Jump to content
×
×
  • Create New...

Did Peter Dunn get CBS to buy WLNY (which has become less profitable under CBS) so that he could get a million-dollar Southampton golf club membership?


Recommended Posts

One of two pretty damning stories in the LA Times today: https://www.latimes.com/entertainment-arts/business/story/2021-01-24/cbs-tv-station-deal-wlny-peter-dunn-sebonack

 

Quote

Just last month, Dunn and another high-level CBS executive joked about the station purchase during a Zoom call. “You mention [W]LNY, I usually call that the acquisition of our golf membership ... I mean TV station,” quipped Bryon Rubin, chief operating officer of the CBS Entertainment Group, according to an audio recording shared with the Los Angeles Times. Dunn chimed in: “That’s paid for itself, and then some.”

 

WLNY’s revenue has shrunk significantly in the years since the acquisition. The arrangement alarmed several CBS executives, who questioned whether Dunn’s acceptance of such a lucrative perk violated the company’s ethics guidelines, which forbid executives from receiving expensive gifts or allowing self-interest to influence company decisions. The matter was flagged for two high-profile law firms investigating alleged misconduct at CBS in late 2018, according to two people familiar with the investigation who declined to comment for fear of reprisal.

 

Link to post
Share on other sites

CBS O&O management is due for a shakeup. Dunn, Friend, Brauer... all with a track record of treating people terribly.. especially women. Can’t believe they were kept in place after CBS did their so-called investigation into their management teams after Moonves got the boot. A lot of ego on that team for a roster of under performing, mediocre stations. 

  • Like 7
Link to post
Share on other sites
22 minutes ago, noggi said:

CBS O&O management is due for a shakeup. Dunn, Friend, Brauer... all with a track record of treating people terribly.. especially women. Can’t believe they were kept in place after CBS did their so-called investigation into their management teams after Moonves got the boot. A lot of ego on that team for a roster of under performing, mediocre stations. 

So, so agree. Especially the part where you mention how they're so in over their heads thinking they're still capable of leading a ship that's nearly hit the bottom of the ocean already. I feel very bad for all of the fired staff -- and to those who have held on to their jobs today in spite of all of the headwinds they've faced from management, truly remarkable. CBS has lost their damn minds and I have no idea how they think the 'status quo' is fine. 

  • Like 3
Link to post
Share on other sites

Reading that story, Why do I want to ask if something like that happened long ago when CBS ran like the proverbial "chicken with its head cut off" when looking for a new Detroit TV home .

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

These articles are stunning. I dont see how Dunn keeps his job tomorrow.

 

The comments about Ukee? And the other anchors? 

 

I had no idea local managers were dealing with so much interference. That explains why they havent been able to improve themselves. The local management keeps getting ousted, but its corporate preventing them from getting better. 

 

And I agree.. The fact the two have kept their jobs while the stations have all sucked rocks, is curious if not shocking. 

Oh.. and $1 million club membership, but they fired half a dozen reporters at each o and o station, and they can barely get the news on. 

  • Like 7
Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, newsman123 said:

These articles are stunning. I dont see how Dunn keeps his job tomorrow.

 

The comments about Ukee? And the other anchors? 

 

I had no idea local managers were dealing with so much interference. That explains why they havent been able to improve themselves. The local management keeps getting ousted, but its corporate preventing them from getting better. 

 
 

You have to wonder if corporate had some kind of vendetta over the years over stations like KYW and WBBM, where they kept screwing them up on purpose because things didn't get their way. It makes you think that without them, WBBM could've fixed things and gotten out of the basement long ago if New York wouldn't have kept hamstringing them, and KYW's technical nightmares right now after the spectrum transition looks like just another 'take that' from above their heads beyond their personnel situation.

Edited by mrschimpf
  • Like 2
Link to post
Share on other sites
13 hours ago, bostonmediaguy said:

I was just coming here to post the stories from the LA Times.

 

Here's the second, https://www.latimes.com/entertainment-arts/business/story/2021-01-24/cbs-television-stations-peter-dunn-racism-sexism, referring to alleged mistreatment by Dunn and the stations group.

