.  It is something that I love to do.  And I would love to be on Dancing with the Stars or any of the ballroom shows that are going on right now.  And definitely, like Hayley said, I’ve always wanted to act, and I would love to get into acting and just be out in the entertainment industry and just take any opportunity that comes from this.  It’s such a great opportunity to start off your career.  And it’s really not the end, it’s only the beginning.


You guys already discussed the emotions you’re feeling right now, but going back to that night, are you both surprised that you got eliminated?  Paul, the judges mentioned many times this season they could picture you winning the whole thing, and Hayley, they always raved about you.  So what are your thoughts on that?

Paul: For me it wasn’t really a surprise, because going into the top six yesterday, we all just got together and we just discussed that, like everyone just deserved to be there and everyone was such an amazing dancer and such an amazing person.  And I guess going in we just thought of it not as something that was very competitive and that it was the end to something, it was more like we had gone through this journey and we had to think of it as more of a celebration that we had come to the top six.  So it wasn’t a shock.  Definitely Fik-Shun and Aaron deserved to be in the finale and the top six, and so did Jasmine and Amy, but the idea was that everyone did deserve to, and anything that would happen, it happens for a reason, I believe, and it wasn’t a shock to me.  I would love to be in the finale, of course, but they also deserve to be there, so I’m not disappointed.  And especially from the guys, everyone, they’re so talented and I’m just happy for them.

Hayley: Yes, basically exactly what Paul said.  It really wasn’t that much of a shock to me.  I think it was more of a shock to me that I even made it that far to begin with, and so I was not disappointed at all.  I was a little disappointed, because of course everyone wants to make it to the finale and the main goal is to win the show, but it was just so great to be just a part of the show because of the camaraderie that we had.  We were just like a huge family and we were all just so supportive of each other.  So we didn’t really consider it a competition very much.  It was not that big of a surprise at all that I was going home.  And I’m just so, so proud of Jasmine and Amy because they’re just amazing and they deserve it so much I’m just blessed to have made it this far, for sure.


When you both danced the contemporary routine together, Mary Murphy and Nigel cracked a couple of jokes that you’d make a great looking couple and should date in real life.  What was going through your minds at that moment?   And is there any hope of that actually happening down the road?

Paul: That’s so funny.  Throughout the season there have been so many accusations and just relationships that people would want to see.  A lot of people would constantly tell me and Makenzie to get married.  I love Makenzie and I love Hayley, but I don’t know if I love them in that way.  Do you know what I mean?  Really, behind the scenes everyone has their own personality, everyone has their own thing towards who they like and whatever it is, so it could go anyway.  I don’t know.  Relationships just don’t happen because they look right.  There have to be other things that are going on personally.

Hayley: Yes, Paul basically nailed it.  I have a boyfriend right now, so it wouldn’t have happened any time soon if it were to happen.  But yes, like he said we’ve all been trying to get to know each other over these past few weeks and it could be a complete possibility, like anybody in the top 20 could end up being in a relationship.  We’ve just been getting to know each other and so we don’t know everyone’s full personality or anything to go into a serious relationship or any of that.  Paul is a gorgeous person, so that would be great.

Paul: Thank you.

Hayley: …So I guess you never know, but as of right now I don’t really see anything because I have a boyfriend …


Hayley, you had several different partners throughout the competition, Curtis, Nico, last night Paul, not to mention the All Stars, what does working with all these different partners bring to your experience?

Hayley: Dancing with different partners definitely was amazing, because everybody has their own strengths.  And so it was great to experience because there was never once that I was like feeling the same way with a partner.  And in dance you have to connect with a partner really fast, so I think that was kind of to my advantage, because I was just given the opportunity to connect with so many different partners so quickly that I feel like that’s really going to help me out in the future.  Every partner that I worked with was amazing and I had such a great time with all of them, so I think it really just added to my experience throughout the entire thing.  And I wish I could have made it into the finale and gotten to dance with literally all of them, but we’ll all be together for a tour and so you never know what dancers they’ll put in or add in, so I’m really excited for it.


