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WBTS - Home of NBC Boston?

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Has anyone considered that the tabloid-y formula used on WHDH may be one reason why NBC wanted to get off of there?

 

CBS deals with a lot of affiliates with horrid tabolidish formats like WPEC, WOIO (in the past) and for their news director du jour, WGCL, even with their national just the facts hard-news reputation. They don't seem very bothered by affiliates taking that direction as long as they aren't placing below the market's MyNet station, or pull a Swann where CBS has to say 'knock it off' to WGCL.

 

And I'm also taking the long view with WBTS. By 2030, like UHF, the entire 'it's a low-power station' debate will be over because we'll likely be getting everything via IP or repeating cells through 7G networks or whatever rather than One Tower Farm in a certain place. It's undeniably complicated for now, but standards will change, along with scheduling.

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Has anyone considered that the tabloid-y formula used on WHDH may be one reason why NBC wanted to get off of there?

That format was already in place for three years when NBC aligned with them. NBC knew full well what they were getting into.

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CBS deals with a lot of affiliates with horrid tabolidish formats like WPEC, WOIO (in the past) and for their news director du jour, WGCL, even with their national just the facts hard-news reputation. They don't seem very bothered by affiliates taking that direction as long as they aren't placing below the market's MyNet station, or pull a Swann where CBS has to say 'knock it off' to WGCL.

 

And I'm also taking the long view with WBTS. By 2030, like UHF, the entire 'it's a low-power station' debate will be over because we'll likely be getting everything via IP or repeating cells through 7G networks or whatever rather than One Tower Farm in a certain place. It's undeniably complicated for now, but standards will change, along with scheduling.

Is Comcast willing to wait 13 years while NBC Boston is a long-term folly?

 

It's not that indifferent from UHF and FM radio. However, those two needed technical and legislative advancements to aid their cause (UHF through improved all-channel tuners and better transmission equipment; FM radio stations were forced to be programmed differently by order of the FCC in 1968, and those formats targeted young people who abandoned the AM dial outright).

 

Remember that Comcast is, at its heart, a CATV company and internet provider best known for horrid customer service and data throttling. Any other group would have a credible chance to do something innovative with WBTS; hell, even Sinclair would.

 

It's just that Comcast is doing this as a means to get people to continue subscribing to their archaic CATV and internet services. That's not really innovation. That's pretty pathetic.

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WBTS' first real ratings test will come on Thursday with the Chiefs-Patriots game.

For what... the game? Or if people will still assuredly turn over to 4, 5, 7 and 25 to watch the late news, as we all know will be the case?

 

If NBC Boston's postgame news gets a bump that night, it will be negligible, short-lived and fail to carry over into any other dayparts.

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IIRC, the main reason for NBC going with WHDH was VHF spectrum. With the swaps in Philly and Boston, NBC wanted to ensure (at the time) that all NBC stations said in the top 25 markets were VHF (None of the other networks had that cache). Charlotte, Raleigh, Hartford and San Diego were close, but still higher than the top 25.

 

Now, VHF is more a hindrance than a help...

 

J

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IIRC, the main reason for NBC going with WHDH was VHF spectrum. With the swaps in Philly and Boston, NBC wanted to ensure (at the time) that all NBC stations said in the top 25 markets were VHF (None of the other networks had that cache). Charlotte, Raleigh, Hartford and San Diego were close, but still higher than the top 25.

 

Now, VHF is more a hindrance than a help...

 

J

But that completely invalidates the whole "NBC hated Ed Ansin because WSVN" argument.

 

While it is possible and plausible that they soured on him again over the course of their affiliation with WHDH, if they really hated him for what happened in Miami, they would have gone to every end imaginable NOT to be on WHDH. Nothing was sacred in 1994-1995.

 

NBC had every opportunity possible to get an O&O or non-Sunbeam affiliate in Boston and avoid working with WHDH, and passed at all of those chances.

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NBC had every opportunity possible to get an O&O or non-Sunbeam affiliate in Boston and avoid working with WHDH, and passed at all of those chances.

 

Despite my attempt to stay out of this thread, I'd just like to remind readers of one thing. In 1995 when they affiliated with WHDH, NBC was owned by General Electric. The WBTS move was a Comcast decision. Different owners. Different companies. Different management. Different long term philosophies. You can't really make a solid then vs now comparison when the players have changed.

