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Media General Names New KRON GM

kronMedia General has named Ashley Gold Messina VP and GM of San Francisco MyNetworkTV station KRON.

Messina is currently the VP and GM of WDCW in Washington, D.C. She starts at KRON September 10, replacing Brian Greif who stepped down in January.

“Ashley is a strong leader and great competitor,” Deborah A. McDermott, SVP of Broadcast Markets for Media General said in a statement. “She is the right person to take the leadership role at KRON.”

Messina started at WDCW 2001 as a local account executive. She was named GM in 2010.

Viewers Angry with KGO for Promoting ‘Live Aerials’ of Robin Williams Home

Last night, San Francisco owned ABC station KGO tweeted out that it had ‘Live Aerials” of Robin Williams’ home after the actor was found dead from apparent suicide.

The viewer reaction was swift and negative.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, Williams’ publicist said his family “asks for their privacy as they grieve during this very difficult time.”

ABC News apologized today for posting a live video stream of Williams’ house on ABCNews.com. An ABC spokesperson told TVSpy they believe it was the same KGO helicopter shot.

“When we realized there was no news value to the live stream, we took it down immediately,” read ABC News’ apology. “Our intention was not to be insensitive to his family, friends and fans, and for that we apologize.”

We also asked KGO news director Tracey Watkowski for comment. We will update when we hear back.

Telemundo Bay Area Adds Sportcaster

TM_Master_ID_RGB_AWTelemundo 48 Area de la Bahia has added Gabriel Sotelo as sports anchor for its evening news and Telemundo Deportivo Edicion Gigantes, the San Francisco Giants highlight show.

“I am very excited and honored to join Telemundo 48’s team to help deliver sports news to the Bay Area’s Hispanic community,” Sotelo said in a statement.

Sotelo will join anchors Blanca Garza, César Bayona and weather anchor Gabriella Dellán on the San Francisco Bay Area Telemundo owned station’s 6:00 and 11:00 p.m. news beginning Monday, August 18.

Sotelo last worked as morning anchor for Despierta San Diego at Univision’s KBNT in San Diego. He has also worked as a reporter for En Contacto Con Los Chargers, the San Diego Chargers highlight show on KBNT.

KGO Announces Partnership with Univision Station

kgo_univision_NEWSan Francisco Bay Area ABC owned station KGO has announced an agreement with Univision owned station KDTV to collaborate on stories they say would be of interest to both their audiences.

The stations will share news content and also cross promote newscasts. The agreement is part of a larger expansion of the relationship between ABC and Univision. The press release said the collaboration is the first of its kind in the SF Bay Area market.

“Our alliance with ABC7 in the Bay Area is a local progression of our relationship with ABC,” Raul Rodriguez, VP and GM of Univision’s San Francisco Radio/Television said in a statement. “The addition of the Bay Area to the roster of existing relationships reaffirms our commitment to informing, educating, and empowering the Hispanic community in the region.”

“We are very happy to work on all our platforms with KDTV and Univision, the premiere Spanish-language television brand on stories and information impacting our distinct set of consumers,” said William Burton, president and GM of KGO.

KPIX Crew Hit by Thieves a Second Time

KPIX crimeThe KPIX crew that was beaten and robbed while the two were still on-air in 2012 was hit once again by thieves in Oakland, reports SFGate.

Anne Makovec, a reporter for the San Francisco Bay Area CBS owned station, and photographer Gregg Welk were conducting interviews on a street in the Fruitvale District of Oakland around 11:00 a.m. this morning, with a security guard in tow, when their news van was broken into.

Reports say the thieves got away with a laptop, and “personal belongings.”

TVSpy has asked KPIX about it. We’ll update when we hear back. You can watch video of 2012′s camera heist after the jump. Read more

Pioneering TV Reporter Belva Davis: ‘There’s still a lot of good journalism out there.’

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Belva Davis made her TV debut in 1963, when she covered a black beauty pageant. She later made history as the first female African-American television reporter on the West Coast when she was hired in 1966 by KPIX in San Francisco. She stayed at the station for 30 years and later became an anchorwoman in 1970.

Davis hosted “This Week in Northern California” for more than 19 years and has been honored with seven Emmys. It’s safe to say that Davis is a bona fide pioneer and has paved the way for the multiculturalism we see in the media today. Here, she shares her keys to success for journalists, particularly women of color, today:

I used to always answer, ‘Work as hard as I did,’ but I realize you have to work harder. Black women have made progress since I started [in journalism], but you can’t go into it wanting to be a movie star. You can get by and make a living. But if you only prepare yourself to do the minute and 30 seconds they give you to do a story and didn’t get the background so that it could be the best that could possibly happen, it would be difficult to contribute to journalistic knowledge. I see in so many young women an obligation to broaden the storyline. That means there’s still a lot of good journalism out there.

