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Everything posted by Nick

  1. I wouldn't take Rich Lieberman's word for anything. To him, every Bay Area radio and television newsroom is a cesspool of incompetence and failure, backbiting and jealousy, and most news anchors are having illicit affairs. It'd be pretty funny if it weren't so monotonous.
  2. I think CBS News and Stations got the new look done in a hurry compared to ABC O&Os
  3. One thing that is not on the horizon is any standardization of ABC O&O graphics. CBS, NBC and FOX affiliates all have identical design. (I think local news is the poorer for that, especially CBS's rendering its stations to the "CBS News (insert market name here) " generic quality. WABC, KABC, and WLS, to name the three biggest ABC markets, are their own tooling and bear little resemblance to one another in font and design. KABC and KGO are mostly similar, except for differences in L3 color and a few other details. KABC by the way is working on the same graphics and set that made a debut in October 2015. That is some kind of record maybe.
  4. John Severino, who'd made KABC's "Eyewitness News" a powerhouse in great part by hiring Jerry Dunphy after KNXT had cut him loose , too old, came back to take over (I believe) the CBS stations group and run KCBS in 1999. He didn't care for Tuck, was quoted in the L.A. Times as saying "he could go back to San Diego" and installed Jonathan Elias with Ann Martin. I liked Elias a lot. Alvarez returned to 2 a year later. Severino was responsible for the dual embarrassments of the 4 p.m. "Women 2 Women" show and also the hiring of Mike Boguslawski, the consumer reporter who'd wave his fists and shout in the camera "I'm in YER COR-NER."
  5. Thanks! And I think Paul Magers is the only male anchor since Dunphy in the early 1970s to anchor a station newscast that was top-rated, however briefly it was number one, and however it was tied to CBS' prime-time popularity. And I remember Tuck's doing those "Perspective" commentaries before becoming the main anchor, and he could give public figures a good dressing down, from Daryl Gates to George H.W. Bush. Almost an anachronism for an anchor then, and out of the question now,
  6. I'm an armchair, backseat-driving commenter as well. The loud, splashy, and tabloid-like "Action News" was the creation of GM Steven Gigliotti and ND John Lippman, who came aboard in late 1991. Among other changes, they dumped Jim Lampley for the more in-your-face Michael Tuck. KCBS won the February 1992 11 p.m. sweep primarily because of the Olympics, but it was all downhill after that, and the management team was canned. Bill Applegate actually restored a little order in 1994-95. While he retained the "Action News" branding he toned the newscasts down quite a bit. He hired Linda Alvarez for mornings; his throwing the CBS checkbook at Ann Martin led Bree Walker out the door, and then went for nostalgia. He outbid Disney and KCAL to get Jerry Dunphy, "Big News" stalwart Bob Navarro, Larry Carroll, and Dr. George Fischbeck!. Not that any of this helped the ratings -- it didn't. In fact things were so dismal that the early-morning news was axed until long after Applegate was shown the door.
  7. I don't know if you'd call this a branding disparity, but there was a difference between OTA and streaming from the time the "CBSN" platform debuted in Los Angeles in mid- 2019. All newscasts, for example this KCAL noon show, put this box over the channel-number bug.
  8. I might not have expressed it right. I noted that KNXT introduced the nation's first hour-long newscast in 1960, that didn't necessarily mean that had any bearing on the recent re-brandings. That call-letter change was certainly a big thing, though the station brandings at the time changed not at all. "Channel 2 News" even kept the 1978 opens with the old logo until early in 1985. I noted that the visage of Jerry Dunphy was shown in KCAL promos; one might have thought his Los Angeles anchoring career began at Channel 9 in 1989. But then I freely admit I am an old fashioned sort!
