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KWTV to Retire Historic Broadcast Tower; Once Billed as World’s Tallest

News9.com – Oklahoma City, OK – News, Weather, Video and Sports |

An Oklahoma City broadcast tower that once was billed as the tallest man-made structure in the world is now destined for recycling. A “towering piece of broadcast and Oklahoma history” said KWTV anchor Kelly Ogle, who climbed the tower for a farewell story–and to tell the unique history of the structure, which among other things led to the station’s choice of call letters:

The tower stands at more than 1,572 feet tall, around 300 feet higher than the Empire State Building, making it at one time the world’s tallest manmade structure. So tall In fact, (station owner John) Griffin decided against the call letters KOMA and instead chose KWTV, standing for “world’s tallest video”.

By the fall of 1954, we reached the widest coverage of any station in the southwest with the view from the top reaching a 60-mile horizon.

“It was real big deal,” (former station general manager Jack) DeLier said. “We had a grand dedication, Johnny Carson was the master of ceremonies, and Vera Ellen who was a film actress and dancer at that time, climbed up on the elevator to the 1,300 foot level and danced on the platform.”

The station no longer uses the tower, and so the massive piece of Oklahoma history will soon be brought down, piece by piece, and sent off for recycling.

Caller Tells KABC Water Main Break Caused by ‘A Really Large Dump’

Yesterday, Los Angeles ABC owned station KABC started its 4:00 p.m. show with breaking news of a water main break flooding parts of the UCLA campus.

About 40 minutes into the report, anchors Ellen Leyva and David Ono spoke with a caller named Louis Slungpue who claimed to be from the Department Water & Power.

Turns out he wasn’t. The first clue may have been the name. The second? Before hanging up, he told the station the break was caused by a student either putting a cherry bomb down a toilet “or someone took a really large dump, you know.”

How to Get What You Want: Negotiation Tips from a Pawn Broker

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It’s not a huge leap in logic to think a pawn broker would be a pretty effective negotiator. Usually, the biggest conflict in any reality TV pawn show is the bargaining over what something is worth.

Les Gold star of truTV’s Hardcore Pawn and owner of Detroit’s American Jewelry and Loan offers his tips on how to get what you want, even if it means walking away from what you want.

So, save this video for the next time you have to haggle for a new contract or you’re looking for that raise you deserve.

Part Three: Is Hardcore Pawn Really Reality TV?

Part Two: Why are Pawn Shop Shows so Popular?

Part One: Five Weirdest things Pawned

Harrisburg Reporter, Photographer ‘Touched’, Scratched in ‘Ghost Attack’

Screen Shot 2014-07-29 at 1.26.06 PMWe all know television news reporting can sometimes be dangerous, and it’s very often quite weird. But few of us can claim to have experienced a “ghost attack.” But Harrisburg Fox station WPMT reporter Katie Kyros and photographer Nick Petrillo just got lucky.

Assigned to investigate a homeowner’s claim of a “violent haunting”, Kyros says she was “touched and pinched” while inside the house, and Petrillo was “scratched” and “burned” on the arm while shooting an interview with the homeowner–wounds she helpfully treated with her personal supply of holy water. “Because you’re telling the story,” DeAnna Simpson said in the Fox 43 story. “Because you’re putting it out there, because they don’t want– that is there, I’m just telling you, right now that is their way of a warning.”

The “ghost attack” story includes Kyros’ personal description of being “touched”, and video of doors that appear to close on command, as well as photos of a few of the “five plus” ghosts that inhabit the Pennsylvania house:

Simpson says one of the entities in the house is a demon. It appears in a photo as a 7-foot-tall shadow figure. While we were there, Simpson recorded orbs on her cell phone camera and it caught a clip of a shadowy hand reaching out.

Video is after the jump. Read more

GAO Says FCC Needs More Data Before Regulating Shared Service Agreements

FCC_304The U.S. Government Accountability Office published a report saying the FCC doesn’t have enough information to regulate shared service agreements.

In its report, the GAO wrote, “FCC does not collect data and has not completed a review on the prevalence of agreements, how they are used, or their effects on its policy goals and media ownership rules.”

