Monday, October 13, 2008

Baker Pisses Off Magic Johnson

Former Omaha radio personality Chris Baker (the Edge and KKAR 1290 AM) is in hot water after comments he made about former NBA star Magic Johnson on his talk-show on KTLK-FM in Minneapolis.

See the story at's Media Watch blog.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Dudzik Out at KMTV

KMTV-3 – Omaha's CBS affiliate – has apparently fired News Director Ken Dudzik. The receptionist at KMTV today (Sept. 19) said, "He no longer works here." We have calls in and hope to have more details by the end of the day. Look to and its Media Watch blog later for the complete story.

Monday, September 15, 2008

RSS and No Registering

You no longer need to register at the City Weekly Web site ( to post comments on their blogs. And they have added an RSS feed.

So post away!

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Two New Posts at

Two new ones have been posted on the Media Watch blog!

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Change Your Bookmarks ... We Are On The Move

This portal to the Omaha City Weekly's Media Watch column will soon be closing.

Point your browser here to stay in touch with the latest news from the local print, broadcast and internet communications channels.

And yes, there is still the ability to comment on all posts.

World-Herald Buys More Papers

The Omaha World-Herald reported today that it has gobbled up two more Nebraska daily newspapers, the Grand Island Independent and the York News-Times. The papers were owned by Gatehouse Media Inc. of Fairport, N.Y.

According to the World-Herald report, the Independent has a daily circulation of 20,500, and a Sunday circulation of 22,300. The News-Times' circulation is 4,700 Monday through Saturday.

The World-Herald distributes 220,000 copies on Sundays and 178,500 on the other days, according to the paper..

Brew Gets Exclusive AC/DC Song

The Brew (96.1 FM) has an exclusive AC/DC cut that the station began playing on the air and its Web site today. "Rock N Roll Train," is a song from the Australian band's forthcoming album and can be heard exclusively on the Web at 961theBrew.

Michelle Matthews, morning show host and program director at the Clear Channel-owned Brew, said that Clear Channel stations made the deal with the band to offer the song exclusively.

Rock'n'Roll Train" will be used in the promo ads for the CBS show "Criminal Minds" beginning Sept. 1. It will also appear in the Oct. 22 installment of the series.

Verizon has the exclusive on the "Rock'n'Roll Train" ringtone via its online media store. AC/DC's music remains unavailable at Apple's iTunes Music Store.

On Oct. 20, AC/DC will release of "Black Ice," which will be sold exclusively via Wal-Mart and Sam's Club stores, as well as

Friday, August 8, 2008

KQKQ Hires 'Jenny' For Midday Jock Slot

Jenny, Courtesy of KQKQJust announced by the folks at NRG Media ... (press release is printed verbatim)

Omaha, NE – August 4, 2008 – Modern Hit Music powerhouse Q98.5FM has a new midday talent. KQKQ Program Director Nevin Dane announced today that “Jenny” takes to the airwaves as the new host of the coveted 10am-3pm timeslot.

“Jenny” comes to Q98.5 from WXAJ 99.7 KISS FM in Springfield, IL where she was the Morning Show Co-Host and held the posts as Midday Talent and Assistant Promotions Director during her tenure. Dane stated the midday timeslot would remain targeted to active listeners. “Our listeners are intertwined with the station and our music and promotions during midday will continue to reflect the lifestyle of our audience with Jenny behind the mic.”

“Jenny” has seven years of broadcast experience in a variety of formats including Modern Rock, Alternative and Adult Contemporary. Prior to joining KQKQ, she worked as Assistant Program Director and Assistant Music Director at WYVR, “The River” in Springfield, IL and as Morning Show Co-Host at Mix 96.5 WKIB-FM in Cape Girardeau, MO.

“Joining the Q98.5 team is so exciting. This is one of the best radio stations in the Midwest and I can’t wait to get to know our fabulous listeners and our advertisers,” stated Jenny.

Features listeners should expect during the new midday show include “Jenny’s Juice” providing a look inside the world of showbiz and entertainment news, along with various local happenings on the music scene. Dane said listeners should look forward to a hip, fun and engaging new program designed to engage the audience and continue to promote at-work listening.

