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WHDH Boston and NBC in Dispute Over New Leno Show

Discussion in 'TV Show Talk' started by LarryFlowers, Apr 2, 2009.

  1. Apr 2, 2009 #1 of 27
    LarryFlowers

    LarryFlowers New Member

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    Ed Ansin, owner of the parent group of WHDH told The Boston Globe he did not believe Leno’s new show would be successful. He said the station would do better financially with a news show that competes with Fox-affiliated WFXT-TV’s highly rated 10 p.m. newscast.

    This prompted NBC Network President John Eckto state that "WHDH would be in blatant violation" of their contract and threatened to strip the affiliate of Network status.
     
  2. Apr 2, 2009 #2 of 27
    cj9788

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    Ansin's Ch 7 In Miami lost NBC pretty much the same way in 1989 or 1990. Back then NBC had value, and he fought to try and keep it and lost. So NBC moved to Ch 4 which was a CBS station, then CBS moved to ch 6 which was independent. ABC stayed on ch 10 then ch 7 became FOX. Then to add to the confusion Ch 4 and ch 6 traded frequencies a couple of years later, so NBC became ch 6 but it was still WTVJ, and CBS became ch 4 WFOR. Before the switch they were WCIX. Miami tv history is pretty interesting, at least to me it is.

    I wouldnt be surprised if Ansin starts to pre empt network programs in boston for breaking local news. If it went out on a police scanner a ch 7 news van was not far behind to break in and give us the dirty laundry.
     
  3. Apr 3, 2009 #3 of 27
  4. Apr 3, 2009 #4 of 27
    joshjr

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    I dont know why it wouldnt be successful. Jay Leno has a much better following then Conan. I think its stupid to change the name of the shows and the time slot. Whats the point really? They are both going to do what they do but with a new show name. I just dont get it.
     
  5. Apr 3, 2009 #5 of 27
    Italia

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    I think this concept will be very popular at first...just like "who wants to be a millionaire". Folks will watch. Then...I feel it will die down, just like "who wants to be a millionaire". By then, there will be multiple primetime talk shows at different times. Watch....that's just the history of television. Something works, copy it.
     
  6. Apr 3, 2009 #6 of 27
    djlong

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    ...and part of Leno's local popularity is that he's from the area. Perhaps Ansin, not being local, doesn't know that.
     
  7. Apr 3, 2009 #7 of 27
    bicker1

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    In response to WHDH's intention, NBC says that such an action would violate affiliate agreements. WHDH says, in response, that their affiliate agreement allows them to do what they suggest, and NBC has not yet said that it doesn't.
     
  8. Apr 3, 2009 #8 of 27
    Stuart Sweet

    Stuart Sweet The Shadow Knows!

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    DJLong beat me to it but yes, Mr. Leno hails from Andover, MA.

    I think this is a chest-beating exercise and really, more than anything shows how weak NBC programming is overall that a key affiliate would try this.
     
  9. Apr 3, 2009 #9 of 27
    LarryFlowers

    LarryFlowers New Member

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    Mr. Ecks at NBC was Very specific, that their contract does NOT allow this to happen.


     
  10. Mark Holtz

    Mark Holtz Day Sleeper

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    Boston is the #8 television market, so naturally NBC will enforce the contract.
     
  11. phrelin

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    Let's see. NBC eliminates an hour of expensive scripted programming for financial reasons. According to the Variety article: "Sunbeam chief Ed Ansin, who owns WHDH, told the Boston Globe that he decided to replace Leno with news because 'it fundamentally is a better financial plan for us.'"

    This raises interesting questions. How much is NBC charging for another hour of night talk show? Unlike primetime hour programs, those late-night talk shows are full of local ad spots. But NBC is likely to maintain the primetime advertising to be predominantly national ads even if it is Leno.

    Obviously, it's revenue producing to move the local news from that 35 minute slot that NBC affiliates have now to an hour followed by syndicated shows like Fox affiliates. The local station gets 100% of ad sales for an hour and 35 minutes a night.

    I'm not so sure NBC has a clean contract case here.
     
  12. bicker1

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    Time will tell who's correct.
     
  13. Geronimo

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    I have not read the contract but this practice certainly used to be fairly common.
     
  14. djlong

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    Ummm.. NBC isn't charging WHDH. Networks PAY the local affiliates to air their programs (with a few exceptions)
     
  15. mreposter

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    If the Boston station succeeds and gets better ratings and ad revenue from news than from Leno, look for a bunch of other stations to do the same. That's probably what NBC is most afraid of - losing control of the 10pm slot. And who wants to sit through 90 minutes of local news to wait for Conan to show up?
     
  16. bicker1

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    There wouldn't be any practical way to objectively prove that, either true or false. All they need to do is get better ratings from their 10PM newscast next season than they get from their news at 11PM now, and they can claim victory.
     
  17. Pete K.

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    Which would you rather sit through? 1) "Coming up, breaking news, "Did you watch the ER finale? We'll go live to a local watering hole... Plus a 7 exclusive, are you getting ripped off by your hairdresser? All that and we'll tell you when its going to rain..."
    2) Leno monologue
    3) Something on CBS
     
  18. phrelin

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    Actually, things have changed though no details have ever been made public. From a TV Week story dated July 8, 2008:
    After that, some station owners started pushing back and rumor had it there were some heavy negotiations. But that was done behind closed doors so we don't know how much things changed.
     
  19. rnbmusicfan

    rnbmusicfan Legend

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    NBC obviously doesnt want WHDH to do this because it would begin a bad precedent for NBC affiliates power over the NBC network. NBC can probably find in its contracts that NBC primetime is still 8-11 ET, so WHDH can't do this. It's understood the Leno show won't bring high numbers like a scripted series that NBC had 10-15 years ago did, and even NBC knows this. So, stations would want the 10pm hour for news to compete against FOX. However, its WHDH that is trying to have NBC's cake and eat it too.

    That is, WHDH wants NBC affiliation for the Today show, which is still #1, the weekend programming which is better filler over the alternative, that is infomercials, the 8-10 primetime hour, live pro sports like NFL, but be able reschedule the last primetime hour of network NBC, that is Leno, to later to fit the wants of running local news earlier instead, because NBC network tv isn't as strong as it once was.

    One smart thing Ed Ansin did was buy out WLVI from Tribune. It prevented NBC from easily buying that station and moving the NBC over to WLVI, like how NBC did in San Francisco, that is move NBC affiliation from a much smaller station of WB/CW to it.

    I think it's just a negotiation ploy of some sort and Leno will debut at 10 on WHDH.

    If NBC and WHDH can't agree, NBC should say dump WHDH/Ed Ansin. Letting WHDH get away with it, sets a precedent of being run over, and it dilutes the entire Leno contract. For a new affiliate, affiliate with WMUR for New Hampshire coverage, while start up a new Boston NBC on either WSBK (assuming they can buy from CBS at a good deal), WMFP, or WNEU. To placate ABC, Hearst can change affiliations at KSBW in Monterey, CA to ABC, giving ABC OTA coverage in a market as a gain to WMUR loss.
     
  20. phrelin

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    What I'm wondering is about the financial arrangements. You have to remember that "Law & Order", "Law & Order:SVU", and "ER" pulled in acceptable audiences in the 10-11 slot that makes money for everyone and provides an OK lead into the local news. But Leno in the 10-11 slot 5 days a week? That's a potential financial disaster for the local stations.
     

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