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A3N

Sinclair...Again

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Changing the call sign was a big deal back in the 1970s.

 

For WMAL to WJLA......

 

and for WTOP to WDVM.....

 

Edit: Put the links in since the embedding didn't work.

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:puke:

 

The FCC had no choice. Either they gave the green light or they were getting sued.

 

At least I live in a state where I don't have to worry about that damned corporation. Even the KTVK/KPHO consolidation doesn't bother me...yet.

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I really hoped you wouldn't go there, but you did. Maybe it's time to pick up a history book and tone down the hyperbole a bit.

Yeah, I went there. Just like I said, it was a dark day in the NW when they acquired Fisher. And when they'd announced they acquired Allbritton, it was a dark day then. So today is a new dark day in DC. Sinclair get's their lucrative prize.

 

I have no regrets for that statement.

 

 

In the grand scheme of things is this really that different from what was originally proposed? This drug out for just shy of a year and the only major difference is the divesture in Harrisburg and two separate staffs in Charleston. In the end we lost 3 stations and now 100% of the revenue (minus pre-existing Cunningham arrangements) will go to directly to Sinclair in Birmingham and Charleston due to the multicasts being established. I'd hardly see that as a big "win" if the goal was to "stop" Sinclair.

No, you're right. It's no different. Because the bastards Sincrap still got what they're wanted in the end. And when they finally announced their nuclear plans back on May 29, and the Free Press was basically in favor of them using multicast channels and shutting down TV stations, after them constantly bitching about sharing arrangements, shows how they're really the hypocritical bastards as they are. Free Press needs to shut their asses up, since they're for TV station shutdowns, and let stations use multicast channels, which are no different than the use of sharing arrangements.

 

Wheeler isn't a dictator, he's just implementing the laws that congress puts forth. So if it had no major legal roadblocks it couldn't just be approved or denied because they wanted to, it has to have a valid reason.

As for Wheeler, he had a valid reason. All he only care for is those incentive auctions and for broadcasters to participate. And as you see with this greenlight, he don't care if more stations go down the tube, which that would likely happen.

 

The viewers couldn't care less about any behind-the-scenes shenanigans. As long as their favorite shows come on at their usual times, they'll be content and blissfully unaware.

Tell that to the folks in the eastern fringes of Alabama that.

 

RIP, WCFT/WJSU & WCIV.

 

On the sale, Robert Allbritton tweeted: "Very mixed emotions: FCC approved sale of our TV stations to Sinclair. Thanks to all at ACC for 40 wonderful years. I will miss you deeply."

He was just a little boy when his father started the company in '74. Hope he'll be satisfied with his future plans & POLITICO.

 

It's sad that he has to sell the house that his father built to these devils from fifty miles away.

 

I do want to commend you Raymie for being the first to file an objection of the deal. I don't think you've done anything wrong. I would've done the same thing, despite not living in the affected cities. Even though the FCC denied it, IMO, I think you voice was heard throughout this long process and that's what counts.

 

I can't believe its been seven months since the same day greenlights of the Gannett/Belo & Tribune/Local TV deals (12/20/13), and they finally approve this deal, within 4 days of being collapsed.

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In Charleston, the change shouldn't be significant since there is no news operation at WMMP or WTAT.

 

In Birmingham, the big issue is the loss of OTA coverage in the eastern part of the market. WSB Atlanta and WTVM Columbus might be the beneficiaries if they want to try to get cable coverage out there. Do either station bring at least a Grade B signal into eastern Alabama that could compensate? WSB might be smart to move to a VHF channel with maximum power (9 is now available?) to cover the most ground.

 

Sinclair had to sell either WHP or WHTM regardless. Even if they shut down one of them, they would control two major affiliations and one news operation would be lost.

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In Charleston, the change shouldn't be significant since there is no news operation at WMMP or WTAT.

 

In Birmingham, the big issue is the loss of OTA coverage in the eastern part of the market. WSB Atlanta and WTVM Columbus might be the beneficiaries if they want to try to get cable coverage out there. Do either station bring at least a Grade B signal into eastern Alabama that could compensate? WSB might be smart to move to a VHF channel with maximum power (9 is now available?) to cover the most ground.

