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rkolsen

WJZ Drops Eyewitness News, Slowly Rebrands, New Logo Roll Out and New Set

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Never said three straight hours of local news makes sense in the Central or Mountain or Pacific. I said hour long 6pm's were ok in those time zones, reason being because a lot of them air the national news at 5:30pm hence not resulting in three hours (straight or not) of local news.

 

Bottom line - three hours of local news is overkill. You can only repeat the same stories so many times.

I really understand you, because you're right. 3 hours is a lot, maybe unnecessary.

Here in Argentina, if the channels would do something like that, people would be really angry at them because early evening (6pm to 8pm) is usually aimed at game shows or magazines, and only two channels air news beginning at 7pm. Thankfully they offer no more than 90 minutes of news in the evening (from 7-8:30 or from 8-9:30, depending on the station)

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TBH a lot of the syndie shows JZ should carry are locked and loaded by WBFF. Judy, Feud, Hot Bench...I'm going to guess they got Jeopardy and Wheel too when Scripps/WMAR foolishly gave those contracts up for The List.

 

It's such slim pickings in that market, they're running MAURY at 9. MAURY! They can't get Jerry because WBFF's sister station WUTB has it at 11AM.

 

So unless Sinclair implodes under the weight of all their M&A, or you've got an itch to see a revival of PM Magazine (which...isn't a bad idea, honestly), there isn't much JZ can do.

 

If anything, you're going to see MORE local news or pay-to-play infotainment on many more stations soon. Syndie shows are getting too expensive to justify the cost-benefit and these days you're lucky if one lasts beyond two years. LA and Vegas already have 3PM newscasts. That's insane. It'll happen in other places too eventually.

 

--How did we get from stretched Helvetica to this again?

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On a side note, let's hope that WJZ gets to finally start at 4:30am. I don't know why they still insist on starting at 5am. Maybe Marty Bass has an iron-clad contract about start times, maybe because the previous GM thought it was BS to start at 4:30am, either way,

START AT 4:30!!!!!

 

Just moving up a start time by one half hour affects the schedules of most the newsroom.

Think in 9hr shifts... without overtime.

 

NO OVERTIME!

 

So your crew and reporter come in at 4am...and you get them till 1pm,

As a general rule you always use your early AM crews to staff the morning and 11/noon shows. You don't use your day crews because they came in at 9am 10am and the staff the evening shows.

 

Just moving the newscast schedule will cost lots of money. Oh is there a union involved??? Cuz they will want to pretend to care.

This is one major reason why stations prefer 11am shows over noon shows...if you have a 4am or 4:30am show.

 

You only have so many people...so many live units...and so many dollars budgeted this year.

 

TV news is dead cheap now.

So cheap that most newsrooms don't even have $100 in petty cash on hand for an emergency.

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The era of need for hour-long newscasts at 6pm in the eastern time zone (for ABC, NBC, CBS affiliates) has passed. WRC, KDKA, and WSB also need to follow suit and dump the 6:30 half hour. Is there really a need for 3 straight hours of local news (all three of those in addition to WJZ air 4pm news as well)? I think not. It makes sense in the central time zone though.

 

Why would WRC, KDKA and WSB give up their hour-long 6pm newscast for 30 minutes 6pm news? Now having several hours of local news from 4-7pm, yes it sounds like an over kill. However in 90s in D.C. market both WRC & W*USA both had a 4-7pm news block. Now in W*USA case ratings did fall dramatically.

 

In this climate where TV stations are adding more news it likely highly they won't break away from a lot of news. KTLA airs news 4am-11am, 1pm, 3pm, 6pm (hour), 10 & 11pm & over KABC has afternoon/evening news from 3pm-6:30pm. However WRC, KDKA, and WSB will never dropped that hour-long 6pm news. All (3) win their 6pm time slot. WJZ in Baltimore has moved to #2. WSB believes the 6pm is all local and network at 7pm. Also, you're messing with these stations ad rates dollars, because I guarantee these stations are raking in some big $$$ at the 6pm hour. Me personally see nothing wrong with an hour-long 6pm news.

