Thursday, June 29, 2006

CBS, Affils Strike Digital Deal

Source: Broadcasting and Cable CBS and its affiliates have agreed on the framework for a new revenue-sharing agreement that clears the way for the network to distribute its content on digital platforms and deals affiliates in on potential profit.

The pact, announced Thursday, gives CBS more flexibility to funnel shows to the Internet, video-on-demand (VOD) and other emerging platforms. In return, stations will receive a cut of proceeds, including incentives for driving traffic to CBS' Website and other network platforms where they sample ad-supported CBS fare.

Also as part of the deal, CBS stations will continue to chip into the network's NFL deal for the next three years. Several station groups, including LIN Television, Gannett and Meredith Broadcasting, have already approved the terms, and now the full affiliate body must also give their approval.

CBS and its affiliates have been working on the agreement for months. As the broadcast networks have rushed to put their content on the Internet, iTunes and VOD, affiliates have balked that they play a key role in making shows popular and should be included in profits. MORE

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Equity Broadcasting To Buy Lexington TV Station

Source: Equity Broadcasting Press Release Equity Broadcasting Corporation which has entered into an agreement to merge with Coconut Palm Acquisition Corporation announced today that it has agreed to purchase WBLU, Channel 62, in Lexington, KY. The company plans to use this station to launch a joint My Network TV and Retro Television Network (RTN) affiliation in Lexington , a market that reaches more than 470,000 households.

EBC plans to launch RTN on the station on August 1. RTN is a new network that airs ratings-proven programs from the 60's, 70's, 80's and 90's, in addition to local programming and sports entertainment. RTN is launching in selected markets this fall and will launch nationwide in 2007. On September 5th, EBC will add a My Network TV affiliation to the station, which will consist of primetime programming, Monday - Saturday.

EBC's President and Chief Executive Officer, Larry Morton, says, "We are thrilled to be coming into the Lexington market and feel that we are going to fill a programming void with our addition of both RTN and My Network TV programming."

Morton further states, "Although the station was not included in EBC's original merger with Coconut Palm, the acquisition will be included when the merger closes."

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Turner Promoted to Evening News Anchor at KNWA

Source: KNWA Press Release KNWA-TV / KFTA-TV today announced the promotion of Matt Turner from Sports Anchor to Evening Co-Anchor of KNWA Northwest Arkansas News. The announcement was made by Blake Russell, Vice President and General Manager of the television stations.

“It's always a great feeling when we can promote from within,” said Mr. Russell. “Matt has impressed us with his work ethic and his 'can do attitude' covering sports, and we know he'll bring that energy and enthusiasm to the newsroom every day.”

"This is a terrific opportunity for me," said Mr. Turner. "Being a part of the Razorback Nation franchise and watching it grow has been very exciting. But having a chance to co-anchor the newscasts every night - is a dream come true."

Mr. Turner joined the station's Razorback Nation team in 2003 as Weekend Sports Anchor. He's originally from Arkadelphia, AR and is a graduate of Ouachita Baptist University in Arkadelphia, where he also played quarterback for the Tigers.

Mr. Turner caught the eye of many managers when he went to Little Rock to cover former University of Arkansas Basketball Coach Nolan Richardson's race discrimination trial. "Many times sports anchors are comfortable covering games. But when sports transcends into news, it makes them a little uncomfortable," said Mr. Russell. "Not so with Matt. He did a wonderful job updating viewers on what was going on in that courtroom, which proved he could eventually make this transition to the anchor desk."

Before joining KNWA, Mr. Turner worked in radio covering Arkadelphia High School and Ouachita Baptist sports. He also interned at Hooten's Arkansas Football Magazine and at KATV-TV in Little Rock. He and his fiancée Julee Bell, who is also an Arkadelphia native, are planning to be married in January.

Sargent Promoted To Anchor KFTA Fox 24 News at 9

Source: KNWA Press Release KNWA-TV / KFTA-TV today announced the promotion of Dana Sargent from Anchor of KNWA Today to Anchor of KFTA's Fox 24 News at 9:00 pm. The announcement was made by Blake Russell, Vice President and General Manager.

"Dana has been such a driving force behind the continued success of our morning newscast," said Mr. Russell. "So it seemed like an obvious choice to have her get our new Fox newscast off the ground."

"While I've worked very hard to build KNWA Today and have built many special friendships with the people who work on that newscast, I'm looking forward to this next challenge." said Ms. Sargent. "Plus, it will feel great to finally be able to sleep in again and not have to get up at 2am."
Ms. Sargent is a graduate of Bentonville High School. She also attended the University of Arkansas. She's been with the television stations for three years.

Nexstar Broadcasting, which owns both KNWA-TV & KFTA-TV, filed with the Federal Communications Commission in April to sell KFTA-TV, Channel 24, in Fort Smith to Mission
Broadcasting. Mission plans to enter a joint sales and shared services agreement with KNWATV. KFTA-TV will become a Fox affiliate in late August, providing the area with its first local primetime newscast at 9:00 pm.

Saturday, June 24, 2006

KATV Picks Up Excellence Murrow

KATV has picked up the small market Overall Excellence Edward R. Murrow award. You'll find the full list of award winners HERE.

