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rkolsen

The End of Action News and Eyewitness News

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The things that made both Action and Eyewitness news unique are largely gone... everybody has settled on a slight variation on the same blocking rotation with weather around 1115 and sports at the end and a story or two in between. The brands are just for show now...

 

I'm not sure whether the actual stacking of the newscast had much to do with Eyewitness/Action News as a brand or format. But much of the reason why weather is still at :15-17 is because of people meter strategies. The people meters average the best five minutes of every 15 minutes of every hour, meaning the meters reset at :15. So if you can push weather to start at :17 and hit the five day at :20, as far as Nielsen is concerned, viewers stayed through to watch the entire newscast (when we all know there's a huge dropoff once you hit the five day and go into sports/fluff/teases/kicker/whatever).

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Why do I need Eyewitness News when I already have an EyePhone...and I get much more "action" then the news-dude and fair news-maiden gets.

 

"Cuz dats how da kids dink."

 

And why the hell would KGO want to pay CBS for the privilege of the EWN trademarks when it's all about cutting overhead?

 

Put a dollar amount on a yearly license for the EWN name and you just may say....

 

"Screw Dat!"

 

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I'm not sure whether the actual stacking of the newscast had much to do with Eyewitness/Action News as a brand or format. But much of the reason why weather is still at :15-17 is because of people meter strategies. The people meters average the best five minutes of every 15 minutes of every hour, meaning the meters reset at :15. So if you can push weather to start at :17 and hit the five day at :20, as far as Nielsen is concerned, viewers stayed through to watch the entire newscast (when we all know there's a huge dropoff once you hit the five day and go into sports/fluff/teases/kicker/whatever).

 

 

yeah...

It was all about style and flash.

Like C block sez it's not the stacking....it was the stories and the presentation.

 

That will never be repeated.

 

"If it bleeds it leads." has been replaced with...

 

"If we are first... then expect us to be wrong."

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Even worse, they've NBC Action News and ABC Action News, respectively, which has probably been very confusing to viewers who might not be able to tell the difference between local newscasts and network news. Hopefully KSHB's change to 41 Action News means a similar change will happen at WFTS.

Or better yet, WFTS goes back to being known as "28 Tampa Bay News" back when WFTS just switched to ABC and started a news department

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I work in the industry and honestly couldn't tell you the difference between the two genres. Both monikers are extremely outdated like many of the managers who think it's a good idea to continue to use them at their stations. To my knowledge the station I work for never at any point used either genre in the title any of their newscasts.

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"If it bleeds it leads." has been replaced with...

 

"If we are first... then expect us to be wrong."

 

This couldn't be more true...

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Nexstar seems to have, in some sense, revived "Eyewitness News" as a brand of convenience so it can put two stations under one news umbrella (WEHT/WTVW, WTVO/WQRF, WBRE/WYOU, etc.)

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I'm not sure whether the actual stacking of the newscast had much to do with Eyewitness/Action News as a brand or format. But much of the reason why weather is still at :15-17 is because of people meter strategies. The people meters average the best five minutes of every 15 minutes of every hour, meaning the meters reset at :15. So if you can push weather to start at :17 and hit the five day at :20, as far as Nielsen is concerned, viewers stayed through to watch the entire newscast (when we all know there's a huge dropoff once you hit the five day and go into sports/fluff/teases/kicker/whatever).

I should have worded that better... I was using it to explain how everything is the same these days... the individual presentation distinctions are largely irrelevant today even if some stations like a WABC or a WLS still want you to “be an eyewitness” or whatever play on the brand they can think of...

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In Detroit, WJBK used "Eyewitness News" from some time in the 60's to 1997 (by then when it was known as "Fox 2 Eyewitness News") when it was sold to Fox and simply became "Fox 2 News", while WXYZ has used "Action News" since the 60's as well (at present it's titled "7 Action News").

 

In adjacent markets...

 

In Flint/Tri-Cities, WEYI once used "Eyewitness News" and even used a variant titled "WEYIwitness News", presently they're "NBC 25 News". In Toledo, WTOL once used "Eyewitness News" around the early 1970's, they're currently "WTOL 11 News", while WTVG has used "Action News" since at least 1997, originally "13 Action News" until 2006 and since then "13 ABC Action News".

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In Detroit, WJBK used "Eyewitness News" from some time in the 60's to 1997 (by then when it was known as "Fox 2 Eyewitness News").........

 

Did you say 'FOX 2 Eyewitness News"?????

 

Omona,

That's as bad as mixing Lucky Charms with Lite Beer.

 

It's just wrong.

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Doesn't WAGA still utilize "Eyewitness News" in occasional promos to keep their long-standing usage in the market active?

 

Yes. Promos will say "If you see news happening call eyewitness news on your phone, the call is free"

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KDFW used Eyewitness News during part of the 1970s, while KXAS tried out the Action News label in the late 1970s-early 1980s, but that was it. No station in north TX has used either brand since.

 

KYTX tried the Eyewitness News branding when it launched in 2004, but I don't think it lasted a year. No Tyler/Longview station has used either brand before or since.

