Sunday, November 27, 2005

Sunday Tornado Outbreak

Severe weather is keeping Arkansas TV 'mets' busy this evening. When I got home from work at 6:30pm, KARK and KATV were providing wall to wall coverage. 4 and 7 had all of its main mets on duty. Barry and Todd on 7 and Brett and Dan on 4. KTHV opted to not provide wall to wall coverage. Ed Buckner was on from time to time giving updates. KARK was first with reports of damage from the storms.

UPDATE: 7:25pm KARK has put several 'citizen journalists', in the line of severe weather, on the air to describe conditions around various parts of the state. KARK and KATV continue to provide wall to wall coverage while Channel 11 is rolling regularly scheduled programming.

UPDATE: 7:50pm As tornado warnings continue to be issued for counties across the state, on KATV Barry Brandt apologized to viewers for covering up regularly scheduled programming. Meanwhile over at KTHV they continue airing regulary scheduled programming, with no update in a while. All 11 provides is the crawl and symbol at the lower left of the screen. Channel 4 rolls on with coverage. And flipping back and forth I find KARK offering the best coverage. KARK has had several citizen reports on the air of damage AND news crews on the scene of where a twister touched down. 4 seems to be the only one hitting the story from the weather and news angle.

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

KARK To Be Dropped From WHECO Cable Systems?

This from

"Open Letter from the General Manager of KARK to Cable Customers living in Hot Springs, Pine Bluff, and Camden:

Dear Cable Customers:

KARK is strongly committed to serving the public and keeping you informed. You may have seen our information crawl stating that KARK may not be on your cable system at year end. That is True.

On December 31st, cable customers in the above locations may lose access to KARK and NBC programming at midnight. Our retransmission agreement with WEHCO for all their cable systems in our viewing area will expire, and we have been unable to come to terms with your cable company for the continued carriage of our station. See below for an exact list of the name of your cable company.

Cable customers living in Hot Springs, Pine Bluff, and Camden have several choices for replacing the services you currently receive from your cable company, including video service from Dish Network or DirecTV.

WEHCO, like all cable and satellite companies, makes payments to the companies that own and operate programming networks. They pay the owners of the programming channels monthly fees, ranging as high as several dollars per month for the right to carry the programming. Your cable company has made it very clear they do not want to pay any fees for the rights to carry KARK. You should also know that WEHCO owns the following newspapers: Arkansas Democrat Gazette, Arkansas Camden News, and Arkansas Sentinel Record in Hot Springs.

We truly regret the inconvenience this dispute may cause subscribers living in Hot Springs, Pine Bluff, and Camden. We will continue to work hard at providing the very best local news, weather, sports and public affairs programming to our viewers, no matter how they might view our signal.

Thanks for your support and keep watching KARK!

Rick Rogala
Vice President & General Manager

DCG comments: I live in Prescott and I subscribe to the cable service which is owned by WHECO media and for the past few weeks KARK programming has been blacked-out by programming from KTAL, the Nexstar NBC affiliate in Shreveport. One can only assume eventually KARK will be gone from Hope Community TV also. And we down here in Southwest Arkansas and on cable could be dealt a double blow IF Nexstar demands payment for the KARK signal AND the KTAL signal.

Monday, November 21, 2005

KNWA's Hart and Yazwinski Headed to KARK

Arkansas reports: "Reporters Sydney Hart and Tom Yazwinski are leaving KNWA to go to work for KARK-TV, Channel 4, in Little Rock. Both television stations are NBC affiliates owned by Nexstar Broadcasting Group Inc. of Irving, Texas."


"KNWA has also hired Mike Stanford as creative services director. Stanford previously worked for News 9, a Time-Warner/Belo Broadcasting cable news channel in San Antonio, Texas. He replaces Sean Bateman, who is leaving in December."

Blogging will resume after the Thanksgiving holiday...Thanks!!!

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

KLRT Gets Exclusive of First Lady and Taylor in Memphis

This from a tipster: "A Huckabee in the ring Janet Huckabee made a special trip to Memphis Tuesday to be with her man in the ring -- the boxing ring, that is. One of middleweight champ Jermaine Taylor's biggest fans, the first lady has appeared not just ringside at Alltel Arena but inside the ropes to present him the Continental belt, and at the Riverfest Amphitheatre, where she presented his four title belts. Fox 16 in Little Rock made a deal to get exclusive footage with the first lady and Taylor at the Memphis Police Boxing Gym, where Taylor held an open workout for the media. The first lady was whisked in after the workout before other TV and print media could grab a picture."

Monday, November 14, 2005

Movin' and Shakin' in NWA

This from the tip box:

"James Hudzinski, weekend meteorologist at KFSM is leaving to work for Weather Central after November sweeps. He will serve as installer/trainer for the Weather Central Genesis Graphics system."

"Weekend meteorologist Derek Beasley at KHBS-KHOG in Fort Smith is moving to Hearst-Argyle sister station WLWT in Cincinnati, OH (DMA #34) as morning and midday meteorologist at the end of November sweeps."

"KHBS-KHOG Sports Reporter and Anchor Rusty Jackson is leaving 40/29 to head to KATV in Little Rock. His start date is December 5."

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

Former KATV'er to CNN

Source: CNN Press Release Susan Roesgen, a veteran broadcaster with more than a decade of experience covering New Orleans and the Gulf Coast, joins CNN as a full-time correspondent assigned to the network’s new Gulf Coast bureau, it was announced today by Jack Womack, senior vice president of domestic news operations and administration for CNN/U.S.