Friday, June 23, 2006

KATV is Tapeless

Arkansas reports that KATV has converted from using video tape to using tapeless video cameras and computers to edit what was shot. The article does not that, "(“Fox News at Nine” has the same equipment but still shoots with tape." Read the full article HERE.

May Ratings: KARK Gains Ground at Five

Arkansas goes further in its newest article relating to the May ratings. Below are a few of the high points from the article:

> KATV had a 10.6 rating and 28 share at 5 p.m. and an 11 rating and 27 share at 6 p.m.
KARK narrowed the gap at 5 p.m. with an 8.1 rating and 21 share and jumped at 6 p.m. with a 7.3 rating and 16 share. KTHV-TV, Channel 11 scored a 5 rating and 13 share at 5 p.m. and a 6.6 rating and 15 share at 6 p.m.

> KATV fell in several demos, particularly with women aged 25-54, where the other stations improved and Channel 7 went from a 7.4 rating to a 4.6. However, its overall numbers are again big because of its continued dominance with persons aged 50-plus, where it again more than doubles the ratings of KARK and KATV combined.

Read the full article HERE.

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Where's KTAL's Todd Warren?

An e-mailer brought this to my attention and I just have to ask, Why is KTAL Met Rustin Duke pulling weekday duty and Where's Chief Met Todd Warren? Remember from a few weeks back the rumor of Warren "shopping around"?

Update: ATN has learned Todd is on vacation. Personally I'm glad this is the case. When KTAL changed staff a number of years ago I was glad Nexstar brought Todd back.

KNWA's Hi Def Not So 'Hi'

A Northwest Arkansas TV viewer says, "KNWA has a new digital channel on the cable up here and they are supposed to be broadcasting in High-Definition. However the cable channel is broadcasting a regular 4:3 tv image stretched out to fit a 16:9 frame. basically, its not high def and all the people look fat because they are stretched out horizontally. their anchors look bad enough on regular tv and now they all look bloated in "HD""

Former KATV'er Getting Picked Up By KLRT?

This from the tip box: "I heard Chris May was in town recently to get a job with Fox 16."

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Rather Leaving CBS

Source: CBS Dan Rather is leaving CBS after 44 years with the Tiffany Network.

Sean McManus, president of CBS News and Sports, made the announcement.

"Of all the famous names associated with CBS News, the biggest and brightest on the marquee are Murrow, Cronkite and Rather," McManus said. "With the utmost respect, we mark the extraordinary and singular role Dan has played in writing the script of not only CBS News, but of broadcast journalism."

CBS News is working on a primetime special on the newsman's career. It is scheduled to be broadcast sometime this fall. CBS News also will make a contribution to Rather's alma mater, now called Sam Houston State University.

Rather's contract with the network was scheduled to expire in November, but he was unable to reach agreement with CBS on a new pact. He had worked as a correspondent for "60 Minutes" since stepping down as anchor of the "CBS Evening News" last year.

Friday, June 16, 2006

May Ratings Are In: KATV Slides Downward

Arkansas Business has the numbers from the May book. Here are a few of the highlights from the article:

> In the extremely broad designated market area household numbers, the much-coveted 10 p.m. weekdays news slot again ended virtually in a tie between KATV and KTHV. KATV had marginally widened the gap at 10 p.m. in the February book but showed slight losses this time around. Meanwhile, KTHV picked up a point or two in most demographics to pull ahead in some categories, while for the most part the stations remain in a dead heat.

In market household whole numbers, KTHV posted an 11 rating and 25 share at 10 p.m., while KATV had an 11 rating and 24 share. KARK came in third with a 7 rating and 16 share.

> In other time slots, KTHV continued its morning dominance with big wins at 5 a.m. and 6 a.m. while KARK held on to its traditional lunchtime crowd.

> Though the market households show KATV protecting its stronghold at both 5 p.m. and 6 p.m., the demos at 6 p.m. show a virtual tie across the board for the three affiliates, which is possibly a first.

Read the full article HERE.

KNWA Pulling a KATV?

This from the tip box:"I'm hearing KNWA has hired Matt Turner to replace Don Elkins. He was one of their sports anchors. Looks like they are pulling a KATV Scott Inman move. Wonder how it will work out?"

Thursday, June 15, 2006

KATV's Heads Get Bigger

Well you can't miss the change at It seems KATV is gearing up to heavily promote the news anchor team of Scott Inman and Christina Munoz as the first step is making the headshots bigger on the station's website.

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Search Still On for KTHV Weekend Anchor

The search continues for a new anchor of the weekend news at KTHV. KTHV General Manager Larry Audas tells Arkansas TV News, "News Director Mark Raines has a number of good candidates in the newsroom and is reviewing their work this summer." So it looks as though the anchor-go-round weekends will continue.

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Election Run-off Coverage

Looks as though KATV is missing out on much of the news tonight. While KARK and KTHV are covering the election results, airing victory speeches and consolation speeches, KATV is stuck with the Dallas/Miami playoff basketball game. Will say KATV did air on-going results as they came in.

