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KABC GM Announces Retirement

kleiner kabcArnold Kleiner, longtime GM of Los Angeles ABC owned station KABC, has announced he’s retiring at the end of January 2015.

Kleiner has been GM of KABC since February 1996.

“I’ve been so lucky to have had such a long and rewarding career in the television business,” Kleiner said in a statement. “I’ve had the great privilege of working with an amazing group of people and I’m very glad to have helped build KABC-TV into the great station it is today. I leave the station in good hands, and they can count on me to be their most loyal viewer.”

Before coming to KABC, he was president and GM of KFMB in San Diego. He started his career with Westinghouse Broadcasting in 1968 as an account executive at KDKA radio in Pittsburgh. He’s worked at WJZ in Baltimore, WBZ in Boston, WPVI in Philadelphia, and WMAR in Baltimore until moving to KFMB in 1993.

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News Crew Says On-Air Goodbye to KTTV Assistant News Director

KTTV anchor Steve Edwards led the Los Angeles FOX owned station’s morning news team in an on-air goodbye to assistant news director Tom Searson today.

“I’m going to miss everyone,” said Searson on set. “Not the late night phone calls,” he added.

Searson, who Edwards said has worked at KTTV for 19 years, took them out of the segment by reading the tease. While hugging the assorted attractive anchors, Searson could be overheard saying, “I’m the envy of the TV news audience right now.”

Group Fights KTTV License Renewal Over Use of Word ‘Redskins’

fcc redskinsThree Native Americans have filed a petition with the FCC to protest the license renewal of Los Angeles FOX owned station KTTV over the use of the word Redskins.

KTTV broadcasts the NFL’s National Football Conference. The Washington Redskins play in the NFC Eastern Division.

Last month, George Washington University professor John Banzhaf said he would target local TV stations in areas with large populations of Native Americans to stop the use of the word. He also said he would go after Los Angeles stations since their licenses are up for renewal at the end of the year. KTTV’s license is up for renewal December 1.

UPDATE: A spokesperson for FOX Television Stations declined to comment on the matter.

All the petitioners argue that the respective stations have not met their legal obligation to operate in the public interest, because repeatedly and unnecessarily using a highly derogatory word – which has been found in several legal proceedings, as well as in dictionaries, to be a racial slur – when children are in the audience is clearly contrary to the public interest.

“No station which repeatedly and unnecessarily used the word “N*ggers” on the air would ever have its license renewed, and Native American leaders all say that the R-word is as much a racial slur to them as the N-word is to African Americans,” says public interest law professor John Banzhaf, who filed the original petition against the renewal the license of WWXX-FM. Read more

KTLA Anchor Learns The Truth About How Co-Anchor Sees Him in Open Mic Moment

KTLA entertainment anchor Sam Rubin learned a valuable lesson last week: never ask a question if you don’t want to hear the answer.

During the Los Angeles CW affiliate’s morning show, Rubin repeated a question his wife asked him, “Since when did you become that fat guy on that show?”

Traffic report Ginger Chan, who was not on camera, but whose mic was on, could be heard saying, “He’s always been.” The genuine look of fright on Chan’s face is evident as soon as she realized everyone could hear her, including Rubin.

Rubin posted about the gaffe on his facebook page, writing, “[T]his was a very honest; and very funny moment; and I sincerely don’t mind in the least that it was at my expense.”

Read more

KNBC Adds Houston Meteorologist

yanez kprcHouston meteorologist Anthony Yanez is joining Los Angeles NBC owned station KNBC.

“It’s bitter sweet, all my kids were born here in Houston,” Yanez told mikemcguff.com. “But you get this opportunity and grab it.”

Yanez, who recently wrote a children’s book about the weather called A Wild Ride on the Water Cycle: A Jake & Alice Adventure, comes to KNBC from NBC affiliate KPRC. He worked at KRQE in Albuquerque, NM. before coming to KPRC. Read more

Why the Fight Over Washington NFL Team’s Name May Affect LA Stations

LA_wikipediaVariety reports FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler recently told reporters he is considering a petition to sanction broadcast stations who use the term Redskins when referring to the Washington, D.C. NFL team.