Paul, do you have a favorite moment or a favorite dance routine that you did while you were on the show? 

Paul: That’s a very hard question, because I feel like every week was its own highlight and it was its own moment, really thinking about how each genre literally brought a different aspect to the table and I enjoyed every single genre differently.  And there wasn’t one routine where I was like, “Oh my God, I hate this routine.  I don’t want to do it.”  And I feel like that’s very rare because sometimes there are moments where people just are not content with their genres.  And in my case I really enjoyed all of my genres.
I was thinking about it today, that if I could think about one genre that I like the most which one would it be, I really can’t.  Not even my own genre I can isolate from the other ones.  And in a sense if you want me to give an answer, I would totally say the Edge of Glory dance by Mandy Moore, the contemporary that we did, me and Makenzie, it was our last dance together and it was just one of those, the moment that we shared together on the stage was very genuine and it just meant a lot to us.  But then again, the week after I worked with Witney and we did a cha cha, and then I worked with Comfort and we did a hip hop, and then Kathryn this week, and Hayley, every week was just its own great moment.  And the thing is I had no regrets with any of them, so the whole experience was great as a whole.


You were on So You Think You Can Dance Armenia, and I was wondering how the two experiences compared to each other.

Paul: Armenia’s So You Think You Can Dance brought so many great moments for me, and it was just a life changing experience for me.   It made me grow as a dancer.  I think, because I’ve only been dancing four and a half years, it really made me mature very quickly, and through that experience I strived to participate in So You Think You Can Dance America because I knew that I would grow even more.  Because there’s no doubt that when comparing Armenia and America the level is different, because Armenia’s population is less than Los Angeles’ population and there are different choreographers there and there’s different contestants and competition there, and here it’s on a different level also.  We have choreographers that are known worldwide, although both of these experiences I would never take back and never regret any moment of.  So, yes, there are many differences between Armenia and America.  They were the same show but both of them were completely different in my life as a whole.


Now that the tour will be coming up soon, which dances, whether it’s ones you’ve done or ones that other contestants, other dancers have done, would you like to see featured on the tour?

Paul: I would love to see Mark and Janelle dance the, what is it called, the K-pop or jazz funk.  It was such a unique genre that it was like, I can’t even say what genre, but that’s totally one.  I would love to see Tucker and Robert’s, the medicine dance that they did.  Hayley, anything that you’d want to see?

Hayley: There are so many dances to choose from that were amazing this season.  It’s so hard to say.

Paul: It really is, because it’s like whenever you’re behind the scenes and you just see the growth of the dancers and you see what they become and how amazing each individual, like from the choreographer to the dancers, puts into the dance to create this masterpiece, every one just grows on you because that’s what creates the season, all the different dances.  And there were so many that were so impossible.  Even if the audience didn’t like it, it was very impactful to us.

Hayley: Yes.

Paul: Because you saw the difference of the dance, like, for example, there were so many people that did dances that were out of their genre and it was just very amazing to see them do so great in that genre.  And it made that dance great for me.

Hayley: I think my ideal show would probably be just like to combine every single piece – the entire season, keep like rotating them through, that way it’s not too long.  That would be my ideal show.


Of the dancers that were partnered with the All Stars, is there one dance you would love to dance, is there one routine that either of you would want to dance in place of the All Star?

Hayley: Oh, that’s so hard.

Paul: In place of the All Star, oh my God, this is a hard one.

Hayley: I know.  I honestly cannot pick a dance.  Really any of them would be amazing, because I think this is definitely one of the best seasons.  There hasn’t been a single dance with an All Star that looks weak.  They’re all so strong, and I think that’s just amazing for us.   So I don’t even think I can pick one of those, I feel so indecisive, but this season has been amazing.

Hayley, when you left Topeka in May to go audition in Texas, what you thought you’d be doing right about now is settling into a dorm and starting your freshman year of college instead of preparing for a 42 city tour.  Has it really settled in for you yet how much life has changed for you in just a few months?

