25 years ago: The deal heard around the world

25 years ago this week, Fox’s Rupert Murdoch changed the TV world by inking a deal to trigger the biggest affiliation switch in history.  It goes back to what happened on December 17, 1993. The networks were complaining about paying too much for sports – the NFL in particular – as the packages were losing money and looking to pay […]

What’s next for WGN-TV sports?

Sun-Times article talks about a future without sports on WGN as station, teams head into transition In 2016, WGN-TV decided to cut their ties to The CW and become an independent station once again, going all in on sports featuring the Cubs, White Sox, Bulls and Blackhawks. Come October 2019, WGN might not have any sports on its schedule at […]

Bears loss doesn’t clank in ratings (updated)

Thrilling game proves to be a ratings hit – Golden Globes less so (Editor’s note: This post has been updated with new ratings information.) Despite the odious outcome, the NFC Wild Card Game between the Philadelphia Eagles and Chicago Bears was a ratings success for NBC and the NFL. The Bears hosted their first playoff game since the 2010 season […]

Media Notepad: WLS-AM’s “Big John” shifts to afternoons

Plus… big day for Bears as they beat rival; Channing Dungey heads to Netflix; Extra adds Fox stations in large markets With Steve Dahl set to depart Cumulus-owned WLS-AM this Friday, the station announced last week it was shifting Big John Howell to afternoons from mornings starting January 3, from 5 to 7 p.m. weekdays. In a statement, the thirty-year […]

Cleveland! Cavs’ title win also one for ESPN, ABC

Highest-rated NBA contest since 1998 In terms of Cleveland media, the last time the city won a championship, WJW-TV was still a CBS affiliate, and the KYW call letters – now used for CBS’ TV and radio stations in Philadelphia – were owned by Westinghouse and used for its TV and radio properties here. And so the Cleveland Cavaliers – […]

Boston’s WHDH loses NBC affiliation

In market’s fourth affiliation change, NBCUniversal to move affiliation to WNEU-TV WHDH owner Ed Ansin promises fight Politicians question move In a bold move, Comcast Corp. announced Thursday it is launching a new NBC-owned and-operated station in Boston, the nation’s eighth-largest market approximately a year from now. NBC plans to move its affiliation to Telemundo affiliate WNEU-TV (Channel 60), a […]

Cubs headed to WLS-TV

  ABC-owned station to run 25 games a season from 2015 through 2019 “Catch the action on WLS”… That’s right, you heard me… ABC-owned WLS-TV (that’s TV, not AM) struck a five-year deal with the Chicago Cubs to air 25 games a season beginning this spring. According to the station’s website, WLS would air games in daytime, primetime, and weekend […]

Tribune, Fox headed for a Showdown In Seattle

Could have implications for Chicago’s WPWR  A brewing affiliation fight in Seattle could have implications for a local Chicago TV station. According to a story in Tuesday’s edition of the New York Post, Fox is expected to yank the affiliation from Tribune Media’s KCPQ in Seattle-Tacoma. As it was reported in local media circles over the last few weeks, Fox […]

Grab Bag: CBS in lead to snare Cubs’ radio rights

  * As first reported by Ed Sherman in Wednesday’s Chicago Tribune, CBS Corp. is the leading candidate to land the radio rights to the Chicago Cubs in 2015 and beyond. The most likely destination would be WBBM-AM, who already hold rights to the Chicago Bears and whose sports station (WSCR) holds rights to the Chicago White Sox. Current rights-holder […]

Local viewers tune out Bears blowout

– But game still tops evening both locally and nationally – Also: Bulls ratings remain strong despite Rose’s injury – The Church Of Tisch does it again The Bears’ performance against the Philadelphia Eagles had to be the most pathetic thing to air on NBC since Do No Harm. Or Animal Practice. Or Welcome To The Family. Or Pink Lady […]

T Dog’s Grab Bag: It’s another episode of “Everybody Loves Mancow”

[Editor’s Note: The first item contains profanity. Reader discretion is advised.] In the latest episode of the sitcom that never ends – Everybody Loves Mancow – the IQ-deficient shit jock in a Chicago Tribune interview Monday announced he sold his Lincoln Park condo and is moving to the suburb of Wilmette. He called the city “unlivable” and ripped the city’s […]

NBC, Tribune appoint new executives

Also: Colin Cowherd comes to Chicago A pair of exec hires were announced on Tuesday: – David Doebler was named president and general manager of WMAQ-TV here, replacing Larry Wert, who is now head of Tribune’s station group. Doebler comes over from sister NBC-owned station WVIT in Hartford-New Haven Conn. During his eight-year tenure, WVIT (on Channel 30) was competitive […]