Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Video: Channel 3 Classic Promos from 1985

This is a group of classic Channel 3 Promos from around 1985, courtesy of the "Director's Cut" archives.

This latest batch includes cameos from Jill Beech, Leon Bibb, Steve Browne, Terry Burhans, Jeff Kinzbach, Jane Scott and Jim Donovan.

Feel free to post your own comments and share your memories. Just click on the videos to watch. If you can't view them on this page, CLICK HERE

Spotlight Article: How Commercials Get On the Air - Part I

One of the most important parts of a television station is the commercials. After all, the commercials are what pays for the programming you see on WKYC. Expenses for a TV station are quite high including salaries for staff, costs of buying syndicated programming, basic operating costs and other expenses that it takes to run any business.

But exactly what is the path that a commercial takes from conception to getting on the air? Let's explore the different aspects of advertising beginning this week in a multi-part series.

We have a highly seasoned sales force at WKYC that goes out into the community and actively solicits businesses to spend their advertising dollars with our TV station. Locally, this is a multi-million dollar industry which is not only sliced among the local TV stations, but also satellite and cable TV, newspapers, radio and other emerging technologies including the Internet. We are constanlty competing for advertising dollars on many different battlefronts all at once. And that pie is getting sliced into more pieces every year, especially with a fragile local economy where businesses have either been closing, moving out of town or reducing the amount of money they spend on advertising.

Advertising is as old as the broadcasting business itself. Sometimes, the businesses will seek us out because of specific programs we offer that match the viewers they are specifically targeting (called demographics). But, it is usually the other way around when you deal with businesses on a local level.

Once the client makes a "buy" with us, we must either receive their pre-recorded commercial or we must work with them to shoot & edit a new "spot" (the jargon for a commercial) using our in-house production facilities. While we don't do a lot of commercial shoots at WKYC, we have enough to keep us busy.

For those we must shoot, a script is first prepared & approved by an advertiser or an agency they hire specifically to handle their commercials. We then assign a photographer and producer to either head to a client's business location or to bring that client to the TV station where we can use our own facilities.

The footage is shot and must be edited. This includes adding graphics like phone numbers, sound effects that get your attention and other effects to make the commercial stand out among all the others.

This whole process can be done fairly quickly, as we have an editor who does nothing but edit commercials all day long. In the old days, this involved literally cutting pieces of film together to make the final product. Today, the video is all ingested onto a hard drive and edited using expensive digital editing software that can do really remarkable things.

Finally the spot is finished and the advertiser decides on a schedule with our traffic department. This will be a pre-determined agreement between WKYC and the advertiser of when their commercials will air. Commercial rates vary based on the time of day and by program. We can charge more for higher rated shows which is why the sweeps periods are so important in May and November. For example, our 2006 ratings helped WKYC bring in revenues in the mid- $40 million range last year.

Once the business end of the process is complete, the finished commerical must be put into our video playback server called "Louth" to get it on the air. This part of the process will be discussed next time here on the Director's Cut Blog.

News: NBC Replaces Entertainment Chief

NBC has made it official - Kevin Reilley, President/NBC Entertainment for the last three years has been axed after sagging primetime ratings led the network to re-think its management team.

Ben Silverman, founder/CEO of Reveille and veteran NBCU executive Marc Graboff have been named to serve as Co-Chairmen of NBC Entertainment and NBC Universal Television Studio.

In their new positions, Silverman and Graboff will jointly head all facets of the network's primetime, late-night and daytime programming as well as the digital offerings related to the entertainment division including

In addition, the duo will supervise the network and television studio's creative, marketing, business and financial areas.

Monday, May 28, 2007

News: WABC-TV Has Studio Fire

WABC-TV in New York City was knocked off the air last night after a fire damaged their main, high definition on-air studio. In addition to being use their local news studio, it also houses the "Live with Regis & Kelly" show.

