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Weeters last won the day on January 24

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  1. Overall this is a pretty decent set. There was some discussion in the Discord that the overall height (going up past the lighting grid!) makes it feel smaller than it actually is. I'm curious how long it will take until producers get tired of wide bump shots, or things break up high that nobody wants to pull out the scissorlift to fix. I do stick by what I said earlier, that I don't think they'll remain on Young St. for more than 5-10 years. This set, abeit nice, is obviously cheap. Parts of it look more like a trade show booth than a permanent news set, and there's little cut corners visible (such as the visible unistrut behind the frosted plexiglass above the LED wall), on top of the obvious recycling of some set pieces from Victory Park (look closely at both and you'll see 'em). The Victory refresh was obviously done with some intention that it would not stay there, and now all they did was move a bunch of it to the main studio.
  2. I have updated the OP with a statement regarding the status of the previously-announced changes, as well as a bit of what's in store for the site's future overall.
  3. Yup, sure do, and not one of them has said corporate "made them" do any of this. In fact, some of the more, uh, "creative" ideas were attributed to station management trying to "one up" other stations in "outside the box" thinking, possibly under the belief that if they weren't outside the box enough they'd be penalized. That's about the closest I've heard to "corporate made them" do it. Regarding the graphics and music, yeah, sure, I'm sure not every station was thrilled about it, but plenty of others were. That's just how these things work in the industry now. The stations resisting change are usually the ones that need it most anyways.
  4. This needs to stop. The "TEGNA Suits" did not storm into WFAA and demand everything be changed. All the "Tegna changes" have been driven LOCALLY by PEOPLE AT THE STATION, some of whom were THERE under Belo. Tegna empowered the stations go "outside of the box", something that they did not get under Belo. Lots of stations "used to be #1" back in the day. They had more viewers on their late news than there are viewers TOTAL between ALL the local newscasts today. Total viewers for all newscasts in the top markets these days match total viewers in small markets two decades ago. Tegna is allowing their stations to do what they think they need to do, so they don't get left behind. This industry has changed drastically since Belo exited the picture. @Myron Falwellsummed it up best in the Discord a few weeks back: Adapt or die. It's how the world works. Tegna is trying. Others are not.
  5. The TVNewsTalk.net On Your Side I-Team Investigators have been working night and day, on a mission to "figure out what the hell is going on" with this transaction, and can report the following: According to the Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs online filing system, the registered agent for Bridge News, LLC is also attached to the following relevant business registrations: Cypress NewsNet LLC (Registered 12/16/21) FTB Operations LLC (Mentioned in FCC paperwork, registered 1/13/22) NewsNet Operations LLC (Registered 1/13/22) Presumably, these are subsidiaries of Bridge News LLC. Additionally, Eric Wotila registered/modified the following companies as well: Lakeline News Operations LLC (Formerly NewsNet LLC, changed 1/19/22) Lakeline News Inc (Registered 12/29/21) The FCC Paperwork The FCC paperwork has a number of attachments, including an Asset Purchase Agreement, and a Time Brokerage agreement. The Asset Purchase agreement, entered into on 1/13/22, is between Freelancer Television Broadcasting, Inc and Eric Wotila personally. The buyer of the assets is "FTB Operations, LLC" which is the new company registered above. The purchase price is $20,000 and "assumed liabilities". The Time Brokerage Agreement, entered into on 1/13/22, is some legalese to allow FTB Operations (which now owns all the IP/contracts/etc) to program the OTA stations that are still technically licensed to Freelancer Television Broadcasting, Inc until the FCC approves the sale. There is an exception in the agreement for two hours on Sunday mornings, likely for EI programming. As part of the agreement, FTB Operations pays Freelancer $250 a month plus "reasonable and prudent station expenses associated with the fulfillment of Licensee's obligation to transmit Broker's programs." Summary So, basically, the entire NewsNet Empire is now in the control of Manoj Bhargava/Bridge News LLC via MBX Wyoming Inc, with Eric only owning 10% of Bridge News. The Speculation Mr. Bhargava is Gray Television's #3 institutional shareholder, through his company MBX Capital LLC (Not to be confused with a similar company MBX Capital Inc which seems to specialize in healthcare investments), owning 5.3% of their publicly traded shares. This transaction was made in July 2021, at the cost of around $100 million dollars. It is unclear what the intentions are with this acquisition of NewsNet. Only time will tell, I suppose.
  6. It might have just dried up, because word on the street is Wotila has sold majority ownership in his two OTA stations. This comes about a year after some construction permits Freelancer Television had in Colorado since 2016 were transferred to Major Market Broadcasting (a group that has several stations running NewsNet). EDIT: The Paperwork. The stations are being transferred to "Bridge News, LLC", a company owned 90% by Manoj Bhargava (a Conservative who owns the company that produces 5 Hour Energy and owns 5.2% of Gray Television) and 10% by Eric Wotila (founder of NewsNet/WMNN/etc). It's not clear if NewsNet is part of this deal.
  7. Local TV in general is experiencing a talent exodus. https://cronkitenewslab.com/management/2021/10/21/local-newsroom-recruitment-crisis-part-1/ https://cronkitenewslab.com/management/2021/10/28/local-newsroom-recruitment-crisis-part-2/ Nobody wants to work for peanuts in local TV when they can make bank elsewhere. I pointed out in the Discord last week that former WISN anchor Melinda Davenport was the host for Facebook's developer conference live streams. @Myron Falwellsummed it up best: Broadcast TV talent is learning they can use their skills at other jobs that make more money and have less stressful hours. There's fewer and fewer people that wish to replace them. TV news is a dying medium, and fewer people desire to stay in it when they can get better pay and hours that allow them to have a social life elsewhere.
  8. It looks like a re-creation of the mock-up made by the new logo designers that was included on Page 1 of this thread. I am told that the local station group was not involved with this project and that any mock up local logos included in the design documents leaked are not official new logos.
  9. Actually, something I didn't consider: Tegna has a history of taking old sets and moving them elsewhere, I guess it's always possible they build out this set, and then a few years from now, build them a new set in a new facility and take the now "old" set and move it to one of their smaller market stations. It's a win-win. A secondhand big market set moved to a small market will last an easy 20 years. Which one of their Texas stations has the old KUSA set? Maybe they'll get it. That thing's already old, give it a few more years and it's going to look like they're broadcasting from a TV News museum.
  10. I can almost guarantee that WFAA will sell their land in the next few years, once this development gets off the ground. I wouldn't expect much of an upgrade to the Young St. studios as a result. The days of WFAA in that spot are very likely numbered.
  11. Given how they've been running their Alaska and Wyoming stations, I wouldn't be surprised if they dropped NewsNet to save a few bucks and use the old INN "News Hub" to do their own hubbed newscasts.
  12. I wonder where they got that...
  13. "First on NewscastStudio" yet posted a day after this thread...
  14. It just isn't a thread about a Tegna station without complaining about C Clarity.
  15. A wildfire broke out on the hill that KEYT/KCOY Santa Barbara sits at the top of. The station was evacuated shortly after.
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