Sunday, December 4, 2016

Enormity of Oakland Fire Tragedy hits home; KTVU Reporter breaks down; News Conferences take somber mode; Almost every Bay Area TV station commits full personnel to cover tragedy; Sunday 415 Media Report/Reflections

Image result for Oakland warehouse fire  As the death toll mounts  (24 known fatalities with more expected) the tone and mood of the pressers have become more tense and emotional, for both the media, locally, and national media folks too. I saw a reporter for the NY Times put his head down as Ray Kelly of the Alameda County Sheriff's Dept confirm the latest number of bodies recovered at a morning briefing.

*KTVU Reporter, Leigh Martinez, who'd been working at the Alameda County Sheriff's office Victims center, momentarily broke down on air late Saturday night.  The tragic events of the day apparently brought back memories of her brother's passing, I'm told. He was a marine in Iraq, all of this public info--Martinez is to be commended for a stellar job. She was at the county center reporting from 7 AM until well into the early evening.


Image result for Leigh Martinez KTVU Oakland Fire
Leigh Martinez/KTVU
*Virtually all Bay Area TV stations were obviously front and center on the story but KTVU deserves full props as the only station that basically went all out, virtually commercial-free --all out on all its platforms too.

Anchors Frank Mallicoat and Claudine Wong, along with reporter, Christien Kafton, performed yeoman's duty with a steady almost six-hour, non-stop newscast before Frank Somerville and Gasia Mikaelian took over late afternoon into the evening.


Image result for Oakland fire tragedy
Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf
KTVU used its "KTVU Plus" side channel (due to college football obligation on Fox2) and continued coverage. Although information was still relatively scarce and officials weren't offering anything more than what was already known (due to sensitivity to victims and families) the gravity and seriousness of the tragedy demanded the attention. KTVU didn't budge and it was right not to.

All in all, KTVU excelled --a real community service.

*Where was KPIX?

Lots of red faces at KPIX, I'm sure, at PIX--where were they? Nowhere --until late into the game.


Image result for News Media covering Oakland Fire
Oakland PD Spokesperson Johnna Watson, foreground and Sgt. Ray Kelly, AC Sheriff's Dept
Even as the story was getting more serious and garnering more attention from both local and national and international outlets, KPIX (the CBS O and O) was running regular programming. Even when college football was on the net screen, KPIX didn't even offer an update on the situation.

Even more embarrassing when PIX finally had reporters on scene in Oakland, information broadcast was old news.

*As bad as Channel 5, it couldn't beat KRON's woeful action of running canned programming, (like, for instance, "Dog Town USA") At KRON, who the heck is minding the store? Uh, maybe nobody; even mediocre-challenged KRON should be ashamed of itself particularly when, early on, it was a very capable outlet.

*Yes, what you saw was correct. The major stations in town began using their star anchors; Somerville, KNTV's Raj Mathai, (who reported, solo, direct from the scene) Dan Noyes from KGO (ABC7)

Saturday, December 3, 2016

Bay Area TV News Goes Wall-to-Wall on Deadly Oakland Fire; Update 3: KRON Goes from Tragedy to 'Bay Area Bargains'; Update 4: All Bay TV Stations Cover Schaaf Press Conference Except KRON Which Runs 'Dog Town USA'

Image result for Oakland warehouse fire How big and tragic the overnight Oakland fire that took at least nine lives? (25 people are unaccounted for at press time) --even the BBC has coverage.

UPDATE 1: An Alameda County Sheriff Dept. official told KTVU as many as 40-plus people could have perished.

Local TV coverage was highlighted by KTVU's Weekend "Mornings on Two" which correctly ditched its regular format and went to wall-to-wall coverage from 7: AM on through the morning.

Anchors Claudine Wong and Frank Mallicoat directed the on-going story from KTVU's Jack London Square studios only a few miles from the scene of the warehouse/loft fire.

 Christien Kafton delivered spot-on reporting  and provided excellent coverage as the story remained fluid and new information developed.

KRON too had comprehensive coverage with anchor, Marty Gonzalez in studio, and reporter, Averi Harper, direct from the scene.

Other stations broke in and out of network programming and stayed heavy on the Oakland fire situation.

UPDATE 2: --9: 18 AM PT

KTVU has switched away from college football to "KTVU Plus"; Amazingly, KPIX (CBS5) is asleep at the wheel: Pix is going with a canned program and ignores Oakland fire; KGO has gone to ABC college football game.

UPDATE 3--11: 31 AM PT

You can't make this up: The Bay Area's "News Station" (really?) has abated its coverage from the Oakland fire to "Bay Area Bargains." Just when I was complimenting KRON, this arrives...some other stations at least have an excuse to leave; network sports shows and the like. On the other hand, KRON's motto these days is that it's the "only" Bay Area station with 24/7 news. Except when that motto breaks the 50 bucks KRON gets airing cheesy infomercials.

Just ridiculous. Not surprising anymore, just ridiculous.

UPDATE 4: 2: 44 PM PT: All Bay Area TV News stations, plus CNN, FNC and MSNBC cover Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf Presser except the "News Station", KRON which is running "Dog Town USA.

No joke needed.


Friday, December 2, 2016

Thursday, December 1, 2016

Remembering KRON; Gasia As Anchor Beats Smiling Gasia on KTVU; NBC Should Have Bought KRON; Chip Franklin Pisses off African-Americans on KGO Radio; Jessica Aguirre On NBC Bay Area Still Got It; Cristina Rendon Too On KTVU; Thursday 415 Media Mashers

Related image I REMEMBER when KRON was the local powerhouse news operation; a time when it was KTVU News before KTVU established itself with the "10 o'clock News" --when KRON was the standard bearer in the market with some of the best people, real news people, worked there.

