WLNE airing infomercials in place of 7p news

Doug Drown revdoug1@myfairpoint.net
Thu Mar 17 21:21:58 EDT 2011

There's something about this that doesn't make sense to me; maybe someone 
can explain it.  If WLNE (nee WTEV) was modestly successful in its early 
years targeting New Bedford-Fall River and the rest of southeastern Mass., 
why couldn't the same be true today?  The population is certainly larger 
there than it was 40-50 years ago.  -Doug

----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Scott Fybush" <scott@fybush.com>
To: "Kevin Vahey" <kvahey@gmail.com>; "(newsgroup) Boston-Radio-Interest" 
Sent: Thursday, March 17, 2011 6:58 PM
Subject: Re: WLNE airing infomercials in place of 7p news

> Kevin Vahey wrote:
>> Certainly - start a Southern NE Chronicle for example.
>> Hearst and Disney do work together ( see ESPN ) so that could explain why
>> ABC is playing hardball.
>> Some are comparing this to what NBC pulled with KRON but I don't think 
>> that
>> is a fair example.
> Nor do I. As best I can read the situation from where I sit, ABC/Disney 
> has no interest (unlike NBC in San Francisco) in adding a 
> Providence-market O&O. But the Mouse does (quite understandably!) want to 
> avoid ending up with a complete dog of an affiliate owner, so why not put 
> a little pressure on?
> I don't think it's for Hearst's benefit; if Hearst wanted WLNE, it's had 
> many opportunities to do so at reasonable prices, and there's an issue 
> with the very significant overlap of signals between WLNE and WCVB. Recall 
> that CBS had to unload WPRI for that same reason.
> I would not be at all surprised to see ABC looking at some other, 
> less-obvious options for new Providence-market affiliation. I could 
> imagine LIN installing ABC as 12.2 or 64.2, for instance - or at least the 
> threat of a LIN-owned "ABC Providence" helping ABC to keep a new WLNE 
> owner in line.
> Sadly, the market seems increasingly to be dictating that Providence-sized 
> communities around the country can't comfortably support three TV news 
> operations. Here in upstate New York, we're down to two (plus a cable 
> channel) in Syracuse, while the third-place operations in Rochester and 
> Buffalo struggle to survive. Wilkes-Barre/Scranton's down to two as well.
> Is there anything WLNE can do now that WPRI/WNAC or WJAR can't do better? 
> (The answer, in hindsight, might have been to stay focused on southeastern 
> Mass. and the Cape, but experience suggests that there just might not be 
> enough revenue in that area to sustain WLNE that way, either.)
> s

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