Local TV should be embarrassed

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radiothonThose who read the radio column in the Sunday Daily Oakland Press are probably aware that I have always felt that radio gives far more to television than TV gives to radio. When Dick Purtan hosted the 19th annual Salvation Army Radiothon live from the Oakland Mall on Friday, they invited ALL of the local TV reporters. Each were given an enormous amount of air-time. Each TV station did brief cut-ins from the broadcast at the mall throughout the day, which was good. Too short, but certainly appreciated by the hard working staff from oldies WOMC-FM (104.3) and the Salvation Army's Bed & Bread Fund.

What was embarrassing is the fact that when the Radiothon ended with a huge finale and a celebration for raising a staggering $1,808,440 in one day to help Detroit's under-privileged, NO local TV station felt it was important enough to report the GOOD news with a field reporter. Shameful. FOX 2 (WJBK-TV) ran less than 30 seconds of “b-roll” from the big finish, but no live shot. Over five minutes of that same newscast was devoted to a porno video made by Kid Rock. Sad.

Even worse was the omission of both WDIV-TV (Local 4) and WXYZ-TV Channel 7, neither of which had even a camera there for the amazing finish of the largest amount of money ever raised by a single radio station in the history of the industry! Channel 7 did run a few clips from their mid-day visit for 38 seconds. It is simply unfair for these TV folks to get so much showcasing on the radio, and then give back so little in return. This is especially bad when it's realized that Dick Purtan's daughter JoAnn is an excellent reporter for Channel 7. His son-in-law, Neil Goldstein, is the news director at Local 4 so he splurged for 49 seconds of voice-over b-roll. Unbelievable!

As a lover of radio, I say to the AM and FM community, stop sucking up to the tube, until they learn how to return the favor. Meanwhile, we in the newspaper business will sincerely congratulate Dick Purtan and Purtan's People on a job well done.



Doing a good deed is its own reward. Dick Purtain doesn't need any more media exposure, and whining because the TV stations were not there is pointless. It doesn't diminish the good he and his crew are doing.

Or, does he only do these things FOR the media exposure? I don't think so.

Nearly $2 million dollars raised in a single day? Amazing. Congratulations to Dick and all involved.

Art: As a veteran of internet media and some print before that, I wonder if the lack of coverage by TV media is to be expected. Television is in many ways designed to be a world in and of itself. It's in the interest of the TV stations and networks that you care more about Raymond's family than your neighbors' families.

Radio, newspaper and (in some cases) internet are more about facilitating your life: preparing for your day, driving from here to there, staying connected through your day.

Well done, Art!

I have to admit that I have been growing increasingly impatient with your coverage on Michiguide of the charity efforts of the local media, but this snubbing of WOMC's achievement is unforgivable!






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About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by Mike Austerman published on February 25, 2006 10:21 AM.

Metro Detroit: Newsmakers Feb 21 - 24 was the previous entry in this blog.

Purtan Radiothon scores record $1.8 million is the next entry in this blog.

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