Hayley: It is actually so strange.  I auditioned in Austin in January, so I knew that I was going to Vegas for quite a few months until Vegas actually happened, but I never imagined that I was even going to make it through to Vegas, and then when I made it through Vegas I didn’t think I’d make South Pawnee, and then when I made South Pawnee I never thought I’d make it this far.  So it’s just been crazy.
Yes, I was planning on going to Chapman University this fall, and as I just kept going further and further in the show, I was like, okay, I guess I’m not going anymore.  But it’s just kind of crazy to even think about that, because right before I left for the show I was graduating high school and then I was planning on going to college, and now I’m here.  And now I get to go on tour and it’s just completely mind blowing to me because my life has just changed in so many ways, and I think it was for the best.  Like Paul’s been saying, everything happens for a reason, and I truly do believe that so maybe going to college now wasn’t what was meant to be for my life, but we’ll just kind of play it by ear and everything really will happen for a reason.  We’ll just see what God throws at me, I guess.


With the success both you and Fik-Shun have had on Season 10, what’s that say about Kansas being a pretty good breeding ground for topnotch dancers?

Hayley: Yes, I don’t think people think of Kansas as being very, I don’t really know, like very resourceful or anything, so it really proved to people that just because you’re from a small state or a small town that doesn’t mean anything, as long as you put the work and effort into it.  And all of the studios in Kansas are amazing, and I don’t think people really realize that, so it just really does prove to people that you can get training anywhere, as long as you have good training and you have the work ethics that you need to be successful, you’ll be totally fine.


It’s been established that you have a boyfriend and that Curtis took you on a date earlier in the season just to work on your chemistry onstage as partners, and Kat Deeley kind of focused in on that during one episode and made it seem like you two were really dating.  So taking into account that situation and the one about you maybe potentially dating Paul down the road and how you guys would make a cute couple, was that a little frustrating for you at all, or make you a little bit uncomfortable? 

Hayley: I know what’s going down and I know that they’re just pretty much kidding about me and Paul dating.  The Curtis thing was kind of taken out of proportion, but it doesn’t really bother me as much as I think it kind of bothers my boyfriend.  But I’ve told him it’s for the show and he knows that I’m just friends with all of these guys, so I mean, it really hasn’t caused any problems or anything.  I think it’s fine.


Reflecting on both of your performances last week, Paul, you did an awesome job with the hip hop routine and you really surprised the judges – Hayley, you performed that great rumba.  Do you guys have any insight as to why maybe your votes weren’t coming in? 

Paul: Well, the thing with the show is it’s so unpredictable.  I hadn’t fallen to the bottom at all and I had a great run with the hip hop.  And the thing is it’s not always what we’ve come to understand.  It’s not always about America’s best dancers.  It just depends on what America thinks.  It has to do with being a favorite dancer also.  And I guess, like we just … it’s not tragic because Aaron and Fik-shun and Amy and Jasmine, they’re all great people and they’re all great dancers, so it could have gone either way.  And it’s just everything happens for a reason.  So it’s just how America saw it this week and it happened the way it did.

Hayley: I was basically going to say the same thing.  It is all based off of America’s votes, so you never know what’s going to happen.  A lot of times people don’t connect with a ballroom dance because America doesn’t know how cool ballroom truly is, and that could have been a part of it.  But also America obviously loves Amy and Jasmine, and they totally deserve it, so I’m completely content with leaving the finale to them.


Paul, You spent much of the competition dancing alongside Makenzie, and you were an absolutely beautiful couple to watch. She had said that she was so lucky to have you as a partner because you were the reason behind the two of you doing so well.  What is your reaction to that?

Paul: Makenzie is just – I was so shocked that Makenzie got cut so early, not early but she didn’t go all the way, I thought that she definitely deserved to be in the finale at least.  She’s just such an amazing person.  And really working with her was just so different because we connected on a different level.  And we became so close and we became such great friends, and she’s just been so supportive of me through this journey, even after she got cut.  And you know the fact that she is such a great person and such a great dancer, I respect her so much for that.  And I know that it’s not the end, we’re going to be dancing together in the finale and on tour, and I just love working with her and I know that she has such a bright future ahead of her and I know that she will be successful in what she does.
And I just wish that America saw what a great personality she had, because backstage she was so goofy and she was just so fun to be around and not only beautiful in terms of her looks, but beautiful on the inside too.  And I just wish her the best and I thank her for being such a great partner, because the time that I spent with her, we never got our genre, my genre, sorry, we never got Latin ballroom, and we always got contemporary or jazz and it was mainly her genre, and she just helped me so much throughout those genres and made it such a great work process and it was great working with her, and her work ethic is amazing.  And I wish her the best.


