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Today marks the 24th anniversary of the launch of ABC 33/40 in Birmingham. 

At the time, it was a merger of WCFT TV-33 in Tuscaloosa and WJSU TV-40 in Anniston, coupled with a low-powered station in Birmingham, WBMA-LP.  This also merged the two markets into Birmingham, and eventually made WBMG (now WIAT) the sole CBS affiliate for the now-combined market.  WNAL was supposed to be the "second" station, but that went to WJSU instead....they served as the CBS affiliate for the remaining tenure of Anniston-Gadsden's time as a separate market.

 

Allbritton would continue to run the stations until their merger with Sinclair.  "33" and "40" were sold off to Howard Stirk at the last second after Sinclair tried some antics to "own" them outright, but decided to give up the licenses unless a buyer was found.  Today, the station is avaiable on WBMA-LD, WABM-DT2, WDBB-DT2, and is still simulcast on Stirk-owned WGWW-DT2 (the former WJSU or "40")

 

Several staff members are still there today, including anchor Brenda Ladun, and of course, the venerable James Spann who had departed WBRC for their switch to Fox as part of this launch.

 

Edited by tyrannical bastard
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On 8/28/2020 at 10:51 AM, Greggo said:

Hurricane Laura toppled the towers of two Lake Charles TV stations: NBC affiliate KPLC and CBS affiliate KSWL. The KPLC tower fell on the station’s offices, ripping a huge hole in the roof of the news studio. Thankfully, the staff had already evacuated to sister Gray stations in Alexandria and Baton Rouge. KPLC’s GM says the rebuilding process could take a year. 
 

The KSWL tower fell on a neighboring building. KSWL, which is based in the old KVHP building, doesn’t do news so no crews to relocate. In the video below, the first downed tower they show without identifying is the KSWL tower. 
 

https://www.kplctv.com/2020/08/27/lake-charles-tv-station-tower-toppled-laura/

 

KVHP also has a silent STA because its signal path is the same as that of KPLC. Worth noting a distinction: KSWL's tower collapse included the transmitter. KPLC/KVHP's did not. So if they can get a signal path to the transmitter at Lunita, they can get back on the air.

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10 years ago I would’ve said there’s no way WFSB will ever fall from the top...now WTNH seems to be the next leader in CT news

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41 minutes ago, PNart2 said:

10 years ago I would’ve said there’s no way WFSB will ever fall from the top...now WTNH seems to be the next leader in CT news

 

I think you'll see a horse race market a la Albany with no clear dominant station. It also wonders whose decision this was: If Meredith wanted him out, they shot themselves in the knee. If Dennis wanted out, it was another bad wound for a station already taking wounds. 

 

Oh, the station also has no male bench. Mark Zinni's a great guy but he can't do everything.

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had to be money related. Meredith has been forcing pay cuts, and either they didnt renew him, or he balked at a cut. 
 

nexstar is throwing money at their stations right now. WTNH should pick him up. 

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1 hour ago, newsman123 said:

had to be money related. Meredith has been forcing pay cuts, and either they didnt renew him, or he balked at a cut. 
 

nexstar is throwing money at their stations right now. WTNH should pick him up. 

 

I would buy the didn't renew part, especially considering that the way he spoke about WFSB was akin to that of being family, a fact compounded by the fact he met his wife there. Not only is she still on the payroll, her show in Better Connecticut returns in two weeks after six months of COVID-hiatus.

 

Another thing to consider: Dennis' heart possibly hasn't been in anchoring since Denise's very sudden passing and the logical solution (Dennis/Kara as a pairing, it's COVID proof!) just couldn't work between Better taping at 10:00 AM and their having two kids at home. I don't think he heads back to TV this soon, I could see politics, I could see something else in the media, I could even see him helping out Denise's husband and daughter with the nonprofit they set up in her memory. 

 

This picture was on Dennis' Instagram story earlier today and very similar one was on Kara's. At first thought it comes off about the new month and their son's birthday being today. In hindsight, it seems like an omen.

 

Screenshot_20200901-221307_Instagram.jpg

Edited by scrabbleship

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Now that I"m reading James Spann's post about the 33/40 anniversary, he is grateful for all Allbritton has done for the station and his ability to broadcast severe weather.