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[QUOTE="Breaking News, post: 193151, member: 2334"]Why would WRC, KDKA and WSB give up their hour-long 6pm newscast for 30 minutes 6pm news? Now having several hours of local news from 4-7pm, yes it sounds like an over kill. However in 90s in D.C. market both WRC & W*USA both had a 4-7pm news block. Now in W*USA case ratings did fall dramatically. In this climate where TV stations are adding more news it likely highly they won't break away from a lot of news. KTLA airs news 4am-11am, 1pm, 3pm, 6pm (hour), 10 & 11pm & over KABC has afternoon/evening news from 3pm-6:30pm. However WRC, KDKA, and WSB will never dropped that hour-long 6pm news. All (3) win their 6pm time slot. WJZ in Baltimore has moved to #2. WSB believes the 6pm is all local and network at 7pm. Also, you're messing with these stations ad rates dollars, because I guarantee these stations are raking in some big $$$ at the 6pm hour. Me personally see nothing wrong with an hour-long 6pm news.[/QUOTE] Why aren't more stations doing this then? Heck, why don't they do news 24/7 (or outside of network programming). KABC's 3pm was born out of necessity (losing Rachael Ray) not desire. Paging @CircleSeven ! Back me up here!!!

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[quote name='TVNewsLover']Why aren't more stations doing this then? Heck, why don't they do news 24/7 (or outside of network programming). KABC's 3pm was born out of necessity (losing Rachael Ray) not desire. Paging @CircleSeven ! Back me up here!!![/QUOTE] I think as the pie continues to get short with syndicated programming and with (3) networks daytime programming stations will continue to add more news. KSNV/Channel 3 before Sinclair bought them; it seems they were dumping all their shows for more news. The station currently airs 3 &3:30pm, 5,6&6:30pm, 7pm news, but many in managment will say " There a need for news in the community at these hours, and not every viewer going to watch the same newscast at the design time." I think we will see more news and different areas down the road.

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Ravens promos and topical news promos using Gotham instead of Helvetica Extended. Just saw one of those "WJZ News is brought to you by Bill Kidd's Toyota" and it APPEARED to use O&O graphics. This has been done in the past (I'm talking 2014 or so) but it is consistent with the speculation that the new GM is rebranding WJZ probably with the mandated look. We'll see

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[quote name='bhratbrat']@TVNewsLover..but that is the beauty of the system. More than likely I bet viewers in Baltimore do appreciate having a local option @ 6:30 PM. The reality is that local news is still far more trusted in the eyes of the average viewer than a national newscast. I think the new WJZ GM recognizes it and will make changes slowly. Cutting a 6 PM newscast from an hour to a half and hour could potentially ostricize viewers more. Probably the same with Chroma Cues is that its probably now a Baltimore Icon (nearly the same age as I am).[/QUOTE] Nightly still appears to beat WJZ (atleast according to WBALs press releases). But I imagine they’re second.

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Ravens promos and topical news promos using Gotham instead of Helvetica Extended. Just saw one of those "WJZ News is brought to you by Bill Kidd's Toyota" and it APPEARED to use O&O graphics. This has been done in the past (I'm talking 2014 or so) but it is consistent with the speculation that the new GM is rebranding WJZ probably with the mandated look. We'll see

 

Pretty much confirms the O&O look is coming to Baltimore.

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Going to do a quick bullet-point list of what I would do regarding WJZ's changes:

 

1. Keep the legacy Group W 13

2. Either do a refresh or update of Chroma Cues or dump it altogether

3. For all that is decent, 86 the 2001-era L3's and especially the hyperextended Helvetica font.

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In Gainesville through Cox Cable, I have two hour-long 6pm newscasts. Not none... TWO. WOGX's FOX 51 NewsEdge at 6pm and WJXT's News 4 Jax at 6 and 6:30pm. I enjoy them immensely.

 

In other words, I love hour-long news at 6pm and WJZ should stick to them. Plus, it gives them an advantage when the others air something else at 6:30pm instead.

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Why aren't more stations doing this then? Heck, why don't they do news 24/7 (or outside of network programming). KABC's 3pm was born out of necessity (losing Rachael Ray) not desire.

A few stations have tried that. KCNC pre-CBS, KSNV pre-Sinclair and CHCH (pre-bankruptcy) come to mind right off the bat.

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In Gainesville through Cox Cable, I have two hour-long 6pm newscasts. Not none... TWO. WOGX's FOX 51 NewsEdge at 6pm and WJXT's News 4 Jax at 6 and 6:30pm. I enjoy them immensely.

 

In other words, I love hour-long news at 6pm and WJZ should stick to them. Plus, it gives them an advantage when the others air something else at 6:30pm instead.

Two different DMAs.

 

WOGX is a Fox affiliate and therefore has no national newscast, and doesn't start evening news until 5pm. So it works for them.

 

WJXT is an indy and again no national newscast. They don't have network programming (soaps, talk shows, game shows) to fill their schedule. They also squeeze Inside Edition in between there evening news block breaking it up.

 

Kind of comparing apples to oranges.

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Two different DMAs.

 

WOGX is a Fox affiliate and therefore has no national newscast, and doesn't start evening news until 5pm. So it works for them.

