On July 21, FOX CT News announced that Jennifer Bernstein has rejoined their news team and will begin on the air August 4th. Jenn worked as a journalist for FOX CT News from 2010-2012, and was, in their words, “the station’s first true multimedia journalist.” Her dedication and innovative work garnered her both an Emmy nomination and the honor of being named “Tribune’s Outstanding Employee of 2010″. After she left the station in 2012, Jenn worked for KYW, Philadelphia’s CBS affiliate, where she covered local and national stories, including the Penn State sex abuse scandal and the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy. She will anchor FOX CT News at 4 as well as co-anchoring “The Real Story” with Al Terzi. We’re excited to see her on our TV’s again!
On July 15, Tribune Co., the company that currently owns the Hartford Courant, confirmed that it will spinoff its publishing business into Tribune Publishing on August 4. The publishing company will include newspapers such as the LA Times, the Chicago Tribune, and several others. While no one has discussed specifically the decision’s implications for the Hartford Courant, it raises many questions about the paper’s future. On WNPR’s news show “The Wheelhouse” this morning, Colin McEnroe and guests Kevin Rennie, Daniela Altimari, Gerry Brooks, and David Collins discussed the possible implications. The Laurel will report more news on what this means for the Courant as it becomes available.
So The Laurel is a site that covers the Connecticut news media, but during the summer we move a little slowly. In fact, quite slowly. Time to catch up on last week’s WTIC-AM/John Rowland developments and throw in our two cents.
Wednesday 7.9.14: From the Hartford Courant’s Ed Mahony & Jon Lender:
Federal prosecutors said Wednesday they intend to tell a jury that when former Gov. John G. Rowland sold his political consulting services, he was secretly selling the muscle behind his long-running political talk show on WTIC-AM radio.
WNPR’s Colin McEnroe once hosted a show during the afternoon drive time slot that was eventually given to Rowland. Here’s his 7.10.14 Facebook post.
If I were a bigger person, I would just leave this alone.
But I’m not, and both Kevin Rennie and I have been essentially making this point for a long time. At WTIC, Rowland was taking money from a candidate and then allowing it to influence what he put on the air. At some point, WTIC needs to apologize for that and make clear that they did not countenance it. I don’t get how the station can ever have any credibility again if they don’t very clearly separate themselves from what he did.
We like the people we know at WTIC, both management and on-air, and appreciate that many of them have worked in this market for a long time. Plus, the station has maintained a local news department. That alone is a huge advantage to the listening public. But we echo Colin’s assertion that WTIC needs to acknowledge what took place and, we think, express remorse. We get that if the FCC and lawyers get involved, then the station will be advised to say nothing. That would be unfortunate for a number of reasons.
One more thing; Rowland’s show was unlistenable. Yes, we know, it had good ratings. We credit that to the fact most people were waiting for traffic and weather. When a host does zero research beyond a few internet headlines, and leans too hard on uninformed listeners, it’s not worth the time and you’re better off listening to Country 92.5 . And this isn’t about political leanings; Rush Limbaugh may be a gasbag but he and/or his researchers have done at least a modicum of homework.
WTIC-AM has a proud legacy it can and should reclaim.
Face the State WFSB 11 am
Host: Dennis House
The race for lieutenant governor
Guest: Heather Somers (R) for LG
Cap Chat: talking about the capital city and the state
Guests: Anthony Price, HEDCO, Thea Montanez, PR consultant, Paul Marte, The Bushnell
Flashback: Death of JFK Jr, report by Dennis House, July 1999
Decision 2014, NBC Connecticut 10:00 am
Hosts: Gerry Brooks, Todd Piro, and George Colli
State Senator John McKinney talks with George Colli about his run for Governor, the differences between himself and Tom Foley, his families influence on his politics and more.
Democracy and Education candidate for Governor, Jonathon Pelto, speaks with Gerry Brooks about his run for the state’s top job.
Christine Stuart of CT News Junkie discusess the McKinney and Pelto interviews with Todd Piro.
CT Capitol Report FoxCT Sunday 10:30 am
Eric Chatman, President of the Connecticut Housing Finance Authority
Jim Kerr, Author “The Executive Checklist”
Adrienne Cochrane, Pres. and CEO of the Urban League of Greater Hartford
The Stan Simpson Show Fox CT Saturday, 6:30 am, online at http://www.ctnow.com/stan
The political season is upon us (wait, you hadn’t noticed?) so the timing is good for NBC CT to launch a Sunday morning political interview program. “Decision 2014″ will air at 10 am as a lead-in to “Meet the Press”. Hosts will include Gerry Brooks, Todd Piro and George Coli. The show will run from now until Election Day. Kudos to the management of NBC CT, whose predecessors relegated Tom Monahan’s “Newsmakers” to 6 am and eventually put it to sleep. It’s great to see more on-air political discourse.
On July 9, 2012, a small group of journalists and entrepreneurs launched CTLatinoNews.com. An online English language news site that reported on Latino related issues, it quickly became the go-to source for balanced and quality news stories for Latinos and non-Latinos alike in the state. In the process, it’s won a National McCormick Foundation award and its reports are routinely picked up by other media – locally and nationally.