Is there anything that either of you have learned, or that you take away from the experience that has either changed you as a person or changed your perspective about dance?

Paul: Well, every single day changed my perspective about dance and changed me as a person, because every single day it was literally this obstacle that we had to succumb and pass and just going through practices that were literally draining of your not only physical self, but also your mental self.  And being able to overcome those challenges and being able to conquer routines that you’ve never really danced before, and being able to just do the best that you can every single day, even though you know that you have no energy in your body, especially this last performance that we had, everyone was really drained, even if we wanted to continue and we had the fight to continue and do our best, our bodies were literally not complying with us.
There were moments where it was like we would fight to finish the routine until the end, but your muscles just give up. We’re still human after all, and the fact that we had to overcome these challenges, it really made us grow and mature as people.  And it’s a great experience, so … an amazing experience, and I truly wish that everyone could experience it, because it makes you grow so much as a person.  And of course it makes you grow as a dancer, but dance, I will be dancing for many years continuing after the show, but I know that what I will take with me even more is how much I grew as a person and the experiences I gained, and the knowledge and maturity I gained throughout the show.  So that’s really one of the biggest things that I know I will remember from the show.


Report: American Idol Considering Former Idols For Judging Panel

cp_american_idol_yakAs the fading Fox phenom looks to improve ratings and the show’s success when it returns next season, the heads over at Fox are reportedly considering putting former show contestants behind the judge’s table. According to Vulture – who first broke the news – the discussions at Fox are very real, but in the early stages. Whether one or all slots will be filled by former contestants has yet to be determined.

It appears that Kelly Clarkson, who appeared on ABC’s short lived Duets, and Jennifer Hudson have been approached. Clay Aiken and Adam Lambert’s names have been thrown around, as well. Fox and the heads of Idol have plenty of time to make the decision. If talks about this plan, which has been thrown out before, fall through, look for other names in the music business to be thrown around, as well.

Randy Jackson has already announced his departure from the show and all signs are pointing to Keith Urban, Nicki Minaj, and Mariah Carey to be replaced as well. There is also word that Fox may go back to a three judges panel and also consider replacing Exec Producer, Nigel Lythgoe. Fox has not made a comment.

If this idea works, it could breathe new life in the show, bring back old viewers who may have abandoned ship, and subtly remind America of the show’s success. Who would you like to see return to Idol?

“SYTYCD” Gets Premiere Date For Season 10, Plus Fox Season Finale Dates, Summer Premieres

cp_yak_sytycdWhile the CW has been the only broadcast network to mark out it’s season finale plans, Fox today announced the premiere of one of it’s summer staples (and largely underrated show, if you ask me) – So You Think You Can Dance – as well as season ender dates. SYTYCD is currently travelling around the country looking for America’s Favorite Dancer for the upcoming tenth season. There are two more audition dates remaining – Memphis (with guest judge Wayne Brady) on March 14 and Los Angeles (with guest Jesse Tyler Ferguson) on March 22. Minnie Driver, “tWitch,” and Adam Shankman have attended auditions earlier this year.

Season 10 is set to premiere Tuesday May 14 at 8/7c on Fox. While it remains unclear if the show will move to its usual slot on Wednesday after American Idol completes its season, we do know that Fox has decided to keep SYTYCD to a once-a-week format, mimicking the changes from last season where performances and results all will be jam packed into two hours. The show is premiering a tad bit earlier this season than in the past, so we’ll see how that plays out this summer!