Friday, June 09, 2006

KATV Gets New Reporter

KATV has hired a new reporter. Kristin Fisher is her name. According to her bio, she comes from KJCT in Grand Junction, Colorado where she worked as a reporter/weekend anchor.

Thursday, June 08, 2006

Paulson Headed to KFOR/KAUT in OKC

As reported yesterday KARK reporter Earnie Paulson is leaving the station after 6 years. Here's an e-mail Earnie sent to ATN Thursday evening:

"My last day at KARK is next Thursday and my first day at KFOR/KAUT in OKC is Wednesday, June 28th. I'll be anchoring the 9pm newscast Monday through Friday.
I have worked with many talented people at KARK over the years and still do. I am leaving behind family and several close friends here in Arkansas and will miss them dearly. My wife is from Arkansas, so it will always be my second home."

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Paulson Leaving KARK

Arkansas TV News can confirm KARK reporter Earnie Paulson is leaving the station and is heading to Okie City where he will has accepted an anchor position. Paulson has been with KARK since May 2000. ATN is working to find out when Paulson's last day at KARK is and what station he's headed to.

KATV Not Carrying All World Cup Soccer Games

This from the tip box:

"KATV in Little Rock is pre-empting 6 of the World Cup soccer matches because it conficts with their normal weekend programming. Therefore Central Arkansas viewers won't be able to see those in HDTV. WB and future MyNetwork TV affliate KWBF will pick up the games KATV refuses to air. This from a post on AVS forum.

Here are the games not shown....

To answer my own question
Originally Posted by mdlangley
Anybody know if KATV 7 is showing the World Cup this Saturday in HD? According to their programming guide they aren't even showing the World Cup on regular ABC.

Thank you for contacting KATV about the 2006 FIFA World Cup games on ABC. Regrettably, KATV will not be able to carry all of the World Cup games offered by ABC due to the Federal Communications Commission mandate that we must carry a minimum of three hours of children’s programming weekly, as well as our previous commitments to local religious programming.

KATV notified ABC that we would be unable to carry six of the World Cup games and the network responded by securing another Little Rock station to broadcast these six games. All of the preempted games will be on KWBF / Channel 42.

To alert our viewers, KATV will scroll an informational text indicating the game is being shown on KWBF at the scheduled time for each game. In addition, KATV newscasts prior to the preempted games, will also announce the channel change.

The six games that will be shown by KWBF/Channel 42 (Little Rock) are:
· Saturday, June 10 at 8:00 AM and 11:00 AM
· Sunday, June 11 at 10:30 AM
· Sunday, June 18 at 8:00 AM and 10:30 AM
· Sunday, June 25 at 9:30 AM

We apologize that we are unable to carry all of the World Cup Soccer games, but in lieu of our broadcasting them, we believe this is the best solution for our viewers.

Thank you for visiting the KATV website and for watching Channel 7.

Richard Farrester
Program Director"

Monday, June 05, 2006

KHBS/KHOG Hires New Met

This from the tip box: "Justin Povick is joining KHBS/KHOG as the new Sunrise Meteorologist. Justin is already used to working the early shift. He's currently the morning meteorologist at KSWO-TV (ABC affiliate) in Lawton, Oklahoma. He also holds a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of North Carolina at Asheville. His first day will be Monday, July 17th."

Thursday, June 01, 2006

KARK Met Off to KNWA

This from the tip box: "KNWA has hired Dan Skoff as their new Chief Meteorologist, replacing Rick Katzfey at the end of June."

Additional: Press Release from KNWA:

KNWA-TV / KFTA-TV today announced the appointment of Dan Skoff as Chief Meteorologist.. The announcement was made by Blake Russell, Vice President and General Manager of the television stations.

“We're very excited to have Dan joining our team,” said Mr. Russell. “His years of forecasting experience in Arkansas and his credentials bring a unique knowledge of weather to Northwest Arkansas and the River Valley. Dan's background should really stand out to our viewers, especially during severe weather.”

"I'm really excited to become a member of the KNWA-TV weather team," said Mr. Skoff. "Northwest Arkansas' growth is tremendous and I can't think of a more vibrant place I would like to live and work."

Mr. Skoff has been the weekend meteorologist at KARK-TV in Little Rock since 2003. Both KNWA-TV and KARK-TV are owned by Nexstar Broadcasting. "This move shows Nexstar's commitment to promoting people within our company," said Mr. Russell. "Since Little Rock is the biggest television market in the state, Dan gained first rate experience at KARK-TV."

Mr. Skoff is a one-of-a-kind meteorologist in Arkansas. He's the only Certified Broadcast Meteorologist in the state. To earn the certificate, he passed a difficult 100 question exam given by the American Meteorological Society. Only 141 other meteorologists in the country have earned this prestigious certification.

Before working in Little Rock, Mr. Skoff was the weekend meteorologist at the NBC affiliate in Amarillo, TX. He's originally from Milwaukee and earned his bachelor of science degree in meteorology from the University of Oklahoma, but is ready to call the Hogs.

He and his wife Jennifer are also the proud parents of a 19-month-old daughter, Callie Grace.