 

Just my observation.

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Despite my attempt to stay out of this thread, I'd just like to remind readers of one thing. In 1995 when they affiliated with WHDH, NBC was owned by General Electric. The WBTS move was a Comcast decision. Different owners. Different companies. Different management. Different long term philosophies. You can't really make a solid then vs now comparison when the players have changed.

 

Just my observation.

GENERAL ELECTRIC OWNED NBC WHEN THE MIAMI INCIDENT HAPPENED.

 

IF GE AND NBC HATED ED ANSIN AS MUCH AS WAS CLAIMED BY FOLKLORE AT THE TIME, THEY WOULD HAVE NEVER DONE BUSINESS WITH HIM IN BOSTON.

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GENERAL ELECTRIC OWNED NBC WHEN THE MIAMI INCIDENT HAPPENED. IF GE AND NBC HATED ED ANSIN AS MUCH AS WAS CLAIMED BY FOLKLORE AT THE TIME, THEY WOULD HAVE NEVER DONE BUSINESS WITH HIM IN BOSTON.

Difference between 1989 and 1994 was that NBC could rein in Ed Ansin more compared to 1989, when pre-empting shows was much more common. But yeah, if NBC hated Ansin, they would've settled for WFXT or WSBK.

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Difference between 1989 and 1994 was that NBC could rein in Ed Ansin more compared to 1989, when pre-empting shows was much more common. But yeah, if NBC hated Ansin, they would've settled for WFXT or WSBK.

 

No interest for either station for NBC back in 1994.

 

Back in 1994, while the Celtics DID own WFXT, they were about to sell, and Fox had first option to purchase the station, which they exercised (which is what started this IMO, if Fox didn't, then it's likely WHDH would be the Fox station). WSBK was owned by Viacom, who at this point in time was only interested in having UPN O&O's. Ditto with Tribune, and The WB (WGNO/WGNX were the only exceptions). Thus, unless they wanted to do a CBS in Detroit, and wind up on a channel in the 50's-60's, or ABC in Birmingham, with two sticks broadcasting the same signal, then WHDH was NBC's only option.

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The rabbit ears dot com listings show WLWC, the CW affiliate for Rhode Island, channel sharing with WPXQ, ION for RI, starting October 1. Like WLWC, WMFP has sold their spectrum, and won't be able to continue to provide the more powerful signal for NBC Boston on 60.5. With cable penetration high in Massachusetts, and the NBC affiliate transition almost a year in the past, will Comcast be content to just have WNEU and WBTS ?

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Okay, hi, everyone. I usually just sit back and watch the frothy rage, but a couple of points.

 

- The Fox purchase of New World prompted CBS to make the affil agreement with Group W.

- The CBS-Group W deal flipped WBZ to CBS

- At about the same time Fox bought WFXT

- So if you're keeping track, every station (except WHDH) and every network (except NBC) had a dance partner in Boston

- Hm, interesting

- So NBC affiliated with literally the only station left, which was owned by Ed Ansin. Cool

 

So, look. Being excited about this stuff is cool and good, but so is being realistic. Important Business™ causes people and companies that don't like each other much to get in bed together every day. This happened with NBC and WHDH. Suggesting otherwise isn't just silly, it's counterfactual.

 

May I propose that we set this part of the discussion down and go back to the important work of arguing over whether OTA channel numbers matter in a world where I open up DirecTV Now and scroll down to a channel called "NBC" in my alphabetical-by-network-name-ordered channel guide?

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GENERAL ELECTRIC OWNED NBC WHEN THE MIAMI INCIDENT HAPPENED.

 

IF GE AND NBC HATED ED ANSIN AS MUCH AS WAS CLAIMED BY FOLKLORE AT THE TIME, THEY WOULD HAVE NEVER DONE BUSINESS WITH HIM IN BOSTON.

 

Breathe child, breathe.

It's not worth having a conniption over.

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Difference between 1989 and 1994 was that NBC could rein in Ed Ansin more compared to 1989, when pre-empting shows was much more common. But yeah, if NBC hated Ansin, they would've settled for WFXT or WSBK.

That's the point! I'm not addressing how or why NBC chose to go with WHDH. It's only the notion that NBC did not want to do business with him whatsoever because of what happened in 1988.