 

Sinclair had to sell either WHP or WHTM regardless. Even if they shut down one of them, they would control two major affiliations and one news operation would be lost.

Sinclair won't let WSB or WVTM gain any cable coverage in their territory. Just look at their efforts to get WTTG off the Comcast lineup in a suburban county between Baltimore and DC (Anne Arundel) because it competes against WBFF.

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In Charleston, the change shouldn't be significant since there is no news operation at WMMP or WTAT.In Birmingham, the big issue is the loss of OTA coverage in the eastern part of the market. WSB Atlanta and WTVM Columbus might be the beneficiaries if they want to try to get cable coverage out there. Do either station bring at least a Grade B signal into eastern Alabama that could compensate? WSB might be smart to move to a VHF channel with maximum power (9 is now available?) to cover the most ground.Sinclair had to sell either WHP or WHTM regardless. Even if they shut down one of them, they would control two major affiliations and one news operation would be lost.

I don't think WSB would care about a few OTA homes and go to that trouble and expense, besides I am sure they would much rather be on UHF anyway. The Birmingham market has approximately 95% cable/DBS penetration, and all of those are obviously not on East Alabama, so the number of viewers lost would be very small. There is a class A station, WEAC-CD licensed to Jacksonville with transmitter in Oxford, if Sinclair could dangle enough money in front of the current owner, that might be a solution for them.

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Sinclair won't let WSB or WVTM gain any cable coverage in their territory. Just look at their efforts to get WTTG off the Comcast lineup in a suburban county between Baltimore and DC (Anne Arundel) because it competes against WBFF.

 

Also when Buckeye cable drops WNWO, they also drop WDIV's NBC programming as well.

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As soon as the proposal to shut down WJSU/WCFT and transfer their intellectual programming onto WABM 68.2 was announced, this made the deal a total formality. Of course LIN/MG gets the booby prize of WHTM, but really. It made the deal totally legit and beyond the FCC's scope... they were not going to deny the deal because of objections that had nothing to do with what they are responsible for.

 

I seriously hope the Free Press is elated at all this. What a bunch of time-wasting clowns.

 

Unless you're WRC, WUSA, or WTTG.

WRC is one of a few NBC O&Os to remain stable during the whole NBC 2.0 cutbacks. They still lead the market. WUSA has fallen from grace, and hard, over the past decade (their decline resulted in much of WJLA's ascent). And WTTG is who we think they are.

 

To be frank, I don't expect the market to abandon ABC7 as much as many on here are expecting to (for a willful burst of Schadenfreude). ABC7 is going to remain a solid number two to WRC.

 

And the countdown clock for Kai Jackson to replace Gordon Peterson has officially started.

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Here's a good read courtesy of James Spann and his Alabama WX blog from 2011

http://www.alabamawx.com/?p=46173

 

Since viewers in Cleburne and Randoph counties are part of the Atlanta market, not only are they in a vast wasteland of television signals already, but they also have to suffer with the fact that they only have GEORGIA stations piped into them, and they are an a different time zone than the ENTIRE Atlanta market, forcing viewers to watch programs (except for prime time) at weird times.

 

While WJSU was a ways away from Anniston towards Birmingham, it was their best hope to give viewers in these counties a station in their own state, and a heads up on severe weather. Since most storm fronts move from east to west, it always seems like the eastern half of the market can get the shaft. Now they're in a more difficult spot since they're on the fringe of Atlanta, and will have less warning times on potentially severe weather since they're on the extreme western edge of what the Atlanta market has to care about.

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Here's a good read courtesy of James Spann and his Alabama WX blog from 2011

http://www.alabamawx.com/?p=46173

 

Since viewers in Cleburne and Randoph counties are part of the Atlanta market, not only are they in a vast wasteland of television signals already, but they also have to suffer with the fact that they only have GEORGIA stations piped into them, and they are an a different time zone than the ENTIRE Atlanta market, forcing viewers to watch programs (except for prime time) at weird times.