“Jenny” graduated from the Broadcast Center in St. Louis, MO with a Certificate of Professional Arts. She also attended Meramec Community College in St. Louis, MO from 1998-2000.

The KQKQ weekday lineup features “Pat and JT in the Morning” 5:30am-10:00am, “Polychronopolis” in PMD Drive 3:00pm-7:00pm and Heather Lee at night from 7:00pm-12:00am.

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Terry Blasts Esch Over Comments in City Weekly

KETV-7 ran a story last night regarding a battle between congressional candidates Democratic challenger Jim Esch, on left, and Republican incumbent Lee Terry. Terry is upset over a comment on abortion that Esch made during an interview in last week's issue of the City Weekly.

Below is the KETV article. Here is a link to the video.

The KETV article in its entirety:

"Abortion Comment Heats Up Esch-Terry Race
Terry Demands Apology After Magazine Interview

OMAHA, Neb. -- The congressional race between Rep. Lee Terry and challenger Jim Esch is heating up after a statement Esch made about abortion opponents

Both candidates consider themselves opposed to abortion, but the Terry campaign is calling out Esch after he told the local magazine City Weekly that used the word extremist to refer to some abortion opponents.

“He said that pro-lifers are extremists. I don’t agree with that,” Terry said. “I think it shows his true colors on that issue.”

The Aug. 5 edition of the magazine posed a question to Esch about whether he would introduce or vote for legislation to restrict or outlaw abortions. In response, Esch spoke about the challenges of weighing the abortion issue philosophically.

“The other thing that frustrates me with that issue is you have two sides and really both, I think the right-to-life side is a little more extremist, but they think it says something fundamental about that person because they look at it as a strictly moral issue,” the magazine quoted Esch as saying.

“He owes all of the pro-lifers in the metro area and apology,” Terry said.

“Everyone is entitled to their own opinion on things,” said Dennis Esch, of the Jim Esch for Congress campaign.

Terry acknowledges that Esch may have misspoken during the interview, but also said it is evidence that Esch is not actually pro-life.

The Terry campaign’s accusations come through what is called its Truth Squad, a watchdog arm led by Richard Carter, who opposed Esch in the May primary."

More From the Press Release Pile ...

Have you noticed that Elictia Hammond is gone from KETV-7?

The former morning co-anchor, who joined KETV in 2004, left the station June 30 to spend more time with her family.

“We appreciate the work Elictia has done over the past three-and-a-half years to help build First News into the morning news leader,” said KETV President and General Manager Sarah Smith.

“Elictia is leaving First News on a high ratings note. In the most recent Nielsen survey, May 2008, the program gained viewers (adults 25-54) over May 2007 and it has consistently been the No. 1 local news program among adult 25-54 viewers.”

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Kugler Broadcasting From China for Olympics

Kevin Kugler, co-host of “Unsportsmanlike Conduct” on Omaha’s the Zone (KOZN 1620 AM), is in Beijing, China to broadcast the play-by-play coverage of Team USA Men’s Basketball Medal Round games, as well as the Gold Medal game regardless of the participants, for Westwood One Radio.

Kugler, who also provides play-by-play for Westwood One’s coverage of college football, baseball and other college sports, is writing a blog from Beijing at A snippet from a recent entry:

“We ventured out today to the largest electronics store I have ever seen,” said Kugler, shown at right at the Great Wall. “14 floors packed with everything from laptops to wireless Internet cards. You want it? They probably have it in this 14-story market. Strangely, laptops in China are pricier than in the states. Most of the consumer goods, it seems, are cheaper here, but laptops that normally cost 1500 in the states can run upwards of 3000 USD here.

“Consider this blog, though, a plea. If there's one thing we NEED in the Omaha/Lincoln area, it's a 14 story electronics superstore. Who will be the brave Nebraskan to step up and provide our state with a necessity like that?”