 

WJXT is an indy and again no national newscast. They don't have network programming (soaps, talk shows, game shows) to fill their schedule. They also squeeze Inside Edition in between there evening news block breaking it up.

 

Kind of comparing apples to oranges.

 

But this is Gainesville #159. Its too small to have hour-long 6pm news on air in any station in this market and yet, I have two.

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Not sure what's up with all this discussion of when newscasts air in a thread about WJZ's possible rebranding, but it's pretty off topic.

 

Let's try to keep the fantasy scheduling and speculation to a minimum, folks. It derails threads pretty quickly.

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Not sure what's up with all this discussion of when newscasts air in a thread about WJZ's possible rebranding, but it's pretty off topic.

 

Let's try to keep the fantasy scheduling and speculation to a minimum, folks. It derails threads pretty quickly.

 

True. To keep it on topic, WJZ dropping Eyewitness News would be like WPVI dropping Action News if that ever happened.

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A few stations have tried that. KCNC pre-CBS, KSNV pre-Sinclair and CHCH (pre-bankruptcy) come to mind right off the bat.

 

I know KCNC is always brought up as an example of this (I think there's a line about it in their Wikipedia or something), but I really don't see how. The only thing they had that was a little odd was a 60-minute 9am newscast in the mid 90s. They were and still are the only station in Denver to have a 6:30pm newscast, but even that doesn't seem that bizarre. Everything else (6-7am, noon, 4-5:30, 6-7, 10) seems pretty normal then and now. It's just that network programming did take up a lot more of the programming day back then and they didn't have any other syndicated programming at the time of the affiliation switch (aside from Westinghouse's Day and Date).

 

I don't think the 9am newscast stayed very long after Westinghouse/CBS took over, and the 6:30 newscast ended in 1998 but returned in 2006.

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True. To keep it on topic, WJZ dropping Eyewitness News would be like WPVI dropping Action News if that ever happened.

It could also be like taking the boat away from WMC-TV’s logo.

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--How did we get from stretched Helvetica to this again?

 

It was a bit of a stretch.

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True. To keep it on topic, WJZ dropping Eyewitness News would be like WPVI dropping Action News if that ever happened.

The EWN brand was not used frequently, and was barely mentioned in the actual opens for close to a decade. This is not as dramatic a comparison.

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The EWN brand was not used frequently, and was barely mentioned in the actual opens for close to a decade. This is not as dramatic a comparison.

Yes.

 

Everyone likes to make comparisons to legitimate untouchable brands/themes/graphics/etc, though there's no such thing when talking about the latter topic. My station of choice had the same theme song for 21 years, graphics for 8, set for 9, and changed anchors once every 12 blue moons, and I even I realize that's still not on the same level as others like 'PVI.

 

Ultimately, the bare-bones logo is about all I'd keep here. Some might roll their eyes at the standardization (I do, sometimes), but this is a perfect case study in why it has its place. It's not my favorite, but there is no good defense as to why WJZ is better off with the crapshow they have now instead of the O&O package. When there are owners (yes, even Sinclair) implementing solid looks on stations below market 100 that are superior to this, you know it's time for a change.

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Yes.

 

Everyone likes to make comparisons to legitimate untouchable brands/themes/graphics/etc, though there's no such thing when talking about the latter topic. My station of choice had the same theme song for 21 years, graphics for 8, set for 9, and changed anchors once every 12 blue moons, and I even I realize that's still not on the same level as others like 'PVI.

 

Ultimately, the bare-bones logo is about all I'd keep here. Some might roll their eyes at the standardization (I do, sometimes), but this is a perfect case study in why it has its place. It's not my favorite, but there is no good defense as to why WJZ is better off with the crapshow they have now. When there are owners (yes, even Sinclair) implementing solid looks on stations below market 100 that are superior to this, you know it's time for a change.

 

Also, at some of those smaller stations, a new logo and graphics package, particularly when it's been a while, can really go a long way in boosting station morale. There are still some stations in SBG (WGXA, WPBN-WTOM) that are not fully standardized. Particularly in the case of the latter, it's been a long time since anyone put a fresh look on the air. It can make those small-town local newscasts feel more professional not just for the viewers at home but even within the station.

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The EWN brand was not used frequently, and was barely mentioned in the actual opens for close to a decade. This is not as dramatic a comparison.

 

It may not have been in the opens but was in the promos, reporter tags and teases before every commercial. I’d say that’s frequent.

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It may not have been in the opens but was in the promos, reporter tags and teases before every commercial. I’d say that’s frequent.

Yes. Although they had been reinforcing the station's call letters so much ("Now, it's WJZ. Maryland's News Station.") that the call letters unintentionally became an alternating brand.

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