Entries in Television Category

Television: Newsmakers Jan. 9, 2010

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Grand Rapids Press:

Could lightning strike twice for West Michigan rock bands? Last year, East Grand Rapids-bred The Good Luck Joes won FOX Sports Detroit's "April in the D" song contest, spotlighting the pop-flavored band in commercials about the Tigers, Pistons and Red Wings that aired from late March through April 2009. It also awarded the group $5,000 and a headlining slot in a concert on the Tigers' opening day in downtown Detroit. Well, the sports network once again is looking for entries from bands who create "songs that are positive and full of energy, promoting the virtues of Detroit with a focus on the Tigers, Pistons and Red Wings." The entry deadline for songs (which must be submitted on DVD and be no longer than 3 minutes, 30 seconds) is Feb. 10. Mail them to FOX Sports Detroit, 26555 Evergreen, Suite 90, Southfield, Michigan, 48076... 'April in the D' song contest once again seeks entries from sports-loving Michigan bands (Sat, 1/9)

 

As of Friday January 15th, The University of Michigan has turned over the programming of its WFUM-TV Channel 28 to Central Michigan University's WCMU operation. The handoff occured just past 11am.

CMU is in the process of acquiring WFUM from U-M and the paperwork has now been filed with the FCC and the official ownership transfer will happen once the sale has been approved.

WCMU plans to put together a community advisory board in the Flint area to help make decisions about what local programming initiatives are appropriate for the market. Already there are plans to incorporate the Flint area in many of the local programs WCMU already produces, such as:

• ASK THE SPECIALISTS- a live call in show every Thursday evening at 8 pm. Viewers are invited to call in their questions to a panel of experts ranging weekly from Doctors, Lawyers, Builders, Veterinarians, etc.

• DESTINATION MICHIGAN- this is a new local series that started this year featuring stories about the people and places that make up our great state of Michigan.

• CAPITOL REPORT- a weekly public affairs program featuring one on one interviews with elected officials. This series is expanded into MEET THE CANDIDATES during election years in order to interview candidates for State and National office seats.

• QUIZ CENTRAL- this series is very close to the High School quiz bowl program formerly produced by WFUM. WCMU has been producing its version for the past 4 years and currently have 32 teams competing.

 

Central Michigan's press release:

Central Michigan University has entered into an agreement with the University of Michigan to acquire WFUM TV which serves the greater Flint area. We are excited to be in the Flint area and to offer the same great PBS programs you love along with our own brand of local shows which highlight the best that Michigan has to offer, including Quiz Central, Destination Michigan, Ask The Specialists, and Capitol Report--just to name a few.

But we're much more than a broadcaster. As Michigan's largest television service, CMU Public Television takes pride in working with local arts and service organizations throughout the state. We've successfully partnered with schools and local groups to provide early childhood literacy training through our Ready to Learn program, encouraged creativity among early elementary students with the annual PBS Kids Go! Young Writers and Illustrators Contest, ensured families have warm clothes through the annual Mister Rogers' Neighborhood Sweater Drive, and taught young mothers how best to prepare healthy meals for their children in our Healthy Weight for Preschoolers program. At the other end of the age spectrum, WCMU addresses issues facing our older viewers including programming and community projects that deal with caring for parents and Alzheimer's disease. We look forward to getting to know the Flint community better, and to tell the stories in the greater-Flint and southeast Michigan areas that need to be told and shared with the rest of the state.

We pride ourselves at being available and responsive to our viewers. If you should ever have any questions, comments, praise, complaints, advice or concerns regarding a program you saw or perhaps the station in general, please do not hesitate to give us a call at 1-800-727-9268 or contact us via e-mail at the following addresses:

• TV Programming Matters - Rick Schudiske @ schud1ra@cmich.edu
• Membership Matters - Kim Walters @ walte1kj@cmich.edu
• General Station Matters - Ed Grant @ grant1eb@cmich.edu

 

Television: Newsmakers Jan. 23, 2010

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Lansing State Journal:

Comcast Corp. reached a lawsuit settlement that will allow customers with analog television service to continue viewing public access channels without change. The Philadelphia, Pa.-based telecommunications company's Michigan region settled a lawsuit with three communities regarding access to public, education and government (PEG) channels. The parties will ask the U.S. District Court to dismiss the pending suit. Meridian Township, Bloomfield Township and the city of Dearborn sued Comcast in January 2008 to prevent it from digitizing public access channels. They alleged the move was discriminatory against the public access channels and would have required analog customers to purchase a digital-ready television or a digital converter box to view the channels. Comcast wanted to move the public access channels from the basic tier to digital channels in order to free up bandwidth for more services and high definition channels, said spokeswoman Mary Beth Halprin. In the settlement, Comcast agreed to continue offering existing public access channels in analog format on the $15.99-per-month limited basic tier until the company digitizes the entire tier or until the communities agree to digitize the channels... Comcast settles suit on access to public channels (Sat, 1/23)

 

Metro Detroit: Newsmakers Feb. 16, 2010

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AllAccess.com:

JIM MARIK (A.K.A. J-R NELSON) passed away in his sleep this afternoon after a three-year battle with cancer. J-R is probably best known for being part of the original Z100/NYC morning show with SCOTT SHANNON. He also ran his own voiceover service for years and most recently, worked at CBS RADIO/DETROIT... J-R Nelson Succumbs To Cancer (Tue, 2/16)

 


 

Fox Sports Net/Detroit updates Pistons schedule

During the course of the season, FOX Sports Detroit picked up two Detroit Pistons games that were originally scheduled to be nationally televised on ESPN - Dec. 9 vs. Philadelphia and March 21 at Cleveland. In exchange, two games have been removed from the local TV schedule - Feb. 27 at Golden State and March 13 at Atlanta. These games will not be available for local viewers.

The Pistons' schedule with TV availability can be viewed at www.foxsportsdetroit.com/pages/pistsonsschedule.

last updated 8:36 p.m.

 

Television: Newsmakers: Feb. 17, 2010

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Gaylord Herald Times:

CMU Public Television is launching the "PBS KIDS GO! Writers Contest," a national/local competition designed to promote the advancement of children's reading skills through hands-on, active learning. The local effort encourages children in grades kindergarten through third in the CMU Public Television coverage area to celebrate the power of creating stories and illustrations by submitting their own original works. The deadline for submission of entries is Monday, March 15. Applications and additional information are available at www.wcmu.org.

"WCMU has long been involved with early childhood literacy," said Linda Dielman, CMU Public Television programming/outreach manager. "PBS Kids programming is focused on school readiness skills to ensure each child's success. This contest is an extension of that effort that brings plenty of fun and excitement for the children and their families"... CMU Public TV launches kids writing contest (Tue, 2/16)

 

Toledo Blade:

Even before cracking the November ratings book and crunching the newscast numbers, WNWO-TV, Channel 24, general manager Jon Skorburg had to know how his station fared. It's been the same every ratings period since Channel 24 began broadcasting nearly 45 years ago: WNWO is in last place in all competitive newscasts. One thousand: That's approximately how many viewers between the ages of 25-54, the prime advertising demographic, the Nielsens say tuned in to Channel 24 at 11 p.m. That's 22 times less than those who watch WTOL-TV, Channel 11, and 17 times less than those who tune in to WTVG-TV, Channel 13. In the average number of total viewers for that same newscast, WNWO was watched by 5,000 people, compared to 57,000 and 40,000 for WTOL and WTVG, respectively... Reshaping Toledo's Channel 24 (Sun, 2/28)

 

FOX Sports Detroit is going to do its part to help bring Detroiters out of the winter funk with its third annual "April in the D" campaign, celebrating the city's passion for sports and the welcomed arrival of springtime.

April in the D welcomes the start of baseball season for the Tigers, the exciting playoff-berth chase for the Red Wings and the conclusion of the local NBA season as the Pistons wrap up their schedule. It's also a month when the NCAA decides its hockey champion at the Frozen Four inside Ford Field, and the Lions prepare for another highly-anticipated NFL Draft.

Upwards of 40 games will be televised among FOX Sports Detroit, FOX Sports Detroit HD and FOX Sports Detroit Plus. The Tigers are scheduled 24 times in the month, highlighted by the April 9th home opener at Comerica Park against the Cleveland Indians. The Red Wings have five important regular-season games on the network, followed by potential early-round Stanley Cup Playoff action. The Pistons have eight televised games to complete their season.

Additional current and vintage baseball programming is part of April in the D: Tigers Premiere Week from April 1-9. Also, April in the D: The 2010 Playlist, premiering April 1, highlights the network's annual popular song contest.

April in the D this year has three theme songs, performed by a trio of Detroit bands. The songs were selected from a field of 90 entries received in the APRIL IN THE D Song Contest, resulting in more than 87,000 votes to determine grand prize winner The Victorious Secrets and runners-up B-Dab and No Justus. The songs accompany FOX Sports Detroit on-air promos and will be played within game telecasts. The Victorious Secrets will perform during a live gig at the Fillmore in Detroit on April 9 as part of WRIF Radio's baseball opening day party.

Several prominent Detroiters will be featured in network IDs and interview segments throughout the month, including Mayor Dave Bing; Lions head coach Jim Schwartz; musician Stewart Franke, Oakland University men's basketball coach Greg Kampe; Red Wings players Henrik Zetterberg and Darren Helm; Pistons guard Rodney Stuckey, as well as the Tigers' Justin Verlander and Brandon Inge.

FOX Sports Detroit's April in the D campaign debuted in 2008, in keeping with the ongoing 'D' branding effort by the Detroit Metro Convention and Visitors Bureau.

"The welcome arrival of spring is a great thing for all, but if you're a sports fan there's nothing like the hope and promise of a new baseball season and the convergence of all of our teams in action," said Greg Hammaren, Senior Vice President/General Manager, FOX Sports Detroit. "It's a great time to celebrate and embrace everything that's great about our city and region - everything that comes together during APRIL IN THE D."

Follow April in the D activities on the web at Foxsportsdetroit.com.

