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Archives: November 2010

Cooper Show Set for Fall Debut on Fox Stations

The Wrap

Anderson Cooper Anderson Cooper‘s syndicated daytime talk show is still a year away from launching — but Warner Bros. Television announced on Monday that it has secured distribution in four major markets: New York, Los Angeles, Chicago and Boston.

The yet-to-be-titled one-hour show will debut next fall on WPIX in New York, KTTV in L.A., WFLD in Chicago and WFXT in Boston.

With those key markets on board, Cooper is being positioned as a major daytime star, in the mold of Phil Donahue and Oprah. More…

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Wood Leaving Longtime Post at CBS TV Distribution

The Hollywood Reporter

Terry Wood Top syndication executive Terry Wood is stepping down from her longtime post at CBS TV Distribution.

Wood is expected to exit her role as president of creative affairs and development at the end of the year. She currently oversees all new program creation and production for the syndicator, which is the most prolific daytime distributor in the country.

“Over the past twelve years, Terry has made substantial and lasting contributions to CBS Television Distribution and helped define the current face of daytime television in the process, said CBS TV Distribution in a statement. More…

Bankruptcy Judge Pushed to Limit in Tribune Case

Chicago Tribune

TribuneCo The judge in Tribune Co.’s nearly 2-year-old bankruptcy case struggled openly at a key hearing Monday as he attempted to referee what one participant described as a “four-ring circus” and another called “total chaos.”

Faced with a proceeding that has splintered into four competing restructuring plans brought by sparring creditor factions, U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Kevin Carey acknowledged that moving the complex case forward efficiently is taxing the powers of the bench.

“It’s an unwanted meeting with my own limitations,” he said at one particularly frustrating juncture during a seven-hour hearing in a bankruptcy courtroom filled to capacity with lawyers representing constituents in the Chicago-based media company’s Chapter 11 case. More…

Anchor Changes Pay Off for LA Stations

Variety

KCAL Rick Garcia, Sharon Tay Recent anchor changes have apparently paid off for Los Angeles’ KCAL, KCBS and KTLA.

KABC, of course, continued its overall dominance of the L.A. market, winning the November sweep in virtually every measurement.

But other stations had reason to cheer too — particularly KCAL, KCBS and KTLA, all of which had shuffled their teams over the past year. They posted impressive double-digit gains this November with their late newscasts, according to Nielsen. More…

In Palm Beach, WPTV Announces Team for WFLX Newscast

Sun Sentinel

Shannon Cake, Jay Cashmere
WPTV-Ch. 5
, the NBC affiliate in Palm Beach, has announced the news teams who will be seen when it begins producing newscasts for Fox affiliate WFLX-Ch. 29 in January.

WPTV replaces CBS affiliate WPEC-Ch. 12 as WFLX’s news partner starting Jan 3.

Shannon Cake and Jay Cashmere, who anchor WPTVs 5 p.m. newscast, will take on addtional duties as the anchors of WFLX’s weeknight 10 p.m. newscast. Steve Weagle will handle the weather forecasts. More…

Rentrak Expands Relationship with Gray Television

TVSpy

Rentrak Logo Rentrak announced on Tuesday that it had expanded its relationship with Gray Television. The station group has signed a deal with Rentrak to provide local market measurement for Omaha NBC-affiliate WOWT.

The new deal joins WOWT with two other Gray stations–CBS-affiliate WIBW in Topeka, Kansas and ABC-affiliate KAKE in Wichita, Kansas–under Rentrak measurement.

“Both Gray stations in Wichita and Topeka have been successfully selling with Rentrak data and we’ve witnessed first-hand the power of Rentrak’s database currency as well as the unique insights Rentrak’s electronic measurement provides to our sales, programming and promotions efforts,” said Charlie Peterson, WOWT’s President and GM.

In Pittsburgh, Popular Sports Anchor Enters Semi-Retirement

TVSpy

John Fedko After more than 23 years in Pittsburgh television, WPXI Sports Anchor/Sports Director John Fedko is entering into semi-retirement.