I have to wonder.....how he feels about Sinclair...🤔

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On 9/1/2020 at 12:10 PM, tyrannical bastard said:

Today marks the 24th anniversary of the launch of ABC 33/40 in Birmingham. 

At the time, it was a merger of WCFT TV-33 in Tuscaloosa and WJSU TV-40 in Anniston, coupled with a low-powered station in Birmingham, WBMA-LP.  This also merged the two markets into Birmingham, and eventually made WBMG (now WIAT) the sole CBS affiliate for the now-combined market.  WNAL was supposed to be the "second" station, but that went to WJSU instead....they served as the CBS affiliate for the remaining tenure of Anniston-Gadsden's time as a separate market.

 

Allbritton would continue to run the stations until their merger with Sinclair.  "33" and "40" were sold off to Howard Stirk at the last second after Sinclair tried some antics to "own" them outright, but decided to give up the licenses unless a buyer was found.  Today, the station is avaiable on WBMA-LD, WABM-DT2, WDBB-DT2, and is still simulcast on Stirk-owned WGWW-DT2 (the former WJSU or "40")

 

Several staff members are still there today, including anchor Brenda Ladun, and of course, the venerable James Spann who had departed WBRC for their switch to Fox as part of this launch.

 

 

My god. Just be called ABC Alabama already and call it a day. Why they're still called ABC 33/40 without actually being on 33 and 40 makes no sense to me.

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1 hour ago, TheRolyPoly said:

 

My god. Just be called ABC Alabama already and call it a day. Why they're still called ABC 33/40 without actually being on 33 and 40 makes no sense to me.

Technically they are still on 40.2. The reason they’ve kept the name is probably because of brand recognition. And if they were to rebrand, I think ABC Central Alabama would make more sense.

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5 hours ago, TheRolyPoly said:

 

My god. Just be called ABC Alabama already and call it a day. Why they're still called ABC 33/40 without actually being on 33 and 40 makes no sense to me.

 

WCIV-DT2 should do the same thing and drop "ABC 4" for ABC Charleston or ABC 8 (WCIV-DT2's cable position)

Edited by nbc9houston
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5 hours ago, TVNewsLover said:

Technically they are still on 40.2. The reason they’ve kept the name is probably because of brand recognition. And if they were to rebrand, I think ABC Central Alabama would make more sense.

But as far as I'm concerned, no ABC affiliate in the state is called ABC Alabama just yet. They have an opportunity here.

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At this point, it's engrained in the viewers' heads, no matter what channel it's actually on. 

Allbritton could have requested a cable channel across the market (like what WCNC did with "6" years back, and pretty much the entire Ft. Myers market sans WINK), but that ship has sailed.

Birmimgham is just one of those markets that let APT/PBS get two of the good allocations....channel 10 (Birmimgham) and 7 (Mt. Cheaha),  leaving only Channel 6 and 13.  When FOX moved to 6, ABC was relegated to 33/40 and 58, and now its gaggle of subchannels strewn over WABM, WDBB, and for whatever reason they can get away with being on the former WJSU.

All the while, the doormat "42" has finally overcome itself, and after an identity crisis before Nexstar got them, back to good old CBS 42.

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On 8/28/2020 at 2:46 AM, A3N said:

They were originally going to have a 4pm newscast when they acquired the CW affiliation but that never came to fruition. I'm curious to see what kind of format this show will take, and if they're going to start using the CBS 8 logo more instead of the NEWS 8 logo.

 

Seems like they also dropped the 4:30am newscast, i'm sure it was to accommodate the noon newscast.

Seems like they may be going in the lifestyle direction with this broadcast. I just saw a commercial with Shawn Styles promoting a regular cooking segment he's gonna be doing for the show. Also, I need to make a correction. The show will be done with Heather Myers, not Barbara Lee... Seems like a long day for Heather unless she will be leaving mornings...

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1 hour ago, Bsean said:

Seems like they may be going in the lifestyle direction with this broadcast. I just saw a commercial with Shawn Styles promoting a regular cooking segment he's gonna be doing for the show. Also, I need to make a correction. The show will be done with Heather Myers, not Barbara Lee... Seems like a long day for Heather unless she will be leaving mornings...