 

FSDetroitAs the Detroit Tigers prepare for the 2010, television partner FOX Sports Detroit has announced its plans for the upcoming year of broadcasts on the regional outlet. Some items of note:

  • The Wednesday, April 7 Tigers game at Kansas City (8:10 pm first pitch) will be joined in progress on FOX Sports Detroit / FOX Sports Detroit HD at approximately 10 pm, immediately after the Red Wings-Columbus hockey game. The Tigers game will re-air in its entirety starting at midnight. During the non-televised portion of the game (8:10 to approximately 10:00 pm), FOX Sports Detroit's John Keating will participate in a live chat session from Kauffman Stadium in Kansas City at Foxsportsdetroit.com.
  • For the fourth consecutive season, the Tigers home opener (Friday, April 9 vs. Cleveland) will be simulcast on FOX Sports Detroit / HD and WJBK FOX 2 in Detroit.
  • FOX Sports Detroit plans to deliver nearly all of its 158 Tigers telecasts this season in high-definition. The only exceptions will be any games shifted to FOX Sports Detroit Plus (currently only April 11) or if HD production or transmission facilities are unavailable on a given date.

 

Flint Journal:

OK ... by now, I've heard the outcries from those vocal commenters who love to rant about the April in the D songs. But your hate just keeps me going. April in the D is unstoppable, and as long as Fox Sports Detroit keeps the promo going, I'm going to keep reporting on it. With opening day for the Tigers going on today and the Red Wings clinching a playoff berth, this April is sure to be exciting even without the Pistons advancing to the playoffs. Below, FSD senior VP and general manager Greg Hammaren was kind enough to answer a few questions (his responses are italicized below) about April in the D, hate mail, viewer feedback and his thoughts on the state of Detroit sports... Interview: Fox Sports Detroit Senior VP/General Manager Greg Hammaren discusses the origins of 'April in the D' (Mon, 4/5)

 

For 2nd year, Comcast, FOX Sports Detroit and Detroit Tigers to deliver Tigers games On Demand

Back by popular demand, Comcast, FOX Sports Detroit, and the Detroit Tigers today announced that they will continue to offer FOX Sports Detroit: Tigers On Demand during the 2010 baseball season, bringing Tigers fans throughout Michigan unprecedented access to their hometown team for the second year in a row.

Tigers On Demand, available at no additional cost to Comcast digital cable customers, provides fans with around-the-clock access to the most recent game telecasts from FOX Sports Detroit in their entirety right in the comfort of their own homes and on their own televisions. The game broadcasts will be available On Demand beginning two hours after the end of each contest and can be paused, rewound or fast-forwarded.

"With the re-launch of Tigers On Demand, we are once again bringing our customers across Michigan access to Tigers baseball whenever they want it," said Tom Coughlin, Senior Vice President of Comcast's Michigan Region. "Whether it's offering Tigers games in High Definition or using Comcast's two-way advanced fiber-optic network to deliver On Demand content, we are committed to keeping our customers at the forefront of innovative TV technology, while delivering the best in local sports programming."

Included on Tigers On Demand are episodes of the FOX Sports Detroit Tigers pre-game show Tigers Live, Detroit Tigers Weekly and Your Tiger Ticket, a Comcast-exclusive 30-minute program focused on behind-the-scenes stories about the Tigers organization. The Tigers 2010 season preview and two classic Tigers games, including the inaugural game at Comerica Park and Justin Verlander's no-hitter versus the Milwaukee Brewers, are also available. Comcast, FOX Sports Detroit and the Detroit Tigers will collaborate to bring customers additional On Demand content throughout the 2010 season.

"We are excited for the return of Tigers On Demand and the opportunity to give our fans more access to games, weekly shows and programming, thanks to our partners Comcast and FOX Sports Detroit," said Steve Harms, Tigers Vice President of Corporate Partnerships. "We are committed to adding value for our fans and this new feature brings them Tigers baseball 24-7."

With Tigers On Demand, fans can watch what they want, when they want it with the click of the remote control, pausing, fast-forwarding or rewinding to catch all their favorite moments or to deepen their knowledge about the team. The new programming can be easily accessed by selecting the "Get Local" category from the On Demand menu and then "FS Tigers."

Like the overwhelming majority of Comcast's more than 17,000 On Demand programs available each month, FOX Sports Detroit: Tigers On Demand comes at no additional cost to Comcast digital cable customers. Since On Demand launched in 2003, Comcast customers have watched more than 14 billion programs.

 

Lansing State Journal:

WKAR-TV's "BackStage Pass" is about to go national. The East Lansing-based television music series will soon be distributed through the National Educational Telecommunications Association (NETA), a professional association that serves public television licensees and educational entities in all 50 states, the U.S. Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico. Executive Producer Tim Zeko says "BackStage Pass" has a good working relationship with the NETA. "We've submitted programming in the past to them, and they know and like our work," he said. What helped set the series apart in the selection process this time around? "Quality musical performances, video production and sound," Zeko said. "BackStage Pass," which airs on HD/23 in Lansing, is the community's prime outlet for getting local bands and singer-songwriters on the small screen... WKAR's 'BackStage Pass' series to be nationally televised (Sat, 4/17)

 

Detroit Free Press:

Chris Hansen's latest project isn't just another look at what's happening in the Motor City. "America Now: City of Heartbreak and Hope," which airs at 7 tonight on "Dateline NBC," is a journey home for Hansen that focuses on the city's economic blight, population flight and political scandals and also on the people who are pouring their hearts into improving the situation. The veteran correspondent -- who's famous for his "To Catch a Predator" investigations -- grew up in Bloomfield Township and covered the city and region for local stations WXYZ-TV and WDIV-TV before joining NBC News in 1993. Hansen talked recently about the "Dateline" episode, which puts Detroit's challenges into perspective for a national audience... NBC looks at the spirit of Detroit (Sun, 4/18)

 

The Tuesday, April 27 Detroit Tigers-Minnesota Twins game will now be televised on FOX Sports Detroit Plus. Coverage begins at 6:30 p.m. with Tigers Live, followed by the game at 7:00.

Game 7 of the Red Wings-Phoenix playoff series will be on FOX Sports Detroit, starting at 8:30 with Red Wings LIve, followed by the game at 9:00. A list of FOX Sports Detroit PLUS channel numbers is available at www.foxsportsdetroit.com (click "Channel Finder").

 

For the second year in a row, transplanted Tigers fans currently serving the United States Armed Forces can enjoy this season's Opening Day celebration while on duty, home or abroad. "Operation Opening Day," a three-hour DVD containing the entire FOX Sports Detroit telecast of the Tigers 5-2 victory over the Cleveland Indians on April 9, as well as pre-game festivities and postgame interviews and highlights, is available for all active members of the military. The "Operation Opening Day" DVD is a gift from Mario Impemba, play-by-play announcer on FOX Sports Detroit, in cooperation with the Tigers and Major League Baseball Productions.

"Many of the men and women in our military are Michigan natives and Tigers fans. While they are away serving our country, attending Opening Day in Detroit is not possible. To thank them for their service, I am honored to bring Opening Day to them," Impemba said. "It is one of our city's greatest events, and I hope having a small piece of home will let them know how much we appreciate their service and sacrifice."

Troops, as well as family and friends of troops, can request this special gift at tigers.com/operationopeningday. Once at the web site, complete the form with a valid military address - APO, SPO or FPO address, military base or ship address. "Operation Opening Day" will be mailed solely to valid military addresses as the gift is intended for the men and women currently serving our country. Quantities are limited and requests will be fulfilled as received.

"Operation Opening Day" is part of the Detroit Tigers year-round support of troops and veterans. Each year, the Detroit Tigers hold a special game to honor and recognize the sacrifice of the men and women serving in the United States Armed Forces and those that have served before them. The Detroit Tigers also visit veterans at the Department of Veteran's Affairs Detroit Medical Center throughout the season.

 

NewscastStudio.com

9&10 News, the CBS and Fox duopoly serving Cadillac, Mich., has become the first broadcast television station to launch an application for the Apple iPad. Much like the station's iPhone app, the 9&10 News app for iPad offers access to local news and weather information and now includes higher video quality, expanded content and higher resolution imagery for iPad users. The app is backward-compatible with the iPhone and iPod touch, and can be downloaded through the App Store. The app was created in partnership with News On iPhone. "We believe it is important to keep up with the technology our viewers are using and we hope this will serve their needs," says Eric Spencer, IT Director for 9&10 News, in a statement. "To be the first broadcast television station to offer this shows our commitment to bring our viewers the best"... Michigan station launches first local TV app for iPad (Wed, 4/28)

 

FOX Sports Detroit enjoying April in the D with Wings' ratings; coverage of series against San Jose Sharks set

FOX Sports Detroit attracted its third largest viewing audience all-time for Tuesday's Game 7 of the NHL Western Conference Quarterfinal series between the Detroit Red Wings and Phoenix Coyotes. Based on data received from Nielsen Media Research, the 9:00-11:45 p.m. telecast registered a 16.7 household rating in the Detroit metro area, an average of 315,663 homes tuned in over the course of the telecast (one rating point equals approximately 18,902 households). The telecast peaked at a 20.3 rating (383,710 households) from 10:45-11:15 as the Red Wings were on their way to a 6-1 victory to capture the best-of-seven series four games to three.

Tuesday's viewership ranks No. 3 on the network's all-time ratings list, trailing a pair of Red Wings games from last year's second round playoff series against Anaheim (17.5 for Game 7 on May 14, 2009 and 17.1 for Game 5 on May 1, 2009).

FOX Sports Detroit is averaging an 11.5 household rating for five Red Wings games this postseason, 9% greater than the 10.7 rating for the first five playoff telecasts in 2009.

With the release of the schedule for the Wings/Sharks second round series, FOX Sports Detroit is scheduled to televise games 3 through 7. Versus has national exclusivity for Game 1 and 2 (Versus is subject to blackout in the FOX Sports Detroit coverage area for games 3 - 7).