Early reports that a studio light exploded and caught a curtain on fire have been ruled out since all the light bulbs were still intact. Officials now think an electrical outlet in the studio caught fire. The fire quickly spread and also did damage to the facility from both smoke & water damage.

This all occurred just prior to the beginning of their 11 pm newscast...which did not air. Most viewers saw either black or color bars for several hours before the station could resume any sort of programming around 2 am.

To read and watch video about the fire - ironically reported by former WKYC staffer (now WABC) early morning reporter/fill-in anchor Lisa Colagrassi, visit the WABC-TV website: Click Here.

Sunday, May 27, 2007

News: Channel 3 Launches "WKYC Outdoors"

WKYC has launched another new, local website called "WKYC Outdoors" which features valuable information about fishing, boating, hunting, camping, & exploring as the summer season kicks into full gear.

You'll discover a weekly updated Fishing Forecast from Meteorologist Betsy Kling, a calendar of coming events and blogging with Big Daddy, Carl Bachtel.

Check it out:

"WKYC Outdoors" joins the lineup of other WKYC websites including, AkronCantonNews and NorthCoastMoms.

Friday, May 25, 2007

News: New Sony Foldable TV Screen Debuts

Sony has debuted a foldable TV screen with an with an organic plasma display screen.

The panel is made of plastic film and can display video images. It has a 2 1/2 inch display and is .3 millimeters deep - paper thin.

The panel is thinner than liquid crystal or plasma displays and sony says it has better image quality. Sony also introduced a larger computer screen also with electroluminescent tv panel.

Sony hopes to produce an 11" foldable panel by the end of the year.

To view video of the new TV screen from WKYC.COM, Click Here

From the Mailbag: A Note from Virgil Dominic

I would like to share this special email I received today from a person I have always admired in the broadcasting business, Virgil Dominic. Mr. Dominic was an important part of the WKYC family as host of the "TV 3 Eleventh Hour Report."

He would later leave us and become General Manager of WJW, among other positions he has held during a very long and highly successful career in local television.

Without him knowing, I always had a high ambition to work under Mr. Dominic at WJW - though I never got a chance before he retired. Therefore, his comments about the Director's Cut Blog are especially important to me as I continue to grow it:
Hi, Frank....

I just discovered your Directors Cut blog and enjoy it very much. You are a fine writer, your material well organized and easy to understand. I find your blog is an enjoyable and informative way for those of us who used to be in Cleveland television to keep up with new developments in the industry and at your station which I have always respected since I used to anchor there when I first came to Cleveland many years ago. My congratulations to you and best wishes for continued success.

Thank you,
Virgil Dominic

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Spotlight Article: Mobile TV - The Next Chapter in Broadcasting

First, there was black & white TV. Then we had color. Today it's HDTV. But tomorrow is already here with the advent of "Mobile TV" where you can watch TV wherever you go. The sky is the limit, literally. It's the natural next step for a generation who has grown up on instantly connecting to the world at any time.

One of the hot topics this year at the National Association of Broadcasters Convention (NAB) in Las Vegas was how to get the ball rolling on Mobile TV on a massive scale. Broadcasting companies like WKYC's parent company, Gannett, are already planning strategies for the inevitable. If broadcasters can agree on a distribution standard, the content is ready.

Mobile TV is more than just TV you will watch in our's watching real time newscasts and entertainment programming on your cell phones, ipods, and other gadgets currently in the development & production stages.

Part of the plan being discussed is to use some of the TV spectrum being abandoned by broadcasters in 2009 as part of the transition to digital television. Telecommunication companies like Verizon, Sprint, T-Mobile & AT&T are already forming partnerships with broadcasters to offer local content.

Most broadcasters want protection though - and for good reason. They want to be able to keep their local content for their local audiences. For example, WKYC - an NBC affiliate would not want someone in the Cleveland area receiving an NBC affiliates programming in Erie, PA. WKYC would want to be able to sell advertising to its own protected coverage area or DMA.

