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San Francisco-Oakland-San Jose

Fox/Cox Swaps Ends 51 Years of KTVU Ownership

FoxCox

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.

Fox and Cox Swap Stations in San Francisco, Boston, Memphis

cox media fox logosFox Television Stations and Cox Media Group have announced they are swapping stations in three markets: Fox will get Fox affiliate KTVU and independent KICU in San Francisco, and Cox will get Fox-owned WHBQ in Memphis and WFXT in Boston. After the deal closes, WHBQ and WFXT will remain Fox affiliates.

“The addition of KTVU and KICU to our portfolio of owned-and-operated stations provides us with a compelling growth opportunity in a top-10 market,” CEO of Fox Television Stations Jack Abernethy said in a statement. “Our stations group will benefit from both the strong demographics of the Bay area market as well as the alignment with our package of sports rights. I’d like to also take this opportunity to acknowledge the talented Boston and Memphis teams for the great work they do. We are confident they will be in good hands with our partners at Cox.”

“This is the first time we have had a media presence in Boston and Memphis, and CMG is excited about the prospects that WFXT-TV and WHBQ-TV bring to our business,” Cox Media Group president Bill Hoffman said. “These new stations fit nicely into CMG’s broadcast portfolio, and we look forward to having a great news presence in these two markets and competing hard with the fine local broadcasters who already reside there.”

More in the release after the jump. Read more

KTVU Airs Wrong Graphic for Starbucks Price Hike Story

KTVU StarbucksKTVU, the San Francisco Bay Area FOX affiliate, aired an over the shoulder graphic during its Friday night 10:00 p.m. that seemed to veer towards commentary.

Julie Haener was reading a story about Starbucks’ plan to hike prices. Over her shoulder? A graphic from fake Starbucks store Dumb Starbucks.

KTVU news director Lee Rosenthal told TVSpy, “The graphic was in our system from our previous report a few months ago and wasn’t purged, which led to it accidentally re-appearing on air.”

[Rich Lieberman]

Motorcyclist Behaving Badly May Now Regret Confronting KRON Reporter

Stanley Roberts, the reporter known for his “People Behaving Badly” series on San Francisco Bay Area independent station KRON, may have taught a local motorcyclist an important lesson about just walking away.

Roberts recorded the guy missing his exit right before the Golden Gate Bridge Toll Plaza and driving the wrong way down another exit.

The motorcyclist then approached Roberts and made it clear he didn’t appreciate the KRON reporter getting the traffic no-no on camera. While he was giving Roberts the “what for,” the folks at the Golden Gate Bridge Highway and Transportation District called the CHP who checked the tape and gave the guy a ticket. Oh yeah, he was driving on a suspended license without insurance so they also impounded his bike.

[Reddit]

KTVU Reporter’s Purse Stolen from Truck

KTVU reporter Heather Holmes was doing a story about a violent daylight robbery when she became the victim of a crime herself.

According to SFGate, Holmes had her purse swiped from the San Francisco Bay Area FOX affiliate news truck while she and her photographer were parked near Oakland police headquarters.

Holmes and a photographer were standing near the corner of 7th Street and Broadway in the city’s downtown for their report. Their van wasn’t locked, because the crew had only recently arrived at the corner, and the vehicle was only steps away. Someone used Holmes’ bank card at the Chevron gas station on Market Street within 20 minutes of the theft.

This is yet another in a growing string of crimes committed against Bay Area journalists. In March, gear was stolen out of a KTVU truck in the Fruitvale district of Oakland.

[Rich Lieberman]

Robert Handa Returns to KNTV

handa_cropped_ktnvRobert Handa is going back to KNTV.

Handa will report for the San Francisco Bay Area NBC owned station and also host a weekly program featuring the Bay Area’s Asian American community.

“We’re thrilled to have a journalist with Robert’s talents and expertise joining our staff,” Jonathan Mitchell, KNTV’s VP of news said in a statement on AsianWeek.com which first reported the news.

Handa told TVSpy by email, “I’m excited about the move and new role as I ‘return home’ to ch11(as many staffers put it). I will miss the people at ch 2.”

He started his career with KNTV when it was an ABC affiliate and joins the station from Oakland FOX affiliate KTVU. He has also worked at KPIX and KQED.

What Are Local Stations Covering?

Only two of the stations in the San Francisco-San Jose-Oakland market are in San Francisco. ABC owned KGO and CBS owned KPIX are actually about a block away from one another. FOX affiliate KTVU is across the bay in Oakland while NBC owned station KNTV is about an hour south in San Jose.

Despite their geographical differences, the stations pretty much covered the same range of stories with only a few variations.

Here’s what they covered in the first five minutes:

LA Station Catches Hidden Cash Millionaire Stashing Dough

The phenomenon that started in San Francisco known as Hidden Cash, where a mystery real estate developer puts hundreds of dollars in an envelope, tweets out hints to its location and lets people have at it with no strings attached is catching the attention of local TV stations.

Yesterday, the free money moved about an hour south of SF to San Jose where Bay Area FOX affiliate KTVU caught someone finding the cash on live TV. Watch that video after the jump.

Now, the millionaire is leaving his green calling cards in LA, where CBS owned station KCBS got an exclusive interview.

The mystery man who says he is giving back after a lucrative real estate deal told KCBS he was going to be in LA for a couple of days and planned to spread the love in the Southland. Read more

KGO Responds to Report Two Veteran Anchors Getting Kicked to Curb

kgo logoSan Francisco ABC owned station KGO has responded to Bay Area media blogger Rich Lieberman’s report the station will not renew the contracts of veteran anchor Cheryl Jennings and weatherman Spencer Christian come December.

“This is the latest in a long string of inaccurate and venomous ramblings by a local individual on his personal website” KGO said in a statement sent to TVSpy. “His latest post regarding two beloved KGO employees is not true and further demonstrates that he and his so-called ‘sources’ have no actual knowledge of any of our business dealings.”

Jennings has been with KGO since 1979 and has long been a fixture on the early evening and noon newscast. Christian was hired by former KGO GM Joe Ahern in 1999 after 13 years as the weatherman for ABC’s Good Morning America.

Carolyn Johnson Joins KNBC in Los Angeles

carolyn johnsonCarolyn Johnson is joining KNBC, the NBC-owned station in Los Angeles, in June. Johnson comes from KGO, the ABC-owned station in San Francisco, where she has worked since 2007.

“Carolyn is an excellent journalist whose passion for journalism is seen through her exceptional story-telling abilities,” KNBC vice president of news Todd Mokhtari said in a statement. “Carolyn grew up in Southern California and now she is returning home to join the most talented and respected journalists in the market at NBC4.”

In her new role, Johnson will co-anchor the noon newscast alongside Whit Johnson and the 6 p.m. newscast alongside Chuck Henry.

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