Western Conference Semifinals: #5 Detroit Red Wings vs. #1 San Jose Sharks

  • Game 1 - Thu. April 29 at San Jose, 9:00 PM ET Versus (national exclusive)
  • Game 2 - Sun. May 2 at San Jose, 8:00 PM ET Versus (national exclusive)
  • Game 3 - Tue. May 4 at Detroit, 7:30 PM ET FOX Sports Detroit / HD
  • Game 4 - Thu. May 6 at Detroit, 7:30 PM ET FOX Sports Detroit / HD
  • Game 5* - Sat. May 8 at San Jose, 10:00 PM ET FOX Sports Detroit / HD
  • Game 6* - Mon. May 10 at Detroit, 7:30 PM ET FOX Sports Detroit / HD
  • Game 7* - Wed. May 12 at San Jose, Time TBD FOX Sports Detroit / HD

 


 

WRCJ reports success in membership drive

The music will continue at Classical/Jazz WRCJ FM 90.9 as the station has successfully reached its spring fundraising goals. Listeners are still encouraged to make contributions by visiting wrcjfm.org or by calling (866) 909-9725. Contributions of $30 or more will get a WRCJ Eco-Tote Bag as a thank-you gift.

WRCJ is owned by the Detroit Public Schools and operated by Detroit Public TV.

 


 

Toledo's AM 1560 returns to air

After being off-air for several days while work was being done on the station's equipment, AM 1560 Toledo is back on the air with a new format and call sign under new owner CSN International. The former talk outlet WTOD is now WWYC and features religious programming based out of Twin Falls, ID as part of the Calvary Satellite Network. WWYC replaces CSN's FM translator which was previously heard on FM 100.7 -- that station is now back on the air as well carrying the modern rock format of Cumulus' WXKR-FM HD2 (The Zone).

 

Ernie Harwell, Michigan's most beloved broadcaster ever, has died this evening at the age of 92 in his home in the Detroit suburb of Novi after an inspiring fight with bile duct cancer.

There will be countless accolades and articles written about the life of a man that cared for his family, friends, and fans in a way that no one ever has before or will again. Whatever it is that is written, it won't be enough to capture just how much Mr. Harwell meant to our state.

Godspeed Ernie and thank you.

 

 


 

Detroit Free Press:

In Ernie Harwell's voice, the South rose again and conquered Michigan in a way no one else ever has. When Harwell arrived in Detroit to join the Tigers radio broadcast team in 1960, he was an unknown to Tigers fans. When he died Tuesday night at his home in Novi, at 92, after nearly a year-long bout with cancer, he had a strong case as the most beloved figure ever in Michigan. He rose to that cherished place through the combined power of radio and baseball and just as importantly his own charm and warmth, which were as steady through the decades as his unchanging Georgia accent. Harwell did Tigers radio from 1960 through 1991, then -- after an ill-conceived dismissal by the Tigers that lasted only one season -- he did a combination of Tigers radio and TV from 1993 through 2002. He ended his 55-year big-league career at the end of 2002 season... Ernie Harwell dies at 92 (Tue, 5/4)

 

In a telephone interview tonight, Detroit Tigers legend Al Kaline was asked why Harwell was so overwhelmingly popular in Michigan. "There wasn't a nicer person," Kaline said. "He had time for everybody. He lived here and stayed here. He didn't just work here and then go away in the off-season. He would have young announcers up to his booth all the time and give them advice. He had time for everybody." Kaline worked as Harwell's broadcast partner on television in the 1990s... Dignitaries share warm memories of Ernie Harwell (Tue, 5/4)

 


 

Detroit News:

Ernie has died. After a battle against bile duct cancer, one he knew he would lose, Ernie Harwell died Tuesday. He was 92. With his death, Michigan -- and baseball -- loses one of its most beloved figures. For 55 years, Harwell was a major league broadcaster, 42 with the Tigers. He broadcast his last game Sept. 22, 2002. Instead of moving away from the Detroit area, he spent his final years in Novi, still being part of our lives as an author and corporate spokesman. William Earnest Harwell was born Jan. 25, 1918 in Washington, Ga. As a boy, his family moved to Atlanta, where he grew up loving newspapers and baseball, which is how and why he became a paperboy and a batboy for his hometown minor league club, the Atlanta Crackers... Legendary broadcaster Ernie Harwell dies at 92 (Tue, 5/4)

 


 

MLive.com

The voice that we fell asleep to while listening to baseball games on transistor radios, the one that called Detroit Tigers games for four decades and became part of our lives, has gone silent. Ernie Harwell died Tuesday of cancer. He was 92. Harwell was the 1981 recipient of the Ford C. Frick Award, placing him in the Hall of Fame at Cooperstown as a broadcaster. He said that his induction speech and the Christian testimony he gave at a Billy Graham Crusade in Tampa were the two most memorable speaking engagements of his life. He loved God, baseball, his family and countless friends. "When you met Ernie Harwell, you walked away feeling you were his best friend," said Tigers radio broadcaster Jim Price, who first met Harwell as a rookie catcher with Detroit in 1967. "People who never met him before would say, 'It's like I've known him forever.' "He was very unique that way." Harwell was a one-of-a-kind person and broadcaster, who had first-hand experiences with nearly every big name in the history of the game... Hall of Fame Tigers broadcaster Ernie Harwell dies at 92 after battle with cancer (Tue, 5/4)

 

Two of the Michigan High School Athletic Association's television partners -- PlayON! Sports (PlayON) and When We Were Young Productions (WWWYP) -- announced Monday (May 10) that they have signed a definitive agreement to merge their companies. The combined company will bring together the deep production and distribution experience of WWWYP, the extensive technology platform of PlayON, and the high school association relationships of each company. The combination of assets creates the premiere high school sports network and the leader in producing, distributing, and monetizing video content in the high school category.

The company will have offices in Atlanta, Georgia, Madison, Wisconsin, and Lansing, Michigan with additional offices planned in Illinois, Missouri, Oregon, and South Carolina. The transaction is expected to close before the end of the year.

PlayON and WWWYP currently partner with seven (7) state high school athletic associations, including Wisconsin (WIAA), Michigan (MHSAA), Georgia (GHSA), South Carolina (SCHSL), Missouri (MSHSAA), Illinois (IHSA), and Oregon (OSAA). The partnership with each state high school association encompasses two primary areas: 1) production, distribution, and monetization of post-season events through television and the Internet; 2) access to PlayON's proprietary technology platform to member schools for self-production of regular season events.

Additional state partnerships will be announced in the near future.

The combined company managed over 2,500 productions of high school events in 2009 and projects to exceed 5,000 events in 2010. It has existing distribution relationships with Comcast, Charter Cable, Time Warner Cable, and Fox Sports Wisconsin, among others.

PlayON President and Chief Executive Officer David Rudolph said, "This is a tremendous expansion opportunity for PlayON and will allow us to continue to aggressively grow our presence in the high school category. Tim Eichorst and When We Were Young Productions have developed an excellent reputation during their seven years of producing high-quality high school sports events and have deep relationships to show for it. Additionally, we are very excited to further extend PlayON's comprehensive technology platform to allow individual high schools to produce and distribute their games."

WWWYP President Tim Eichorst said, "PlayON and When We Were Young Productions complement each other very well. Our companies began working together a year ago and we quickly realized that we had a natural fit in how we approached working in the high school space. Together our position in the market and our ability to deliver on our mission will be even stronger."

To assist the company with its ongoing growth plans, Neal Pilson has agreed to join as a Strategic Advisor, focusing on strategic counsel with special emphasis in areas related to media, distribution, investor relations, partnerships, and growth. Pilson is a senior industry executive, former president of CBS Sports, and is currently president of Pilson Communications Inc. (PCI) where he is active in all areas of sports television, media and marketing.

Pilson said, "High school is the high growth area for the sports and media industry. As the category further develops over the next few years, I am looking forward to working with PlayON and When We Were Young as they continue to expand their leadership position."

 

Michigan Almanac: June 14, 2010

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Lansing State Journal:

Michigan Government Television is going to air a gubernatorial debate that was held earlier this month on Mackinac Island. MGTV is to show the debate at 12:05 p.m. on Monday. The debate took place at the 2010 Detroit Regional Chamber Mackinac Policy Conference and featured all seven candidates running for governor. MGTV to air gubernatorial debate from Mackinac (Mon, 6/14)

 

The MHSAA Network has begun its third season of coverage of high school sports, and its first week of action will launch this week on Comcast Channel 900 and the MHSAA.tv website.

The flagship production of the Network is MHSAA Game Night, which airs at 7 p.m. on Wednesdays. Game Night kicks off its third season with a Macomb Area Conference football rivalry game from last Thursday (Aug. 26) between Marine City and Marysville, a game won by the Mariners, 12-8. Game Night will also show on Sundays at 7 p.m., and a third showing may occur on Saturdays at 7 p.m. when not pre-empted by live college games on Comcast.

Two other games will be featured each week. Following the Marine City-Marysville football game on Wednesday at 9:30 p.m. on Comcast Channel 900 will be a Wolverine Conference boys soccer match between Richland Gull Lake and Vicksburg from last Monday (Aug. 23), a game won by the Bulldogs, 3-1. The second Wednesday night game each week will get a second airing on Channel 900 on Sundays at Noon; and a third showing may occur on Saturdays at 3 p.m., when not pre-empted by live college games on Comcast.

Thursdays at 8 p.m. will be the third featured production of the week. This week on Thursday will be a boys soccer game between East Lansing and Chelsea from last Tuesday (Aug. 24), which was won by the Trojans, 3-1. The third game each week will generally receive a second airing on Channel 900 on Saturdays at 9:30 p.m., and again on Sunday at 9 a.m. In subsequent weeks, the Thursday prime-time slot will feature girls volleyball action.

Each week's featured games will be available for on-demand viewing on the MHSAA.tv website the day after their initial playback on Comcast and highlight package of all games will be available for Comcast subscribers to watch through its Video On Demand service.

MHSAA Classics return again this year, featuring great games of years past. These games will be available Mondays through Fridays on Comcast Channel 900.

The complete schedule of upcoming MHSAA Network productions on Comcast Channel 900 and the MHSAA.tv website can be found exclusively online by clicking on MHSAA.tv and selecting TV Schedule.

