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Posts Tagged ‘WTHR’

WTHR Expands Morning Newscast

WTHR_NBC_13Indianapolis NBC affiliate WTHR is expanding its weekday morning newscast by 30 minutes beginning next month.

“Hoosiers wake up to Channel 13 and for those who need to get up extra early we’re pleased that they will be able to watch their favorite morning show and favorite morning team a half hour earlier,” general manager Larry Delia said in a statement.

Beginning February 24, the morning newscast will begin at 4 a.m. instead of 4:30 a.m. WTHR is moving NBC’s “Early Today,” which currently airs at 4 a.m., to COZI-TV.

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WTHR Anchor Speaks to Daughter Live by Phone During Purdue University Lockdown

payton_swan_wthrBefore Indianapolis NBC affiliate WTHR had any official information about the shooting at Purdue University that left one man dead, WTHR anchor Scott Swan spoke to his 20-year-old daughter Payton live by phone at around 12:38 p.m.

Swan, who is a nursing student at Purdue, told her father she heard reports from “various people that a TA was shot in the middle of class in Electrical Engineering.” Swan also said students were told to shelter in place.

“We’re just all really shaken up,” she told her father. She added students didn’t have any information from police.

She said her sorority sisters told her professors had locked and barricaded themselves in their classrooms and the whole campus was on lockdown.

Swan ended the phone call by telling his daughter, “Thanks for talking to your dad and making me feel a little better about how things are going.”

WPTV Reporter Alex Sanz to Join the AP

alex sanzAfter two years at WPTV, Alex Sanz is leaving the West Palm Beach NBC affiliate to work for the Associated Press. He will be based in Atlanta and his stories will appear across all platforms, including broadcast, digital and mobile.

“This is a great opportunity for Alex and certainly a loss of us. Alex’s experience allowed him to bring necessary context to stories and meetings. His ability to navigate City Hall allowed us to get in front of some big stories,” WPTV news director Mike Garber wrote in a note to station staffers this week.

Before WPTV, Sanz worked at KHOU in Houston and WTHR in Indianapolis.

Weekend Anchor and Morning Producer Reportedly Out at WTHR

wthr_croppedThe Indianapolis Business Journal reports WTHR weekend morning anchor Nicole Pence and morning producer Brian Fetting are no longer with the Indianapolis NBC station.

According to the IBJ, Pence, the Indiana Governor’s niece, “abruptly departed from the station this week.” Her bio has been taken down from the station website.

>UPDATE: Matthew Kingsley, Pence’s agent told TVSPY, “Nicole Pence has turned this over to her legal counsel, John Taylor at Faegre Baker Daniels. Mr. Taylor is handling it and is also working alongside Pence’s media agent, Matthew Kingsley, with 3 Kings Entertainment.”

Kingsley would only refer to the statement when TVSpy asked for clarification.

Separately, a TVSpy tipster told us Fetting left the station earlier this week following a story about Donald Trump‘s wife Melania. She had testified in an Indianapolis courtroom about a lawsuit involving her skincare company. Trump reportedly was critical of a story on WTHR’s morning show.

Pence had been with WTHR for about a year and half. She came to the station from WLEX in Lexington, KY.

TVSpy has asked a station spokesperson for comment but has yet to hear back.

Indianapolis TV Station Trolled with Doctored Photo of Tornado, a UFO and Bigfoot

WTHR appears to have been trolled during its coverage of the storms that rumbled across the state when an image of a fake tornado that included a UFO and bigfoot was uploaded to its viewer photo iwitness site.

Jim Romenesko reported that Indianapolis Star reporter Eric Weddle found the mistake and tweeted about it,

You can see the original and doctored image in the tweet above. Weddle told TVSpy the photo has been making the social media rounds with students of nearby Purdue University and residents of Lafayette, IN.

>UPDATE: WTHR news director Kathy Hostetter told TVSpy, “The photo was published to the wthr.com photo gallery by someone outside our building.  At the height of the storm and in the aftermath of it, we received a lot of viewer photographs & video, and this one slipped through our verification protocols.  We have since removed the photo from our gallery, and we’re reviewing our internal processes to ensure this doesn’t happen again.

The UFO is in the photo’s top right. If you look down at the sidewalk right of center you’ll also see bigfoot walking towards the street.

