Roberts a No-Show at Four A’s


The biggest no-show at this week’s Four A’s Media Conference was Brian Roberts, CEO of Comcast Corp.

And while he wasn’t there to talk to, most of the hallway chatter at the show was about his bid to take over The Walt Disney Co., the reason for his no-show status. Most people wondered what it meant rather than having any definite opinions.

Curiously, Roberts had been sort of a last minute addition the Four A’s lineup. The trade group had to print a separate flyer stuffed into its pre-printed agenda that announced his addition as a keynote speaker, only to have him cancel Wednesday, the day the conference began.

Roberts’ topic was to have been "the changing media landscape"-something he knows a thing or two about, given Comcast’s rapid rise to the top of the MSO ranks. And as the bid for Disney shows, Roberts is doing his best to keep that media landscape changing.

Meanwhile, the conference got under way with a record 1,100 media executives in attendance. Attendees were to treated to an opening cocktail reception Wednesday night (TVB sponsored) followed by a CAB sponsored dinner with entertainment provided by Comedy Central’s Colin Quinn.

Among the more profound questions asked by Quinn was how come nobody got the advertising rights to Janet Jackson’s breast during the Super Bowl? His unique take on the media and advertising biz lasted close to an hour.