 

While WJSU was a ways away from Anniston towards Birmingham, it was their best hope to give viewers in these counties a station in their own state, and a heads up on severe weather. Since most storm fronts move from east to west, it always seems like the eastern half of the market can get the shaft. Now they're in a more difficult spot since they're on the fringe of Atlanta, and will have less warning times on potentially severe weather since they're on the extreme western edge of what the Atlanta market has to care about.

WBRC, WIAT, and WVTM all give wall to wall coverage in severe weather, so even if no solution is found for OTA reception, there will still be information available. Hopefully Sinclair will work something out regarding OTA reception in East Alabama.

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There is also online streaming, which is something I'm a bit surprised that no one has brought up. S!nclair probably would be wise to make mass investments into WBMA+'s digital ops.

 

Yes, it's a tall order considering the putrid CMS setup implemented on many of their legacy and Newport stations.

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I believe ALL of Allbritton's station's use livestream, which allows for on-demand replays of past broadcasts, and will even play the last broadcast made in off times.

 

Sadly, it's likely to go away in favor of the other methods used by Sinclair's other stations.

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Here's the news from POLITICO, with a more detailed statement from Robert Allbritton.

 

They said it could close by next week (8/1), but I strongly doubt that will happen, since they'll likely close it out way earlier than that.

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Signal loss aside, as long as Sinclair doesn't put all of its eggs into the NC8 basket, Allbritton might actually be in good hands. The least Sinclair can do is not turn WJLA into "WBFF DC" and to at least keep the journalistic integrity that Joseph Allbritton worked for. I'm honestly praying "The House that Joe Built" doesn't become "The House that David Wrecked".

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Signal loss aside, as long as Sinclair doesn't put all of its eggs into the NC8 basket, Allbritton might actually be in good hands. The least Sinclair can do is not turn WJLA into "WBFF DC" and to at least keep the journalistic integrity that Joseph Allbritton worked for. I'm honestly praying "The House that Joe Built" doesn't become "The House that David Wrecked".

 

Sorry to bust your hope bubble, but David going to change the structure of Channel 7 in D.C. I don't see Leon Harris, Gordon Peterson, Maureen Bunyan, Doug Hill staying. Sinclair is not going to paid those high salaries. D.C. going to be their largest market to date. (8). It would be nice to keep the station staff with the resources it has, but David going to place his Sinclair Conservative spin, and the landscape is going to change.

 

It just a matter of time, and last year it was Fisher this year it Allbritton, which company next year will we be talking about Sinclair buying destroying? Which company will exit and Sinclair will swoop in to buy?

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And the countdown clock for Kai Jackson to replace Gordon Peterson has officially started.

 

I wonder if they're going to show Leon Harris the boot too but I doubt it. Likely they just wanted to line somebody up for Gordon. Don't take this the wrong way, but I don't think Gordon has much left in him to do the news. I'm sure he's been thinking about retiring for a while now and this is the perfect excuse. Sinclair might as well poach somebody to co-anchor with Jackson (hint: Kristine Frazao). And then they can also keep then Leon Harris/Alison Starling parring as well.

 

OK, here's a thought. I just now took a long hard thought about this. How come everybody on here is bitching about WJSU leaving the air? WBRC, WVTM and WIAT do not have the same reach and if those stations were sold nobody would make a big deal out of that. But since it's Sinclair you guys found a way to pick at them and it's not even a fair attack because the other stations do not have the same reach and life has gone on in Birmingham and WBRC still outrates WBMA+.

 

 

I believe ALL of Allbritton's station's use livestream, which allows for on-demand replays of past broadcasts, and will even play the last broadcast made in off times.

 

Sadly, it's likely to go away in favor of the other methods used by Sinclair's other stations.

 

Sinclair uses FlowPlayer for their streaming.

 

Amazingly, the Fisher stations still use the crappy BIM layout rather than switching to Sinclair's CMS (which would only be a slight improvement).

 

 

Sorry to bust your hope bubble, but David going to change the structure of Channel 7 in D.C. I don't see Leon Harris, Gordon Peterson, Maureen Bunyan, Doug Hill staying. Sinclair is not going to paid those high salaries. D.C. going to be their largest market to date. (8). It would be nice to keep the station staff with the resources it has, but David going to place his Sinclair Conservative spin, and the landscape is going to change.

