Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Its a Fact. They Are Different & Wonderful.

I'm from the south...in fact from South Carolina.  Now, I have lived elsewhere at times, and traveled to 40 states and 7 foreign countries.  For me...this is the place to be.

There are many aspects of this region I prefer over everywhere else.  The largest among them has always been southern women.  They think, act and sound differently than say, northern women.  For me its the perfect combination of class, grace, humor, irony, and sex appeal.  Added to the obvious cosmetic superiority, its the sound of a southern woman.  From my mother, to my wife....the sound of the female southern accent is a  remarkable elixir of music, poetry, and earthiness. Please don't confuse redneck for southern.  Rednecks are everywhere......only the south has the southern woman.

Watch this little video and if you don't know someone that reminds you of this group....well as we like to say... you aint from around here.....bless your heart."

Thursday, November 15, 2012

TV - WYFF and The Definition of Editorials

Even though the audience for this blog is nationwide, I wanted to focus on the southeast television market.

The Greenville – Spartanburg area is home to a number of fine outlets and one in particular is representative of a station that does many things well, while at the same time failing miserably in others.

WYFF-TV (channel 4) has been an NBC affiliate for decades and is currently owned by the Hearst Corporation.  Through many years of service to the the two Carolinas and Georgia, TV 4 has grown as a first class new organization while failing to maintain a local service fulfillment.

Back when it was known as WFBC-TV and owned by Multi-Media, it did a remarkable job going beyond the traditional areas, such as network clearance of programs, selling time, airing local news. 
No, back then it actually broadcast the annual Downtown Greenville Christmas parade, had local programming for kids with Monty’s Rascals, Romper Room, and believe it or not even aired the local Soapbox Derby LIVE for several hours each year.  That was then, and as they say, this is now.

While it has expanded its local news from a single 30 minute piece in the dinner hour and the 30 minutes prior to Jack Parr, then Carson, and now Leno to multiple hours each day, the LOCAL aspects of programming have disappeared.  Sitcoms and syndicated programming have filled the slots and programs like Telescope, Rascals, Romper Room, and others have long since replaced with higher margins and less LOCAL effort.

Now, I don’t want to present the impression that the local news programming is weak.  It was and still is the premier outlet with overall vastly superior staffing.  

A good example would be the early morning news  It begins at 4:30 am and wraps at 7 am as stellar lead in to the NBC Today showJeff Hart , Beth Brotherton, Dale Gilbert with the  weather, Jimmy Watt with a very good traffic segment have shown that they can be counted on for a steady and consistent presentation of the news.  Added to the mix is Sean Muserallo who each day is in the field covering either a breaking story or worthwhile feature.  His growth alone is reason enough to watch each day .  No…..TV-4 does a fine job of news around the clock…particularly compared to the fraternity party that the local FOX affiliate (WHNS-21) burbs up each day.  The morning news presentation is not even worthy of a high school produced multi media attempt.  That show, for all of its mistakes, silliness, and giggling is a story for another time.  But before we leave WYFF-TV, we need to assess the pitiful attempt they make at airing what they call an “editorial.”

I have a vision that at some point during a Hearst corporate management meeting, an attorney stood up and reminded those in attendance that each of their properties would be up for FCC license renewal within the upcoming few years, so they needed to do something to bolster their local content programming.  Apparently the suggestion was “lets have a local manager do an editorial regarding a local issue.” Great concept……in the case of WYFF-TV poor execution.

For the last few years they have aired a series of “editorials” that were either self serving, promotional, or patently weak, lame, pointless, without merit……hell, choose any or all of the descriptors.  Recently the VP for WYFF has gone out on a limb and declared,
  • Hurricanes are bad, 
  • The Red Cross is good, 
  • The downtown food festival is good, 
  • Peaches are good for the economy, 
  • People should vote, 
  • Veterans deserve appreciate and 
  • One of the best was what a great job THEY did covering primary elections.

Hearst VP - John Soapes
I grew up with an understanding that editorials, delivered by newspaper management, magazine editors, and television stations, were designed to make its audience think, to take a stand on something controversial, support one candidate over another, and then explain why those decisions were made.  Again, that was my perception of an editorial and WYFF seems to have a wholly different one.  I actually have laughed out loud when I have heard John Soapes  say “we believe that peaches are good for the economy.” Nothing like taking a stand, popular or not, and then offering up some sage words to support your position.

Since iconic television stations like WYFF have abandoned local non-news programming for re-runs, doctors, and judges, is it too much to ask for 90 seconds of substance within the confines of its local editorial?  In recent months their have been ample opportunities to make an impact and actually serve the public more than car commercials, and half ass reality shows.  

  • The removal of a huge number of candidates from ballots,
  • The proposed voter ID law, 
  • The remarkable arrest record of the local law enforcement following acts of violence, or 
  • Support for a Sheriff like Chuck Wright that speaks his mind, answers questions honestly and enforces the law regardless of the popularity of his statements or actions.  
  • Lets not forget  other issues such as closing businesses that are nusenses, 
  • Tearing down abandoned homes that now serve as crack houses, etc.  

Each of these could stand scrutiny(support or condemnation) from a broadcast outlet licensed to serve the community. 

I understand that it is far easier to pick “safe” topics, those that won’t require lawyers, or reap threats of cancelling advertising….but “we believe the community, the audience, the overall population deserve better.”  What are your thoughts?  Does your local market mimic the weak offerings referenced here or do they lay it on the line?  Let us know. Give examples.  Its important to remember that I do not believe that Mr. Soapes is a bad person or doesn't care about the content of his editorials.  I've been told by numerous people is fair and open minded.  I only hope he considers reflecting the values put in place by his predecessors.  Men like Norvin Duncan, Dave Partridge, Charlie Newcomb and Dave Handy (both of WSPA-TV).  