Here's where the MHSAA Network cameras will be this week:

The MHSAA Network delivers coverage of regular season and MHSAA Tournament competition across multiple platforms -- cable television, radio and the internet to fans of high school sports across the state and around the world. In addition to providing content to cable partners Comcast Television and Fox Sports Detroit, the MHSAA Network features two websites, MHSAA.tv and MHSAANetwork.com where fans can click to view or listen to content; and a radio network of nearly 40 stations statewide which annually carry the MHSAA Basketball Finals and the commentary MHSAA Perspective, which airs for 30 weeks during the school year.

 

Specs Howard School of Media Arts is celebrating its 40th anniversary by honoring five extraordinary graduates who have significantly contributed to the media industry with a place in the school's Hall of Fame.

2010 inductees will be determined online - four through nominations submitted to the website and a Specs Howard School panel. The fifth new inductee will be chosen based on a "Popular Vote." "Popular Vote" choices are being taken at specshowardvote.com. Voting started September 1st.

Any former graduate may be nominated. However, for the Detroit on-air "Popular Vote," the following, listed alphabetically, are eligible: Sean Baligian - WDFN, Pat Batcheller - WDET, Mike Bradley - WMGC, Nick Craig - Channel 95.5, Craig Fahle - WDET, Sara Fouracre - 97.1, Billy The Kidd (Green) - Beat, Jay Hudson - 89X, Allyson Martinek - WDVD, Bill McAllister - 97.1, Tracey McCaskill - WMXD, Rachel Nevada - WOMC, Tony Ortiz - CBS Radio, Jeff Riger - 97.1, Fay Samona - WMGC, Bill Stevens - WWJ, O'Neil Stevens - WMXD, Pat Sweeting - WWJ, Scott Vertical - WDVD, Renee Vitale - WNIC.

Once chosen, the new 2010 inductees will join the 37 current members of the Specs Howard Hall of Fame, which include: WRIF's Ann Carlini and "Screamin'" Scott Randall; WJR's Lloyd Jackson; WXYZ's Glenda Lewis; WYCD's Linda Lee and WJBK-TV's Jackie Paige.

The deadline to submit nominations and vote is September 30. Winners will be announced this fall.

 


 

FoxSportsDetroit.com:

The Detroit Red Wings and FOX Sports Detroit today announced the 2010-11 Red Wings local television schedule. FOX Sports Detroit (FSD) continues its exclusive production and carriage of Red Wings games by airing up to 75 regular-season games, plus three pre-season contests. The 78 overall games include 59 slated for FSD and 19 on FOX Sports Detroit Plus (FS PLUS). Up to four regular-season games may later be selected for exclusive national telecast by NBC. Most, if not all, Red Wings games this season on FSD and FS PLUS are expected to be televised in high-definition... Red Wings TV schedule (Wed, 9/1)

 


 

Pistons.com:

The Detroit Pistons announced their 2010-11 local television schedule today with 80 of the team's regular-season games being televised by FOX Sports Detroit. Including one ESPN broadcast as part of the NBA's national television schedule, 81 of the club's 82 regular-season games will be available on television. All Pistons games will be available on either 97.1 FM The Ticket or WWJ 950 AM. FOX Sports Detroit, beginning its 14th season of broadcasting Pistons games, is the exclusive local television provider for Pistons Basketball. The network will televise an all-time high 80 regular-season games, and two preseason contests including the premier of LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh together for the first time in Miami HEAT uniforms on October 5 at Miami. Most, if not all, Pistons games this season on FOX Sports Detroit and FOX Sports Detroit Plus are expected to be televised in high-definition... Pistons Announce 2010-11 Local Television and Radio Broadcast Schedules (Thu, 9/2)

 


 

Former radio host Tom Wilson has passed away

Sad news to report as Tom Wilson, the longtime host of the locally produced 'Somewhere in Time' radio program, reportedly passed away last month. No other details are available at this time.

This Tom Wilson isn't to be confused with current Red Wings' and longtime Pistons/Palace Entertainment executive Tom Wilson.

 


 

WDET launches new weekend schedule starting Sunday

Starting this Sunday, September 5th, public WDET-FM 101.9 will be adjusting its weekend schedule to feature more Modern Music and New Soul. Jon Moshier's Friday night program will re-broadcast at 2PM pm Sunday followed by an extra hour of Nick Austin starting at 4PM. An updated programing schedule is available here.

 

Metro Detroit: Newsmakers Sept. 23, 2010

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Detroit News:

A drawn-out tug-of-war over gubernatorial debates ended Wednesday with Virg Bernero and Rick Snyder agreeing to a single meeting. The one-hour debate is set for 7 p.m. Oct. 10 and will be broadcast live on television stations across the state. Bernero originally called for eight debates between the candidates. Snyder wanted three. Talks broke off and hopes of an agreement dimmed until the deal announced Wednesday. Political experts agree Snyder -- who is leading the Lansing mayor by roughly 20 percentage points in most polls -- has little to gain from debating his opponent... Snyder, Bernero to debate Oct. 10 (Thu, 9/23)

 


 

Detroit Free Press:

The debate over the debates wasn't so great. But it's over. And now the Great Debate, governor's edition, is scheduled for Oct. 10.Democrat Virg Bernero and Republican Rick Snyder have agreed to participate in a single, Sunday evening televised debate at the facilities of Detroit Public TV in Wixom. The broadcast is to be carried by other public TV stations around Michigan and will be available free of charge to all commercial channels that wish to carry it, said John Bebow, executive director at the Center for Michigan, a debate sponsor. The center leads the Great Debates coalition of about 20 organizations, including the Free Press, which will host the gubernatorial debate... Finally, a debate for Snyder and Bernero Decision 2010 (Thu, 9/23)

 

West Michigan: Newsmakers Sept. 28, 2010

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TVNewsCheck.com:

LIN Media has picked up the CoolTV multicast network in 11 of its 17 markets encompassing six million TV homes, 5.2% of all TV homes, according to Cool Music Network, the startup behind the network. Combined with Sinclair (33 markets) and Journal Broadcast Group (nine markets), the LIN deal puts the eclectic 24/7 music network in a total of 53 markets and extends its reach to approximately 30% of all U.S. TV homes, according to Cool Music COO David Hampe. The LIN markets: Indianapolis; Hartford, Conn.; Grand Rapids, Mich.; Albuquerque, N.M.; Austin, Texas; Providence, R.I.; Toledo, Ohio; Ft. Wayne, Ind.; Springfield, Mass.; Terre Haute, Ind.; and Lafayette, Ind. CoolTV is customized for each market to reflect the local demographics and music scenes. "It's our ability to deliver a unique viewer experience to each market that creates the local radio-on-TV style," said Joe Comparato, Cool Music CEO, in a prepared statement... LIN Media To Air CoolTV In 11 Markets (Tue, 9/28)

 

Metro Detroit: Newsmakers Sept. 29, 2010

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WXYZ-TV anchor Robbie Timmons announces her retirement

Robbie Timmons, a long-time news anchor and reporter at ABC affiliate WXYZ-TV, is announcing she is leaving the station to pursue personal interests.

Timmons has been anchoring Detroit evening news for 34 years. She joined WXYZ-TV in 1982, anchoring the 5 p.m. newscast alongside legendary newsman Bill Bonds, and more recently with Emmy award winning anchor Carolyn Clifford. She has also anchored Action News at Noon, the number one rated noon newscast with Clifford. Prior to joining WXYZ, Timmons was behind the anchor desk at WJBK-TV, Channel 2.

During her time at Channel 7, Timmons co-hosted a variety of programs, including the Michigan Humane Society Telethon, St. Vincent DePaul Telethon, and Channel 7's Town Hall Meeting on Breast Cancer Research. She has co-anchored special coverage of Red Wings Stanley Cup Parades, Detroit Pistons NBA Championships, the University of Michigan National NCAA Football Championship, as well as U of M Big Ten Championships and Rose Bowl trips.

"I have enjoyed being part of the Channel 7 family and viewers' families for nearly 30 years," said Timmons. "We've been together on bad news days and good news days...seen changes in Detroit and the State of Michigan, and we've witnessed people giving us hope and making a difference."

"WXYZ has been fortunate to have Robbie's talent and experience as part of our Action News team," said Vice-President and General Manager, Ed Fernandez. "Always the consummate professional, Robbie has played an important role in the success of WXYZ-TV and we wish her all the best as she starts this new chapter in her life."

Timmons began her career in 1972 at WILX-TV in Lansing where she became the first female in the country to anchor evening newscasts at 6 p.m. and 11 p.m. She went on to anchor WJBK-TV's 11 p.m. newscast and produce Emmy winning documentaries for the CBS station, before joining WXYZ-TV.

Her work has earned Timmons six Emmy awards from the Michigan Chapter of the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences. She has also been recognized for her volunteer work on behalf of Forgotten Harvest, St. Vincent DePaul, the Humane Society, the Detroit Zoo, the Michigan State University College of Veterinary Medicine, and the University of Michigan Cardiovascular Center.

Timmons' reports on thoroughbred horse racing and the closure of the Detroit Race Course in 1997, prompted her to become active in efforts to rescue thoroughbreds. She became an officer of CANTER, a thoroughbred rescue organization that prevents the slaughter of thoroughbreds and helps find homes for racehorses. The organization also provides educational opportunities for Michigan State University Veterinary students who assist with surgeries to repair racetrack injuries. Timmons has helped take CANTER from a Michigan-only organization, to a national all-volunteer rescue effort that continues to expand across the United States.

"I'm excited about the opportunity to dedicate more of my time and energy to the organization that I feel so passionately about," said Timmons who will be a full time volunteer for CANTER and the national organization's treasurer.

Timmons' work with CANTER inspired her to write the popular children's book, "Twoey and the Goat," based on the true story of a unique friendship between a thoroughbred champion and a goat. The book is being considered as the subject for a feature film.

Timmons says she plans to continue writing children's books and is looking forward to spending more time with family, friends, and her Sheltie, Cassie.

Timmons last day at WXYZ-TV will be October 14.

