The return to focus: Publishers wake up to the limitations of growing too much too soon

In mid-September, The Weather Channel announced a pivot that, on paper, might sound a bit strange: It was going to focus on the weather. The channel, home to five-day forecasts and obsessive storm and blizzard coverage, had until last month adopted a decidedly more populist approach to programming. “American Super/Natural,” which debuted in 2013, chronicles weather-related myths and mysteries. In “Fat Guys in the Woods,” a survival expert teaches Average Joes how to survive in the wild. “Prospectors” follows a group of miners as they search for rare gems. By the middle of 2015, 47 percent of Weather Channel’s programming …

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