The multibillion-dollar television advertising business isn’t at risk of drying up, but the revenue stream is slowing as ad dollars chase cord-cutters who eschew traditional TV for online video. In its annual survey of ad agencies and brands, AOL found that of those increasing digital ad expenditure, 40% said they would do so at the expense of their broadcast budget, and 35% their cable TV budget. The networks argue that advertising "softness" is a temporary symptom of broader economic headwinds, and that numbers will recover in the short term. However, weaker-than-expected upfronts called into question the strength of the TV ad market.
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