 

At midnight on September 30, Dish Network dropped FOX Sports Detroit and in the immediate future, Dish customers risk missing the final weekend of the Tigers season, the Red Wings remaining two preseason games and next week's start of the regular season, as well as the Pistons preseason contest on Tuesday featuring LeBron James' debut with the Miami Heat.

In October and November alone, there are 41 Red Wings and Pistons games combined potentially at risk to Dish customers.

"FOX has been trying for months to reach a fair agreement, but Dish refuses to play ball," said Tim Bryant, FOX Sports Detroit spokesman. "Our programming is among the most valuable Dish offers, and we're simply looking for a fair deal."

Fortunately, there are alternatives, as Fox Sports Detroit is offered by a number of other local distributors in our area. Dish customers should visit www.getwhatipaidfor.com for more information.

Nationwide, Dish has dropped Fox's 19 regional sports networks, FX, and National Geographic Channel. On October 31, the satellite operator's agreement to carry Fox television stations also expires and includes WJBK-TV Channel 2 in Detroit. Other over-the-air Fox stations that may be affected are in Atlanta, Austin, Baltimore, Boston, Chicago, Dallas, Gainesville, FL, Houston, Los Angeles, Memphis, Minneapolis, New York, Orlando, Philadelphia, Phoenix, Tampa, and Washington D.C.

 

Statewide video coverage of all Michigan High School Athletic Association Finals will take place beginning in the 2010-11 school year for the very first time as the MHSAA Network and When We Were Young Productions will collaborate with FOX Sports Detroit to deliver the games in one of the most comprehensive cable and online high school sports packages in the nation.

FOX Sports Detroit and the MHSAA have signed a multi-year extension of an agreement where live coverage of most Football, Boys Basketball and Girls Basketball Finals will take place; and the new arrangement with the MHSAA Network will also plan for live coverage of Finals in Ice Hockey and Girls Volleyball. In addition, FOX Sports Detroit will continue to be the home of the exclusive announcement of the qualifiers and pairings for the MHSAA Football Playoffs on the annual Selection Sunday Show.

The FoxSportsDetroit.com Website becomes the exclusive home to live video streaming of the events that will be shown live on FOX Sports Detroit. MHSAA Finals in all other team sports this year, plus Finals in Track & Field and Swimming & Diving in both peninsulas, all rounds of the Team and Individual Wrestling Finals, and the Semifinal round of the Basketball, Football, Ice Hockey and Volleyball Tournaments will be streamed live on both the FoxSportsDetroit.com and MHSAA.tv Websites. All of the action will be archived online at MHSAA.tv.

All other team Finals - Baseball, Competitive Cheer, Lacrosse, Soccer, Softball and Team Wrestling - as well as the Lower Peninsula Swimming & Diving Finals and the championship matches of the Individual Wrestling Finals and will be shown on a delayed basis on Fox Sports Detroit or FOX Sports Detroit PLUS. Highlights programs of Finals in Bowling, Cross Country, Golf, Gymnastics, Skiing and Tennis will also air. This entire package will also be shown on Comcast Television, which is carrying MHSAA Network regular-season programming and pre-Finals MHSAA Tournament action in a number of sports for the third straight school year.

Comcast will also be the cable home of all of this content on its popular Video On Demand service, including all the championship running events at the MHSAA Track & Field Finals, where each event will be produced individually for on demand enjoyment. MHSAA Network programming on Comcast reaches over one million homes in the southern half of the Lower Peninsula.

"We're pleased that we can now bring most of our Final events to cable and satellite viewers statewide, and that all of our sports will receive coverage on the web through our continued partnership with FOX Sports Detroit," said John E. "Jack" Roberts, Executive Director of the MHSAA. "The MHSAA Network, through the work of When We Were Young Productions, continues to serve high school fans in large numbers, and has proven that our viewers watch and appreciate this content - during the regular season and our tournaments - regardless of who is playing."

"High school sports are as much a part of the fabric of life here in Michigan as any of our pro teams. The passion and excitement is just as engaging, just as real," said Greg Hammaren, Senior Vice President/General Manager, FOX Sports Detroit. "We're immensely proud to extend our wonderful partnership with MHSAA and expand it with the help of When We Were Young Productions and Comcast. This agreement is a shining example of the excellent value and community service that cable providers and FOX Sports Detroit represent."

Here is a detailed rundown of 2010-11 MHSAA Championships on FOX Sports Detroit and the FoxSportsDetroit.com website:

Fall Championships

  • Oct. 24 - Selection Sunday Show - LIVE on FOX Sports Detroit
  • Nov. 6 - Boys Soccer Finals - LIVE on FoxSportsDetroit.com & MHSAA.tv; delayed on FOX Sports Detroit
  • Nov. 18-19 - Girls Volleyball Semifinals - LIVE on FoxSportsDetroit.com & MHSAA.tv
  • Nov. 20 - Girls Volleyball Finals - LIVE on FOX Sports Detroit & FoxSportsDetroit.com
  • Nov. 20 - Football Semifinals - 16 Games - Most LIVE on FoxSportsDetroit.com & MHSAA.tv (Subject to availability of streaming capabilities at host sites)
  • Nov. 20 - L.P. Girls Swimming & Diving Finals - LIVE on FoxSportsDetroit.com & MHSAA.tv; delayed on FOX Sports Detroit
  • Nov. 26-27 - Football Finals - LIVE on FOX Sports Detroit* & FoxSportsDetroit.com (* All games live except Division 4 Final on Nov. 26)
  • December - Fall highlights program of MHSAA Finals in Cross Country, Tennis and L.P. Girls Golf on FOX Sports Detroit

Winter Championships

  • Feb. 19 - U.P. Swimming & Diving Finals - LIVE on FoxSportsDetroit.com & MHSAA.tv
  • Feb. 25-26 - Team Dual Wrestling Quarterfinals & Semifinals - LIVE on FoxSportsDetroit.com & MHSAA.tv
  • Feb. 26 - Team Dual Wrestling Finals - LIVE on FoxSportsDetroit.com & MHSAA.tv; delayed on FOX Sports Detroit
  • March 4-5 - Competitive Cheer Finals - LIVE on FoxSportsDetroit.com & MHSAA.tv; delayed on FOX Sports Detroit
  • March 3-5 - Individual Wrestling Finals - Rounds 1-8 - LIVE on FoxSportsDetroit.com & MHSAA.tv
  • March 5 - Individual Wrestling Finals - Championship Matches - LIVE on FoxSportsDetroit.com & MHSAA.tv; delayed on FOX Sports Detroit
  • March 10-11 - Ice Hockey Semifinals - LIVE on FoxSportsDetroit.com & MHSAA.tv
  • March 12 - Ice Hockey Finals - LIVE on FOX Sports Detroit & FoxSportsDetroit.com
  • March 12 - L.P. Boys Swimming & Diving Finals - LIVE on FoxSportsDetroit.com & MHSAA.tv; delayed on FOX Sports Detroit
  • March 17-18 - Girls Basketball Semifinals - LIVE on FoxSportsDetroit.com & MHSAA.tv
  • March 19 - Girls Basketball Finals - LIVE on FOX Sports Detroit & FoxSportsDetroit.com
  • March 24-25 - Boys Basketball Semifinals - LIVE on FoxSportsDetroit.com & MHSAA.tv
  • March 26 - Boys Basketball Finals - LIVE on FOX Sports Detroit* & FoxSportsDetroit.com (* All games live except Class B Final)
  • April - Winter highlights program of MHSAA Finals in Bowling, Gymnastics and Skiing on FOX Sports Detroit

Spring Championships

  • June 4 - Track & Field Finals - LIVE on FoxSportsDetroit.com & MHSAA.tv
  • June 11 - Girls & Boys Lacrosse Finals - LIVE on FoxSportsDetroit.com & MHSAA.tv; delayed on FOX Sports Detroit
  • June 18 - Baseball-Softball Finals - LIVE on FoxSportsDetroit.com & MHSAA.tv; delayed on FOX Sports Detroit
  • June 18 - Girls Soccer Finals - LIVE on FoxSportsDetroit.com & MHSAA.tv; delayed on FOX Sports Detroit
  • August - Spring highlights program of MHSAA Finals in Golf and Tennis on FOX Sports Detroit

For a complete rundown of MHSAA Championships coverage on FOX Sports Detroit, FoxSportsDetroit.com, MHSAA.tv, MHSAANetwork.com and Comcast Television, visit the MHSAA Website at www.mhsaa.com/News/MHSAANetwork/MHSAAFinalsOnTheAir.aspx.

 

Impasse between FOX and DISH continues

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Sports fans that subscribe to DISH Network across Michigan continue to miss the programming of Fox Sports Detroit as the impasse between Dish and Fox carries on. The situation has already caused subscribers locally to miss Detroit Red Wings regular season hockey games, and if situation isn't resolved soon, Detroit Pistons basketball broadcasts on Dish will be in jeopardy. As of November 1st, the disagreement over the cost of programming might escalate to include Fox-owned and operated broadcast station WJBK-TV Channel 2.

The lack of an agreement between the two parties began to affect viewers across the country on October 1st when 19 regional sports networks, FX, and National Geographic Channel were no longer available to Dish subscribers.

"The two sides are not actively negotiating and remain at an impasse," said FOX Sports Detroit spokesman Tim Bryant.

 

WKAR-TV Channel 23 East Lansing is preparing to begin construction of a new broadcast tower that will replace the original that was built in 1953 at WKAR's transmitter and tower site on Dobie Road in Okemos. Tower construction and installation of a new broadcast antenna on the tower is expected to continue through June 2011.

Construction was approved by the Michigan State University Board of Trustees at their June 18, 2010 meeting.

The project will replace WKAR's aging tower on the same site as the current tower. Completion of the tower and installation of a new antenna, will allow WKAR to increase broadcast power. The end result will be improved reception for both the WKAR Radio and Television signals.

"The tower replacement project allows us to accomplish three necessary and important things effectively, simultaneously and in a cost efficient manner with the least disruption to viewers and listeners. This includes replacing a 57-year-old tower, replacing irreparable and obsolete radio broadcasting equipment and allows WKAR-TV to increase power to improve the station's signal" says WKAR station manager Kent Wieland. "This will be done without increasing WKAR's vertical footprint."

