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Opening Arguments

Quite the event

OK, class, your new word of the day is "eventize":

NEW YORK (AP) -- One day into the annual week where television's biggest networks reveal their future programming plans and it was clear what the buzzword was going to be: Eventize.

No matter whether it's a word or not, broadcasters talked frequently about their desire to create big events that viewers need to watch immediately for fear of being left out of the cultural conversation.

Networks are adjusting to the changed world of how people watch their programs: hours or weeks later on DVR, online or on-demand. But the industry's financial structure hasn't caught up yet, so viewers who watch when a program is first aired - once the only way to watch - are considered more valuable.

[. . .]

A grand finale won't be enough for CBS' outgoing comedy "Two and a Half Men." The network wants a season's worth of special episodes. David Letterman's retirement will be a "yearlong celebration of Dave." CBS producers have been told to push the envelope, said Nina Tassler, entertainment president, like the surprise death of Will Gardner on a March episode of "The Good Wife."

The story notes that more and more is being "eventized," which means that soon they'll be "eventizing their entire season." Sounds painful.

So, the viewers who are the most valuable are the ones who watch stuff when it's actually aired -- in other words, people who don't have real lives they need to fit TV watching into.

I was thinking about eventizing my life. Probably a little late in the day for that, huh?