Sunday, December 02, 2007

Local Television News

Seeing that I am in a funny mood this weekend, I don't want to risk offending any of my blog buddies, so I am going to play it sorta straight and go with an idea that reemerged in my mind this morning.

I have a few who read this blog who have been employed in television in Northeast Ohio. Most of the folks whom I associate with on the Ohio media discussion boards are "old school," and I am as well.

By "old school," I mean that I prefer my local news 1/2 hour. Nowadays, we get as much as 2-1/2 hours of what is called "local news." Local news could be same stories as much as 4 times, American Idol happenings, "dirty dining," someone painting road kill, or many other things designed to further dumb down society.

We just got through "November Sweeps" and were treated to gems, such as the "Orgasm Diet." A few years back Spencer Tunick was in Cleveland to do a mass nude photography session. One of the participants was a news anchor from one of the local TV stations. The station did a feature on this and aired it during November sweeps. Only problem is this shoot happened in June.

Another TV station had an anchor who was on vacation in Florida. She participated in a wet t-shirt contest and had removed the t-shirt and danced on the bar. Only problem was someone taped her performance and put it on the Internet. She was fired by the station she worked at in Youngstown. She reemerged in Cleveland at the same station where the other "nude anchor" worked.

Do we need all this material? Does this news entertainment send you elsewhere for information? Does the news in your location have "features" that insult your intelligence? If you comment, please also give your location and the market you get your local TV news from.


Frasypoo said...

Yes,yes, local news drives me crazy!!!
Luckily we have 4 stations with them so I scroll thro when they show nonsense!!!
I usually watch Channel 2 action news and scroll thro Fox 5 Atlanta(they have an Indian news anchor)

wzzp said...

Location: Cleveland, Ohio

Reaction: I grew up during a time when two stations ruled the town. The first part of my life it was WEWS-TV5 (you've got to CATCH 5). The second half of growing up local TV was dominated by WJKW/WJW Newscenter8. I was a big fan of WEWS. I was a luke warm fan of TV8. But back then these two stations dominated because they had reporters and anchors that people identified with, admired, and enjoyed watching.

The current environment in Cleveland TV is similar to local markets all over the country. A drive to out do the other. Whether it is the latest weather gadget, or the latest "babe" reading the news, the viewers are faced with dumbed down information. If it bleeds it leads. Investigate everyone! Hidden camera reveals. Film at 11.

The best news cast in Cleveland for almost 20 years was Today in Cleveland with Del and Tom. You know why? Because these two just sat down at your breakfast table, and talked with you about news, the farm report, Henry, Martha's coffee, birthday greetings, wearing different hats, Tom's movie reviews, Tom's "walk up the hill," Del's Folks, and of course some dancing. Tell me, where is there a news cast like that today?

Valley Girl said...

I rarely watch the local TV news. I prefer print, online, or radio sources, since TV just seems to focus on the negative: shootings, violence, etc. It leaves me drained and saddened.

Bizdecision said...

WZZP...well said. I agree. I grew up as a Newscenter 8 viewer and still watch their news quite a bit.

Good call on hiring the latest "babe." Sure, looks are important to an extent BUT when the news becomes a fashion show rather than a newscast, then there's trouble. The focus goes on the person delivering the news.

Pilgrim said...

News in these parts is pretty tame Cliff. News is targeted to the Maritime region (New Bruswick, Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island). We don't get much excitment out here, maybe one or two murders a year for the entire area. Most stories are about he bazaar at the Seniors complex or a cat stuck up a tree.
I was an avid fan of CNN until FNC became available. CNN was way too left leaning and I eventually tired of Fox too. I find all the news including Canada's all news networks (which make CNN look like the Bill ORiley Network) more entertainment based than news worthy. I guess I'm old school too.

Pat Jenkins said...

good post wixy.. i like valley girl never get a chance to watch the local news at 5, 5:30, 6 and 7games, dinner and the what not get in the way.. but your examples show the shamelessness of a supposed credible industry.... p.s. do you have a link to the t-shirt constest!! i am kidding!!!

Tim Lones said...

Good Topic, Cliff:

Of course, with You and I being near the same age and growing up in Northeast Ohio, I watched Cleveland stations growing up..Today I went up to Borders in Fairlawn to pick up 2 Big Chuck and Little John DVD's. (Those from out of the area, they were Friday night movie hosts for ages on Channel 8 in Cleveland..The show, in various forms, was around for 43 years..)..There were sketches during the movie breaks, and Channel 8 news staffers would on occasion participate in these skits..The reason I mention all this is that Channel 8, as well as 5 and 3..Up till recent years, had newspeople that were REAL..They could give and take a joke, and would most likely say hello to you on the street if you met up with them..But they also were good newspeople, that knew how to tell a story..Todays newscasters seem so fake and plastic as a whole..And there is way too much in the way of "fluff" stories these days..

Rich in Medina said...

I was a "Catch 5" viewer as well. One thing I will never forget is having a snow day and staying home, watching the Morning Exchange and seeing Liz Richards recapping school closings sporting a black eye courtesy of Trivisano the 1st.