The conversation will be moderated by Heidi Chung, Media Correspondent, Variety Intelligence Platform (VIP). Panelists include James Smith, Head of Industry, Entertainment, Facebook; Scott Donaton, SVP and Head of Marketing, Hulu; Michael Engleman, Chief Marketing Officer, Showtime; Kimberly Paige, Chief Marketing Officer, BET, and Ellen Stone, EVP, Entertainment Brand Strategy and Consumer Engagement, NBCUniversal Television and Streaming.
Registration is free but required for access. Secure your spot at: variety.com/buildingnewworldspanel ” />
"To compete amongst a new tide of streaming possibilities, platforms are now facing an unparalleled engagement and retention challenge. The solution to this challenge can be reachable for today’s streaming brands: leverage your IP and show your subscribers a whole new world that transcends beyond the screen and into the physical, digital and virtual realities," said Smith.
The panel will be a deep dive into how marketers approach promoting entertainment around IP that transports fans to a brand-new world of experiences, leading to connections with fans that can last for generations. Executives from BET, Facebook, Hulu, NBCUniversal and Showtime will join the “Building New Worlds With Entertainment Marketing” panel on October 21 in the Variety Streaming Room, presented by Facebook.

An NBCU rep said in a statement to Variety, "We are thrilled to have reached a deal with YouTube TV and can continue to offer our full network portfolio, without interruption. YouTube is a valued partner, and we never want to involve our fans in a dispute but felt obligated to let them know what was at stake. We thank our viewers for their loyalty and promise to continue bringing them the networks and programs they love."
NBCU channels that YouTube TV subscribers had been in danger of losing were NBC, Bravo, CNBC, E!, Golf Channel, MSNBC, Oxygen, Syfy, Telemundo, the Olympic Channel, Universal Kids, Universo and USA Network, as well as NBC Sports regional networks including NBC Sports Bay Area, NBC Sports Boston, NBC Sports California, NBC Sports Chicago, NBC Sports Philadelphia, SNY and NBC Sports Washington.
In addition, the internet giant said NBCU, by looking to bundle Peacock Premium with YouTube, that would effectively double-charge customers for the same content (while requiring them to log in separately to Peacock’s apps). Google has claimed that NBCU is asking for higher rates than it charges YouTube TV’s pay-TV competitors.
NBCU had said that it was seeking "fair rates from Google for YouTube TV’s continued carriage of the only portfolio offering entertainment, Hispanic, news and sports networks.”
In reaching the carriage renewal, NBCU dropped its ask that YouTube TV bundle Peacock Premium with the streaming service. YouTube TV said the price of the internet-television package will remain the same.
30 at midnight ET, but the parties reached a short-term extension while they continued working to hammer out a long-term deal. The previous agreement was set to expire Sept.
YouTube TV customers will continue to get NBCUniversal's suite of cable channels and local NBC stations after Google and NBCU announced an official agreement Saturday.
The contract fight escalated earlier this week, after NBCU on Sunday began warning YouTube TV customers they could lose networks like NBC, USA Network and CNBC over the stalled talks.
You’ll continue to have access to 85+ channels, including all NBCU channels, their Regional Sports Networks, and your local NBC station, with no change to our current monthly price." The service currently costs $64.99/month. YouTube TV said in a statement Saturday, "We’re thrilled to share that we have now reached an agreement with NBCUniversal.
The service last raised its rates in June 2020.” /> YouTube TV, available only in the U.S., offers 85-plus channels including local channels for ABC, CBS, Fox and NBC.