Ratings Climb For WTHR After Angela Buchman’s Debut

buchman_wthrWTHR‘s hiring of meteorologist Angela Buchman looks like it’s paying off.

The Indianapolis Business Journal is reporting WTHR has seen a big ratings increase since Buchman’s debut after she made the switch from cross-town rival WISH.

The NBC affiliate posted double-digit ratings gains in all newscasts during September except at noon, versus the same month in 2012. Buchman first appeared Sept. 3. She reports the weather weekdays at 5 p.m., 6 p.m. and 11 p.m.

The IBJ also said CBS affiliate WISH has seen the opposite movement for its 6:00 p.m. news with ratings dropping by 31 percent. Ratings for WTHR in the same time-slot have risen by 14 percent over September of last year. Read more

WXIN Pokes Fun at Rivals With ‘Only One Angela’ Billboards

Indianapolis Fox affiliate WXIN is taunting their rival stations with tongue-in-cheek billboards in Indianapolis. The ads feature WXIN anchor Angela Ganote along with the text “Only One Angela,” an obvious reference to weathercaster Angela Buchman, who recently jumped from Indianapolis CBS affiliate WISH to NBC affiliate WTHR. The Indianapolis Business Journal has details:

Every couch potato knows Fox59 is poking fun at WTHR-TV Channel 13’s Angela Buchman. The popular weather prognosticator returned to the air early this month following a yearlong noncompete period from her contract with former employer WISH-TV Channel 8.

[...] “Why, I don’t know what you mean,” said Michael Brouder, WXIN’s director of creative services. Brouder’s not fooling anyone. “It was done with tongue firmly planted in cheek,” he confessed. “If you know about the local news market, you would certainly get it.”

WTHR Wants to Boost Signal After Viewer Complaints

WTHR has asked the FCC if it can boost the output of its transmitter after hearing complaints about its over the air signal.

The Indianapolis Business Journal said the station filed the request in June after receiving complaints from more than 40 viewers, “since WTHR has transitioned to [digital], viewers have repeatedly complained that they experience reception problems when trying to view WTHR’s broadcasts.”

WTHR went as far as sending engineers to viewers’ homes to measure signal strength. It also has incrementally dialed up power on two previous occasions in an attempt to remedy reception problems since the 2009 digital transition.

Phil Bremen, an associate professor in the Telecommunications Department at Ball State University, told the IBJ the increase in power for the signal makes sense, “In a business where margins keep shrinking, nobody wants to give up any viewers by default.”

[TVNewsCheck]

Paul Rennie Named GM of WXIN-WTTV

Paul Rennie has been named vice president and general manager of WXIN-WTTV, the Fox and CW affiliates in Indianapolis. It is a move within Tribune for Rennie, who has been general sales manager of KCPQ-KZJO in Seattle since 2004.

“Paul brings significant industry experience, including time spent in Indy, and he understands the variety of opportunities and challenges generated by a major-market duopoly,” Tribune president of broadcast media Larry Wert said in a statement.  “He is a strategic and innovative thinker whom people trust and enjoy—Paul is the perfect fit for Indy.”

Before joining Tribune, Rennie oversaw the sales department for WRTV, the ABC affiliate in Indianapolis. At WXIN, he replaces Larry Delia, who joined rival WTHR earlier this year.

“I’m happy to be returning to Indianapolis, which is a great market that offers a lot of opportunity,” Rennie said. More in Tribune’s official announcement after the jump. Read more

As Angela Buchman’s Debut Nears, Chief Meteorologist Chris Wright to Exit WTHR

Chief meteorologist Chris Wright is leaving WTHR, Dispatch Broadcast Group’s NBC affiliate in Indianapolis.

Wright’s exit comes as the station prepares for the September arrival of Angela Buchman, who joins WTHR from rival WISH after sitting out a yearlong non-compete clause in her contract. Wright told NewsBlues that WTHR offered him “a huge pay cut and a reduced role” and said he would “go try to catch on somewhere else.”

“Despite our efforts and wanting him to remain at WTHR, Chris has chosen to look for other opportunities,” Dispatch vice president of news John Cardenas told the Indianapolis Star.

WTHR has yet to respond to TVSpy’s request for comment.

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