Conan Pays the Price for NBC Chief's Lack of Vision


NBC Universal Chairman Jeff Zucker would like nothing more than to be regarded as a brilliant long-term strategic thinker. Unfortunately for his ambition, reality has consistently suggested otherwise. He failed to program a replacement for Friends, even though it was the key to NBC's prime-time dominance. He failed to anticipate that Jay Leno wouldn't want to take early retirement. And then he failed to foresee how thoroughly uninterested audiences would be in a prime-time version of Leno's shtick.