  9. Some have called this "KCAL News" branding awkward and odd because the indepdendent's calls were chosen instead of the heritage CBS station's. But when you consider the eyemark is seen not only in all KCAL newscasts but graces the floor under the anchor desk, the station is for all practical purposes no longer an indie but a second CBS O&O. From 2003 until last week, the CBS eye was purposely absent from all KCAL 9 News graphic design. The set is pretty darned nice (so is KTLA's). It looks much more vast than the old KCAL set it replaced. It almost looks too big in a way; the weather and traffic anchors seem kind of small sitting at those desks. The audio seemed flat the other day, almost like the sound of people talking in a big empty hall. Somebody said it, and I agree: re the glitches and imperfections, this is the kind of thing KTLA would pull off perfectly. "The Desk" feature I like a little better than some others here do; it isn't the first time in L.A. that kind of thing has been done; KCOP's brief "Real News" in the mid-1990s or so had Ross Becker and others strolling around the newsroom and stopping at the assignment desk. Boy did that idea go south fast... O&O graphic design, music, etc, has been standardized by parent networks for a long time, but this CBS reworking finishes off most all local identity, making newscasts replicas of the network version. I'd like to see stations retain SOME unique qualities, like channel numbers... but I guess modern TV viewing and streaming makes clicking a number on the remote less relevant. (It's odd that WCBS hasn't changed a thing yet) It was a jolt to go through the Web site and see every reference to CBS 2, CBS 2 News, KCBS, etc absolutely gone. The station that revolutionized local news in 1960, the station of Dunphy, Bill Stout, Clete Roberts, Joseph Benti, Connie Chung, and others deserves something a little better than that -- even if its news ratings have been at the bottom of the heap for a long time.
  10. I guess Mike Rogers' "The Desk" assignment-editor segments will be a feature. I would think (and hope) that Amy Johnson will be a part of the block.
  11. There is no more clue to any kind of launch date for the seven-hour KCAL morning news block than there was in mid-July. But its noon newscast today did have some new and I thought intriguing interstices -- in line with CBS News imaging with the lighter blue and a flash of an "Anywhere, Anytime" branding (or maybe the other way around, it was so fast). Alas, KCBS's evening shows revealed nothing of the kind. I still think they're messing with our minds...
  12. You're absolutely right of course about the difference between the 2016 look and TT Norms Pro, which I should have discerned. While the latter's been integrated somewhat into the stations' current look, the font on the L3s is not the same. And the "News" font under the O&O station logo goes back years and years. It used to be that a new look would often be introduced to coincide with the start of a new Nielsen book, but maybe the old "sweeps" idea is irrelevant in these times, particularly in the larger markets.
  13. From my comment-conversations with the YT uploaders of those "sizzle reels", it seems it's pretty much that "I got this from a guy who got it from a guy who says another guy leaked it to him..." In other words, take it for what it's worth. Actually, when you think about it, while those of us who follow this are tired of the 2016 O&O graphics and have been hearing about an update so long... what might we expect in the way of an overhaul? ...the current look isn't necessarily dinosaur tracks; the L3s and most everything else are in the same default TT Norms Pro with the CBS soft blue; some of the over-the-shoulders and sidebars and weather graphics have been spruced up a bit; the streaming versions of the newscasts have all the latest CBS touches ; the stations seem to have a lot of latitude with promos and branding, back and forth with channel number and CBS News identity. And for other Los Angeles-station viewers, I believe KABC's graphics date to October 2015 and KTLA's are exactly six years old, though a new set in the making could bring a new look.
  14. That makes perfect sense, I think.
  15. I see absolutely no organized plan or blueprint for this long-touted "rearchitecture" (to use member Samantha's term) of rendering O&O newscasts as local replications of the CBS News brand. All that can be seen after many months of hype is just a grab-bag of different looks, styles, and sounders that vary from market to market from day to day and hour to hour, an awkward muddle of branding.
  16. I think that kind of branding would be just right. And certainly through the years, now I think about it, there's been some blending of network and local news identities -- while I wasn't around to see it, Robert Trout anchored WCBS's newscasts in the '60s, it was kind of a New York version of CBS News almost. I'm sure there are other similar exam I mostly watch the KCBS and KCAL streams and that of KPIX, sometimes WCBS and others, all of which are out of my home market (there is no O&O in my Salinas-Monterey area in California.) I see much more "You're watching..." and a lot fewer ads, and even fewer are local to the area.
  17. Those are some very good points. And from them I agree, the transition may be more about getting eyes and ears on CBS' streaming platforms than air, indeed. Go to any local O&O site and scroll to see the "CBS News" stream from other markets, Pluto TV offers the same. If streaming will overtake the old fashioned remote, if it hasn't already, than this is an easy way to offer the CBS brand. I may be too old fashioned for my own good, I like local-channel IDs. This does certainly rope all local stations into a corral to be clicked on easily under the CBS brand, and who knows, it may help news viewers get interested in the network's prime-time programming, or that of Paramount +. I can say that the stations I watch, KCBS / KCAL for instance, are in transition too, the duopoly seems to be putting CBS News Los Angeles right alongside CBS 2 / KCAL 9, the look is different in every promo, it kind of makes me wonder what the final identity is going to be, that's where I dreamed up the "muddle" term. It seems to me that one thing that needs work is on the streaming newscasts, where there is a way-too-long ad-less lag during commercial breaks, the "You're Watching CBS News (region) / We'll Be Right Back" deal...
