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Was Gari's "Image News" package initially called the "A Package"?

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A few years ago, I found some article online (probably copy and pasted from Wikipedia) about "Image News" by Gari Communications.  It's one of my favorite news music packages, especially the 1998 cuts; and KOAT (the ABC affiliate in my area) used the package from c. 1999 until 2004 since it's a Hearst station.  Now, let's get to the nitty-gritty.


As most of you know, Image News was introduced in 1995 along with Hearst's first mandated graphics package (camera 1.0); WCVB, WTAE, and KMBC started using it towards the end of that year.  Around 1997 I believe, Gari marketed Image News to stations outside of the Hearst group.  And according to that article, when it was used exclusively by Hearst stations, it was called the "A Package", but was renamed "Image News" when non-Hearst stations began using the package.  But I am wondering if this is true at all since the "B Package" wasn't introduced until 1998.  KOCO began using the "B Package" that year because KWTV was already using "Image News", and two or more stations in a given market can't use the same music package; and WLWT used it due to WDTN also already using "Image News" (they're in different markets but they're close by such that these regulations also apply).


Does anyone recall "Image News" being called the "A Package" originally?

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I have heard the story that it was called the A Package but I've never seen it confirmed in any Gari marketing material.


My guess is that it was retro-actively referred to as the A Package, but it was never formally the name. News packages don't need a name unless they are being syndicated. So Image News was given that name when Gari decided to sell it to other stations. Before that, the cue sheet likely just said it was the Hearst-Argyle News Package. It doesn't seem plausible that it would be called the A Package without there also being a B Package, which came around a few years later.

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On 7/5/2021 at 1:53 PM, dpb said:

News packages don't need a name unless they are being syndicated.


Strive by InTheGrooveMusic isn't being syndicated as far as I'm aware; I believe only the Hearst stations are using it.   But I could do a threat about that package.

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