What Will You Remember Most About the Western Show?

Dec 1, 2003  •  Post A Comment

A fellow exhibitor came to the Discovery booth and demanded one of the VIP premiums. … Staff clarified they were only available to key distribution partners and he countered … ‘One of your senior executives, Chris Moseley, told me to come and pick this up.’ I edged closer to the counter, and he added: ‘Mr. Moseley and I have known each other for years.’ Suffice it to say he didn’t leave with the VIP premium.
(Ms.) Chris Moseley
Executive VP, worldwide marketing
Hallmark Channel
My most distinct memory is from 1999, when I spoke at the opening general session. It was my first opportunity to address a large industry gathering since being appointed president and CEO of NCTA. Seeing so many friends and colleagues among the sea of faces in the audience made me really feel at home that day.
Robert Sachs
President and CEO
In 1973 we set up an earth station and transmitted the first U.S. domestic satellite transmission. It was on an 8-meter ‘portable’ dish, mounted on a tractor-trailer. It took about two hours to set up. We had the receiver available for people to see and to walk through. There was a cabinet set up where you could look at all the electronic equipment. It was pretty amazing.
Bill Bresnan
Chairman and CEO
Bresnan Communications
I remember fondly the early Western Shows of the 1970s. It was in that period that I had booth duty for HBO. Those were the days when the entire show was contained in the Disneyland Hotel.
Glenn Britt
Chairman and CEO, Time Warner Cable
Chairman, NCTA
I always liked the plenary panels with people like Malone and Turner and the other colorful characters in the industry. The show is very candid and always good for a quote.
Richard Green
Chairman and CEO
My first Western Show in 1976. Willie Nelson one night; Ike and Tina Turner the next. I was a guest of Gene Schneider, smoking one of his trademark cigars. The second night ended with Richard Wiley, then FCC chairman, at a hotel bar, followed by a search-and-rescue mission of a network exec from the hotel’s swimming pool. I knew then I had found the right business.
Paul FitzPatrick
Executive VP, chief operating officer,
Crown Media Holdings
Glenn Jones, who was the head of Jones Intercable and Mind Extension University, was a poet, and he used to bring books of his work and place them in the magazine racks right up next to the trade publications. I always thought that was great that such a giant in the industry would do that.
Rich Cronin
President and CEO
Game Show Network
Stopping John Malone after a general session and letting him know that we would be glad to provide ’12 more Comedy Central channels’ for his digital lineup at TCI, per his comment on the panel on how to fill the digital spectrum. Based on his response, apparently he was joking.
Brad Samuels
Former executive VP
Affiliate relations
Comedy Central
For many years CTAM has produced a program prior to the show. One year we were thrilled to bag Barry Diller to keynote our event. He was surprised to find he was headlining an event preceding, not at, the Western Show. Still, he gave one of the most thoughtful talks about the increasing media impatience that makes launching stand-alone networks almost impossible. I bet his scheduler got an earful!
Char Beales
President and CEO, CTAM
At one time the Western Show seemed to be the most interesting and dynamic of shows and paid the most attention to programming when cable was in its era of wire.
Ron Alridge
Former publisher, Electronic Media
I will always remember the fun, the friendship and the excitement of the show. Maybe it was because of the holiday spirit or because we were in California in December, or maybe it was just because we were rooting for a show like the Western to succeed in spite of the national trend toward bigger but fewer shows. But it’s been a special time each year in the cable industry that won’t be replaced.
Matt Polka
President, American Cable Association
One memorable session featured John McLaughlin as moderator and Ted Turner and director Ron Howard as speakers. McLaughlin was warned not to focus on public policy issues, as that would leave Howard out of the conversation, but he was hot to hit Turner with some issue and he went ahead with it. Turner and McLaughlin clashed, with poor ‘Opie’ just sitting there. … It all made for great theater.
Paul Rodriguez,
Director of communications, NCTA
(Former partner, P&P MediaWorks, a longtime Western Show vendor)