 

 

Similarly, Hampton Roads in Virginia has never had an Action News branding for the stations in the area, and only two stations (WAVY, WTKR) used the Eyewitness News branding with mixed results (WAVY had it from 1969-81 but was mostly a non-factor in Tidewater then before dropping it in favor of the Daily News branding used for most of the 1980s. WTKR used the branding from 1992-94, during which it was the area's #1 station, before abandoning it in favor of the ill-fated TV3 News branding that sparked a ratings slide the station didn't recover from until about 10 years ago).

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Doesn't WAGA still utilize "Eyewitness News" in occasional promos to keep their long-standing usage in the market active?

Nope; they ditched it in 1997 (prior to that, it was News Scene).

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Did you say 'FOX 2 Eyewitness News"?????

 

Omona,

That's as bad as mixing Lucky Charms with Lite Beer.

 

It's just wrong.

 

This was a pretty common transitional branding at the New World Fox stations. WAGA, WTVT, and WJBK were "Fox # Eyewitness News" from about 96-97.

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This was a pretty common transitional branding at the New World Fox stations. WAGA, WTVT, and WJBK were "Fox # Eyewitness News" from about 96-97.

 

Now, all three are simply Fox (channel number) News-- kind of boring, at least IMO.

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Nope; they ditched it in 1997 (prior to that, it was News Scene).

 

I was referring to this:

Yes. Promos will say "If you see news happening call eyewitness news on your phone, the call is free"

 

That is why no other station can use the EWN brand in the Atlanta market, technically, WAGA still does at the bare minimum.

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Did you say 'FOX 2 Eyewitness News"?????

 

Omona,

That's as bad as mixing Lucky Charms with Lite Beer.

 

It's just wrong.

I usually use a thick lager with my lucky charms...

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Another branding that you see getting phased out: News Channel. WEWS used it from 1990-2016 and is now just News 5.

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Another branding that you see getting phased out: News Channel. WEWS used it from 1990-2016 and is now just News 5.

 

And WSPA in my area no longer uses the NewsChannel title; they became 7 On Your Side in 2011 (IIRC), but I do know that at the bottom of 2015 (also IIRC) is when they became 7 News.

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Meanwhile, WESH used both NewsCenter and NewsChannel brandings over the years ([WESH] 2 News lay in between).

 

WKMG - NewsWatch, then (Channel) 6 News, then NewsCenter, then WKMG News, then Local 6, then News 6.

 

Nobody bats an eye.

 

But I’m all prepared for Armageddon when WFTV drops Eyewitness News.

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Did you say 'FOX 2 Eyewitness News"?????

 

Omona,

That's as bad as mixing Lucky Charms with Lite Beer.

 

It's just wrong.

Fox 8 IS NEWS was pretty awkward. Only used on-air for two weeks (!!!) but that didn't stop WJW from having that transitional logo slapped on their ENG vans..

 

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Similarly, Hampton Roads in Virginia has never had an Action News branding for the stations in the area, and only two stations (WAVY, WTKR) used the Eyewitness News branding with mixed results (WAVY had it from 1969-81 but was mostly a non-factor in Tidewater then before dropping it in favor of the Daily News branding used for most of the 1980s. WTKR used the branding from 1992-94, during which it was the area's #1 station, before abandoning it in favor of the ill-fated TV3 News branding that sparked a ratings slide the station didn't recover from until about 10 years ago).

 

Eyewitness News has been known as “cursed” in Virginia. WXEX/WRIC used it as well, to no success. WSLS used it for a short time in the ‘80s.

 

Another branding that you see getting phased out: News Channel. WEWS used it from 1990-2016 and is now just News 5.

 

Indeed. It’s faded in the Carolinas and Virginia... as mentioned, WSPA dropped it. WPDE is “ABC15 News”. WTKR dumped it for “News 3” a couple years ago. WWAY now goes by “WWAY News” since adding the CBS affiliation.

 

WCTI is all that’s left using NewsChannel, and my guess is they’ll become ABC12 News once Sinclair puts their corporate hands on it.

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KPIX sadly buried CBS 5 Eyewitness News back in 2013 to become KPIX 5 NEWS.

 

I wonder what’s preventing KGO from picking up the moniker? They recently started wearing circle 7 pins now.

 

Cool - didn't realize they started wearing the pins. Ironically was watching a KABC segment a few weeks ago and thought 'wonder what it would take for KGO to wear those.' And dismissed the thought.

 

KGO has historically been an independent minded station. Dropped 'Newsscene' in the early 80s for the generic 'Channel 7 News' - ahead of the curve there. Also one of the first to go with Network + Channel Number + News with ABC 7 News.

 

Never really followed the O&O mandate sets (except for a couple years in the mid 80s when Cap Cities built them a new building) and went all kinds of ways on graphics and music.

 

Seems corporate will get a grip for a couple of years, then KGO goes its own way again.

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Another branding that you see getting phased out: News Channel. WEWS used it from 1990-2016 and is now just News 5.

 

I quite can't remember a Detroit station that branded by that, but WJRT in Flint did use "News Channel" in the early 1990's until it was sold to ABC. I believe I recently watched a 1995 WTVG video where they also went by "News Channel" before they went to "Action News".

 

But going back to "Eyewitness News", I believe I remember WWJ using it for a time during the period in which they aired a 35-minute extension of WKBD's (at-the-time) in-house 10 PM newscast.

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