One idea being proposed is to have a device be configured to receive 2 or 3 local radio signals that will "unlock" it to receive only that area's local station's programming on mobile devices. Once you leave the area, your mobile device would the lock onto a new service area. The down side to this thinking would be in you went to Phoenix, you could no longer get Cleveland programming. So this is an area that broadcasters are still working out.

It's very likely that stations, like WKYC, will begin offering plenty of programming for your mobile devices within the next year or two...this could well include an outlet that allows you to receive our news broadcasts 24/7 on your mobile device.

It's a whole new day for local broadcasters with digital broadcasting. As we have said before, the days of the television "station" is over. Every local broadcaster will be offering content on multiple platforms that is out to attract your eyes.

I welcome your feedback on my article. Please email me at:

News: End of May Sweeps

It's Over!

Wednesday was the last day of May sweeps. It's always a stressful month (along with November) because so much is riding on the numbers. Both periods are critical to determining how much a station can charge advertisers for their commercials.

For WKYC, things are looking good. Here are some of the highlights for Channel 3. These are based on the total amount of viewers who watched. The specific demographic breakdowns won't be out until June.

*WKYC is #2 at 5 AM & 6 AM (nice 25% increase over last book at 6 AM)
*Good Company beats out that other show on WJW at 10 AM...
*Midday News is up year to year
*WKYC is a strong #2 at 6 PM
*WKYC is #1 at 7 for News & #2 in timeslot
*WKYC is #1 at 11 PM (Despite a 21% decrease in NBC's Prime Time audience since Last May)
*Weekend AM is #1 and continues strong

We'll take a short breather and get ready for the less important July book.

Monday, May 21, 2007

Get To Know Team 3 - Betsy Kling

This month's "Get to Know Team 3" spotlight is on Weekend Meteorologist, Betsy Kling. You may not know this, but Betsy and Paul Thomas are married and both came to WKYC from WTLV/WJXX-TV (First Coast News) in Jacksonville, FL in March 2003. Let's find out a little more about Betsy, shall we?

Q: When did you first discover that Meteorology was your calling?

Betsy: I had heard that meteorology was an easy lab science (HA, HA, HA...joke was on me). It may not have been easy but it was certainly fascinating and I was hooked. Pretty funny turn of events for a girl who was terrified of storms and tornadoes (and I am still a little leery).

Q: What was your first job doing weather?

Betsy: I did the weather for our campus news at BGSU (BG24 News). From BG I went to Fort Wayne, Indiana for my first "real" job.

Q: What's your favorite season & why?

Betsy: I love autumn. It really isn't so much for the colors in the leaves or anything, but I like that dry, cool air.

Q: What is your favorite weather "Gadget" to play with Ch 3. Weather Plus Center?

Betsy: I love visible satellite imagery. I still can't believe that we get the detailed pictures that we do from 22,000 miles up. Visible satellite pictures come from cameras on those satellites and can only see the clouds during the day, as it uses the sunlight for illumination. The detailing is amazing. Infrared satellites are heat sensing, so there are times when you can miss some of the warmer (lower layer) clouds, but it can "see" cloud cover at night. Other than that I have a blast with our X-band doppler radar when storms are rumbling through.

Q: What other cities have you worked in?

Betsy: I started in quaint Fort Wayne, Indiana and moved to beautiful Jacksonville, Florida from there. I knew Cleveland was where I wanted to be, and when the opportunity to come home came up I jumped at the chance (my parents are thrilled!).

Q: What was the most memorable weather event you've covered?