Also premiering this summer for Fox – Hell’s Kitchen on May 6 at 9/8c, with Fox’s new reality series Does Someone Have To Go? getting a sneak peek following Idol on May 15. The Goodwin Games premieres May 20 at 8:30/7:30c, MasterChef on May 22 at 8/7c, and Animation Domination High-Def on July 27 at 11/10c. Hell’s Kitchen moves to Thursdays at 9/8c on May 23 after Does Someone Have To Go? officially kicks off at 8/7c that night.

Per Fox, on Does Someone Have To Go the boardroom doors get blown wide open when employees are given the power to make some tough decisions. Frustrated bosses will hand over the reins of their companies to the employees, offering their respective staffs a chance to make changes in the workplace – even if it means letting co-workers go. Each participating office will have its own set of issues, which will force them to take a hard look at what’s plaguing their workplace and answer the toughest question of all: DOES SOMEONE HAVE TO GO? is Fox’s latest venture into reality where companies can lay off or fire colleagues on TV.

As for the Fox season finale dates, check out the list below.

8/7c Raising Hope (two episodes)

8/7c Bones
9/8c The Following

8/7c COPS

9/8c Glee

FRIDAY, May 10
8/7c Kitchen Nightmares
9/8c Touch

8:30/7:30c Bob’s Burgers
9:30/8:30c American Dad

8/7c So You Think You Can Dance – PREMIERE
9/8c New Girl
9:30/8:30c The Mindy Project

8/7c American Idol, Part 1

8/7c American Idol, Part 2 (results)

7/8c The Cleveland Show (two episodes)
8/7c The Simpsons (two episodes)
9/8c Family Guy (two episodes)

Yak’s Guide to Holiday Programming: November/December 2012 Premieres, Finales & Specials

‘Tis the season to prepare to clear your DVR after November sweeps to prep it for a holiday marathon of goodness. As but a mere (and awesome, if you ask us) supplement, we’ve prepared your holiday themed guide for TV premieres, finales, specials and more for the remainder of 2012. You’re going to want to bookmark this page, as we will constantly be updating it as more dates are announced. ABC Family’s Countdown to Christmas and 25 Days of Christmas would fill this calendar past max capacity, so be sure to check out our full listing (click here) for all ABC Family has to offer! So if you want to know when your favorite classic movies, new network game show events, reality competition finales, new holiday specials & more air … check it out below!

Related | NBC Announced Christmas Specials, Plus Supersized Voice Finale

Related | Fox Announced Original Thanksgiving Plans, plus Holiday Themed Programming

We’ve got you covered here at the Yak! Don’t forget to check back for special previews from some of your favorite shows during sweeps!

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Tech Tuesday: Comcast, Fox and Hulu

You know I have been one of the biggest cheerleaders of cutting the cable cord. It’s difficult with the networks and big cable companies trying very hard to thwart any progress in that area, rather than coming up with ways to embrace the new technology. Netflix, Hulu, Roku’s free channels, TV HD Antenna’s, a computer hooked directly to the TV, all the ways in which many have deployed cutting the cord. (Course, we need to keep the internet!) Hulu appears to now be having to give in to the big boys. How disappointing.

I understand why cable companies have been fighting so hard. They are set to lose a ton of business. It’s their own fault really, with their prices going up, up, up. Every year we get a new notice of price increases. The blame, cable companies say, are the rising costs of content. You know, the dreaded negotiations they go through every year or so, with threats of cutting off channels. They say that, but then, I’m sure their humongous bottom line doesn’t suffer, only our pockets. If it indeed is a huge raise in content fees from major networks, then call their bluff and let them go. Yes, I know the call centers would be inundated with complaints, but what the heck, hold your ground to save our pockets. The content providers will come back. Think of the advertising they would lose in those major markets.