Construction at the tower site is expected to continue through May with the new antenna mounted an operation by June 2011. On occasion, to facilitate construction and beginning in April 2001, WKAR will periodically operate at reduced power. This schedule is pending any delays not accounted for by icy or bad weather during the winter. Notifications will be posted on WKAR.org, the stations' Facebook pages, and in WKAR's e-News. Viewers and listeners are encouraged to subscribe to the free weekly e-News at wkar.org/subscribe.

Wieland adds that the construction or brief periods when WKAR operates on reduced power will not affect most cable viewers.

"Okemos residents living near our broadcast tower should not notice any discernable increase in noise during the construction of the tower," says Wieland. "There will be some periodic additional traffic of construction trucks on Dobie Road."

The tower and antenna project was made possible by grants from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting and the Public Telecommunications Facilities Program, supporters of WKAR, and matching funds from Michigan State University.

WKAR is part of Michigan State University Broadcasting Services and includes WKAR-TV's four digital television channels, WKAR Radio's AM and FM stations, online service WKAR.org and public services, WKAR Ready To Learn and the WKAR Radio Reading Service.

edit: updated construction schedule with new dates

 

Detroit News:

A plan by WADL-TV to broadcast Sunday's concert by striking musicians of the Detroit Symphony Orchestra is not meant to express favoritism toward the musicians, the station manager said Friday. Responding to a letter from DSO lawyers apparently intended to discourage the broadcast of the 3 p.m. Sunday concert at Christ Church Cranbrook, station manager Steve Antoniotti said: "We're merely trying to expose the quality of these musicians to people who haven't had the opportunity to hear them, and to show what a community asset might be lost in this labor dispute." But Michael Schwartz, an attorney for the station, replied more sharply. In a statement issued Thursday, Schwartz said DSO management had "hired a New York law firm which sent a letter to WADL, ominously suggesting that the station might end up with liability in connection with the broadcast." "We are disappointed that the management of the Detroit Symphony Orchestra should seek to instruct us on how we are to fulfill our responsibilities to our viewing public and that they should be expending scarce resources to hire an expensive New York law firm in a misguided attempt to create obstacles to the public's being able to view and hear a performance by an illustrious group of musicians."... Concert broadcast of striking DSO musicians contested (Sat, 10/23)

 

Mid-Michigan: Newsmakers Nov. 3, 2010

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Broadcasting & Cable:

The Walt Disney Company has made an agreement to sell the two smallest O&Os in its 10-station ABC Owned Television Stations Group to the stations' former owner SJL Broadcasting. The stations -- WJRT in Flint, Mich., and WTVG in Toledo, Ohio, - are strong revenue generators in their markets and are expected to remain ABC affiliates. Pending FCC approval, the deal is expected to be completed in early 2011 ... "The proposed sale of these Flint and Toledo properties makes strategic sense for the future direction of the ABC Owned Television Stations Group," Campbell said in her statement. "As we sharpen our focus on larger markets with greater growth potential, we're gratified that these well-run, local stations will be in the able hands of SJL, which is geared toward smaller stations and has a strong history with these two in particular." Prior to ABC's acquisition of both stations in 1995, they were owned and managed by SJL Broadcast Management... Disney to Sell Two Stations (Wed, 11/3)

 

Metro Detroit: Newsmakers Nov. 18, 2010

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WXYZ-TV Ch. 7 Detroit re-ups with ABC through January 2015

E.W. Scripps company has extended its affiliation deal with Disney's ABC television network through Jan. 31, 2015. In addition to keeping Channel 7 in the fold for ABC, the agreement also applies to five other Scripps stations in Cleveland, Cincinnati, Baltimore, Tampa, and Phoenix, covering about 8% of U.S. households.

"I'm pleased that we're able to continue the productive relationship we've had with ABC for many more years," Scripps television station group senior vice president Brian Lawlor said in a release. "This new agreement reflects our shared belief in the power of a high-quality national programming provider combined with local affiliates that have trusted news brands and strong influence in their communities."

The six Scripps stations' agreement with ABC had previously expired earlier this year at the end of January, but the affiliation had continued under short-term extensions.

 


 

Michigan Radio becomes official representative for StoryCorps' 2010 National Day of Listening

On Friday, November 26, 2010, Michigan Radio (WUOM 91.7 Ann Arbor / WFUM 91.1 Flint / WVGR 104.1 Grand Rapids) will participate in the third annual National Day of Listening, a national holiday started by the acclaimed oral history nonprofit organization StoryCorps. The National Day of Listening is an effort to encourage all Americans to honor a friend, a loved one, or a member of their community by interviewing them about their lives.

National Day of Listening participants are encouraged to record their National Day of Listening interviews using equipment that is readily available in most homes-from cell phones to tape recorders to computers or even pen and paper.

Michigan Radio has created a special National Day of Listening website at: www.michiganradio.org/Storycorps. At that website, people can download a Do-It-Yourself interview guide with simple step-by-step instructions, advice on choosing equipment to record the interview, and a list of favorite StoryCorps questions to ask. They can also view a Do-It-Yourself video, get inspiration by listening to examples of stories that others have recorded, and share their experience by joining StoryCorps' national Wall of Listening.

"The idea of listening during the holiday season has clearly resonated with people across the country," says StoryCorps founder and MacArthur "Genius" Dave Isay. "The National Day of Listening, which coincides with Black Friday-traditionally the largest shopping day of the year-provides a meaningful alternative to holiday consumerism and proves that simply listening to one another is the least expensive and most meaningful gift we can give."

To see how more people across the country are celebrating this year's National Day of Listening, visit: www.nationaldayoflistening.org. The 2010 National Day of Listening is sponsored by the Fetzer Institute.

Founded in 2003 by MacArthur "genius" Fellow Dave Isay, StoryCorps' mission is to provide Americans of all backgrounds and beliefs with the opportunity to record, share, and preserve the stories of their lives. Each week, millions of Americans listen to StoryCorps' award-winning broadcasts on NPR's Morning Edition. StoryCorps has published two best-selling books: Listening Is an Act of Love in 2007 and Mom: A Celebration of Mothers from StoryCorps in 2010. For more information, or to listen to stories online, visit www.storycorps.org.

 

All eight title games available on TV and Online; Telecasts produced in High-Definition for first time

FOX Sports Detroit for the 13th consecutive year is providing exclusive television coverage of the Michigan High School Athletic Association Football Finals. The 2010 edition is Friday, Nov. 26 and Saturday, Nov. 27 at Ford Field.

This year, FOX Sports Detroit Plus (FS Plus) is the primary television outlet, carrying seven of the eight games live. Friday night's Division 3 contest airs via same-day delay on FOX Sports Detroit (FSD). For the first time, the telecasts will be produced in high-definition on FOX Sports Detroit Plus HD, available on select video providers including Comcast, WOW!, AT&T U-Verse, DIRECTV and Dish Network. For all channel listings by provider, click the "Channel Finder" tab at www.foxsportsdetroit.com.

All eight games will be streamed live at www.foxsportsdetroit.com.

 

Here is the telecast/webcast schedule, along with announcers assigned to each game:

Friday, November 26:

  • 10:00 AM, FS Plus / HD & Foxsportsdetroit.com: Division 8 - Mount Pleasant Sacred Heart vs. Saugatuck
    Play-by-Play: Dan Dickerson Analyst: John Wangler
  • 1:00 PM, FS Plus / HD & Foxsportsdetroit.com: Division 2 - Lowell vs. Farmington Hills Harrison
    Play-by-Play: John Keating Analyst: Herman Moore
  • 4:30 PM, FS Plus / HD & Foxsportsdetroit.com: Division 6 - Ithaca vs. Monroe St. Mary Catholic Central
    Play-by-Play: Matt Shepard Analyst: Rob Rubick
  • 7:30 PM, Foxsportsdetroit.com & 10:00 PM (delay) FSD / HD Division 4 - G.R. Catholic Central vs. Williamston
    Play-by-Play: Matt Shepard Analyst: Rob Rubick

 

Saturday, November 27

  • 10:00 AM, FS Plus / HD & Foxsportsdetroit.com: Division 7 - Ishpeming vs. Hudson
    Play-by-Play: Dan Dickerson Analyst: Herman Moore
  • 1:00 PM, FS Plus / HD & Foxsportsderoit.com: Division 1 - Plymouth vs. Lake Orion
    Play-by-Play: John Keating Analyst: Herman Moore
  • 4:30 PM, FS Plus / HD & Foxsportsdetroit.com: Division 5 - Grand Rapids West Catholic vs. Olivet
    Play-by-Play: Matt Shepard Analyst: Rob Rubick
  • 7:30 PM, FS Plus / HD & Foxsportsdetroit.com: Division 3 - East Grand Rapids vs. Orchard Lake St. Mary's
    Play-by-Play: Matt Shepard Analyst: Rob Rubick

 

Halftime features:

Hudson Tigers: This feature explores how much high school football means to the tiny town of Hudson, Michigan, represented this year's Division 7 championship game. From the late 1960's through the mid 70's, the Hudson Tigers won a then-national record 72 games in a row. To this day, the streak is a major part of the town's identity. Meet some of the people involved in that tradition, from coaches, players and community members.

High Schools with a Heart: A visit to the annual grudge match between Holly and Fenton that took on a caring cause this year as the schools donned camouflage uniforms and raised money for Iraq and Afghanistan war veterans through the Wounded Warriors Project.

 


 

Note for Comcast subscribers: Comcast is expected to add FS Plus HD on Tuesday, November 23rd on channel 707. It's not clear what service tier will be required to receive FS Plus in HD.

 

Metro Detroit: Newsmakers Nov. 22, 2010

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WDIV continues traditional airing of Thanksgiving Day parade in Detroit

WDIV-TV Local 4, the official television station of America's Thanksgiving Parade, will bring home the excitement and grand spectacle of balloons, bands, celebrities and floats in High-Definition during the 84th America's Thanksgiving Parade live from Woodward Avenue in Detroit.

