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DC News Now

Benny Vandergast

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Launching a barebones local tv news operation in an already heavily oversaturated market and producing an out-of-home marketing campaign featuring a bunch of nameless stranger's faces and giving people absolutely no idea what or where your "new local news" product even is... not sure if the question is if they've found an audience but can the audience even find them?

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Train. Wreck. In every way possible. Technical, understanding of the market, talent. 

Don't have any intel on numbers. 

The news judgment is still very much "Hagerstown" - for example, when POTUS traveled to Hagerstown, they treated it like how any small market would treat a Presidential visit. Multiple reporters, lead story, etc. The problem is, you're appealing to a market where having POTUS around is normal. He lives here. 

Content is repeated and uninspired. Nothing new or distinctive. 

Talent isn't distinctive. Many of the holdovers from Hagerstown are clearly in over their heads. Some of the new hires are uncomfortable to watch as well. 

The partnership with "DC Realtime News" stringer is uncomfortable because they'll use his commentary on crime from Twitter as content in newscasts. 

Only having NewsNation and other Nexstar stations for outside content presents major problems and leads to a lot of 2-3 day old filler content.

Lots of political spots in newscasts right now, with MD-6, VA-7, and VA-10 house races. It will be interesting to see what fills breaks after November 8th.


Channel numbers aren't as relevant as they once were, but on most systems, you won't find WDVM anywhere near WRC, WTTG, WJLA, WJLA 24/7, or WUSA. So finding viewers through channel surfing won't be easy. They might have a better chance on that front if they programmed more news on WDCW and threw syndicated leftovers onto WDVM. 




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Even if you have the best news product in the market (and this certainly isn't it), that you have NO actual web video presence outside after-the-fact YouTube uploads and the rest of your schedule is made up of low-tier stuff nobody else will touch, they need to do a lot more. WFMZ is the gold standard of 'scrappy and solid indie news done right'; DCNN isn't even at a 1/3 of KUSI.

Edited by mrschimpf
phrasing for the KUSI example
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