 

It just a matter of time, and last year it was Fisher this year it Allbritton, which company next year will we be talking about Sinclair buying destroying? Which company will exit and Sinclair will swoop in to buy?

 

Disagree. I don't see Gordon Peterson and Maureen Bunyan sticking around. Doug Hill maybe, because whenever he retires, that's one less high salary they have to worry about. But I see them leaving on their own accord, and not Sinclair forcing them out. Like I said, regardless of ownership, those three probably don't have much left in them to continue doing or caring about the stresses of the job. So when they do leave, those high salaries won't have to be replaced at all and they will be replaced with much cheaper talent.

 

I honestly think there will be cuts in weather and reporters. They are WAY overstaffed at that station and I cannot see Sinclair continuing that. I think the people that did not want anything to do with Sinclair, like Bob Ryan and Kathy Park, already left on their own accord. As long as the employees at WJLA continue to get a paycheck, they probably don't care.

 

Yes, there's probably some behind the scenes people who are worried sick and are jumping ship. Which is good for Sinclair because that's natural attrition to be expected with the sale and the positions will get cut. Which means less layoffs.

 

But I do think when Sinclair takes over, I think Kai Jackson, Leon Harris, and Alison Starling, and maybe some new co-anchor will now be the faces of the station and not Gordon Peterson and Maureen Bunyan. They will probably be planning on their retirement.

 

I think what you WILL, 100% without a doubt, see happen right away, is Bill Lord gets shown the door and Doug Gealy will now be WJLA's GM. Even though I'm an outsider looking in, I can guarantee that.

 

And I think Morris Jones will be making a comeback to a Sinclair station near you. As well as the show he hosts, "Government Matters". That show was announced right after the deal to sale to Sinclair. Coincidence? I think not.

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I honestly think there will be cuts in weather and reporters. They are WAY overstaffed at that station and I cannot see Sinclair continuing that.

 

 

There are ELEVEN people on their weather staff. ELEVEN. Even by factoring in NewsChannel 8, that's the most I've ever seen for a local TV station. TEN of them are meteorologists (with one as a met/producer) and one's a forecaster.

Most stations get by with only 3-5. If NewsChannel 8 goes national, that's one sure thing that will get gutted, save for a weather expert or two.

 

 

Unlike the other sales, Sinclair has had over a YEAR to prepare for this. And knowing them, they've acted like it was a done deal when Allbritton agreed to sell to them over a year ago. Changes could be swift once the keys are handed over whenever the sale closes.

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OK, here's a thought. I just now took a long hard thought about this. How come everybody on here is bitching about WJSU leaving the air? WBRC, WVTM and WIAT do not have the same reach and if those stations were sold nobody would make a big deal out of that. But since it's Sinclair you guys found a way to pick at them and it's not even a fair attack because the other stations do not have the same reach and life has gone on in Birmingham and WBRC still outrates WBMA+.

You have a valid point there, though I would not be surprised at all if Sinclair decides to change the branding from 33/40 to just ABC 33 and be done with it (even with WABM being used as the main feed for WBMA). It sounds a lot better than calling yourself ABC Birmingham or ABC 68. From a quality standpoint, regardless of signal changes, this will wind up being an improvement for WBMA+ compared to how Allbritton has treated it. Now if only they could blow up the cheap-looking set and put a real one in there.

 

Sinclair uses FlowPlayer for their streaming.

 

Amazingly, the Fisher stations still use the crappy BIM layout rather than switching to Sinclair's CMS (which would only be a slight improvement).

Sinclair should just go ahead switch all of their stations to the responsive design version used at KABB, WSYX, and KRXI since that is the trend now being done by some station groups.

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Believe it or not this is the abridged version of my original post.

 

I read somewhere ( maybe on here ) that now they will be able to demand higher advertising revenue. My response to that is: Is there really a premium for ad rates on low rated TV stations outside of prime time?