It always amazed me, when I worked for the cable company long long ago, the customers that would call in about the negotiations. I specifically remember the Fox negotiations. First, Fox News wasn’t a part of the negotiation at the time. That channel was to stay on the air regardless, so those complaints were moot. Second, people would say they would take their business elsewhere (Dish, DirecTv or what not) when as soon as the cable negotiations were through, the negotiations would start up with one of the other providers. Now, you would have quit cable, gotten into a contract with a satellite provider with a 1-2 year contract, and still possibly lost the channel they were fighting for, with no way to escape, no threats to leave (without paying a large sum of money.) In addition, the Network and Cable company would put it out there that you would be losing your local channel. Well, with a really cheap antenna, you could just hook it up to your TV and get that for free… so I never understood that argument or threat.

Now, according to the New York Post, Hulu appears to be poised to go by way of the big boys, and turn itself into a platform kind of like “HBO-GO.” Not by choice of course, but again, because of a Network. Fox is currently re-negotiating it’s deal with Comcast in a way that would require Hulu users to prove they already subscribe to Comcast to access it’s content. Basically, users would have to log in to Hulu using their Comcast logins rather than use their Hulu ID to view any content provided by Fox.

There is an easy way around this of course. If you want to watch a Fox broadcast from your local channel, then get a digital antenna. They are as cheap as $20 and then all your local stations are free. Most of what I watch are on those channels anyway. (The Amazing Race, Big Brother, etc.) Get yourself a DVR, Tivo is a good one (although there is a subscription involved, much cheaper than cable still) and watch when you feel like it. You already pretty much have do that with CBS, who doesn’t provide much if any of their content to Hulu, although will stream it on their website the next day.

The big cable companies will be fighting tooth and nail to keep our money, and the content providers will continue to fight for their bottom line as well. Of course they will, they are in the business to make money, no fault in that. Course we are, as we should be, in a fight to keep our own pockets filled as well. The dream of having the cable companies providing you an “a-la-mode” selection of channels will never happen, so you can give up that dream. Will the Premium channels ever provide an outside of cable way to subscribe to them? That looks bleak at the moment as well. I’m actually surprised the networks haven’t embraced more the Hulu model, forcing us to watch the commercials we can otherwise skip with our DVR.

Who knows what the future holds. The cable companies and networks will continue to fight all the way… but it will be the people that (somewhat) win this eventually if we demand it. Heck, TV used to be free… remember that? The companies made their money off of advertising (that we are skipping now.) How many times have your strolled through all those channels you pay for thinking “so many channels, nothing to watch” or better yet, perused the channels late at night when you couldn’t sleep and discovered that most of these channels you pay for have turned into very long commercials? Do we really need all these choices? Is it worth $150 to $200 for that one or two shows you like on cable? Let’s do the math on it. Let’s say you watch two shows, on once a week on a cable channel, and let’s say your current cable plan costs $150. Each episode costs you, basically, $18.75. Personally, I think not. I missed them when I first did the cut, and yeah, every once in awhile I miss them still, but for the most part, I’m over it. That’s 3 Venti Vanilla Lattes for me, or a movie night out, PER EPISODE. I’m good with that.

Have you cut the cable cord? Considering it? Leave us a comment below!

‘American Idol’ Contestant Conceals Crimes, Eliminated Wednesday

UPDATE #3: Producers apparently began to look into Jermaine’s past after rumors swirled that his dad hadn’t really abandoned him at all. Jermaine’s dad confessed that the two actually see each other regularly and that he did not abandon his son 10 years ago, as previously claimed. After Jermaine began tweeting that he never told producers anything about his dad abandoning him, they began to dig deeper to uncover his spool of lies…and the rest is now history.

UPDATE #2: Jermaine Jones has since deleted his tweet. Hmmm… Idol blog, Mjsbigblog, has a pic of the deleted tweet.

UPDATE: Jermaine Jones just tweeted, “Awww I will no longer b on the show”

Internet reports are swirling that American Idol will be kicking off a season 11 hopeful Wednesday night – during the Performance show. The unnamed contestant allegedly concealed a history of crimes in 2011, one involving violence. Claims are surfacing that the unnamed contestant used an alias with the authorities. According to the show source who leaked the information, the contestant has outstanding warrants for his/her arrest, which the singer concealed from production. Per reports, the contestant was confronted on camera and will be ousted during Wednesday’s live performance show.

