The Television Critics Association tours have changed a lot since they began in the Seventies. There used to be four every year. (Since sometime in the late Eighties there have been only two.) In addition to Los Angeles, their only home for more than 30 years, they used to take place in New York City and Washington, D.C. (CBS sometimes flew the entire group to Arizona to hold their sessions at a resort in Phoenix.) They once were dominated by CBS, NBC, ABC and PBS. (Then along came syndication, cable, Fox, The CW and, most recently, the streaming services.) They used to get longer by the year, topping out in the mid-Nineties at 24 or 26 days (depending on whom you ask), though since the aughts they have contracted (even as the number of networks and services they include has increased). They were created and structured by and once placed primary importance on hard-working newspaper critics, who provided primary access through their columns to the viewing public. (We know what happened there.) Newspaper people used to pay full attention to each panel and take notes during sessions, then dash away to file copy. (Today, TCA members spend their days madly typing behind laptop lids, filing and socializing every word they hear, which some people who take the stage find off-putting.)
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