ABC Paid $57,000. CNN Paid $42,000. How Much Would You Pay?

By Brian 

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The back of the Business Day section in today’s New York Times sports an unusual four-page advertorial titled “The Changing Face of TV News.” (In small print, the ad says it “did not involve the reporting or editing staff of the New York Times.”)

According to a rate sheet obtained by TVNewser, ABC News spent $57,272 to purchase a full-page ad at the end of the section. CNN paid $42,432 for a 2/3 page ad on the second page.

CBS didn’t advertise. NBC didn’t advertise. FNC didn’t advertise. In explaining why not, a Fox News spokesperson was sharp-tongued: “Advertorials aren’t exactly the most credible form to showcase journalists…unlike other networks, we prefer not having to pay for ink.”

(Here’s the rate sheet, by the way.)

In an e-mail to a network exec, Andrea Kahn, the NYT freelancer who put together the advertorial, said that “those who advertise will undoubtedly get more space in the piece.”

And Kahn wasn’t kidding. Execs from CBS, PBS, MTV, CNBC, Comedy Central, and Telemundo are quoted a couple times, but a majority of the quotes come from ABC News VP Paul Slavin and CNN prez Jon Klein. The spread includes a big picture of CNN’s newsroom. Was it really worth $42,000 (or in ABC’s case, $57,000)?