Cosmopolitan magazine is losing its place on the checkout lines of Walmart stores following a campaign from the National Center on Sexual Exploitation. A March 27 press release from NCOSE claimed that it had successfully pressured the retailer to make the decision. “Cosmo sends the same messages about female sexuality as Playboy,” a statement from NCOSE said, noting that the placement of the magazine near store checkouts results in all customers being “bombarded daily with sexually objectifying and explicit materials.” One NCOSE ally and a major supporter of the checkout-line ban on the magazine is Victoria Hearst, part of the family whose Hearst Corp. is Cosmo’s publisher. Hearst’s CosmoHurtsKids has put up billboards in Salt Lake City, Memphis and Nashville claiming that “Cosmopolitan Magazine Contains Porn.” While Walmart will continue to sell Cosmopolitan, it will only place the publication in its regular magazine racks, away from checkout lines. The company called the move “primarily a business decision,” though it noted that the concerns voiced by NCOSE were heard.
Former Obama administration official Susan Rice has been named to the Netflix board of directors. Rice was U.S. ambassador to the United Nations from 2009-2013 and then served as President Barack Obama's national security advisor until January 2017. She was a central player in the controversy that followed the 2012 attack on Benghazi, in which four Americans lost their lives. During the Clinton administration, Rice was assistant secretary of state for African affairs. “We are delighted to welcome Ambassador Rice to the Netflix board,” said Netflix CEO Reed Hastings. “For decades, she has tackled difficult, complex global issues with intelligence, integrity and insight and we look forward to benefiting from her experience and wisdom.” Netflix has nearly 120M subscribers worldwide.
TV ad spending is expected to remain flat in 2018, according to eMarketer’s most recent U.S. advertising forecast. The forecast says that spending on TV ads will dip 0.5 percent this year to $69.87 billion, down from $70.22 billion in 2017 and $71.29 billion in 2016. The drop comes as viewers keep moving to internet-based platforms. Overall, digital ad spend will rise 18.7 percent to $107.30 billion. Roku’s U.S. ad revenues are expected to top $293 million in 2018 (up 93 percent over its 2017 total), while Hulu should see a 13 percent jump in its ad revenues to $1.12 billion. While the report says there should be a slight uptick in TV ad revenues in 2020 (due to the Tokyo Summer Olympics and the U.S. presidential election), it predicts that the general trend will be downward. “As ratings for TV programming continue to decline, advertiser spending will also continue to see declines,” said eMarketer senior forecasting director Monica Pearl.