We believe its time for local issues to be dealt with by local media leaders.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Showbiz - Two Giant Egos Collide

Mark Wahlberg
Michael Jackson
The world was reeling...New York was hurting...ari travel had been suspended for several days and then two ego collided.

Michael Jackson and Mark Wahlberg came to verbal blows over who could use the jet owned by Sony Records to escape the aftermath of 9/11 -- and MJ won.

According to a new book called "Untouchable" by Randall Sullivan ... Michael, his kids and several relatives hightailed it to White Plains, NY a few days after the Twin Towers were hit in order to catch a private plane back to L.A. 

But  when M.J. arrived he was confronted by Mark Wahlberg and HIS entourage ... who were also waiting to use Sony's ride.

Sullivan says the duo exchanged verbal blows over who got the plane ... until Sony honchos sent word down that M.J. (as the bigger celeb) was the victor.

Jackson eventually changed his mind at the last minute and wanted to get to L.A. by bus ... so his entourage flew without him.  Jackson then changed his mind again and sent his mother and some relatives on the bus -- and Sony was forced to send a second plane.

The moral of the story is to work for Sony ... they had TWO planes!!!

Friday, November 9, 2012

Music - Stupid Is As Stupid Does.

As if the level of "weird" couldn't get any higher with regard to the the Jackson family...one of the "dimmer" stars of the clan takes it up one more notch.

Lesser known, Jermaine Jackson has filed a request to legally CHANGE his last name ... trading out "Jackson" for "Jacksun."  TMZ reports the reason for the name change is to have a name with more "energy" and "positive feeling". LOL

Jermaine filed a petition for a change of name with L.A. County Superior Court yesterday asking for the change in nomenclature.

In the court documents, Jermaine says he wants to make the change for "artistic reasons" ... but he does not give any further details about the move. It is rumored that he feels he would be a bigger name in the industry with a different name.  Yea...thats his problem....his last name.  More specifically the SPELLING of his last name.  As Mrs. Gump observed...."Stupid is as stupid does."

The request has NOT yet been approved by a judge -- but a hearing has been scheduled.

Barring any crazy legal situations, Jermaine will be required to have his name change announced publicly several times in the next couple of months before it can be made official. A public announcement consists of having the name printed in a local publication ... just like Ron Artest had to do when he changed his name to Metta World Peace.

Monday, November 5, 2012

Music - Suicide Silence Lead Singer Dies

Mitch Lucker

Fans are in mourning over the death of Mitch Lucker, a vocalist for the heavy metal band Suicide Silence who was killed in a motorcycle accident in Huntington Beach.

The band posted a statement on its Facebook page Thursday morning reading, "There's no easy way to say this. Mitch passed away earlier this morning from injuries sustained during a motorcycle accident. This is completely devastating to all of us and we offer our deepest condolences to his family. He will be forever in our hearts."

Lucker, 28, who lived in Huntington Beach, was riding his black 2013 Harley-Davidson south on Main Street about 8:55 p.m. Wednesday when he hit a light pole near the intersection of 13th Street. According to a release from the department, Lucker apparently lost control of his vehicle and was thrown from it after hitting the pole.

The motorcycle continued moving forward after Lucker was ejected and collided with a pickup truck that was traveling north on Main. The driver of the truck was not injured.

Lucker, who was treated at the scene by paramedics, died shortly after 6 a.m. at UC Irvine Medical Center, according to the Orange County coroner's office.

The band has released three albums — 2007's "The Cleansing," 2009's "No Time to Bleed" and last year's "The Black Crown" — and is described on the website of its record label, Century Media, as "the defining modern death metal band for a new generation."

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Deep Thoughts from Shallow Minds

There are times in ones life when instead of searching for something to write about......it just falls into your lap.  Instead of researching examples of the extreme stupid you only have to read the news from "hollyweird."   Sooooo, without further ado, I give you "Deep Thoughts from Shallow Minds."  Todays contributions are from a pair gas bags...........

 Lindsay Lohan offered her unique perspective on the massive hurricane wreaking havoc across the Eastern seaboard.
"WHY is everyone in SUCH a panic about hurricane (i'm calling it Sally)..? Stop projecting negativity! Think positive and pray for peace," she posted on her Twitter page.

Actress Mindy Kaling was also less than impressed with the storm, which has taken dozens of lives.
"9 months from now hopefully we will have some cool Hurricane Sandy babies! On the west coast we never get to bond over weather panic. We're like oh no an earthquake for 2 seconds, then go to spin class or whatever, she wrote.

Monday, October 29, 2012

Music: Madonna Blows It Over Obama

Madonna drew boos and triggered a walkout by several concertgoers after she touted President Barack Obama on her "MDNA Tour" in New Orleans.

The Material Girl asked during Saturday night's performance: "Who's registered to vote?" She added: "I don't care who you vote for as long as you vote for Obama." Drawing boos in touting Obama over Republican Mitt Romney, Madonna followed: "Seriously, I don't care who you vote for ... Do not take this privilege for granted. Go vote."

Madonna is often outspoken. Some Colorado fans, mindful of a mass shooting there, complained she used a fake gun to shoot a masked gunman in a recent concert act in Denver. A Madonna concert in Paris in July drew ire when a video showed a swastika on a politician's forehead.