Friday, February 16, 2007

Weekend Wrapup, Mid-February Edition

Some random stuff:

MASON OUT: It doesn't seem like long ago that we were congratulating long-time WQMX/94.9 operations manager Kevin Mason on his new gig as VP/GM of a record company in Nashville.

Unfortunately, it appears the volatile nature of the music business has left the former Akron country programmer without a job.

AllAccess reports that Mason's new employer, Rust Records, is folding up its tent along Nashville's Music Row, leaving Mason and everyone else with the company out of work.

Of course, the former WQMX OM/PD is looking for a new job...reach out to him at kevin - at - kevinmason - dot - com. (We don't know how much that prevents spammers from picking up addresses, but we're trying...)

AIRING IT OUT: George M. Thomas' weekly "Airing It Out" sports media column in Friday's Akron Beacon Journal touches on something we reported here - the expansion of Les Levine's "More Sports and Les Levine" TV talk show to the Akron/Canton reaches of Time Warner Cable this week.

According to Thomas, Levine's show apparently runs only 30 minutes on the Akron/Canton end of TWC, because it has to make way for the 6:30 PM edition of the WKYC/3-produced "Akron/Canton News" on cable channel 23. (It may or may not be repeated later...that, we don't know.)

It's the first cross-pollenization of local programming from the former Adelphia system based in Cleveland, to the existing Akron/Canton-based Time Warner system.

So far, we haven't seen anything more coming back in this direction - we're on the former Adelphia end. And we caution you once again that our earlier posts about this have been primarily speculation - don't blame anyone for them but us.

We'll make that clear again, and wonder (yes, wonder) if Time Warner will eventually launch that "local channel" we guessed about earlier.

There is precedent for it - when the company's Albany NY system launched all-news outlet "Capital News 9", it moved the existing non-news programming on that local channel to cable channel 3, where it became "TW3". (Read about it in this Wikipedia article.)

Again, purely our own speculation here...and not factual. We wouldn't be surprised to see them eventually do it, but we have no indication that it is in the immediate future. And if you have any questions about this speculation, talk to us, not other blogs.

Oh, and we noticed a new "Cleveland Local" heading under Time Warner Cable's "On Demand" channel, free programming section (cable channel 1, former Adelphia system).

So far, the only choices are two recent high school basketball games. No "Akron/Canton News" (yes, we are going to continue to bring this up, TWC folks), no other local programming including Mr. Levine's show, etc.

And while we're talking about the whole topic, we've been asked by readers why WKYC itself doesn't show "Akron/Canton News" on its over-air digital channel.

We can answer that without help from WKYC.

The Cleveland NBC affiliate only runs one subchannel right now on WKYC-DT - "WKYC WeatherPlus", the local version of the NBC-owned weather feed.

As far as we know, there is no provision for WKYC to "break format" and air anything but WeatherPlus on WKYC-DT 3.2.

We've seen other TV stations with home-grown weather channels run actual programming - it's all the rage in Indianapolis, for example. But WeatherPlus would appear to not allow that, either technically or probably contractually.

If WKYC wanted to run "Akron/Canton News" on its digital over-air channel, it would have to open up a second subchannel, then figure out what to surround the channel with. And since WKYC and Time Warner Cable are in a pretty tight situation with the newscast, we doubt they'd do it'd be one less "reason" to subscribe to cable...

Again, this is our own information, speculation and educated guesses. Please don't bug the folks at Channel 3 or Time Warner about this...they have nothing to do with this post...

AND WHILE WE'RE AT IT: Please don't associate stuff posted in our comments section (Motto: "On Its Last Legs, Honest!") directly with this report.

A persistent commenter or commenters have added a number of rumors about the employment status of a certain local mid-morning sports talk radio host, and his rumored replacement... a name we've brought up here numerous times. And the station itself, of course, has gone through changes recently.

But let's go on the record.

We've actually been overwhelmed (!) with E-Mail asking about the comments, which were not added by your Primary Editorial Voice(tm) and were posted without identification.

At this point, we have NO information confirming the rumors attached to the comments section on this board. None.

It's not that we believe changes may not happen. After all, the rumored "replacement" host has been mentioned frequently as someone we expect to hear regularly on that certain station in the future.

But...we've got nothing. We just wanted to disassociate ourselves with the rumors, and we'll let you know as soon as we hear anything we can "go to print" with, as it were.

And if you are an "insider" with information that could verify such, feel free to write us privately. Identify yourself, and we will not "give you up"...we hold onto our sources and keep them secret...


Ed Franklin said...

I've noticed this past week the channel one being adding to the Akron system too. It's labeled "Time Warner One" and all the program guide description gives is "Coming Soon!". Maybe something is in the works ala the Albany, NY system (my hometown...)
So far it's just a informational video loop on how to program your remote and such.

Anonymous said...

This morning's WKNR show with Kendall Lewis joining Les Levine quickly brought back the memories of why BSK is un-listenable. Boy that was BAD RADIO today.

Anonymous said...

I think Time Warner understand's that with WKYC's help, they could create a local news/public affairs channel that could benefit both Akron/Cleveland. By having news from Akron/Canton, and Cleveland on the whole system, they could offer viewers another choice. Could WKYC add a 7 AM, 4PM, or 5 PM show to their offerings?

Also when the today show expands to 4 hours, good company is not going anywhere since Gannett is not going to replace it.

Quote from broadcasting cable:

"I've already told NBC that I'm not going to replace these shows,”

“On almost all of our stations, we'll run the fourth hour in the time period where Passions runs. In some markets (like Denver, where Gannet's KUSA airs Passions at 2 p.m.), that means running the fourth hour in the afternoon, apart from the core program. “I've been telling them that they need to produce it as a stand-alone hour that happens to have a great brand,” says Ogden.

Anonymous said...

And I loved Les and the BSK this morning. Kendall was great with his draft stuff and he even got a little worked up. You may not like him, but Kendall appeals to many people. PLUS, he adds something KNR lacks - a minority voice in a city full of minorities. (Please don't take that comment the wrong way, I am not trying to start something racial.)