 

I don't know about you guys but here (WBFF, WNUV and WUTB) at least 50% of the commercials are for lawyers looking for settlements or encouraging people to be litigious (one law firm airs occasionally on the other three but not as often as they do on Sinclair group), pay day loans (to go with the litigious law firm ads), bail bondsman, no credit check car dealerships, some flea market type of stores (where the people wear gaudy outfits of knock off brands) and Baltimore City Health Department PSAs to encourage healthy habits or warning signs of diseases. Hell it even appears that a lot of these said ads look like they were made with an old iBook, the laptop not the app, dubbed onto VHS video tapes on, sent to the station and told them air their 4:3 commercial stretch-o-visioned into 16:9 format with significant amounts of overscan. It just makes the stations look unprofessional and like they don't have any quality control

 

I believe that there are a few reasons why the air these types of advertisements:

  • Each channel has a bit of a niche audience and a set "theme" , rather than a variety of shows. I'm going to use WBAL as an example to compare/contrast to Sinclairs triopoly simply because they have the most diverse lineup (and most programs out WMAR and 'JZ) of syndicated programming. The day starts off with Live with Kelly and Michael, followed by Access Hollywood Live, after the noon news is Who Wants to Be a Millionaire, following Days of our Lives is Doctor Oz, Steve Harvey and Ellen Degeneres:
    • WBFF focuses mainly on talk shows and starts off with a broadcast of The 700 Club followed by two hours of eponymously named trash tv with Jerry Springer, Steve Wilkos. Then at 1PM is Queen Latifah Show a talk show featuring celebrity interview, human interest stories and life changing circumstances. Following that is Bethenny, a former Real Housewife who made a lot of money selling Margaritas and thought she could do a talk show about what women care about "love, pop culture, beauty and fitness" little did she know is that there are a half a dozen other shows like hers out there and that not many people knew of her outside of the Real Housewives. Then there are two hours of court shows, first Judge Mathis then Judge Judy. At six they have two hours of game shows first up is Family Feud, then Jeopardy and Wheel of Fortune (which they stole from WMAR). At 11:35 they have the now cancelled Arsenio Hall show. Clearly this is the network where the "popular shows" go.
    • WNUV is clearly the court room station. It does not carry any news programming so they air infomercials and from 6:30 a religious program, then another infomercial, then three more religious programming, and then an educational show. Then from 9AM to 2PM is the court show block starting off with Supreme Justice, Judge Mathis, Americas Court with Judge Ross, Paternity Court then Divorce Court each show airs for an hour. Followed by a single episode of the King of Queens, at 2:30 is an infomercial for a car dealership. A now cancelled show, Bill Cunningham airs at 3. Starting at 4PM it appears to be off network syndicated comedies: How I Met Your Mother, Are We a There Yet, Tyler Perry's Meet the Browns, Tyler Perry's House of Payne. At 6 is an hour of cartoons consisting of The Simpsons and Family Guy. For prime access is an hour of Family Guy.
    • WUTB is a bit more eclectic and the rerun channel. The day starts off with Bridezillas, a show called the Test, Wendy Williams, two hours of Law and Order: SVU, two hours of court shows Justice for All and Judge Alex. From 3-6 is more eponymous talk shows Trisha Goddard, a rerun of Queen Latifah from WBFF, a repeat of that days Wendy Williams. From 6-8 is an hour of Two and a Half Men followed by Big Bang Theory.
    • Said niches often time do not gain the big ratings (like the lesser known court shows aside from Judge Judy) or viewership (I'd be surprised if some shows are seen by 1000) which is a factor for the pricing of ad spots.
    • Some programming may not air towards the main target audience of advertisers during the day part: women. Trash TV like Jerry Springer and Steve Wilkos are not shows women would normally watch.
    • Finally they have a problem being affiliated with less popular networks that may not appeal to the masses or is too narrowly focused like the CW and teens.

    Sent from my iPad

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I think what you WILL, 100% without a doubt, see happen right away, is Bill Lord gets shown the door and Doug Gealy will now be WJLA's GM. Even though I'm an outsider looking in, I can guarantee that.

 

WCMH's best days were when Doug Gealy was at the helm. Those were the days when that station really had an eye for talent (and eye candy). He also did a yeoman's job at Acme. Doug Gealy would be a great person to run WJLA.

