By James Hirsen
David Letterman stunned his audience last week with his announcement that he would retire from late-night television sometime next year. The CBS "Late Show" host referenced a conversation he had with "the man who owns this network, Leslie Moonves." He said he had phoned Moonves and told him, "Leslie, it's been great, you've been great, and the network has been great, but I'm retiring."
He implied that his decision to leave the show was one he had made in order to spend time with his family, but many television professionals are more inclined to believe that the proactive move may have had more to do with CBS's late night competition for ratings. The business end of late-night programming has undergone some significant changes due to recent technological trends. Viral videos, social media sites, and on demand media constitute a new norm for obtaining and keeping late-night audiences, particularly the younger demographic. [more...]