Well, they cut the 4:30am newscast, so that's one less thing for Heather to do, theoretically.

 

My guess is that she'll still contribute to the 11am/Noon shows, and gets bumped off mornings. Seems like Neda has been filling in the weather anchor/fill-in anchor role pretty frequently, so she can easily slide in to fill Heather's spot.

 

The Tegna influence has been slow to creep in, compared to other stations in the group. Honestly, I was expecting them to do some kind of lifestyle show sooner, rather than later.

 

Let's see what else they do. A new set, perhaps? They are overdue for one...

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On 9/1/2020 at 7:51 PM, scrabbleship said:

 

I think you'll see a horse race market a la Albany with no clear dominant station. It also wonders whose decision this was: If Meredith wanted him out, they shot themselves in the knee. If Dennis wanted out, it was another bad wound for a station already taking wounds. 

 

If the FTV Live post about WFSB and Dennis House parting ways is any indication, confirmation that WFSB shot themselves in the knee.  

 

He'd be a good get for WTNH on paper, but I'd put money on him going to WVIT. They have a habit of getting people that WFSB has cast aside and they're based in West Hartford, a town Dennis has championed and calls his home. That is if he doesn't dabble into politics now that he's lost his home of vetting candidates. Or writes the book that he's teased about writing (he'd join Kara on the bookshelf).

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9 hours ago, scrabbleship said:

 

If the FTV Live post about WFSB and Dennis House parting ways is any indication, confirmation that WFSB shot themselves in the knee.  

 

He'd be a good get for WTNH on paper, but I'd put money on him going to WVIT. They have a habit of getting people that WFSB has cast aside and they're based in West Hartford, a town Dennis has championed and calls his home. That is if he doesn't dabble into politics now that he's lost his home of vetting candidates. Or writes the book that he's teased about writing (he'd join Kara on the bookshelf).

What about FOX61? Could that even be an idea?

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13 hours ago, A3N said:

Well, they cut the 4:30am newscast, so that's one less thing for Heather to do, theoretically.

 

My guess is that she'll still contribute to the 11am/Noon shows, and gets bumped off mornings. Seems like Neda has been filling in the weather anchor/fill-in anchor role pretty frequently, so she can easily slide in to fill Heather's spot.

 

The Tegna influence has been slow to creep in, compared to other stations in the group. Honestly, I was expecting them to do some kind of lifestyle show sooner, rather than later.

 

Let's see what else they do. A new set, perhaps? They are overdue for one...

Oh yeah, you're probably right. I forgot about Neda. She'll take over morning weather and probably report for 11a and noon. One could only hope they have a new set coming in the near future. We're nearing 10 years on this one. 

 

I think the Tegna influence at KFMB has been mostly confined to mornings.

Edited by Bsean

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2 hours ago, Breaking News said:

What about FOX61? Could that even be an idea?

 

His age (57 in December) might be a strike against him in the book of Tegna. Which is ironic given how if Tribune was still around they'd have done it in a heartbeat, they did so for a 70ish Al Terzi after WFSB pressured him to retire.

 

If he stays in TV, I'd put them a little behind WTNH. It'd be instant gravitas and credibility but for how long. As it was, Dennis was down to the 5:00, 6:00, and Face the State on Sunday mornings (which taped Thursday afternoons). I honestly see him tackling new media and/or the political realm before a return to TV.

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35 minutes ago, scrabbleship said:

 

His age (57 in December) might be a strike against him in the book of Tegna. Which is ironic given how if Tribune was still around they'd have done it in a heartbeat, they did so for a 70ish Al Terzi after WFSB pressured him to retire.

 

If he stays in TV, I'd put them a little behind WTNH. It'd be instant gravitas and credibility but for how long. As it was, Dennis was down to the 5:00, 6:00, and Face the State on Sunday mornings (which taped Thursday afternoons). I honestly see him tackling new media and/or the political realm before a return to TV.

 

It's not the age that's the problem, it's the financial layout that the experience demands that's the problem for GANNETT TEGNA.

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Some other retirements that have made the rounds this past week:

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