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Kimberly Bookman to Join WHDH

Kimberly Bookman has announced she is joining Boston NBC affiliate WHDH as a general assignment reporter.

According to New England One, Bookman comes to WHDH from WCVB in Boston where she was a freelance reporter. She has also worked at WMUR in Manchester, NH, WFXT and NECN in Boston, WMAR in Baltimore, WSPA in Spartanburg, SC and WETM in Elmira, NY.

Taylor Swift and the Future of Local TV News

taylor swiftTaylor Swift, as it turns out, knows a thing or two about the local TV news biz. Just look at the lyrics of her hit song “Ours”: the stakes are high, the water’s rough, but this love is ours. That could easily be said about the love many of us feel for working in television, a business rich with history, but roiled by change.

This morning, The Wall Street Journal published an essay by Swift on the future of the music business, where she argues all is not lost in the face of declining sales, piracy, streaming, and audiences facing an endless sea of digital distractions. “Music is art, and art is important and rare. Important, rare things are valuable. Valuable things should be paid for.” You could say the same thing for journalism.

Millie Tran, a writer and editor at the American Press Institute, shared Swift’s WSJ piece on Twitter, noting “it has a lot of parallels for the news industry.” And it really does.

Swift’s best advice, both to aspiring singer-songwriters and journalists hoping to keep viewers coming to local news—whether it’s at six o’clock or via a station’s iPad app? Read more

Katherine Whaley Leaving KHOU

katherine whaleyAs Darby Douglas returns to KHOU as morning traffic reporter, Katherine Whaley — who has been in that role since 2009 — is leaving the Houston CBS affiliate. The Houston Chronicle has details:

Whaley, a graduate of Memorial High School and Rice University who joined Channel 11 in 2009, said she was offered a reporting position with the station that she said she “ultimately determined was not the right fit for me.”

She said she will continue with Channel 11 through most of August and is “engaged in conversations for upcoming opportunities.”

Houston media blogger Mike McGuff, who first reported the story, also talks to Whaley about what’s next.

KNBC Photographer’s ‘Do You Have Pics?’ Tweet Sparks Debate

Was KNBC photographer Kenny Holmes being insensitive—or simply smart—when he used Twitter to reach out to a person who claimed to be one of the riders stuck on a disabled California roller coaster Monday?

Four people were injured when a tree branch fell onto the track of the Ninja, a 2,700 foot ride at Six Flags Magic Mountain. Shortly after the accident, Holmes used Twitter to find a user named Israel who may have been one of the 22 riders who had to be rescued from the coaster by firefighters. “Stuck upside down on Ninja at Six Flags…scary. The news is here as well” he tweeted.

Holmes reached out with his own tweet:

That tweet was quickly pounced on as an example of uncaring media interested only in getting those exclusive photos, with one person sending a mocking tweet, “Stay classy @NBCLA @KHOLMESlive. “You haven’t been rescued yet, might fall, but u have pics bro?”

Holmes, who also reached out to relatives of potential victims of the coaster accident on Twitter, defended himself, saying he confirmed “Israel” was no longer on the ride, and not in danger of falling—actually, he’d never even been on the ride, but had sent out the “stuck upside down” tweet as a joke. Read more

Alan Lee Leaving WJBK After 18 Years

WJBK anchor Alan Lee announced on-air this morning he is leaving the Detroit FOX owned station.

Lee, who has been the morning show anchor at WJBK since 1996, said he decided not to renew his contract and instead will pursue plans to write a novel.

WJBK general manager Mike Renda said in a statement, “We want to thank Alan for his many contributions to the FOX2 news team over the past eighteen years.”

Lee’s last day will be July 31.

What Are Local Stations Covering?

Today we look at the number two market in the US where the top stories seemed to be the Donald Sterling trial, immigration issues and the focus on the beating of a woman on a local freeway by a CHP officer.

KCBS was the only surprise with its first block focusing on recent beach dangers.

Mark Joyella Joins TVSpy

JoyellaA familiar face is joining us here at mediabistro. Starting today, Mark Joyella will be contributing to TVSpy. Mark has worked as a reporter and news anchor at local news stations across the country, including WFTS in Tampa/St. Pete, WPLG in Miami and WNYW in New York. Most recently Mark was an anchor at WFTV in Orlando.

Along the way, he’s won five regional Emmy Awards for reporting and writing, and covered stories around the world, including the Middle East, Central and South America and Cuba. Mark’s also worked as a digital producer at CNN. Mark lives in Brooklyn with his wife and daughter. On Twitter, you can find him here. Tip him early, and often.

Man Arrested for Beating WCHS Reporter with Tripod

aaron wchs tripod attackA Clay County, WV, man has been arrested for allegedly beating WCHS reporter Bob Aaron while Aaron was shooting a story about possible animal abuse.

According to the Charleston-Huntington ABC affiliate, Howard Lilly is being held on $25,000 bond after being charged with destruction of property, grand larceny and malicious wounding for allegedly grabbing Aaron’s tripod and hitting him with it.

“He came up off of his property onto the roadway,” Aaron said. “And before we could have much of a conversation further about it he came at me grabbed the tripod and starting hitting me with it. He broke the camera lens and gave me a couple of pretty good shots before we left.”

Bob sustained injuries to his leg and finger. His tripod was taken by the attacker and his camera was destroyed. Bob went to a local hospital as a precautionary measure but his injuries did not appear to be serious. Read more

Longtime WFIE Anchor Ann Komis to Retire

ann komisAnn Komis is retiring after 29 years at WFIE, the NBC affiliate in Evansville, Ind.

“I can’t tell you how excited I am to start a new and hopefully adventuresome chapter in my life,” Komis wrote on Facebook. “I plan to have as few deadlines as possible.”

Komis anchors the 5 and 6 p.m. newscasts alongside David James. Her last day at the anchor desk will be Friday, July 18.

Bus Goes Out of Control, Crashes into WCCO

A Minneapolis Metro Transit bus driver died Friday after his bus went out of control and at one point took out part of CBS owned station WCCO‘s building.

The station said the bus driver “suffered a sudden collapse while driving due to natural causes.”

WCCO Meteorologist Mike Augustyniak was walking down the mall and narrowly missed being hit.

“You do a quick calculation: Do I run away or sneak by it? Because it was moving so slowly, I decided to run toward it and around it, but had to jump over some debris that was being pushed towards me,” Augustyniak said. “The streets were empty because it’s a holiday, so I would say, all and all, lucky no pedestrians were hurt.”

A bicyclist near Augustyniak was sideswiped. He suffered some scrapes, and received medical attention at the scene.

The bus came to a stop next to Peavey Plaza on the corner of 12th Street and Nicollet Mall. Gasoline was seen spewing from the back of the bus, leaving a trail across Nicollet.

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