The broadcast model is likely "safe" because networks would lose a key advantage over cable channels if they didn't have their local station allies, according to Todd Juenger, a senior analyst at Sanford C. Bernstein & Co. "Without the local connection, and its powerful news lead-in/lead-out, we believe the broadcast networks would become indistinguishable over time from the large general entertainment cable networks," he says. "The broadcast ratings advantage would erode, as well as the CPM premium."

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