Hosted by Carmen Harlan, Devin Scillian, Chuck Gaidica, Guy Gordon and Rhonda Walker, Channel 4's live broadcast of the parade starts Thursday, November 25th at 9 a.m., following a Parade Preview special at 8 a.m. and Local 4 News Morning, also broadcast live from the Parade route, beginning at 6 a.m. NBC's coverage of Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade from New York will air locally on WDIV's digital sub-channel 4.2, ThisTV Detroit, Thanksgiving Day at 4 p.m.

Guests during the parade broadcast are scheduled to include Deidre Hall of NBC's Days Of Our Lives, R&B performer Dwele, Hip Hop recording artist Biz Markie, One Tree Hill star Jana Kramer, Def Jam recording artist Aaron Fresh and Detroit's own Bob Seger Silver Bullet sax man Alto Reed, in addition to Gold and Silver medalists from the 2008 and 2010 Olympic Games including skaters Meryl Davis and Charlie White. Plus, tune in for the live announcement of the winner of The Biggest Loser: Detroit Edition II presented by Blue Cross Blue Shield.

 


 

TV coverage set for 'The Big Chill at the Big House'

Dec. 11 Michigan State at Michigan Outdoor Hockey Game Televised Regionally on FOX Sports Detroit, Elsewhere on Big Ten Network

FOX Sports Detroit is set to provide comprehensive television coverage of next month's historic outdoor game between Central Collegiate Hockey Association rivals Michigan State and Michigan, dubbed 'The Big Chill at The Big House.' The Saturday, Dec. 11 game begins at 3:00 PM Eastern in front of a crowd expected to approach 110,000 at Michigan Stadium in Ann Arbor.

Already a sellout with 109,901 tickets sold, 'The Big Chill at The Big House' will set a hockey attendance record, surpassing the 74,544 on Oct. 6, 2001 at Spartan Stadium in East Lansing for the 'Cold War' game between the same schools (3-3 tie). That 2001 contest, also televised by FOX Sports Detroit, set the standard for all outdoor hockey games that have followed on the amateur and professional level.

'The Big Chill at The Big House' will be televised regionally in high-definition on FOX Sports Detroit, reaching 3.2 million households throughout Michigan and portions of Northwest Ohio and Northern Indiana. Outside of the FOX Sports Detroit footprint, the game will be shown on the Big Ten Network, available to an estimated 75 million households across the U.S. and Canada.

"FOX Sports Detroit is honored to once again be part of hockey history by presenting 'The Big Chill at The Big House,' said Greg Hammaren, Senior Vice President/General Manager, FOX Sports Detroit. "As was the case in 2001 with 'The Cold War,' we look forward to showcasing the CCHA, these two great universities and the passion for hockey in Michigan - this time in glorious high-definition."

FOX Sports Detroit provides additional coverage, including the Big Chill Preview (premiering Nov. 23) along with CCHA Live pregame and postgame shows on game day. Below is a recap of FOX Sports Detroit's programming related to 'The Big Chill at The Big House' (all times Eastern):

'Big Chill' Preview: Tue. Nov. 23 & Wed. Nov. 24 - 6:30 PM on FOX Sports Detroit, w/ multiple airings through Dec. 10. Interviews with players and coaches from both schools regarding the excitement level for the game and impact on their programs and hockey in Michigan overall; current NHL players who played in the 2001 game share their memories; and we hear from today's players who were spectators for the game nine years ago; and a feature on the event planning, including rink and ice preparation.

'Cold War' Encore: Fri. Dec. 10 - 10:30 PM on FOX Sports Detroit. The night before this year's historic event, this two-hour presentation revisits the 2001 "Cold War" game which saw Michigan and Michigan State battle to a thrilling 3-3 tie, in what would be the forerunner of outdoor hockey games conducted since on the NHL and collegiate level.

'CCHA Live' Pregame & Postgame: Sat. Dec. 11 - 2:30 PM (pregame); approx 5:30 PM (postgame) on FOX Sports Detroit. Hosted by Mickey York and former Western Michigan coach Jim Culhane, the show sets the scene before the game, and later provides a comprehensive recap.

'The Big Chill at the Big House' Game Coverage: Sat. Dec. 11 - 3:00 PM on FOX Sports Detroit (regionally), Big Ten Network (elsewhere). The 14-camera, high-definition production by FOX Sports Detroit includes the following announcers: Matt Shepard (play-by-play), Billy Jaffe (analyst), Fred Pletsch (between the benches analyst), along with Mickey Redmond and John Keating (rinkside reporters). Shepard, Jaffe and Keating also were on the 2001 "Cold War" telecast.

The hockey game is part of a huge programming day for FOX Sports Detroit. It starts with an appearance by the nation's currently No. 2-ranked men's college basketball team as Michigan State meets Oakland University at The Palace of Auburn Hills. The evening schedule features the Detroit Red Wings and Detroit Pistons both in action:

12:30 PM - Men's College Basketball: Michigan State vs. Oakland, at The Palace of Auburn Hills

2:30 PM - CCHA Live Pregame

3:00 PM - 'The Big Chill at the Big House' : CCHA - Michigan State at Michigan

5:30 PM - CCHA Live Postgame

7:00 PM - NHL: Detroit Red Wings at New Jersey Devils (FOX Sports Detroit Plus)

7:00 PM - Pistons Live Pregame

7:30 PM - NBA: Toronto Raptors at Detroit Pistons

9:30 PM - Red Wings Live Postgame (FOX Sports Detroit Plus)

10:00 PM - Pistons Live Postgame

12:00 AM - (replay) Detroit Red Wings at New Jersey Devils

2:00 AM - (replay) Toronto Raptors at Detroit Pistons

 

Television: Newsmakers Nov. 24, 2010

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TVNewsCheck.com:

SJL Holdings is paying ABC a combined $30 million for WJRT Flint, Mich. (DMA 69), and WTVG Toledo (DMA 70), Ohio, according to an FCC filing seeking approval of the stock transfer deal. Upon closing, ABC will get $16.8 million for WTVG and $13.2 million for WJRT. ABC had announced the sale earlier this month as part of a strategy to focus on large market stations. SJL is headed by George Lilly and his son, Brian. It also runs an ABC-CBS duopoly in Erie, Pa. (WICU and WSEE), and the ABC affiliate in Elmira, N.Y. (WENY)... Price on ABC's Toledo and Flint TVs: $30M (Wed, 11/24)

 

Television: Newsmakers Dec. 6, 2010

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TVNewsCheck.com:

Buy low, sell high. George Lilly has been applying that basic business principle in the buying and selling stations since 1983. In 2005, he partnered with the private equity firm The Blackstone Group to form Montecito Broadcast Group and purchased four stations from Emmis Communications for $259 million. Less than two years later, he flipped the stations to New Vision for a figure somewhere north of $330 million. Now he thinks he can work that buy-low, sell-high formula at least one more time. Backed by Sankaty Advisors, a unit of Bain Capital, Lilly last month agreed to buy two small-market ABC O&Os -- WJRT-TV Flint, Mich., and WTVG Toledo, Ohio -- for $30 million. With the worst of the recession apparently past and new sources of revenue beginning to materialize, Lilly believes the stations' price tag is low and that he will be able to sell at a considerable markup several years from now. How low? According to BIA/Kelsey, the same George Lilly and yet another investment group sold the stations to ABC for $120 million... Bullish big time on buying TV stations (Mon, 12/6)

 

Metro Detroit: Newsmakers Dec. 13, 2010

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Big Chill sets viewership mark for Fox Sports Detroit

FOX Sports Detroit's coverage of Saturday's "Big Chill at The Big House" outdoor hockey game (Michigan State at Michigan) was the regional network's highest rated college hockey telecast in its 14-year history, delivering a 5.1 Nielsen household rating in Metro Detroit (equivalent of approximately 96,400 households). The previous high was a 3.5 rating on Oct. 6, 2001 for "The Cold War" -- the previous outdoor game between the schools.

The telecast was distributed throughout Michigan (and portions of NW Ohio and Northern Indiana) on FOX Sports Detroit and elsewhere in the U.S. and Canada on the Big Ten Network. The game was also shown in Ontario on Leafs TV; across the U.S. on FOX College Sports Atlantic and in Alaska on FOX affiliate KFXF-TV.

A live in-game chat at Foxsportsdetroit.com had 3,000 participants representing at least 24 states and 15 foreign countries. For the day, the website had more than 40,000 page views, most of it regarding "Big Chill" coverage that also included stories and a photo gallery.

Saturday's "Big Chill at The Big House" was attended by a world-record hockey crowd of 113, 411 at Michigan Stadium as the Wolverines beat the Spartans 5-0.

 


 

Detroit Free Press:

WXYZ-TV (Channel 7)'s Christy McDonald will be leaving the station Dec. 21, she said. McDonald, who has worked at WXYZ for 10 years, told Names & Faces that station management would no longer let her work part time and instead wanted her as a full-time reporter.

"I love the station. I love this city," she said. "It's so painful to have to make this decision. But unfortunately, it's not a life balance that works for me or my family right now."

Married to WCSX-FM (94.7) sports director (and Free Press blogger) Jamie Samuelsen, McDonald has three children: Caroline, 6; Josh, 4, and 1-year-old Catherine. McDonald, who anchored the 7 p.m. newscast for her first five years at the station, worked part time as an on-air reporter and fill-in anchor after her first daughter was born. The Emmy winner, who covered everything from the Woodward Dream Cruise to the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, earned a best reporter tag from the Associated Press this year... Reporter turns down full-time job at Channel 7 (Mon, 12/13)

 


 

Grand Rapids Press:

ArtPrize and Grand Rapids' "Medical Mile" will be featured on a CBS-TV news special, "Reinventing Michigan," airing at 6 p.m. tonight in Detroit. Dick DeVos, Michigan's Republican gubernatorial candidate in 2006 and his wife, Betsy, and their son, Rick DeVos, creator of ArtPrize, will appear on the broadcast airing on WWJ-TV, the CBS affilliate in southeast Michigan. Others appearing include Governor-elect Rick Snyder, Detroit Mayor Dave Bing, U.S. Senator Debbie Stabenow and actor and Michigan native Jeff Daniels. The show is the latest installment on WWJ-TV's "Eye On the Future" series hosted by Carol Cain and Paul Pytlowany... ArtPrize, medical mile in Grand Rapids discussed in 'Reinventing Michigan,' tonight on CBS-TV in Detroit (Mon, 12/13)

 


 

MLive.com:

Singer, radio host and native Detroiter Keith Washington is under fire...kind of...for taping a private conversation between him and Aretha Franklin taped a month prior before the Queen of Soul told fans that she is suffering from pancreatic cancer. Washington, who took over the 7 p.m.-12 a.m. timeslot at WDMK (105.9) six weeks ago, called Franklin on her cell phone on November 8... Radio host Keith Washington criticized for taping private conversation with Aretha Franklin (Mon, 12/13)

 


 

The Oakland Press:

Bullying continues to be an ongoing issue, sometimes resulting in suicide. Recently, 14-year-old Samantha Kelly of Huron Township committed suicide after allegedly being taunted and harassed for making a rape allegation against a fellow student. But a local radio station, 98.7 AMP Radio, a Top 40 station in Southfield, is aiming to bring awareness to this problem.