For more from Davis, including what it was like to make her on air-debut, read: So What Do You Do, Belva Davis, Pioneering Broadcast Journalist, TV Host and Author?

KPIX to Launch Revamped 10:00 p.m. Newscast on CW Affiliate

delacruz kpixSan Francisco Bay Area CBS owned station KPIX-KBCW is launching a revamped newscast on CW affiliate KBCW starting Monday at 10:00 p.m.

The show, which replaces the regular KBCW 10:00 p.m. news Monday through Friday, will be called Bay Area Night Beat.

Veronica De La Cruz will host the show which mixes traditional local news with what’s trending on the internet and on social media and is targeted towards a younger audience.

“We are very excited about this newscast that augments our deeply held traditional news values with a social media lens and contemporary story-telling techniques” said Dan Rosenheim, VP of News and news director for KPIX-KBCW.

A station spokesperson promised no big set changes, no gratuitous live remotes and no co-anchors, just the news with science and environmental stories added to weather and a segment called “Jump on Tomorrow” giving news about what’s happening the next day.

‘No One in the Newsroom is Happy’ as Boston Station Prepares for New Owners

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The deal’s not done, but nerves are on edge at Fox 25 in Boston. “No one in the newsroom is 
happy,” the Boston Herald quotes an unnamed source inside the station. “No one here knows what’s happening.”

Fox is set to swap WFXT to Cox Media Group in exchange for Cox’s San Francisco station–and current Fox affiliate–KTVU. The companies will keep their general managers, sending KTVU’s Tom Raponi to Boston, while WFXT’s Gregg Kelley heads to San Francisco. The Herald reports staffers in Boston fear they may also inherit KTVU’s news director:

Raponi’s current news director in San Francisco is Lee Rosenthal, and a Left Coast blog reported that he has put his Bay-area house on the market — possibly signaling a move east. But Raponi told us yesterday that it’s too early to speculate about personnel moves.

“We have not even closed on the deal,” Raponi said. “It would be premature to make any personnel decisions, but as soon as we have something, we will announce it.” Read more

But Didn’t You Say You Had Breaking News?

Okay, I’ll be the bad guy for a moment. I think it’s time we stopped doing these on-air proposals and hey-look-at-me stunts. Like cupcake stores, we may have reached the limit.

Just last week two very lovely news anchors at KRON in San Francisco, Justine Waldman and Grant Lodes (they’re married) announced they will soon be having a baby. Awesome, guys–congrats! But here’s the thing. We got the great news during, well, the news. After teasing viewers that there was an “exclusive and developing story” coming at the end of the 8 p.m. newscast, the segment opened with a full screen DEVELOPING STORY graphic and stinger. Lodes, KRON’s breaking news anchor, then told viewers “now to a developing story we’ve been following–KRON 4′s Justine Waldman is pregnant.”

Wait, what?

Within seconds, we got to see a “new picture just into the KRON 4 newsroom”–an ultrasound image of the baby due in November. I’m a Dad. And I’m on Facebook. I’ve seen plenty of ultrasounds. But this just made me uncomfortable. Again, I think this is fantastic for Justine and Grant, but here’s the thing: I can’t do this anymore. Read more

Fox/Cox Swaps Ends 51 Years of KTVU Ownership

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The news today that Cox and Fox have entered into a station swap, will come as bittersweet to some. Cox Media Group has owned the San Francisco Bay area station for more than 50 years. In the process, Cox is gaining two stations east of the Mississippi.

Cox has owned KTVU, in the sixth-largest U.S. TV market, since 1963. Channel 2 was a charter affiliate of the FOX Broadcasting Company when the network went on the air October 9, 1986.

As FOX Broadcasting takes ownership of KTVU, it is swapping the stations it owns in Boston (market #7) and Memphis (market #50.) Both stations will remain Fox affiliates.

WFXT Channel 25 in Boston has been a FOX O&O since 1987, when it was acquired by News Corp. The station went on the air in 1977 as WXNE, an affiliate of the Christian Broadcasting Network. WHBQ Channel 13 in Memphis went on the air in 1953, and was a dual CBS/ABC affiliate, before picking up the primary ABC affiliation in 1956. It would remain an ABC affiliate until 1995 when News Corp. acquired the station.

With KTVU, FOX gains a station in an NFC market. It has rights to the NFL’s NFC package of games. In fact, the 2016 Super Bowl will be played at the home of the San Francisco 49ers. Unfortunately for FOX, CBS has the rights to Super Bowl 50.

Boston and Memphis will bring to 10 the number of U.S. markets in which Cox operates. The company owns ABC affiliates in Atlanta, Orlando, and Charlotte; CBS affiliates in Seattle and Dayton; the Fox and CBS affiliates in Jacksonville; the NBC affiliate in Pittsburgh; and the Fox affiliate in Tulsa. Fox Broadcasting will now operate stations in 16 markets, including 13 of the top 15.

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