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The Morning Fix: Murdoch family drama. Will World Series deliver?

October 19, 2011 |  7:42 am

After the coffee. Before making my Series pick.

The Skinny: The roundup today includes more good drama with the Murdoch family and less good drama on network television. Also, a look at how annoying reality stars outlast their 15 minutes of fame.

Spread the word. A coalition of networks, studios and unions has launched a campaign to promote an anti-piracy bill called the Protect IP Act, which would go after websites that carry pirated films and TV shows. If successful, the group will turn its efforts to stopping Disney from making any more "Pirates of the Caribbean" movies. I kid, I kid. More from the Los Angeles Times.

I never sang for my father. Is James Murdoch's status as heir apparent to succeed his father as head of News Corp. in jeopardy? While there's been lots of griping from shareholders about the next generation of leadership at the media giant, a New York Times story suggests there are serious clashes between father and son. Of course, this wouldn't be the first time a Murdoch son has been anointed only to be pushed out of the way. With the company's annual meeting taking place at the end of the week, speculation of palace intrigue is growing. Reuters, which likes throwing things against the wall and seeing what sticks, took the drama even further with its own story.

We don't know drama. The broadcast networks are having some luck with new comedies this season but are slipping when it comes to drama, which used to be their bread and butter. TV Guide looks at the lackluster season for network dramas.

Modern viewing. ABC's "Modern Family" leads the way among shows that people record and watch later. According to Nielsen's delayed ratings, 4.5 million viewers recorded and later watched an episode of the Emmy-award winning comedy instead of watching it live Wednesday night. I fall into that category, although I still watch it Wednesdays and sometimes even look at the commercials. More on what shows people record and watch later from the Associated Press.

Low ratings for fall classic? The World Series starts tonight with the Texas Rangers taking on the St. Louis Cardinals. Since only Texas is from a top-five television market, expectations for ratings are low. Of course, the World Series has lost a lot of luster over the past two decades. I listen to a lot of sports radio and on Tuesday -- the day before the first game  -- all I heard was talk about the Raiders deal for Carson Palmer. Still, I'll be watching. Fox says it's not worried. Coverage from Variety.

Last-minute substitution. On Wednesday, Viacom and Google battled again in court over whether the Internet giant's YouTube unit is guilty of copyright theft. However, Ted Olson, the prominent attorney who had been expected to lead Viacom's team, was benched at the last minute. The Hollywood Reporter on the behind-the-scenes drama.

Inside the Los Angeles Times: James Rainey on NPR's new chief Gary Knell. How reality stars keep cashing in even though their 15 minutes of fame are up.

-- Joe Flint

Follow me on Twitter. I don't spoil TV shows with tweets. Award shows and sports are another story. Twitter.com/JBFlint

For the record: The Texas Rangers play in a top-five television market. An earlier version of this post said neither World Series team was in a top-five market.

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