Thursday, November 9, 2017

KTVU Rhapsody

Related image EARLY THIS (THURSDAY) morning I got an email from a former on-air talent at KTVU; the person had worked there in its non-Fox iteration for only a few years but was a respected presence in the newsroom.

The person (I'm not using the name because the person asked me not to because they still work in the business and didn't want to compromise their position) said they mostly agreed with me about the current state of KTVU. They were not that astonished that in its Fox-owned reign, KTVU has seen change in all its looks; its tone; its style; its amazing turnover rate. I too am not astonished but I still nevertheless feel a sense of loss at just how truly different and radically-different KTVU has become. I don't work there; I could only imagine how I'd feel if I were on staff. But I hear quite a lot from some of the natives how awful it is to go about their business at 2 Jack London Square.

I see the good and the bad. I still respect KTVU News because given the state of the TV News biz overall, they still do a pretty good job and the ratings reflect that; Channel 2 dominates the morning and their still vaunted "10 o'clock News" continues to rule the late-evening news. Their current people, for the most part-- the on-air talent; the writers; the producers; the photographers; the camera people are all first rate.

I look at KTVU in the morning and I'm perplexed. How the mighty have fallen. I thought I was alone but the unnamed person didn't like what they see too. Significantly, others who also work there and some who don't (some ex-employees and industry people) feel bad that the product has been cheapened and the people who know better act like buffoons --those of you that read me regularly know someone I frequently cringe when I see her. She doesn't respect the brand. She's too busy making a fuss even when there's no need to and purposely flaunting the camera. It's all a "look-at-me-me-me" persona that both embarrasses her and the station. She's been called to the back office but she still prefers to freelance and no one has called her on it in force. This, in spite of quite a few of her co-workers that are disgusted at her behavior and repulsed by her hijinks. Unfortunately, they don't want to go on the record but that's understandable. The people in charge know. Here's hoping they do something. Or do they even care anymore? One has to wonder.

In an earlier post today (Thursday) I commended KTVU and its Investigative EP, Simone Aponte, on a great job; the jailhouse interview with the Ghost Ship tenant. It looked like the old KTVU and it was solid TV Journalism without all the sensational, gooey formula you would normally see in today's environment especially during Sweeps.

I wish KTVU would revert back to that vintage credo because it's good work and it drives numbers legitimately and doesn't have to rely on gimmicky foreplay to succeed. It's also genuine and sincere and the viewers watch solid work and are riveted. They don't need any pirate talk or some moron in the morning throwing paper airplanes at the camera. Treat the viewer with respect and you'd be amazed at the results.

Image result for TV SweepsKTVU, there's still hope.


  1. Speaking of failures, whatever happened to Mark Pitta? He was on KTVU Mornings for awhile, then had a nervous breakdown or something.

    1. Doing standup in Mill Valley

  2. > Their current people, for the most part-- the on-air talent;
    > the writers; the producers; the photographers; the camera
    > people are all first rate.

    Um, no they're not. They spell supers wrong all the time, get facts wrong in stories, no longer cover stories with any depth unless it's a special investigation (most of the VO and reader copy is just "rip-and-read"), and often don't have the most updated versions of stories--you have to watch KGO for that.

  3. It's clear the not so new regime at FOX ( no longer the only one 2)is taking it's marching orders from Rupert's minions. Even the correspondents from outside the Bay Area appear to be of the Stepford variety; all style, no substance and all toeing the right wing hearts and minds agenda.

  4. Off the subject, but Andrea Borba (KPIX) and her photographer need an award for a beautifully, photographed, produced, and presented report tonight on the capture today of an errant mountain lion in San Francisco. Perfectly done, excellent presentation, great photography. A very special report. The best I've seen anywhere.

  5. Must be that ugh Heather or ugh julie. Also....I have ceased watching ktvu news since the FOX stench got heavy.