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ABC Affiliates

Broadcasters Warn Lawmakers Over Concerns About STAVRA

broadcastersThe Hill reports, representatives of ABC, NBC, CBS and FOX affiliates wrote to the Senate Commerce Committee to warn that despite the loss of “Local Choice” from the bill, STAVRA still has elements that “would undermine free access … to high quality national network and local broadcast television programming.”

In particular, the stations are concerned about changes made to the system for beaming broadcast channels onto people’s cable and satellite packages, known as “retransmission consent” agreements.

The bill, they wrote, “asserts unprecedented extension of [Federal Communications Commission] regulatory authority over private marketplace negotiations” and unfairly singles out broadcast companies for new limits. Read more

Brian Monahan Leaving Seattle’s KIRO for WSB in Atlanta

web_bio_monahanBrian Monahan, meteorologist at Seattle CBS affiliate KIRO, is leaving the station for Atlanta, where he’ll join Cox sister station WSB. “Finishing up my last morning on KIRO7, and my co-workers sent me off with a signed 12th man flag (of course!),” Monahan posted to Facebook. “I’ll miss these guys a lot as I head to Atlanta!”

Monahan joined KIRO from yet another Cox station, WFTV, the ABC affiliate in Orlando. Monahan followed Bob Jordan from Orlando to Seattle, making the move in 2012.

WTVD Kept Away from NFL Commissioner During Visit to Local High School

Mark Armstrong, sports director for ABC owned Raleigh-Durham, N.C. station WTVD, tried to get close to NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell today while the commissioner was visiting a local high school.

As Deadspin first reported, the story of what happened next played out in three tweets.

Armstrong clarified not all media was shooed away from Goodell. “It turns out that the local CBS affiliate’s prep sports web reporter was allowed to attend as well as a columnist, Luke DeCock, from the Raleigh News and Observer.” Read more

Bat Dive-Bombs Anchors During WATE Morning Newscast

There are all kinds of ways for morning anchors to wake up. You’ve got your turbo coffee, your high volume music as you roll through empty streets toward the station, and, in Knoxville, you’ve got a bat that gets into the studio during “Good Morning Tennessee” and dive-bombs the anchors. Trust me, nobody was nodding off.

The bat appeared repeatedly on camera as anchors Bo Williams, Tearsa Smith and meteorologist Julya Johnson displayed varying degrees of live TV freaking out. ABC affiliate WATE reports its employees are working to escort the winged intruder out of the building, with the help of uniformed animal control officers.

ABC Announces All of Its Owned Stations Now Using Rentrak

ABC_304All of ABC’s Owned Television Stations are using Rentrak’s Advanced Demographics ratings info.

The station group announced WABC in New York, KABC in Los Angeles, WLS in Chicago, WPVI in Philadelphia and WTVD in Raleigh-Durham have joined KGO in San Francisco, KTRK in Houston and KFSN in Fresno in using the audience measurement system.

“We believe in providing our advertisers and agencies with the most accurate level of measurement,” Rebecca Campbell, president of the ABC Owned Television Stations Group said in a statement. “We have confidence that Rentrak’s larger sample sizes, along with its automotive and political data, provide us with the information we need.”

KTRK Anchor Tom Abrahams Signs Three-Book Deal

wpid-allegiance-coverHouston anchor Tom Abrahams, it turns out, has been busy in his time away from the weekend anchor desk at ABC owned KTRK. He’s just signed a three-book deal with Post Hill Press for a series of political thrillers. The Houston Chronicle reports Abrahams has already published two books, “Sedition” and “Allegiance,” with the first of three more already written.

But despite his emerging status as an author, he’s not ready to give up TV news:

“I love my job at Channel 13. So no plans to write full-time,” he said. “I spend about 10 hours a week writing, which is a good escape. It fills a creative void. If it became a full-time job, it would be become less of an escape. As long as I can do both, I will.”

Boston Anchor’s Story of Near-Fatal Illness Hits Home With Viewers

Screen Shot 2014-08-25 at 9.28.35 AMPhil Lipoff, anchor at Boston ABC affiliate WCVB, is back at work after a frightening brush with death. Writing about his illness in detail for the first time, Lipoff reveals how quickly his health collapsed, and how his recovery has impacted him:

This was a life-threatening and life-altering episode. I see things differently now.

I see more of what is really important. (I know that is a cliché, but it’s true.)

I drove for the first time this week. The windows were down. It was such a beautiful day. The sky has never looked so blue. I just kept breathing in and out. Have you ever been aware of your breath before? It’s an amazing thing.

After three weeks away from work, I’m back at the desk this week. You have NO idea how good that sounds to me. Better than the alternative, right?

Lipoff’s story, posted to WCVB’s website Monday, has been shared more than two thousand times, and gotten nearly 7,000 likes on Facebook.

Dave Rexroth, Returning to Work, Talks About the Fireworks Accident That Took His Eye

Screen Shot 2014-09-08 at 10.15.01 AMDave Rexroth, the chief meteorologist at Detroit ABC affiliate WXYZ, has a family tradition of lighting fireworks on the Fourth of July. This summer, being careful to keep the kids away, one of the fireworks exploded directly in front of his face. Rexroth tells the Detroit Free Press he knew immediately it was bad. “Oh no, you have just done something to destroy your family.”

Rexroth was badly injured, and ultimately lost his eye. He feared he might lose his career as well, but has returned to work with his sense of humor still fully operational:

“This is my new eye,” he said, pointing to the left side of his face. “I’ve had it for a week now. I’m still trying to figure out how to use it. … I’m telling you all this stuff because I don’t want you to be uncomfortable. I’ve come to grips with it. It’s been difficult at times, but most of the time, it’s been really, really nice to know that people care.”

His voice cracked, and he wiped his forehead.

“So,” he said, slapping his hands, pausing to set up the punch line. “Sorry. I’m crying my eyes out.”

Kelsey Woodard Joins WQAD in Moline

Screen Shot 2014-09-08 at 9.42.27 AMMoline ABC affiliate WQAD has hired Kelsey Woodard as meteorologist, replacing Cassie Heiter, who left for Oklahoma City’s KWTV.

The Quad-City Times reports Woodard’s got experience as a storm chaser:

A native of Atoka, Tenn., Woodard has a degree in geoscience, with a concentration in professional meteorology and an emphasis in broadcast meteorology from Mississippi State University, one of the leading colleges to produce TV weather experts. While at Mississippi State, she participated in several university-sponsored tornado chases.

Louisiana Station to Air School Kids Reciting Pledge of Allegiance

wbrz_304x200Starting Monday, WBRZ, the Baton Rouge, La. ABC affiliate, will air a daily sponsored segment featuring local public and private school classrooms reciting the Pledge of Allegiance.

The segment, called The Pledge of Allegiance will air before the 6:00 a.m. hour of the morning news. The station says it’s a way to “to promote educational values and national pride.”

WBRZ director, Jake Manship said in a statement,“WBRZ has been locally owned for 59 years and proud to contribute to our community in many ways, including this new special project supporting educational values in our community schools.”

The feature will be sponsored by a local medical clinic.