 

 

 

 

There are ELEVEN people on their weather staff. ELEVEN. Even by factoring in NewsChannel 8, that's the most I've ever seen for a local TV station. TEN of them are meteorologists (with one as a met/producer) and one's a forecaster.

Most stations get by with only 3-5. If NewsChannel 8 goes national, that's one sure thing that will get gutted, save for a weather expert or two.

 

Unlike the other sales, Sinclair has had over a YEAR to prepare for this. And knowing them, they've acted like it was a done deal when Allbritton agreed to sell to them over a year ago. Changes could be swift once the keys are handed over whenever the sale closes.

 

 

 

I forget the movie (I think it was one of the Naked Gun movies), But I remember a newscast or a sportscast where a stream of about 7 people started introducing themselves at the start of a program.

 

 

 

 

I don't know about you guys but here (WBFF, WNUV and WUTB) at least 50% of the commercials are for lawyers looking for settlements or encouraging people to be litigious (one law firm airs occasionally on the other three but not as often as they do on Sinclair group), pay day loans (to go with the litigious law firm ads), bail bondsman, no credit check car dealerships, some flea market type of stores (where the people wear gaudy outfits of knock off brands) and Baltimore City Health Department PSAs to encourage healthy habits or warning signs of diseases. Hell it even appears that a lot of these said ads look like they were made with an old iBook, the laptop not the app, dubbed onto VHS video tapes on, sent to the station and told them air their 4:3 commercial stretch-o-visioned into 16:9 format with significant amounts of overscan. It just makes the stations look unprofessional and like they don't have any quality control

 

 

 

If you think that's bad, go listen to a radio aircheck from the 1990's and before. Compare the advertisers then to the advertisers radio gets now. They acutally ran ads for legitimate products back in those days, like Coca Cola or Gilette. Now it's non-stop gold commercials or male enhancement products.

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WCMH's best days were when Doug Gealy was at the helm. Those were the days when that station really had an eye for talent (and eye candy). He also did a yeoman's job at Acme. Doug Gealy would be a great person to run WJLA.

 

 

 

m.

According to this Press Release will be group manager for Sinclair's Raleigh, Richmond VA and DCs so I assume just managing WJLA would be a demotion.

 

To be honest I didn't know of him until I googled him.

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According to this Press Release will be group manager for Sinclair's Raleigh, Richmond VA and DCs so I assume just managing WJLA would be a demotion.

 

No, he would likely serve in a dual role, similar to WSYX's Dan Mellon, WKRC's Jon Lawhead, and WOAI's John Seabers, all of whom are group managers for Sinclair in addition to working as GMs for their respective home stations. Sinclair probably got Gealy while they were waiting for the greenlight and he's looking after Richmond and Raleigh until the sale closes and will keep that job after he's appointed to GM of WJLA.

 

But notice he's only overseeing two other markets and DC. In contrast, Seabers oversees all of Texas and I think Oklahoma.

 

Either way, Sinclair will not be keeping Bill Lord. Besides, and if you want to google this I recommend you do, but Bill Lord got into a pissing match with reporter Doug McKelway (now at Fox News) because of alleged conservative bias. So... why would Lord work for a company that has an obvious conservative slant?

 

I'd be willing to bet $1 that Bill Lord is a democrat.

 

The ND, Doug Culver, is likely gone too, but probably not right away. I see him working there for a few more months and then resigning for "other opportunities". From what I've read, Culver and Lord are "good friends" and if Lord gets a job at another station, I could see Culver following him. (source:http://www.dcrtv.com/mediaw22.html)

 

Also, maybe Sinclair can poach McKelway to come back but I doubt it. Definitely a solid anchor/reporter and that was WJLA's loss... But if they want to make a case for WJLA and NC8, they can hire somebody who now has a national profile via Fox and that would be Doug McKelway.

 

All of this is prediction obviously, but I'm 100% sure this is how it's going to go down. I guarantee it.

 

 

 

Believe it or not this is the abridged version of my original post.

 

I read somewhere ( maybe on here ) that now they will be able to demand higher advertising revenue. My response to that is: Is there really a premium for ad rates on low rated TV stations outside of prime time?