“My new role with CNN enables me to join the top news organization in the world while remaining based in a city I love: New Orleans,” Roesgen said. “I hope to give viewers a true and broad sense of the recovery efforts along the Gulf Coast in addition to providing the best reports on other news from the region.”

CNN opened CNN Gulf Coast in September to give the network a vantage point in covering the entire Gulf Coast after Hurricane Katrina. The bureau, one of 11 across the United States, is equipped to perform multiple live shots and supports all CNN networks, including CNN Newsource, the network’s syndicated news service.

Roesgen comes to CNN from WGNO-TV, where she has worked as the 10 p.m. news anchor since November 2003. For the past four years, she has also served as a host and reporter for a variety of broadcast and news outlets. Her projects included live field reports of rocket launches at Cape Canaveral, Fla.; hosting and production of a Pearl Harbor documentary for the National D-Day Museum; and reports for National Public Radio.

Roesgen moved to New Orleans in 1993 as a co-anchor of evening newscasts for WDSU-TV. She earned an Emmy award for a report on cemetery thefts and a state Associated Press award for a multi-part series on Israel. She left New Orleans for one year in 2001 to serve as co-anchor of National Geographic Today for the National Geographic Channel.

Her other anchoring duties have included stints with WABC-TV in New York City, KFMB-TV in San Diego and KATV-TV in Little Rock, Ark. Roesgen graduated with highest honors from Montana State University, earning a bachelor’s degree in English.

Monday, November 07, 2005

Where's 'Where Are They Now'?

Where are they now will return in a few days. I am working two jobs to help make ends meet. My second job is in retail and we are getting ready for the 'After Thanksgiving Day Sale'.

Friday, November 04, 2005

Former LR Anchor on the Move

Newsblues reports Susan Roesgen will not be renewing her contract at WGNO-26-ABC/New Orleans when it comes up for renewal later this month. Roesgen was an anchor at KATV for a couple of years in the mid '80's.

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

KNOE/Monroe, LA ND to KTAL

According to a tipster, Andrew Pontz, news director at KNOE in Monroe, LA is moving to KTAL, News Channel 6 as news director. The tipster says, "Pontz announced to KNOE he's leaving at Thanksgiving..." Pontz replaces Sean Kennedy who is off to to become assistant ND at McGraw Hill's KGTV-10-ABC in San Diego.

Additional: Another tipster adds this : "Former KTBS News Director Andrew Pontz, who worked in Shreveport for decades, is returning to the market - to KTAL. If memory serves me right, Pontz was fired by KTBS owner Edwin Wray after buying a second satellite truck in the early 90's. Pontz went to Bryan/College Station and is now at Monroe at CBS powerhouse KNOE. I don't believe either KTAL or KNOE has announced this."

Sports Anchor Out at KFSM

This from the tip box: "Eric Sullivan has been suspended indefinately by KFSM TV-5. All promos have been pulled that feature him. Mike Irwin has started filling in. It has been leading to this for sometime. The final straw apparently being erics refusal to drive to fort smith to do sports more than he has been."

UPDATE: 11/03/2005 9:50pm A tipster tells ATN Sullivan was fired today.

Where Are They Now

Today we feature former Little Rock anchor Vickie Newton.

Vickie is a well-known face to viewers in many different cities. She has worked as an anchor for CNN Headline News, reporting from the network's world headquarters in Atlanta. Also in Atlanta, Vickie was an Anchor/Reporter at WSB-TV, the city's #1 news station. Previously, Vickie worked at WDIV in Detroit, KMBC and WDAF in Kansas City, and KATV in Little Rock, Ark.

What is Vickie doing now? Vickie joined KMOV Channel 4 in January 2002 as an Anchor/Reporter for "News 4 St. Louis" at 5 and 10 p.m. weekdays with Larry Conners.

Tuesday, November 01, 2005

KATV to Provide Comcast Cable Customers with On Demand News and Information

Comcast is teaming up with 'Arkansas' News Leader', KATV to provide On Demand news and information. Below is an excerpt from an article at Arkansas

"Following a national trend in markets large and small across the country, Comcast recently tacked on its first local programming to the On Demand menu with the addition of news and informational programming from KATV-TV, Channel 7.

All of KATV’s daily newscasts will be loaded up and ready to watch using On Demand no later than 30 minutes after airing on regular television. The most current newscast will be available until it is replaced with a timelier newscast.

“KATV has always enjoyed its relationship with Comcast, and we’re pleased to be part of the introduction of this cutting-edge technology to central Arkansas,” said Dale Nicholson, president and general manager of KATV.

In addition to telecasts of “Good Morning Arkansas,” “Mid-Day Arkansas,” “Channel 7 News at Six” and “Channel 7 News Nightside,” KATV programming on the On Demand menu also includes local sports shows “Saturday Morning Blitz” and “Sportsweek” with Steve Sullivan, David Bazzell and Bruce James.

As for the other affiliates hitting On Demand any time soon, Wilson said, “There are no plans at this time.”"

Where Are They Now

Today ATN features Laura Huckabee.

Huckabee started her career as a news anchor in Arkansas but quickly made the transition to weather. She graduated from Arkansas State with a degree in Elementary Education and later obtained a second degree in Broadcast Meteorology from Mississippi State. She is a member of the National Weather Association and the American Meteorological Society.

During her career, she has moved from Jonesboro, Arkansas to Little Rock, Albuquerque New Mexico to Salt Lake City, Utah and finally to Atlanta. She is a veteran of CBS, ABC and NBC affiliates.

What's Laura doing now? Laura is a meteorologist at CBS 46, WGCL-TV in Atlanta, Georgia.