"Unfortunately, bullying has become a serious issue recently," said Debbie Kenyon, vice president and market manager of CBS Radio Detroit. "Kids not only have to endure this at school, but now kids and adults are experiencing this through social media. 98.7 AMP Radio, our core artists, our on-air talent and the Detroit Lions are reaching out to let kids know that bullying isn't right."

The station has started airing public service announcements urging the public to end the epidemic of bullying as well as to seek help if victimized by bullying. The PSAs are voiced by several 98.7 AMP Radio artists, including Jason Derulo and Taio Cruz, and Detroit Lions players, like quarterback Matt Stafford, defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh and defensive end Kyle Vanden Bosch.The station's on-air personalities have joined the campaign, too... Anti-bullying campaign amps up at 98.7 FM (Mon, 12/13)

 


 

AmericaJR.com

102.9 W4 Country (WWWW-FM) is collecting Toys for Tots during its annual Christmas Crusade for Kids at the Kroger store located at 400 S. Maple Road in Ann Arbor. The toy drive began on Friday, Dec. 10 and ends on Wednesday, Dec. 15. The radio station has not set a goal, however last year it raised 16,000 toys and $16,000 in cash donations. The entire W4 air staff will broadcast live all week long from inside the grocery store. Although the economy is still in bad shape, some say we are out of the recession.

"We're here, we do it annually, collecting toys and you've got to think from baby to teenager," said Mandy Cooke, mid-day host on W4 Country. "We're also taking cash and check donations here until Wednesday. Cash donations are much appreciated if you don't know what to get. I'm not sure if there's any goal, it's just a lot. That's my goal, bring a lot."

W4 Country is on location at the Kroger store asking for your toys and monetary donations from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Sunday and from 6 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Wednesday. This is the seventh year the radio station has been hosting the toy drive... 102.9 W4 Country hosting Toys for Tots drive (Sun, 12/12)

 

Television: Newsmakers Dec. 17, 2010

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DPTV series 'Leaders on Leadership' adds coverage across most of Lower Peninsula

Beginning January 2011, television viewers in mid- and northern Michigan will get an opportunity to delve into the minds and motives of business leaders through their local PBS station. WCMU, Central Michigan University Public Television, will begin broadcasting "Leaders on Leadership" at 3:30 p.m. Sundays starting January 2.

Each half-hour edition seeks to reveal the character, drive and ambition of chief executives renowned for their leadership in guiding local, national and international organizations.

"Leaders on Leadership" will continue to air in Michigan on producing station WTVS Detroit Public Television Sundays at 11 a.m., repeated Wednesdays at 5:30 p.m. It also airs on WGVU Grand Valley State University Public Television from Grand Rapids, and WGVK in Kalamazoo. The addition of WCMU brings the show to most residents of Michigan's Lower Peninsula and some parts of the Upper Peninsula. It is also available at www.dptv.org On Demand.

"Leaders on Leadership" is a partnership between the Wayne State University School of Business Administration and Detroit Public Television (DPTV), and is made possible by a grant from Greenleaf Trust. Currently in its seventh season, the program is hosted by Larry Fobes, director of Wayne State's Institute for Organizational and Industrial Competitiveness (IOIC). The show won a Michigan Emmy for Best Interview/Discussion Program in 2004.

"I appreciate the range of guests on this series, and especially its strong emphasis on Michigan leaders," said Linda Dielman, TV program/outreach manager for Central Michigan University Public Television. "We're always eager to air Michigan-produced programs of this quality."

Dan Alpert, senior vice president of DPTV, said, "There are important lessons for people in all walks of life in these interviews with successful organizational leaders. WCMU's airing of the series will help ensure that more people in Michigan will benefit from the business knowledge of Larry's guests."

"The School of Business Administration at Wayne State University is always eager to extend the opportunity for residents of Michigan to benefit from our extensive range of outstanding academic programs as well as unique outreach initiatives like 'Leaders on Leadership'," said Dean David L. Williams.

 


 

WXYZ TV launches community impact project: Detroit 2020

Unify. Inspire. Act. That's the motto of Detroit 2020, a groundbreaking project that WXYZ-TV will launch on January 4, 2011. Detroit 2020 is a decade-long, multi-platform, regional-impact initiative, designed to dramatically change the course of Metro Detroit.

For generations, Detroit-area viewers have relied on WXYZ to address issues, encourage debate and help find solutions to the challenges in our communities. Building on that legacy, Detroit 2020 will tackle some of the biggest issues facing Metro Detroit--including education, race relations and transportation--through news stories, special programs, town hall meetings, commentaries and community service efforts.

"The goal of Detroit 2020 is to significantly improve the economic, emotional and mental well-being of Detroit and the region by the end of the decade," said WXYZ Vice-President and General Manager Ed Fernandez. "Detroit 2020 will encourage dialogue, demand solutions, unify efforts, and provide a voice for all communities."

News stories planned during premiere week include:

  • Jan. 4 - "A Tale of Two Cities," a feature that explores the possibilities of change to move the region forward as well as the consequences of neglect
  • Jan. 5 - a profile of one Detroit neighborhood that has been revitalized
  • Jan. 6 - a look at what's working in one industrial city in the country and the lessons that Detroit can learn from this success
  • Jan. 7 - a segment focusing on the challenges many suburban communities are facing as they struggle with job loss and income reduction

Through a companion Web site, www.Detroit2020.com, as well as Facebook and Twitter, viewers will have the opportunity to voice their opinions on important community issues and share their stories, photos, and experiences. Detroit2020.com will also provide valuable resources that will encourage community groups and individuals to take action.

"It may seem like a daunting task," said Fernandez, "but we are beginning to realize we are all Detroiters, we are all invested in the prosperity of our region, and we are all united in a desire to bring about change. "

 

WKAR senior capital correspondent and Off the Record anchor Tim Skubick has conducted a final hour-long exit interview with Michigan Governor Jennifer Granholm which is scheduled to be aired on Wednesday, Dec. 29, on Michigan State University public TV outlet WKAR-TV Channel 23 in Lansing. The special, which airs at 8 p.m., will mark WKAR's first production in high definition.

Recorded at the governor's residence on Dec. 17, the program also will be seen on public television stations throughout the state (check local listings). It also will be re-broadcast on WKAR at 11 p.m. on Friday, Dec. 31; and at 11 p.m. Monday, Jan. 3, on WKAR World.

The governor will discuss her eight years in office, provide insight to the position's challenges, and reflect on the highlights and difficulties during her administration. During the second half of the program, she is joined by First Gentleman Dan Mulhern.

"This is the governor's final exit interview," said Skubick, who has covered her for the past 12 years - four as attorney general and eight as governor. "She saved the last one for us and it is the only one being produced at the executive mansion."

The program continues WKAR's tradition of producing at-home conversations with the governor, which began with Gov. William Milliken. Tim Skubick has has recorded conversations with every Michigan governor that has been in office during his 40 years of covering Michigan government and politics.

The program will be available for online viewing at video.wkar.org immediately following the Dec. 29 broadcast and for purchase on DVD.

'An Evening with Governor Granholm' is a co-production between WKAR and Michigan State University's College of Communication Arts and Sciences.

 

The Michigan Association of Broadcasters (MAB) and Michigan Association of Public Broadcasters (MAPB) will produce and distribute the inauguration of Governor-elect Rick Snyder and other elected state officials on January 1, 2011 from 12:00 p.m. (noon) - 1:00 p.m. The program will be the first inauguration to be offered in High Definition Television. It will be available on over 75 local television and radio stations across the state, streamed on their websites and fed in the standard digital format for stations that are airing bowl games and wish to record and air the program at a later time. The broadcast of this inauguration will be aired more widely than any other inauguration in Michigan history.

MAB will provide a hosted feed for the full hour with journalist Rick Pluta, Capitol Bureau Chief and voice of the Michigan Public Radio Network, along with special guest commentator, Kelly Rossman-McKinney of The Rossman Group, a Lansing-based public relations firm. Visit the MAB web site at michmab.com for the audio.

There is at least one commercial television and radio station, along with public radio and TV, carrying the inauguration in every market.

"The broadcast of this event demonstrates the cooperative spirit that Governor-elect Snyder says it will take to solve our problems as a state," says Karole White, President/CEO of the MAB. "Broadcasters have set aside competition and affiliations to bring the inauguration to citizens. If we can do it, then any group should be able to work together to find solutions to some of the state's most pressing issues."

"Broadcasters are expanding their reach by texting the latest headlines, using social media, offering video and audio streaming plus in-depth news articles on their websites. Broadcasters serve their communities and are known for their dedication to public safety through the emergency alert system. Broadcasters offer the best of all worlds in both traditional and new media," says White. "We are so pleased to be able to use the new HD technology for the inauguration."

Click here for a complete list of participating stations in .pdf format.

The Michigan Association of Broadcasters thanks Detroit Public Television and WKAR-AM-FM-DT who are using their technology to provide the inauguration to all commercial and public broadcasters.

 

Michiguide.com 2010 News Archive

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