Thursday, December 16, 2010
8262: Comcast Promises Charlie Chan Marathons.
Asian American Groups Support Comcast-NBCU
By Katy Bachman
Five Asian American organizations have come out in support of Comcast’s proposed deal to control NBC Universal after Comcast agreed to expand Asian American programming in a 16-page memorandum of understanding.
The support comes as regulators work to complete a review of the $30 billion deal, which likely won’t be approved by the end of the year.
“We believe that the approval of this joint venture will mark a significant advance for the cause of diversity in media and entertainment,” wrote the groups in a Dec. 15 letter to the Federal Communications Commission. (They include the Asian American Justice Center, Organization of Chinese Americans, Japanese American Citizens League, East West Players, and Media Action Network for Asian Americans.)
These groups—concerned that Comcast had terminated one of the few Asian American channels—have been working with Comcast since the deal with NBCU was announced.
Comcast’s commitment to expand Asian American programming includes increased distribution of an existing channel or launching a new channel, as well as the launch of Cinema Asian America—a new On Demand offering. Comcast has also agreed to invest “substantial funds” to develop new talent pipelines for Asian American-themed content.
In the area of corporate governance, the cable giant said it will “make its best efforts” to fill a future board of directors opening with an Asian American candidate.
All of Comcast’s efforts will be monitored by a new nine-member Asian American Advisory Council, four of whom will be named from the organizations that signed the memorandum of understanding between Comcast and the five Asian American Groups.
“While our dedication to diversity is long-standing, the commitments announced today position us to better compete in an increasingly diverse business environment,” said Susan Jin Davis, vp of strategic services communications and data services for Comcast Cable.
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