 

Fascinating reads.

 

Just FTR, just about every piece of info in this particular story is way way worse than the optics of nabbing a golf membership as part of a TV station acquisition.

  • Thanks 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

I reported Dunn, Friend & Goldberg to Debevoise & Plimpton during the moonves Investigation. among other things- Goldberg used Reporter/photog to shakedown the caterer for his son's Bar_mitzvah who was going out of business. Goldberg's wife took day off from Fox News Channel to field produce - show who was who etc. Goldberg got back $15,000 down payment and story never aired - even though ther were many other victims who never gor squat back. Peter Dunn's father was IBEW and story doesn't mention that Pascucci bought golf club land from IBEW years before selling TV55 to CBS. Dunn, Friend, Goldberg also made backroom deal with IBEW for layoffs - which techs were supposed to - but never voted on, causing layoffs for 4.03g's - then senior IBEW retiring afterwards/collected unemployment/exit pkg$$$ and CBS Pension - when they should have retired to begin with and saved 4.03g's from layoffs (older staff retiring with unemployment was the catch). Friend came to CBS and introduced the on-air staff saying "My name is Friend - but I'm Not your Friend". Then told on-air staff that an employee gave them a case of their own brand Olive Oil - and asked if anybody else wanted to "lick my A__". I also reported racism and reverse-racism, reported plenty of sexual harassment etc. Obviously nothing was done - because CBS was only focused on terminating Moonves. The law firms' investigation was a total sham.

  • Like 2
Link to post
Share on other sites
15 hours ago, Yankees4life said:

Heads need to roll over there...and hopefully it will


True, but the most likely scenario will be people either retiring (or being reassigned) and being replaced with people equally as worse as themselves. Situations like this rarely bring about the necessary changes required.

  • Like 2
  • Thanks 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

Peter Dunn is the cancer of the O&O stations. If Peter's head rolls, don't put it past ViacomCBS -being the competent bunch they are- promoting Jay Howell to Peter's job. CBS O&O's are long overdue for a major management shake up. Friend is a schmuck and Dunn is trash. Time to take out the trash.

  • Like 4
Link to post
Share on other sites

There's now a petition by Black journalist to have CBS Local TV President Peter Dunn and David Friend fired. Update: NABJ is the that made the call for petition!!!

Update again: Here's the link!!!

 

On a personal note as a black man in America myself this country anti-blackness is so real and alive and I'm happy it's getting exposed!!!
 

https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.cbsnews.com/amp/news/black-journalists-group-demands-that-cbs-fire-local-tv-executives-following-report-of-racist-comments/

Edited by Gavin
  • Like 5
Link to post
Share on other sites
26 minutes ago, Samantha said:

Moved over to General TV as this has turned into a larger story than New York or Philly.

After reading this FTVLive article about a former WFOR GM forking over thousands of dollars for a dinner that was hosted by none other than Peter Dunn its clearly gone far beyond just the NYC TV boards. It needs to be here and it's the right move.

 

Link related to that FTVLive story: https://www.ftvlive.com/sqsp-test/2021/1/26/miami-general-manager-was-told-to-fork-over-thousands-of-dollars-in-midst-of-cbs-layoffs

Link to post
Share on other sites

Don Champion is sharing his story of discrimination.

 

https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10106647264600435&id=18406529&set=a.655479412025&notif_t=feedback_reaction_generic&notif_id=1611684354501645&ref=m_notif

 

Quote

I can honestly say I’ve never been discriminated against in the way David Friend and Peter Dunn did me at WCBS-TV. Even before I started, my agent warned me, “be careful, you’re gay, Black and a man. David doesn’t like any of those.” I still question how I got in the door at CBS 2 News- in the end, I think it was fate.

 

Edited by C Block
Link to post
Share on other sites
On 1/24/2021 at 12:22 PM, Geoffrey said:

There's some more from that which makes this whole thing rather damning

Quote

In his Jan. 10, 2020, complaint, which was reviewed by The Times, Kennedy alleged a “quid pro quo exchange” in which Dunn and another executive “received two ultra-exclusive club memberships to Sebonack Golf Club in the Hamptons in exchange for purchasing the WLNY television station in December, 2011, in violation of company policy.”

