TV Syndication’s Ray of Hope?

TV Syndication's Ray of Hope? 1To launch its new daytime talk show “Rachael Ray,” King World Productions created a television ad campaign called “R Words.” Viewers were told that in addition to the alliterative host, the letter “R” stood for such things as “rowdy,” “real deal” and “romantic.”

Two others it didn’t mention: really risky.

While still a highly profitable segment of the TV industry, the sale of talk, game and court shows to local stations — a $1.2 billion annual business called first-run syndication — is faltering. Technology and the changing way people watch TV have sent ratings for such stalwarts as “Jeopardy” and “The Oprah Winfrey Show” down as much as 13% over the past year, while efforts to launch new programs have largely failed.

‘He’s Just Not That Into You’ author Greg Behrendt is a would-be talk-show star.