Fedko will end his full-time duties with the station at the end of the year but will continue his popular high school football coverage during the fall. Fedko is perhaps best known in Pittsburgh for his passionate reporting on high school football and his Friday night “Skylights” segment will continue indefinitely.

WPXI is reporting that Fedko’s semi-retirement was brought on so that he could spend more time with his family. And Fedko is emphasizing that this is indeed the case. He told Bob Smizik of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette that he was “absolutely not” pushed into semi-retirement by WPXI management. “This is something I’ve been planning for a long time. I thought long and hard about this over the winter, my wife and I, and the station has been very gracious with me,” he said.

Ray Carter, WPXI’s VP-GM, said that the station was happy that Fedko would stay on for football season. “High School football would not be the same without John at the helm,” Carter said. “We couldnt be happier and will welcome him back each fall.”

NBC Looking for Twitter Stars to Bolster O&O Content

TVSpy

NBC Local Just when you thought local news’ obsession with Twitter couldn’t get any stronger, NBC Local Media has announced that it will be giving popular Twitterers in local markets access to its local media platforms.

NBC Local Media is set to launch a new program called “The 20″ in which it will identify the 20 most influential Twitter users in a handful of major markets and incorporate their 140-character commentary into its local content. “The 20″ will be featured on TV segments, local websites, and mobile products.

“In the age of social media, ‘voice’ is democratizing, with fresh new perspectives about important issues facing local communities. ‘The 20′ will connect these relevant new voices with NBC’s local broadcast and online audiences to facilitate discussion and debate, and help to shape local media coverage,” said Greg Scholl, President of NBC Local Integrated Media.

The roll-out of “The 20″ will be similar to NBC’s gradual launch of city-focussed O&O websites such as nbcnewyork.com. NBC expects to unveil “The 20″ in New York, Washington, D.C., and San Diego in January, and then to expand the program to other markets over 2011.

Blackerby Tapped to Run Indianapolis’ WRTV

TVSpy

Larry Blackerby Larry Blackerby has been appointed to run Indianapolis ABC-affiliate WRTV. The McGraw-Hill-owned station announced on Monday that it had hired Blackerby as Vice President and GM.

Blackerby brings with him over three decades of experience in local TV, including stops in Jacksonville, FL and Palm Springs, CA. Most recently, he held the VP-GM position at Houston’s KPRC.

“Larry brings to this position a long and consistent record of ratings and revenue growth at both network affiliates and independent stations across the country,” said Darrell K. Brown, president of McGraw-Hill Broadcasting. “We look forward to tapping into his experience, leadership and energy at WRTV.”

Beyond success in television, Blackerby maintains a strong commitment to being involved in the local communities where he works. During his time at KPRC, he served on the board of Big Brothers, Big Sisters of Greater Houston and the Quality of Life Committee for the Greater Houston Partnership. WRTV staffers can expect Blackerby to demand a focus on community work outside of the newsroom.

WCBS’s Wragge Replacing Harry Smith on ‘Early Show’

TVSpy

Wragge A major shake-up is underway at CBS’ “The Early Show.” TVNewser has learned that co-anchor Maggie Rodriguez will be leaving the show and, according to The AP’s David Bauder, she will be exiting along with her co-anchor, Harry Smith.

Bauder reports that Rodriguez and Smith will be replaced by Erica Hill and Chris Wragge. Hill and Wragge currently co-anchor the Saturday edition of “The Early Show.”

Viewers in the New York area know Wragge as a marquee anchor for WCBS. Wragge joined WCBS in 2004 as a sports anchor/sports director before transitioning into the role of co-anchor for the station’s 5 and 11 p.m. newscasts.

Wragge’s “Early Show” promotion would be the culmination of years of hard work and commitment to CBS. With his WCBS evening duties as well as his Saturday “Early Show” gig, Wragge regularly works 6-day weeks. As his WCBS bio points out, “Wragge embodies the word “workaholilc.’”

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