Report: NBC may cut back prime-time hours

  Move as a result of waning interest in linear TV In what could be potentially the biggest shake-up in prime-time since the implantation of the PrimeTime Access Rule in 1971, NBC is mulling a plan to give the 10 p.m. ET/ 9 p.m. CT slot to affiliates – likely for them to program local news. “While NBC is the […]

It’s official: Nexstar buys The CW

  No cash is exchanged; big changes are planned Television’s worst kept secret was finally made official Monday as Irving, Tex.-based Nexstar has acquired a majority stake in The CW from Warner Bros. Discovery and Paramount Global. Speculation has been branded about since January, when word came both Warner and Paramount were looking to unload the fifth network and Nexstar […]

Chicago stations cover Highland Park shooting tragedy

Local stations pre-empt programming on holiday For a city used to the horrors of gun violence, even this was too much to take. On a sparkly clear day, a Fourth Of July parade in the north suburban community of Highland Park was interrupted by a gunman who opened fire from a roof of a commercial building, hitting spectators below. As […]

Apple TV Plus, MLS strike landmark streaming rights deal

Deal is for a decade; RSNs, WGN-TV odd men out  In a landmark rights deal, Major League Soccer announced Tuesday they are shifting all of their rights to Apple TV Plus, reportedly in a ten-year, $2.5 billion pact. This means every single game is going to be streamed and produced by Apple TV Plus –  usurping any existing local or […]

Dan Roan calls it a career after 38 years at WGN-TV

Ellen DeGeneres’ show also ends today [Editor’s Note: There is an update on Ellen’s show below.]  One of Chicago’s longest-tenured sports anchors is ending his run today.  Dan Roan quietly announced his retirement several months ago and made his plans to depart May 26. WGN-TV paid homage to him during their newscasts and on GN Sports half-hour show in a […]

CBS 2 announces Joe Donlon as new co-anchor

Teams with Irika Sargent for newscasts Former WGN-TV and NewsNation executive Jennifer Lyons has landed another Nexstar alum to join her at CBS-owned WBBM-TV (CBS 2). As first reported by Robert Feder, Joe Donlon is joining Irika Sargent as co-anchor of the station’s 5, 6, and 10 p.m. newscasts starting May 2. This is the second NewsNation alum to join […]

Merri Dee dies at 85

Trailblazing woman worked at WGN-TV, WCIU, and WSNS Longtime media personality Merri Dee – one of the first Black television personalities in Chicago, passed away at the age of 85 Wednesday. This is a tweet from her official account, posted the same day: Merri loved connecting with people anywhere, everywhere — in-person, on-air, often in the airport, & always online. […]

The Media Notepad: Winter Olympics’ lackluster ratings performance drags down NBC 5’s news ratings

Also: All CHGO launches; two network TV shows canceled; restaurant with a sitcom connection burns down Much has been made about the lackluster Winter Olympics ratings, but one angle wasn’t talked about much – their effect on NBC affiliates – or lack thereof. And no one experienced a bigger disappointment than Chicago’s NBC 5 (WMAQ.) As reported by Robert Feder […]

Remembering Bill Jackson

Jackson’s puppeteer work spanned two decades and five local TV stations   Even though his profile was a bit lower than other Chicago TV children show hosts, Bill Jackson made an impact nonetheless.  Jackson died in his Paso Robles, California home Monday at the age of 86. Jackson appeared on local television during the 1960s and 1970s, fondly remembered by […]

Report: The CW is up for sale with Nexstar the leading suitor

Possible sale could reunite network with company’s WGN-TV  According to a Wednesday night report from The Wall Street Journal, AT&T and ViacomCBS are exploring a sale of The CW and according to sources, Nexstar is the leading suitor to buy the network. As of an owner of 197 stations, Nexstar owns more CW affiliates than any other group, including the […]

Rewinding media in 2021: You just can’t explain it

  Popularity isn’t exactly overrated as 2021 ends a wild year in media Like mystery of the sphinx or crop circles, you just can’t explain the continued popularity of certain things despite questionable changes. After the firing of Mark Giangreco and seemingly public disdain for one of her former co-anchors, ABC 7 remains on top of local Chicago news ratings, […]

Welcome to the New Year’s Eve Battle Royale

Local stations, broadcast and cable networks battle it out to ring in the new year I think the question we should be asking is who isn’t doing a New Year’s Eve show this year?  The major networks and local stations are throwing their hats in the New Years’ Eve ring as they look to capture their share of an audience […]