Thursday, September 9, 2010

Media Notes

It's been a while since I inflicted one of these on you, so here goes...

ABC News president David Westin quit. He'll be gone by the end of the year.  There's talk Westin resigned rather than implement more budget cuts and layoffs.  ABC News is severely hampered by the lack of a cable network.  The owner, Disney, can create eight different ESPN channels, but not one for news.

How will the Westin years be remembered?   It's a mixed review.  He kept it all going.  On the other hand, Good Morning America was a disaster until Charlie Gibson and Diane Sawyer stepped into the picture.  A lot of people aren't sold on George Stephanopolous in the morning, and Christiane Amanpour on Sundays.   Westin provided leadership during Peter Jennings' illness, but many felt the pairing of Bob Woodruff and Elizabeth Vargas was a mistake.  We'll never know.  Woodruff got hurt in Iraq before the team got a chance to figure things out.  It will be interesting to see who ABC/Disney picks to fill the void.

Former radio talk show host Kevin Lynn is now writing a sports column for the Wilkes-Barre Times~Leader.  Quality stuff, but he should be commenting on news, not sports.  There's a serious gap when it comes to compelling newspaper columnists around here.  There are some good ones.  Not enough.

Former FOX Sports Radio morning host Steve Czaban began his new show on Sporting News Radio Tuesday morning.  It's good to have him back.  SNR streams, and has a Sirius channel.  No XM and no broadcast affiliate around here, and that's unfortunate.  After listening to the first couple days, it's clear the FOX Sports Radio managers, who made the decision to dump Czaban last year, are idiots.

I am so sick of Progressive and Geico insurance commercials.

I can't get enough of the Capital One Vikings.

FOX Sports is trying something different with its NFL coverage this year.  The network will have one of its studio analysts drop in on game coverage.  They'll do it from the Los Angeles broadcast center.  There's no "in between" here.  It will be either great, or awful.

Joe Theismann has signed on to do Thursday night games on the NFL Network.  I couldn't stand Theismann when he was on ESPN.  The man talks way too much.  He did some radio work after ESPN dumped him, and I've done a 180.

The Washington Nationals fired TV analyst Rob Dibble after he said something outrageously stupid about injured Nationals pitcher Stephen Strasburg.  It's funny.  The Nationals hired Dibble because he's outspoken.  He got fired for the same reason.

Sorry for the sports overload today.

John Kluge died Tuesday.  95.  Billionaire.  He built the Metromedia empire of television and radio stations, and billboards.  At one time, Metromedia was among broadcasting's elite.  Kluge sold off parts of the company over the years.  The TV stations were sold and became the foundation of the FOX network.

Frank Cady turned 95 yesterday.  He played Sam Drucker on Petticoat Junction, Green Acres, and the Beverly Hillbillies.

Tropical Storm Earl brushed the east coast a couple weeks ago, and it was another barrage of silly reporting, courtesy of The Weather Channel.

I know a lot of people don't like him, but listening to Brent Musberger do a football game is wonderful.