 

I don't know about you guys but here (WBFF, WNUV and WUTB) at least 50% of the commercials are for lawyers looking for settlements or encouraging people to be litigious (one law firm airs occasionally on the other three but not as often as they do on Sinclair group), pay day loans (to go with the litigious law firm ads), bail bondsman, no credit check car dealerships, some flea market type of stores (where the people wear gaudy outfits of knock off brands) and Baltimore City Health Department PSAs to encourage healthy habits or warning signs of diseases. Hell it even appears that a lot of these said ads look like they were made with an old iBook, the laptop not the app, dubbed onto VHS video tapes on, sent to the station and told them air their 4:3 commercial stretch-o-visioned into 16:9 format with significant amounts of overscan. It just makes the stations look unprofessional and like they don't have any quality control

 

I believe that there are a few reasons why the air these types of advertisements:

[snip]

 

 

KABB and KMYS are the same way. Most of the ads are for injury lawyers or votech schools. At night, they air a lot of "singles line" ads. This just goes to show these stations try the hardest to appeal to the "lowest common denominator" viewer (hate being politically correct BTW).

 

Anyways, I was looking around WJLA's website. The biggest on-air cuts are probably going to come down in weather. As mentioned earlier, they have 11 employees dedicated to weather AND they're looking to hire someone else (!).

 

Here's their current job openings:

  • Account Executive- NewsChannel 8
  • Account Executive- ABC7
  • Associate Producer
  • Freelance Photographer/Editor
  • Photographer/Editor
  • Meteorologist/ Weather Producer
  • Web Editor
  • Assignment Editor
  • Topical Promotion Writer/Producer/Editor
  • NewsChannel 8 Weekend Anchor/Reporter
  • NewsChannel 8 Digital Reporter
  • NewsChannel 8 News Producer

It looks like they are already cutting back in advance of Sinclair. I actually can't see any of the remaining reporters getting laid off. The cuts are likely going to be weather and behind the scenes. Sinclair doesn't seem to be the one for mass on-air firings. They will probably let the more expensive talent like Gordon and Maureen go through nonrenewals. But with the people who have jumped ship, they seem to have a reasonable amount of anchors and reporters to work with now. They don't seem to be hiring any more reporters even with the vacancies that have come up, with Natasha Barrett and Kathy Park obviously wanting nothing to do with Sinclair (BTW, Barett's bio is still up on WJLA's site even though she's already started at KTRK). They even removed Britt McHenry's position and haven't filled it.

 

I just don't know why they need all those meteorologists.

 

Everybody's fearing all of these firings and you don't have to look further than KOMO. Yes, they laid some backend people off but for the most part maintained the status quo and they're finally getting a new set. WJLA is overdue for one as they've had the same one since moving to the old Gannett headquarters building in 2001. Dan Lewis, their star anchor, left and I think Sinclair and money may have played a part but I also think he was looking for a change. He still contributes pieces to KOMO. So that could very well be what happens here.

 

Finally, Sinclair updated their "stations" section of their corporate site. Gone is the image of the map listing all of the stations they owned and in its place is a google map that I figure is much easier to update. Guess they're growing so fast they got tired of having to constantly update the image of the map.(btw, they got WOAI's address and phone number wrong)

http://www.sbgi.net/business/television.shtml

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Being from DC, I grew up with WJLA. So this bothers me. Not necessarily that it is the evil Sinclair, but that WJLA is going to continue the downward spiral of not being local. WRC is the top station in DC for a reason. Solid ownership (NBC), solid anchors (Jim and Doreen have been there pretty much forever), and there is a local vibe to the newscast. I fear that WJLA will be another cookie cutter station, with random talent and not really be the solid 2nd place station they worked so hard to be. I am used to what I have seen from WBFF/WNUV, and if that is what is coming - then WRC might as well sit pretty at the top, to be honest. I really hope the amazing talent at WJLA jumps ship soon, and that the Legends, Hill/Buynan/Peterson retire now, because I think it would be an insult to get a pay cut. Either retire or, of course, jump ship.

 

So long WJLA, its been a great ride.

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