I remember people like Catherine Heenan, Evan White, Bob Jimenez, Susan Blake and the like.

I remember evidence of KRON's initial demise when stupidity trumped common sense and ultimately a terrific news domain went south in a furry.

And how little people with no sense of professionalism and a lack of respect for the legacy of the station are driving it through the ground now.

Image result for kron 4 news Evan WhiteI don't relish KRON's imminent demise. Oh sure, it's not the same KRON, not at all, nevertheless it's sad to see such a proud heritage station meet its maker.

*I watched KTVU's Noon newscast in detail the other day; It dawned on me as much as I detest Gasia Mikaelian on "Mornings on Two", I actually like her as a straight anchor reading the news which she does well.

Dear Gasia: nothing personal, it's the uber-smiling and laughs that drive me crazy.

Image result for gasia mikaelianYou're so much better. I know management has Foxified you and you have to earn a living but please...show some levity every now and then. You don't have to audition anymore, you got the gig.

*I wonder if NBC regrets not buying KRON and therefore, maintaining its presence in the Bay Area with a strong signal --sorry, but KNTV has never worked.

Too many egos, too many people not admitting to a mistake thereby ensuring mass corrosion of product and, well, you get the picture.

Image result for chip franklin show*I wonder if KGO Radio's insufferable Chip Franklin ever listens to his shows --or are the giggling blondes in the background too much a distraction. Chippie on a recent show insulted most of the Bay Area's African-American community and when some callers tried to shake him down, he promptly cut them off. Chip is to talk-show host is melba toast is to fine cuisine. Pass the liverwurst.


Image result for jessica aguirre*What little star power KNTV possesses --and it's little, Jessica Aguirre has still got it.

Aguirre has managed to maintain grace, news savvy, and eloquent teleprompter duty under some challenging obstacles.



*It's the holiday season --time for the gruesome live shots and MOS interviews in front of the infamous Walnut Creek fountain...where reporters line up to talk to the demo-rich A25-54 white people with perfect teeth and Gucci bags.

*Greg Papa is not holding out at his 95.7 FM radio sports gig, trust me.

In fact, Papa returned to the airwaves on Wednesday.

*December: time for airport live shots; holiday cooking segments on 4 PM news shows; and inevitable Union Square ice rink background. What a Grinch I am, I know.

Related image*Cristina Rendon --still one of the most underrated anchor/reporters at KTVU. More Cristina, less Heather Holmes, but what the hell do I know.

*A news industry observer in this town with a keen observation worth noting.

"Every newscast looks the same; the stations may be different, the people too, but overall, it's all pretty much the same and blasé too--nothing stands out, same old thing."

*Hey Chip, you're due for that 2345th show about what millennials want.

Real riveting radio, was that in the latest handbook given out by management?

We get hit by a major terrorist act and Chipster will be talking to some anal wart, pimply-faced, 30 year-old techie name Brad in Marin explaining what hipsters are buying for Christmas gifts.

Terrific radio, Chip.

*Follow me on Facebook



Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Dread at KRON; Fear of The Unknown; Source: 'They're Going To Turn Off The Lights; Radnich Future, Others Too, Murky; 415 Media Exclu

Image result for KRON Channel 4There exists at perennial albatross station, KRON, a real, discernible dread; a dread of the unknown and murky future that exists at the station at 900 Front Street.

415 Media made contact with a KRON source; someone who works inside the building who describes the mood as deteriorating at best and the atmosphere quite depressing. No surprise there.


Here's more from the source, at length...

"The feeling like the end is near, meaning they're going to turn off the lights.  Considering the situation, the staff remains focused on doing a job...but for the most part that is easy because one just goes through the motions.   When the email went out from Ashley Gold Messina for the quick urgent meeting it was thought there might be news of the sale going through, the station being sold or news on a possible shutdown.   AGM was also serving as the interim GM at KOIN in Portland and remains there until she leaves at the end of the year. Before her announcement it was thought Media General would ship her up there before unloading KRON.
 
There is a hiring freeze, of course.  People are tired of  Radnich on the air...but he is still cordial and polite (for Gary) in the halls. 
There is the belief many things will get the axe when Nextstar takes over.  Gary, the Sunday Sports Night Live show and The BackStory to name a few."
Image result for Gary Radnich
Gary Radnich at KRON
 

Savage Furious at Trump Over Post-Election Snub; Syndicated/KSFO Talker Won't Attend Inauguration; Sissel Leaves KRON for KGO-TV; Wednesday 415 Media Open

Image result for michael savage donald trump interview Before and during the presidential campaign, Donald Trump was a frequent guest on the Michael Savage Show --interviews like this one were almost routine and Savage regularly touted his show to listeners as Trump's exclusive radio outpost.

Of course the election came and Trump scored an electoral landslide; and Savage has repeatedly proclaimed his show had a lot to do with it.

And it did.

Trump has curiously not done the Savage show since the election and the bombastic, SF-based talk-show host and author is furious --and has said as much, ripping Trump and his advisors with regularity --"He has betrayed my millions of listeners, the very people that voted for him, " said Savage recently on the air. (Heard locally on KSFO Noon-3 PM)

More than likely, Trump's people were non-too-thrilled over Savage's criticism of some of the President-elect's cabinet choices. At least that's the word on the street. Looks like Savage isn't alone in that department.

Trump himself invited Savage to the inauguration --and now Savage has said he will not be going back to Washington for the event.

Stay tuned for the latest, this whole thing could get interesting.

*More KRON departures:  Morning MMJ Jackie Sissel has left KRON and now works for KGO-TV.  Jackie was the morning photo you never saw but heard.

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