Monthly Archives: February 2009

Not many folks see Frier’s goodbye on Local 6

Why did WKMG let go longtime anchor Bob Frier? Could be a combination of things — budget tightening, wanting to go in a different direction … yadda, yadda, yadda.

But one key reason has to be Local 6’s ratings. Yes, WKMG’s 11 p.m. newscast — once ranked No. 1 — does well following CBS’ primetime, but the station’s early evening newscasts are ailing. When other stations are promoting their upcoming 11 p.m. shows during network primetime, WKMG has been running spots trying to lure viewers to its 5 p.m. newscast.

And according to, WKMG may need a lot more promos. When Frier signed off on Friday night at the end of the 6 p.m. newscast, fewer than 1,000 homes in the key 25-54 demo were tuned in … and WKMG was the seventh-rated station in that quarter hour.

Here’s the viewer info from Friday evening, from

     Rating Share  
1 WFTV-9-ABC 3.0 13 local news
2 WESH-2-NBC 1.8 8 local news
3 WRBW-65-MyTV 1.7 7 Judge Judy
4 WRDQ-27-Ind .7 3 George Lopez
5 WKCF-18-CW .6 2 Deal-No Deal
6 WOFL-35-Fox .6 2 local news
7 WKMG-6-CBS .2 1 local news

Continue reading Not many folks see Frier’s goodbye on Local 6

5 Orlando stations turn off transmitters tonight

Turn out the lights, the party’s over … in analog.

At 11:59 p.m. tonight, five Orlando TV stations will permanently end their analog broadcasts, entering an all-digital era and most likely making your older model television sets obsolete.

The stations turning off their analog transmitters, according to the FCC: Public Broadcasting stations WMFE-Channel 24 and WBCC-Channel 68, Univison’s WVEN-Channel 26, independent WRDQ-Channel 27, religious broadcaster WTGL-Channel 45.  They’re joining two other area stations that shut off their analog signals earlier: religious station WACX-Channel 55 and Public broadcaster WDSU-Channel 15.

The rest of the local stations — including big-network WESH-NBC 2, WKMG-CBS 6, WFTV-ABC 9, WKCF-CW 18, WOFL-Fox 35 and WRBW-MyNetworkTV 65 — will halt their analog signals in June.

If you get your TV signals via cable or satellite, you’re fine. If you rely on an antenna, then you may have a problem if your TV does not receive digital signals (most older models don’t). You’ll need a DTV box to convert the digital signal to analog. For more information about DTV and how to get a coupon for a DTV box, click here.

Continue reading 5 Orlando stations turn off transmitters tonight

Bob Frier out as anchor at WKMG-Local 6

Bob Frier is out as anchor at WKMG-Local 6. This last newscast will be tonight at 6.

Orlando Sentinel TV Guy Hal Boedeker reports the station and the longtime anchor have “mutually agreed to part ways.”

New arrival Mike Garofalo will become the main anchor along side Jacqueline London. Garofalo came to the station in December and has been anchoring at 4 and 6 with London.

Read Bob’s bio here.

More to come.

CW18 bringing back Steve Wilkos Show

Are you a fan of Steve Wilkos? If so, this should make you happy.

NBC Universal Domestic Television Distribution announced The Steve Wilkos Show has been renewed for a third season by stations across the nation, including Orlando’s WKCF-CW 18.

Wilkos — the former muscle man on the Jerry Springer show — is a veteran of the U.S. Marine Corps, a former Chicago cop, and is now a national spokesman for USA Cares, a non-profit organization that supports military families.

NBCUD said the show has the biggest year-to-year growth of all nationally syndicated strips and hit its all-time-high ratings in recent weekly syndication figures, according to NBCUD.

Read more here.


Continue reading CW18 bringing back Steve Wilkos Show

WMFE, WRDQ, WVEN to turn off analog signals next week

Three Orlando TV stations have notified the FCC they plan to turn off their analog signals next Tuesday — the date originally set for analog’s end.

Public broadcaster WMFE-Ch. 24, independent WRDQ-Ch. 27 and Univision’s WVEN-Ch. 26 all decided not to extend their analog broadcasting to the government’s new cut-off date in June, according to the Orlando Sentinel.

Why turn off the analog signals now and go with only a digital signal? Money. Cash-strapped WMFE can save $10,000 a month by turning off its analog transmitter. “It is a substantial cost to WMFE to maintain the analog signal for four more months,” WMFE president Jose Fajardo said. “In these difficult economic times, this is an unbudgeted cost the station cannot incur.”

All other local stations plan to continue broadcasting in both analog and digital beyond Tuesday. WFTV-Ch. 9 confirmed it keep its analog signal at the new deadline, June 12.

Continue reading WMFE, WRDQ, WVEN to turn off analog signals next week

New news leader? WFTV, WESH battling it out

Could WESH be about to end WFTV’s 30-year reign as the king of TV news in Orlando?

New Nielsen “people meters” data show — and parties at both stations acknowledge — a tight, two-station race between WFTV and WESH for the title of Central Florida’s news leader.

According to Sentinel TV Guy Hal Boedeker, WFTV averaged 48,000 viewers to WESH’s 46,400 at 6 p.m. in the news-coveted 25-to-54 age group. For the demo at 11, WFTV had 43,200 to WESH’s 37,500.

Here’s the amazing part: Among viewers ages 18-to-49, WESH is the No. 1 station at 5, 5:30 and 6 p.m. — 30,000 viewers for WESH to 29,000 for WFTV.

“It’s a two-station race,” WFTV GM Shawn Bartelt told the Sentinel.

WESH GM Jim Carter agreed: “Based on the ratings I see, it’s a two-station race, and closer than it’s been in a long time. We were No. 2 at 11, just slightly behind WFTV. The rest of the time periods, we’re right there with them. The horse heads are next to one other. They’re neck and neck.”

WFTV still leads in the overall household ratings — 128,800 homes to WESH’s 100,100 at 6 p.m. But the demo results are a bit startling and perhaps indicate a shift in Central Florida’s viewing habits.

Read the full story here.

Continue reading New news leader? WFTV, WESH battling it out