The service provides live and on-demand content viewable on smartphones, tablets, connected TVs and computers. YouTube TV is priced at $40 per month, offering a lineup of over 60 networks that includes ABC, CBS, Fox and NBC (with all four available in over 90% of markets), plus cable networks like TNT, TBS, CNN, ESPN and FX. The service offers a cloud DVR with no storage-space limits (with recordings stored for nine months), as well as up to six individual accounts per membership.
Conkling, who started at YouTube on March 11, is based in New York. Conkling takes over for Heather Moosnick, who left YouTube last fall to join Hulu as senior VP of content partnerships. She reports to Kelly Merryman, VP of content partnerships.
"Lori is an exceptional team leader and strategic thinker, and we're looking forward to working with her as we continue to build the future of entertainment." "We're excited to welcome Lori to YouTube to lead content partnerships for YouTube TV and Google Fiber," Merryman said in a statement.
YouTube TV competes with conventional cable and satellite TV operators, as well as other services in the crowded OTT television space including Hulu With Live TV, AT&T’s DirecTV Now, Dish Network’s Sling TV, Sony’s PlayStation Vue and FuboTV. The internet-TV providers have angled to win subscribers with cheaper pricing, more flexible bundle options and enhanced features.” />
Conkling’s appointment comes on the heels of YouTube TV nationwide expansion across all U.S. markets earlier this year, after launching in April 2016 in five initial markets.
In her new role at YouTube, Conkling will lead programming and packaging strategies, including negotiating all content deals in the pay-TV ecosystem inclusive of broadcasters, cable networks, regional sports networks, and affiliates. She also will be a lead representative for YouTube TV to industry organizations and influencers, advertisers, distribution partners, and YouTube creators.
Before joining NBCU in 2013, she led negotiations with pay-TV distributors for the Walt Disney Co., Lifetime Networks and A+E Networks. At NBCU, Conkling oversaw NBCU's digital investments, including in Jeffrey Katzenberg and Meg Whitman's Quibi and Zola, in addition to executing commercial deals that expanded the media conglomerate's reach across the multiplatform ecosystem. While at Disney, Conkling was instrumental in the launch of ESPNU, ESPN's college sports network.
She comes to YouTube from after six years at NBCUniversal, where she was EVP of strategy and business development focused on digital. Lori Conkling is joining YouTube as global head of partnerships for YouTube TV and Google Fiber.

In addition, as Viacom previously announced would happen, former Awesomeness CEO Jordan Levin has left the company. The cuts affected more than 10% of Awesomeness' headcount.
The layoffs at Awesomeness primarily affected corporate positions that were duplicative with Viacom, including human resources, legal and finance departments.
Awesomeness was co-founded by Brian Robbins — who left as CEO last year to join Viacom as president of Paramount Players — and producer Joe Davola.
Awesomeness is now housed under Viacom Digital Studios, led by Kelly Day, formerly chief business officer of AwesomenessTV, who joined Viacom last fall.
According to sources familiar with the pact, Viacom's acquisition of Awesomeness is worth at least $50 million. That's far below the implied a $650 million valuation of AwesomenessTV, after Verizon paid about $159 million to acquire its 24.5% stake in AwesomenessTV in 2016.
“As we begin to integrate Awesomeness and streamline the organization within Viacom, a number of positions were impacted," a Viacom rep said in a statement. "We are grateful for the many contributions of each individual and continue to work diligently to ensure a smooth transition.” The cuts were first reported by THR.
As expected, Viacom has made a round of layoffs at Awesomeness, pink-slipping more than 30 employees of the digital-media company it acquired last month from NBCUniversal, Verizon and Hearst.
After joining Viacom, Day hired another Awesomeness alumna: Paula Kaplan, executive VP of talent and development for Viacom Digital Studios, who was previously AwesomenessTV's chief talent officer.” />
Meanwhile, sources said neither DreamWorks Animation (which bought AwesomenessTV in 2013 when it was just one year old) nor NBCU internally valued the Awesomeness business on the basis of the Verizon or Hearst investments. (Comcast/NBCU picked up the majority ownership of Awesomeness with the $3.8 billion acquisition of DreamWorks Animation.) One of the factors affecting the value of the Viacom deal for ATV was that the sale did not include DreamWorksTV, the YouTube kids’ entertainment channel, which is being retained by NBCU.

Rather, it's seen as a purely promotional tool to create new fans of the Peacock's shows. A source familiar with the strategy behind the app emphasized that Watch Back isn't part of a larger NBCU streaming strategy — it's not a premium over-the-top service like CBS All Access.
NBCUniversal is developing a new app, dubbed "WatchBack," that's basically meant to be a hype-machine for the media company's multiple shows and brands, Variety has confirmed.
The company doesn't have a firm launch date for WatchBack, but it could be ready to roll before the end of 2018. The app would be free, and it won't have any exclusive content or full series — just clips or single episodes, designed as a way to get people interested in the programming on NBCU's broadcast and cable networks.
As a promotional incentive to get people to tune in to NBCUniversal broadcast and cable shows, the app will grant points to viewers for content they watch which they could then redeem for rewards or gift certificates, per The Information report. However, NBCU isn't going to be "paying viewers" to watch its programming per se, as the article implies. Word of NBCU's Watch Back plan was first reported by The Information.
The watchback.com domain name is registered to NBCUniversal Media, and the website currently displays a message that says, "coming soon…"” />