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September 1, 2014

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What It's Like To Attend a Live 'American Idol' Taping

by AOL TV Staff, posted May 20th 2010 6:35PM

You know 'American Idol' inside out -- you can name every finalist in nine seasons, you tune in every week to watch your favorite 'Idol' contestant sing and you can't wait to hear what crazy British thing judge Simon Cowell will say next. You are an 'American Idol' expert. But have you ever given any thought to how the 'American Idol' magic comes to your TV screen every Tuesday and Wednesday night? What goes on behind the scenes?

If you've ever thought about attending a taping or just want to know what it's like to experience the 'Idol' madness in person, here is your survival guide to attending an 'American Idol' taping. -- By Andrea Reiher, Editor at Zap2it.com

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Who are the greatest TV characters?

by Bob Sassone, posted Jul 8th 2009 5:10PM
network logosZap2it is doing a rather ambitious poll concerning the greatest TV characters. And it's not just a general question, they're looking for specific characters: Best Mom, Best Private Eye, Best Couple, Best Nurse, Best Sidekick, Best Bitch, Best Alien, Best Voiceover, and many more.

The voting continues through August 17. The rules say that the show must have premiered in the 2000s, though they're relaxing the rules a bit to include shows that launched in the 90s (or 80s) as long as they also stayed on throughout the 2000s too.

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Zap2it adds online TiVo scheduling feature

by Brad Linder, posted Dec 12th 2007 3:56PM
Zap2itZap2it, everyone's favorite online TV listing site (you know, until they killed the free listing data that had been used by MythTV, GB-PVR, and Media Portal) has announced support for online TiVo scheduling.

There's no shortage of ways to schedule your TiVo recordings on the web. You can do it from TV Guide's web site, Yahoo! TV, or even TiVo Central Online. That's right, when you first bring home your TiVo, you're given the option of viewing TV listings online and scheduling your recordings whether you're at work, on vacation, or sitting two feet from your TiVo.

Still, if you happen to prefer using an alternate TV listing site like Zap2it, I suppose it's nice to have a TiVo integration option.

[via TiVo Blog]

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Schedules Direct and CT TV appear to be waging a price war

by Brad Linder, posted Aug 23rd 2007 7:30AM
Schedules DirectZap2it Labs is about to shut off the free TV guide listing service used by MythTV, GP-PVR, Media Portal, and other free PVR software applications. As we've been reporting, two separate groups are stepping up to continue offering TV listings.

But neither Schedules Direct nor CT TV will be giving the data away for free. That's because unlike Zap2it, (which is a subsidiary of Tribune Media Services), both groups have to pay to license the data.

Schedules Direct announced earlier this month that their program guide information would be available at a price of $15 for 3 months. As more customers sign up, they're hoping to bring the cost down to $20 per year. This week, CT TV announced that it would charge either $3.50 per month or $30 per year (which comes to $2.50 a month).

Considering CTpvr has long been an also-ran in the world of software-based PVRs, CT TV could become a real money maker for the company. That's assuming free PVR users are willing to pay for TV listings at all and don't just find a way to improve applications that scrape the same data off of online TV guide pages for free.

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EasyTV Data to pick up where Zap2it Labs leaves off

by Brad Linder, posted Jul 14th 2007 12:55PM
MythTV EPGA few weeks back, Zap2it Labs announced that they would shut off their free XML TV listings in September, due to abuse of the service. This could spell big trouble for MythTV, GB-PVR, and other personal video recording software packages that rely on Zap2it for their electronic program guide data.

A group of developers from MythTV, XMLTV, and MacProgGuide have formed Easy TV Data in response to the announcement. The group is engaged in some super-secret behind the scenes development to provide reliable TV listings after Zap2it cuts the cord on September 1st.

The simplest alternative is to use screen scraping software that would visit TV listing web pages and grab the data. But this is not as reliable as the XML data Zap2it currently provides, since web services can and do frequently change their site design. Hopefully the Easy TV Data group have something a bit more exciting in mind.

[via Download Squad]

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Zap2it Labs will discontinue free TV listings in September

by Brad Linder, posted Jun 20th 2007 10:04PM
Zap2it labsZap2it Labs has announced that it will no longer offer free television listings after September 1st. You may be wondering what the big deal is. After all, there are a million web sites where you can get your TV guide data.

But Zap2it Labs provided listings in an easily indexable formula, making it the program guide data source of choice for MythTV, GB-PVR, and Media Portal. These programs are also capable of handling XMLTV data, but there aren't really any good programs right now for scraping program guide data for U.S. television listings. We can probably expect to see that change in the very near future.

There's an active discussion taking place in the GB-PVR forums about alternative data sources, such as Yahoo! TV or TitanTV. But GB-PVR's lead developer says he doesn't have plans to design a program to scrape the data. Rather he suspects the much larger developer community working on MythTV will lead the way.

[via Brent Evans]

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Moonlight already looking for a new leading lady

by Bob Sassone, posted May 24th 2007 6:33PM

LucioThe new fall season isn't etched in stone yet. The networks could still make some changes, especially when it comes to time slots. But also to the casts that were in the pilots for the new shows.

Case in point, Moonlight. The new CBS vampire private eye show is already looking for a new leading lady to play opposite Alex O'Loughlin. Shannon Lucio was his romantic partner in the pilot, but they're getting rid of her and looking for someone else for the role. Lucio was formerly on The O.C.

Moonlight will air on Friday nights at 9 this fall, after the renewed Ghost Whisperer.

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ABC says Boston Legal isn't good enough for sweeps

by Bob Sassone, posted May 17th 2007 4:21PM

Boston LegalHere's a little addendum to this post: ABC is pushing the season finale of Boston Legal out of the May sweeps period.

The episode was supposed to run on May 22, but ABC has instead decided to squeeze one more "very special episode" of The Bachelor titled "After The Final Rose." This means that the season finale of Boston Legal won't air until the following Tuesday, May 29, at 10pm.

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Snapstream launches Couchville: A new kind of TV guide

by Brad Linder, posted Mar 5th 2007 10:00AM
Couchville
Snapstream, the company behind BeyondTV, has launched a new product called Couchville. Odds are Couchville is the evolution of the secretive Columbus project Snapstream began beta testing last year.

So what is Couchville? Well, to put it simply, it's a TV guide. But it's a bit more than that. First, Snapstream has integrated BeyondTV Buzz. If you click the Buzz button, you'll see the top 15 programs recorded by BeyondTV users over the last week, as well as the top scheduled recordings for the next few days.

The other thing that sets Couchville apart from other TV listings sites like TVGuide.com or Zap2it is that it has a web 2.0, AJAX feel to it. Instead of clicking on a "next page" button to get more listings after a page refresh, you can click and drag the guide much like you would drag a map in Google Maps.

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Will you watch a Commander-In-Chief movie?

by Bob Sassone, posted May 17th 2006 9:01AM
Sutherland and DavisAs Joel reported yesterday, ABC has canceled the Presidential drama Commander-In-Chief, saying it might come back as a two hour movie. But now Zap2it.com is reporting that not only will the two hour movie wrap up the storyline, but it could actually revive the series if it gets good enough ratings and the network thinks the show could succeed in a different form.

Chances of a TV movie? Excellent. Chances of the show coming back as a regular series? I'd say slightly less than zero.

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