  18. All this being said, and eloquently, (it almost reads like a press release) I , a viewer and I think a longtime one with some sophistication, am simply unable to grasp the connection that Wendy McMahon and Neeraj Khelmani are so enthusiastically trying to forge between CBS News and local-station operations, trying to make them one and the same. They are two very different entities. Local viewers identify with their channels and personalities. I can't see how, for instance, making KCBS ' morning block (or KCAL's, if such a thing ever comes to pass) "CBS News Los Angeles" will turn viewers away from other choices; many are watching KTLA instead of "CBS Mornings" anyway. This is not to be harsh; it's what the numbers say. I can understand graphic design, music, etc, to be standardized, probably more for cost reasons than any other, but to me this year-and-a-half-long attempt at trying to somehow combine network news and local identity seems to be a task that has bitten off more than it can chew, as of October creating an ever more awkward muddle of brandings and looks.
  19. In the three months after this significant announcement, there has been not a word since about any specifics or even a launch date. All the releases refer to the "planned" news block "expected" to start "in the fall." The duopoly's Web site or social media pages offer no indication that such a thing is imminent. The only hire is Jamie Yuccas, who is not really a hire; she's already been working in the building for a long time and is evidently going to devote a few extra hours to KCAL while maintaining all her other CBS-platform duties. I know nothing about this, but I wouldn't expect anything for quite a while.
  20. I do care, or at least I did, it's kind of an offbeat hobby of mine, local-news presentation, especially Los Angeles stations, that's my home base. As for new CBS O&O graphics, or for ABC's too, following this is like kicking the dust where a dead horse used to lie.
  21. No. Many of the biggest names in Los Angeles television have all moved to the competition at one time or another, for more money or a better time slot, and sometimes back to where they'd been: Clete Roberts, George Putnam, Bill Stout, Joe Benti, John Schubeck, Warren Olney, Tritia Toyota, Jess Marlow, Paul Moyer, Ann Martin, Jim Hill, Linda Alvarez, Colleen Williams, Chuck Henry, Micah Ohlman, and of course Jerry Dunphy. It's a way of life in the business; Lynette Romero's situation, whether dissatisfaction with contract or daypart, and departure up the dial, is not usually the kind of thing that sends the station descending into Dante's ninth circle of hell.
  22. Well, good for Mark Mester for sticking up for not only a long-time co-anchor but one of the best, most popular and well-liked. However -- --there must have been a way for him to do so without throwing the whole station into chaos. He passionately called his employers a bunch of horrible people, dishonorable and heartless, and perhaps without even knowing it, made his boss the GM look like either a figurehead, a corporate pawn in allowing this to happen, or a hypocrite, for claiming to be Lynette's supporter and then throwing her under a train. You can't do that and expect your management to accept it. He will probably wind up hosting "Daily Mail" or something.
  23. You know, Calitalian 2, it's funny, I read that article the very Friday morning it appeared in the Times, and several times afterward too, but -- --you are absolutely right about that, it had escaped me that their respective divorces were final early in 1990. Beyond that, in a larger sense I think you and I have pretty much nailed down this story, still an interesting one I think. It's good to chat with those who remember what others might dismiss as unimportant. Thanks for engaging me in this. About the same time as Nikki Finke's piece, the Daily News ran a similar story, not quite as long. It was written maybe by Ray Richmond, but more likely by the paper's other television writer whose name I simply can't pull up. It's on the tip of my mind's tongue, but nothing. Remember the scurrilous things the old Los Angeles magazine columnist Tom Nolan wrote about Jim and Bree?
  24. Most of the time if an anchor is signed away by a rival in the market, he or she becomes a non-person immediately, without any on-air retrospective. And any viewers contacting the station to ask what happened are met with the curt "So-and-so is no longer with the station and has decided to pursue other opportunites." In 2005 the folksy weather forecaster Johnny Mountain was bid a fond retirement farewell from his morning shift at KABC. Four months later he was at KCBS. And got big money. There was speculation Channel 7's management knew he'd be going down the street, but let him say goodbye anyway. Or maybe not.
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