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Letters to the Editor: April 2003 Issue

Standing Up To The FCC
“Media Consolidation Nation,” February 2003, page 18
I wanted to write and thank you for having the courage to write an informative and refreshingly critical article on the FCC and media consolidation. Now, when will you submit a version of your terrific article as an op-ed piece for the Wall Street Journal, LA Times, or the Boston Globe? You [Deborah McAdams] have a keen, insightful voice that needs a bigger audience than DigitalTV. Do let me know when you’re next in L.A., as I’d like to take you to lunch.
Mark Grasso
Regional Sales Manager
Western Region/Latin America

Editorial Extinction?
“Editorial Chops,” February 2003, page 6
I too remember growing up and listening to WOR...but it was radio then and it was wartime. There were newscasters and there were commentators, and there was a difference. [Edward] Murrow, [HV] Kaltenborn, WOR’s Gabriel Heatter, and many others left a lasting impression on this youngster. I consider myself very fortunate to be able to comment on both the serious and the not so serious in my South Florida environment. I am also very fortunate to have been recognized in your February commentary. Thank you for your kind words and recognition. Your readers and my friends—many not heard from in quite some time—have called and written.
Murray Green
Former General Manager
WFLX (Fox), West Palm Beach, FL

I read your commentary decrying the lack of television editorials and want you to know that viewers in San Diego have never lacked for editorial opinion at KGTV, the ABC affiliate.
KGTV has presented editorials, editorial replies, and viewer comments on a daily basis for at least the last 25 years, and probably longer.

Our editorials air after our morning news, after our midday news, and after our 5 p.m. newscast, seven days a week. We don’t shy away from controversial issues. We have endorsed candidates, and we take positions on ballot measures. This week, we are taking a position on a movement to recall the governor of California. The editorial board is made up of department heads and staff members who meet weekly to discuss issues and vote on the positions the station should take.

Our editorials are posted on our website,, along with discussion boards inviting reader/viewer comments.
Lee Swanson
Executive News Producer
KGTV (ABC), San Diego, CA

I came across your magazine last week, and I noticed your commentary regarding station editorials. I enjoyed your insights regarding the relative lack of editorials in recent years. However, I believe the station to which you refer should be WPIX, not WOR. To my recollection, Richard Hughes was the station executive who did these editorials, always with the tag line, “What’s your opinion? We’d like to know.”
David Krell
PRIME (Professionals in Media and Entertainment)

I think you jogged my memory. Yes, the tag line “What’s your opinion? We’d like to know” was delivered by Richard Hughes. It was a long time ago, during the days when I would have to ask my parents’ permission to stay up late to watch Dragnet, which followed the 10 p.m. news and the editorial. Those were also the days of the WOR editorials and viewer responses and the WNEW (now WNYW) Metromedia station’s “It’s 10 p.m., do you know where your children are?”

Bravo for “Editorial Chops.” I’ll be interested in knowing how people respond to your challenge. I love it when leaders challenge folks to become courageous.
Harlan Johnson

Unfortunately, not a lot. —Michael

The Upscale HD Viewer
“HDTV Viewers: The New ‘Upscale’ Demo,” February 2003, page 21
Excellent article. I agree with everything you wrote. I have been producing HD content for about 17 years and pretty soon I hope to be an overnight success.
Randall Dark
HD Vision
Studio City, CA

Thank you for “HDTV Viewers: The New ‘Upscale’ Demo”! I wholeheartedly agree with your opinion and appreciate your willingness to stand up for consumers who can see the difference between HD and NTSC and who are willing to make the investment in it.

I’ve been an HDTV content producer for eight years and share your views regarding the incredible opportunities afforded to broadcasters through HDTV. As a consumer with an HDTV, I will readily change my viewing loyalty from one program or affiliate to another in order to watch programming in high def. I still don’t understand why news directors don’t see this. They have a perfect opportunity to pull viewers from their competition simply by offering HD.

You hit the nail on the head.
Kristen Cox
President and CEO
16x9 Productions

I think your article in the latest Digital TV-Television Broadcast is right on the mark. This is an audience—small but growing rapidly—spending money on HDTVs and home theater equipment.

Here in Dallas, one of my pet projects will be to find out how big this early adopter group is currently, how fast it’s growing, and what I can produce to service them and make money. Thanks for the idea. I’ll let you know how things come along.
Tim Werner
Freelance HD Editor
Former Senior Editor
HD Vision, Dallas, TX

Nightly Business
“Dollars And Sense: Nightly Business Report’s Rodney Ward and Wendie Feinberg,” February 2003, page 28
I enjoyed reading your article about two of the people behind NBR. A point of order though; I’ve worked at WGCL (formerly WGNX) since the inception of news here (over 14 years as a newscast director and then production manager) and while we’ve had our share of news management changes, I don’t believe there has ever been a Wendie Feinberg employed here as assistant news director or anything else. I’ve racked my brain trying to remember her. Could it be she said she was at the “CBS affiliate in Atlanta”? Before December 1994 that would have meant WAGA.
Jerilyn Jaskowiak
Production Manager
WGCL (CBS) Atlanta, GA

Thank you for your comments. I looked back at my notes, and this was my mistake. Wendie told me she worked at CBS in Atlanta. I looked up the CBS affiliate in the B&C Yearbook 2002-2003 and it was listed as WGCL. Obviously, Wendie was at the CBS affiliate when it was WAGA. My bad. —Sarah