Monday, August 4, 2008

Cecchetto Out, Nigrelli In at KMTV

KMTV-3 co-anchor Carlo Cecchetto has left the station for “personal family reasons,” according to Ken Dudzik, news director at KMTV.

Cecchetto, at left, joined KMTV in Jan. 2007, debuting with another new co-anchor Carol Wang, middle. Wang will remain with the station.

Wang will be joined by Craig Nigrelli, who will co-anchor the 5, 6 and 10 p.m. newscasts.

Nigrelli, at right, has more than a decade of anchoring and reporting experience, most recently with KCTV5 in Kansas City, Mo. His first day on-air at KMTV will be today, August 4.

“Craig’s strong background, and experience with late-breaking and investigative news, will serve our viewers well,” Rob Burton, vice president and general manager of Journal Broadcast Group’s Omaha operations, said in a press relese. “We’re excited to be adding him to our Action 3 News team.”

Nigrelli’s career began in 1993 as a general assignment reporter for WIVB-TV in Buffalo, N.Y. He later anchored the station’s weekend morning show. In 2000 he moved to Albuquerque, N.M., to work as an enterprise reporter and morning show anchor at KOAT-TV, before moving to KSTP-TV in Minneapolis in 2004. A year later he was hired at KCTV5.

Nigrelli is a graduate of Rutgers University with a B.A. in communication and economics.

Friday, August 1, 2008

Price On Afternoon Drive on Big O

Matt Price has taken over the afternoon slot on the Big O (101.9 FM). Price will handle the 3-7 p.m. shift on the adult contemporary/rock station.

“Matt has a great delivery on the air with his wit, sense of humor and maturity. He really encompasses what we are trying to accomplish with this radio station in attracting adults 25-54 and appealing to the female listeners,” said Nevin Dane, Big O’s program director.

Price began his radio career a part-time talent for KFOR, KLMS and KRKR in Lincoln from 2001-2003. He co-produced Husker football programming including the “Husker Tailgate Show” and “Average Joe Sports Show.”

Monday, July 14, 2008

Julie Cornell Steps Down As Anchor At KETV

KETV-7 co-anchor Julie Cornell announced live on the air this morning that she is leaving the anchor desk at KETV. Brandi Petersen will replace Cornell when she leaves at the end of the month. Petersen will join co-anchor Rob McCartney.

Cornell, whose husband Bill Randby will remain as KETV’s chief meteorologist, began at KETV in 1992. She has been one of the station’s main co-anchors for the past 11 years after replacing longtime KETV anchor Carol Schrader.

Cornell published a story on explaining that she wants to become a fulltime mom.

“This year, our twin girls, Madeline and Jocelyn, will start kindergarten,” Cornell wrote. “Our son, Will, begins second grade. I've worked the night shift for most of my 21 years in broadcasting, and it doesn't mesh with the school schedule.

“So at the end of July, after 11 years as a main anchor at KETV, I'll step away from the anchor desk, because I want to be with my children at night. I'll continue to work a very flexible part-time schedule here at channel 7, write weekly stories for Julie's Diary on the KETV Web site and write feature stories for the news, as I have for 16 years here in Omaha.

“Brandi Petersen will take over the anchor desk next to my buddy, Rob. She's my friend. She's smart, level-headed and hard-working. Brandi is one of the finest live reporters I've seen on air. She loves this community and she's a tremendous asset to our station.”

Friday, June 27, 2008

KETV wins 10 o’clock in May

In the May 2007 local TV ratings period, KETV-7 and WOWT-6 were neck and neck with viewers ages 25-54 for their 10 p.m. weekday newscasts. A year later, KETV has taken the No. 1 spot in that advertiser-coveted demographic of adult TV viewers.

In the May 2008 report from Nielsen Media Research, KETV had a 33 percent share of TV viewers for its 10 p.m. newscast, which was up from 26 percent last year. WOWT had a 23 percent share this May at 10 p.m., which was down from 28 percent in May 2007.

Meanwhile, KMTV-3’s 10 p.m. newscast dropped from a 10 percent share of viewers ages 25 to 54 at 10 p.m. in May 2007, to 9 percent this year.