 

And to be blunt about it, if Comcast didn't have a regional news and sports network and a Telemundo O&O out in the farthest reaches of the galaxy, NBC would still be on WHDH.

 

NBC opted to leave WHDH, which was their right to do so, but it was not about a hatred of Ed Ansin.

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Difference between 1989 and 1994 was that NBC could rein in Ed Ansin more compared to 1989, when pre-empting shows was much more common. But yeah, if NBC hated Ansin, they would've settled for WFXT or WSBK.

 

I think people forget that Ansin ended up buying WLVI too when he heard NBC was snooping around to purchase it.

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Does anyone remember that the only reason NBC had to do to WHDH in the first place was because Group W signed WBZ over to CBS and eventually merged with them. It has been my belief to this day that NBC has never been truly satisfied with its Boston situation since leaving WBZ.

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NBC opted to leave WHDH, which was their right to do so, but it was not about a hatred of Ed Ansin.

 

Right, but you're using this to make an argument of absence here. I'm 100% sure that everyone who has ever been in the brass at NBC thinks Ansin is a piece of shit. I do not own any television networks and *I* think Ansin is a piece of shit. Regardless, you're right, NBC makes business decisions based on what they think will earn revenue, not who they do or don't like, but...

 

My dude, you're also very wrong. NBC stuck with WHDH because it was the only viable option. Once it stopped being the only viable option, they bounced. This doesn't require such a close reading of the tea leaves.

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Does anyone remember that the only reason NBC had to do to WHDH in the first place was because Group W signed WBZ over to CBS and eventually merged with them. It has been my belief to this day that NBC has never been truly satisfied with its Boston situation since leaving WBZ.

For all the brouhaha over the Jay Leno Show prime time fiasco, WBZ actually pre-empted NBC programming far more often that did WHDH. WCVB also pre-empted ABC programming quite often back in the day, but ABC put up with it because Channel 5 was a strong affiliate that lent the network considerable prestige.

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The rabbit ears dot info listings show WLWC, the CW affiliate for Rhode Island, channel sharing with WPXQ, ION for RI, starting October 1. Like WLWC, WMFP has sold their spectrum, and won't be able to continue to provide the more powerful signal for NBC Boston on 60.5. With cable penetration high in Massachusetts, and the NBC affiliate transition almost a year in the past, will Comcast be content to just have WNEU and WBTS ?

 

Fixed.

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Very interesting. Rabbit ears dot info is showing WMFP channel sharing with WWDP. Will this include WMFP's arrangement with NBC Boston? If so, will it still be called 60.5 ? Anyone who can get WWDP can surely get WJAR.

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For those who care, Boston was the third ranked market during the NFL Kickoff game Thursday night--Providence/WJAR was number one.

 

Still, the national ratings were down 12% year to year--that's absolutely not all on WBTS but if the down trend for football ratings continues into this year, it may show that not even marquee primetime matchups can save the situation.

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For those who care, Boston was the third ranked market during the NFL Kickoff game Thursday night--Providence/WJAR was number one.

 

Still, the national ratings were down 12% year to year--that's absolutely not all on WBTS but if the down trend for football ratings continues into this year, it may show that not even marquee primetime matchups can save the situation.

Who was #2, WCSH, KSHB, or other?

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Very interesting. Rabbit ears dot info is showing WMFP channel sharing with WWDP. Will this include WMFP's arrangement with NBC Boston? If so, will it still be called 60.5 ? Anyone who can get WWDP can surely get WJAR.

If you look at the services carried by WWDP & WMFP, they can carry NBC Boston in HD and everything else in SD.

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If you look at the services carried by WWDP & WMFP, they can carry NBC Boston in HD and everything else in SD.

 

SonLife on WMFP 62-1 and NBC Boston on WMFP 60-5 are both in 720p, actually - I just checked the OTA signal. They could be moving any combination of NBC Boston, SonLife, Comet, and Charge to WWDP. WWDP currently has the primary Evine on 46-1 in 1080i, and oddly the same Evine on 46-2 in 480i, so they have some room to add more subs. There are still other place WBTS could go - WBPX (now that we know that ION will channel share, at least in RI) and WUNI are possibilities. Maybe WUTF would still have room, even though already adding WBIN.

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