The FCC is getting in on the fight after George Washington law professor John Banzhaf filed a petition with the commission to pull the license of the radio station owned by the same man who owns the NFL team.

Now it looks like the naming battle may come to the West Coast after Banzhaf revealed he intends to challenge the license renewals of the Los Angeles ABC, CBS, NBC and FOX owned stations because they use the name during broadcasts.

Banzhaf told The Hollywood Reporter he will target markets with large Native American populations like Oklahoma, South Dakota and North Dakota, but said one of the reasons he chose Los Angeles first was because the station licenses are up for renewal on December 1.

Banzhaf is in talks with several Indian groups (he would not name names) about supporting his effort. He can’t personally petition an L.A. station. It has to be done by a resident of the station’s viewing area.

A petition would trigger a process that would require the station to respond, after which Banzhaf’s side would also respond to that response. “The FCC moves like molasses,” said Banzhaf. “Meanwhile the stations do not have their license renewed and that may have consequences for them.” Read more

L.A. Anchors Bring Authenticity to Jake Gyllenhaal Crime Film

If you want to make a movie about Los Angeles and news, you could do a lot worse than having Pat Harvey and Kent Shocknek showing you exactly how it’s done. Shocknek, who just retired from KCBS-KCAL, and Harvey, who has co-anchored the 5 p.m. and 11 p.m. newscasts at KCBS since 2010, were selected for the film by director Dan Gilroy. The film, Nightcrawler, stars Jake Gylenhaal as a freelancer covering the dark world of L.A. crime.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, no actor could quite match the real thing:

“We wanted to cast real anchors in our film because actors often can’t capture exactly what it is that news anchors have,” said Gilroy, speaking ahead of the European premiere of Nightcrawler at the Zurich Film Festival. “(But) I didn’t think any anchors would want to be in our film because they would read the script and say ‘you’re killing us.’ But they all said yes.”

KCAL-KCBS Anchor Kent Shocknek Says Goodbye, Stars in Short Film

Kent Shocknek signed off from CBS owned KCBS-KCAL Friday night.

Shocknek worked in TV news for 36 years, 31 of those were in Los Angeles. Here’s his final goodbye:

Today we find out he is starring in a short film. The nine minute film is called “The Six O’Clock.” Shocknek plays “a man driven to perfection by his job.”

Read more

It’s Kent Shocknek’s Last Day At KCBS-KCAL

Los Angeles CBS owned station KCBS-KCAL is saying goodbye to longtime anchor Kent Shocknek.

The station put together a “Derek Jeter-esque” goodbye promo to let viewers know. On the website, they promised a send-off, “After 36 years in television, we will give a final farewell to Kent Shocknek on KCAL9 at 10 p.m. Friday.”

Shocknek announced his retirement in August.

The Mysterious Case of the Anchor Chairs

KCAL Chairs THREELA Observed reports on the changing anchor chairs during one 9:00 p.m. newscast on Los Angeles CBS owned station KCAL.

The LA blog got a tip from a reader they called Mister B., who thought something might be up when Leyna Nguyen and Sylvia Lopez had different chairs three times in an 11 minute span.

Notice just the backs of their chairs. When the show opened at 9 p.m., Nguyen had a high back on her chair and Lopez looked perhaps a bit out of sorts. By 9:04, Lopez had the superior chair back and, truth be told, looks a little more tuned in and primed for action in Mr B’s screen grab. At 9:11, both women have new chairs. Mr. B wonders if the game of musical chairs was rooted in rivalry or something more innocent: “Does this qualify as ‘breaking news?’”

TVSpy has been watching too many episodes of Finding Bigfoot and In Search of Aliens to think it could have just been a case of the wrong chairs being on set at the start of the show. We asked CBS for comment. We will update when we hear back.

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