The report said the agreements pit cable and satellite providers and consumer groups against station group owners, with cable and satellite providers saying the deals contribute to higher rates for consumers while consumer groups say shared services agreements dilute the quality of news in local markets.

The GAO said reports were mixed on the actual effects of the agreements “because the [retrans] negotiations are subject to nondisclosure agreements, and there is no data source identifying which stations participate in agreements.”

The report concludes by telling the FCC it “should determine whether it needs to collect additional data to understand the prevalence and context of broadcast agreements and whether broadcaster agreements affect its media policy goals of competition, localism, and diversity.”

Deadline Hollywood

What Did They Cover in El Paso Last Night?

El Paso, TX, is nestled where Texas, New Mexico and Mexico meet.

Of the four network affiliated stations, NBC affiliate KTSM and CBS affiliate KDBC had the most similar newscasts. That’s because while KDBC may be owned by Sinclair, it’s operated by Communications Corporation, the owner of NBC affiliate KTSM.

And, if you’re looking for a different perspective on what’s going on at the border than what you’re seeing on the networks, watch an El Paso newscast to see how they cover it.

Denver Sports Anchor Apologizes for Alzheimer’s ‘Joke’

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KUSA sports anchor Drew Soicher has apologized after opening his sportscast with a questionable reference to Alzheimer’s disease. “So much talk about Alzheimer’s at Broncos training camp that you wonder if that’s the name of a new player on the roster,” Soicher said, before turning to the news that team owner Pat Bowlen had stepped aside to receive Alzheimer’s treatment.

The “new player” line was quickly tackled as an insensitive joke, as Denver Post television critic Joanne Ostrow writes:

Soicher, the 9News sports anchor, got the jokey TV rhythm right (sounds like a vaudeville gag) — but the content uncomfortably wrong. His opener blew up as a tasteless one-liner on social media.

Soicher insists he never intended to joke “about anybody’s illness,” and posted the line–in context–on the KUSA website, along with his comments: Read more

Fort Myers Anchor, Victim of Identity Theft, Fights to Clear Name

Screen Shot 2014-07-29 at 12.36.34 PM WINK news anchor Cayle Thompson says he “learned the hard way” that nobody is safe from identity theft. “We don’t know yet how my identity was stolen, and we don’t know who did it,” he said, revealing that someone tried to take out at least two loans in his name. It was the beginning of a months-long saga that has yet to end:

My producers allowed me to take the rest of the day off. Phone calls had to be made, letters drafted, and emails sent. I called my bank and mortgage company. I called the three credit reporting agencies and requested a free fraud alert on my accounts. I spoke with a woman at the Federal Trade Commission and filled out an FTC Identity Theft Affidavit. I went to the Lee County Sheriff’s Office and made a full report. I visited the Social Security Administration office on Colonial Boulevard.

Thompson says he was alerted to the theft by his human resources manager at WINK, who received paperwork indicating an unemployment claim filed in Thompson’s name. “My hackles went up because I knew it was fraud,” Karen Seiferth said in a story Thompson reported on his experience.

Tenikka Smith to Join Jacksonville Station

Tenikka-SmithWSOC has announced Tenikka Smith is leaving the Charlotte, NC, Cox owned ABC affiliate for Cox’s Jacksonville stations WAWS-WTEV.

Smith was the weekday morning anchor for Eyewitness News This Morning on WAXN.

“I am very excited to join the CBS47 and FOX30 Action News family as we continue our mission to provide viewers quality coverage and original content,” Smith said in a statement.

“We were searching for a key team member to fill this anchor role at WAWS/WTEV, and Tenikka has everything we were looking for,” said WAWS-WETV GM Jim Zerwekh.

Smith started working at WSOC in 2009. Smith starts at WAWS-WTEV in early fall.

On the Move, 7/29/14

Randy McIlwain joins KNBC in Los Angeles as a consumer reporter. McIlwain previously worked at KXAS in Dallas.

Melissa Mollet has been named traffic anchor at WRC in Washington, D.C. She had previously been a freelance reporter at the station. Before that, she worked at KDVR in Denver.

Tracy Clemons joins KTRK in Houston from KSDK in St Louis. In his new role, Clemons will be a multimedia journalist.

Reporter/multimedia journalist Josh Green joins KING in Seattle from WFLA in Tampa. Read more

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