And about that Golf Course thing

Quote

“From a business ethics perspective, this is an incredible gray area,” said Joanne H. Gavin, associate dean of Marist College’s School of Management in New York. “Nothing about this feels transparent or fair to other CBS employees.”

I've been a broadcasting nerd for as long as I can remember (even studied Mass Communication?Journalism until this semester) and this has to be the most damning stuff I have ever came across. This makes groups like United Broadcasting, RKO and Sinclair look good in a bad way,

  • Like 2
Link to post
Share on other sites
10 hours ago, C Block said:

I read Don's whole post. Damning. That man's news career ended as is. Dreams Dashed. I know Friend's bullying is all about abuse of power, but I why did I felt like it sounded in part like If it wasn't anyone Straight, White Woman (basically a 'model' if suggested) everyone else is at Dunn + Friend's target for ire. That + Ukee's 'Jive', (who the F#*K still says THAT word, first off btw?)it sounded like they have a type. (be careful, you’re gay, Black and a man. David doesn’t like any of those.”) To summarize in one point, after seeing Ukee's clip posted from CBS3 thread, heads must roll NOW! No way in hell those two clowns survive after this.

Edited by justin2kx
  • Like 3
  • Thanks 2
Link to post
Share on other sites

Over the years, I’ve interviewed with both of these people. I’ve competed against each of them at different times, and worked with a number of their former employees. Nothing in these articles surprises me. The golf club story is an extreme, but quid pro quos are not uncommon.
 

Unfortunately, one thing this investigation does not touch on, is the fact that these types of alleged management biases and activities are not unique. Anybody who has ever worked in a top five market has either worked for people like this, or worked across the street from them. Also, make no mistake about it. The offenders are not limited to white men. Women and people of color have their own sexist, ethnic, ageist, racial and even geographical biases. I’ve met some of them too. 
 

I do believe that the majority of newsroom and station managers are decent and fair men and women who, while not perfect, understand right from wrong. But, just as in politics, it only takes a few who abuse position or power to damage or destroy careers and industry reputations.

  • Like 5
Link to post
Share on other sites
50 minutes ago, newscopter7 said:

Can Dunn/Friend really point to any successes in the CBS O&O group during their tenure? 

Budget whacking

  • Sad 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

Having read the LA Times articles and Don Champion's Facebook post, all these damning revelations sickened me to my stomach. The fact that these two had jobs and committing unethical and shameful conduct like this all these many years despite the stations' woes is unbelievable and infuriating. Even worse that it isn't new in the industry. Dunn and the ironically-surnamed Friend don't deserve administrative leave. They deserve to be straight-up fired with no benefits immediately.

 

On the other hand, I'm grateful for and fully supportive of Ukee Washington for his response. His words moved me to tears and he deserves the praise he's been given.

  • Like 5
Link to post
Share on other sites
29 minutes ago, Action Newsroom said:

Having read the LA Times articles and Don Champion's Facebook post, all these damning revelations sickened me to my stomach. The fact that these two had jobs and committing unethical and shameful conduct like this all these many years despite the stations' woes is unbelievable and infuriating. Even worse that it isn't new in the industry. Dunn and the ironically-surnamed Friend don't deserve administrative leave. They deserve to be straight-up fired with no benefits immediately.

 

On the other hand, I'm grateful for and fully supportive of Ukee Washington for his response. His words moved me to tears and he deserves the praise he's been given.

 

That's the sad part... they're probably going to get a sweetheart deal to retire and just walk away from this. Meanwhile, toxic cultures like what WCBS/CBS O&Os have to offer exist throughout the industry, not just in top markets. The way the newsroom was run at my last station is what finally drove me out of the business, but I don't know that any station I ever worked for wasn't without some major personality issues or featured some sort of sociopath in charge at some level.

  • Like 4
Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Important Information

We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue. By using TVNewsTalk you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.