It’s no question that this might have been leaked “on purpose,” if you will to drum up hype and attention for tomorrow’s telecast. American Idol has been declining in the ratings, in hot competition with NBC’s The Voice. Is this contrived or is this really a MAJOR oversight from producers who have ousted the sordid past of so many hopeful in the show’s 11 season history.

If anymore details surface, we’ll be sure to post them here. Stay tuned with the Yak for more developments.

Choices, Coming to a TV Near You

Netflix has made some terrible mistakes in the past year. First it was the idea to separate the DVD service from the streaming (with a huge price hike), then the announcement they will be splitting out the DVD and streaming companies all together, then changing their mind on that, then relegating streaming users to only one stream at a time, then saying that it was an error on their end and they weren’t doing it, THEN actually (lately) rolling out the one stream at a time thing slowly without much fanfare thinking there would be less of an uproar that way. We reported on that last month here:  Netflix: N8107-154-5006 Back to One Stream at a Time.

Their loss is another companies gain. Apparently, Amazon is real close to cutting a deal with Viacom for their programming as well as offering a stand alone streaming subscription for customers without Amazon Prime. The announcement and program may come as early as this week. Amazon has already cut some deals with some other major TV providers such as  CBS Corp, Warner Bros, Fox, Sony Corp, NBC Universal and Walt Disney Co. Viacom is the last of their building block to offer the subscription service with likely more deals with networks to come.

Amazon, in addition to it’s Prime Video library (and soon to come subscription service) also has a rental library similar to iTunes already, which boasts some big name newer movies. The subscription service would round them out to be a huge player in the streaming world and most definitely provide the biggest competition to Netflix to date.

Verizon is also jumping into the streaming game. Just announced this week, Verizon will be teaming up with RedBox to offer streaming subscriptions for content as well. No word yet on what deals they have made with content providers. Verizon says they should be up and running with RedBox in the second half of this year.

What will Netflix do, if anything? Netflix has been on quite a bumpy road lately and appears to be making some very bad decisions, at least where customers are concerned. So bad that it almost seems as if they are trying to go out of business. Are they? Who knows. I will say for me, who has both Netflix and Amazon Prime as well as occasionally use Redbox, I am liking more choices stepping forward. Maybe we can have more deals floating around. Maybe Amazon will be able to offer their newer movie rentals for less… like the price of a RedBox rental perhaps? All the choices coming can only add up to a good thing for us consumers.

What do you think? Do you use Amazon Prime already? Do you like their service? Looking forward to more choices all around? Sound off below!

‘SYTYCD’ Petition to Appeal Cancellation of Results Shows

Well, YakkityYaks is kicking off 2012 by taking a stand. We recently published an Open Letter to the network executives of Fox regarding the cancellation of the Results Shows for upcoming Season 9 of So You Think You Can Dance. In our efforts to spread the word and garner support from SYTYCD fans around America, we have come up with a few simple ways to have our voices heard. If you support our movement, please pass on the word to your friends and family.

1. Talk about the show with others – at school, at work, online, or wherever. As auditions kick off January 5 in Atlanta, we can work to create a buzz. We understand the upcoming season does not premiere until the end of May 2012, but demonstrating strong investment in the show cannot hurt.

2. Sign the petition below and encourage others to do so as well.

3. Write to the network. Please be respectful and logical in your arguments. Threats will not strengthen your argument, but rather weaken it. Explain to the network how much you enjoy the Results Shows portion of SYTYCD and how it enhances your experience when watching the show on Fox. You can mention that you’ve signed the petition, and that you want to see the Results Shows make a return to the show’s format. Visit and contact the network through their online rom or you can write via “snail-mail” to: Mr. Kevin Reilly, President of Entertainment, FOX, P.O. Box 900, Beverly Hills, CA 90213-0900, RE: So You Think You Can Dance

4. Take note of the products that have been advertised in season’s past. You can write the advertisers and tell them that you notice their products during telecasts of SYTYCD and that you appreciate their sponsorship of the performance and results shows.

If anyone has any other ideas, please feel free to post them below. Together our voices can be heard. Thanks in advance to our supporters!