Betsy: My first tornado warning. I was so unprepared. You want the story? Okay,...It was a warm and sunny 1997 weekend day in Fort Wayne, Indiana(fast forwarding...) So the first storm comes through and knocks out the power while I am in the shower. No problem...I'll just head to the station to get ready since there is a generator there. What I didn't realize is that a larger and more powerful storm was just starting to move in. I heard the tornado warning on the radio in my car. I ran into the station with wet hair, no make-up, wearing a t-shirt and shorts when an engineer came in with a microphone and told me I was going to be on the air in 1 minute. Ummmmmmm...WHAT! So, needless to say I ended up scaring the viewers more than the storms themselves. I got my feet under me after about 5 minutes, but it was a very bad way to start. Thankfully I am a little better at that stuff now.

Q: What is your favorite food?

Betsy: It isn't so much my favorite food as my favorite food places. Having grown up in Copley most of my favorites are down that way. I love Bob's Hamburgers in Akron (the BEST), Luigi's Pizza in Akron, Durbin's Magic Freeze chocolate-almond ice cream in Barberton, Strickland's strawberry ice cream (all over the place these days), Orange dreamcicle ice cream at Welch's in Norton, Skyline Chili (variety of places) ((4-way with beans and a skyliner - no onions)), my mom's spinach quiche, veggies of all sorts, hot dogs at Jacobs Field, strawberry shortcake, Szalay's corn (I liked it so much I actually worked there as a kid...corn on the cob every day for lunch), Lydia Esparra's beef tenderloin on the grill, and I have to say I make a pretty mean pasta salad in the summer.

Q: What do you do to relax when you are away from work?

Betsy: I picked up tennis last year and I am now become addicted to it. I play twice a week and am in a league right now. I also like to dig around in our garden, hang out with my family, play with the dog and do a little shopping every now and then.

Q: What's your favorite radio station?

Betsy: I typically listen to 102.1fm, but I'll tune in good old WKDD for a little faster pace and WTAM for news/weather/traffic/sports.

Q: If money were no object, what would be your ultimate 2 week vacation?

Betsy: Camping...although since money is no object I would do it in a sweet RV. I would probably head to Alaska and the Northern Rockies (Alaska I've done, the Rockies I haven't). And since money is no object I would make it longer than 2 weeks. ;)

Email Betsy at:

News: New NFL Video Rules

While we are discussing sports happenings today on the blog locally, let's take a look how the NFL has decided to handle the use of video shot by local stations - including ours, even as the "official home of the Cleveland Browns." Again, this is mandated by the NFL and not by the Browns themselves.

The NFL has issued a new set of rules that severely restricts media sites usage of video shot from NFL press conferences, interviews or practices. The rules stipulate a maximum of 45 seconds of video per day, no use of live footage, a 24-hour window for all content and that content must contain links back to and official team sites. Additionally, the video footage cannot be sponsored, and no more than 45 seconds per day of team practice footage.

The good news, perhaps?

The NFL has set no limitations on the amount of talking head video a station uses, as long as that video does not also contain an interview or any press conference footage. As for online usage, the rules allow for up to 45 seconds per day of interviews or press conference footage of a single team, or no more than 90 seconds of multiple team footage. Again, no live footage is permitted, the video window is limited to 24 hours, and everything has to point back to

It seems like the NFL wants to continue restricting the media in order to take away a local stations right to freely cover events so that it may protect its own interests like the NFL Network and other NFL controlled entities. The NFL also recently attempted to ban local stations from shooting video from the sidelines as well.

Let us know your feelings about the rules: Email me at

Friday, May 18, 2007

News: Former News Director "Lands" in Cleveland

Former WKYC News Director Dick Moore has made a stop this afternoon in Cleveland as part of his cross country trip that we have been telling you about. Dick landed at 4 PM at Burke Lakefront Airport and hussled to the Channel 3 studios before heading out for an evening of leisure and a little fun with former co-workers.

Here is a picture of me (left) and Dick (right) in the Channel 3 Newsroom this afternoon. Click on the picture for a full view.

You can continue to view his journey across the country on his blog:

To read our original article - Click Here

Director's Alert: Tom Meyer Joins WKYC

Tom Meyer is joining the WKYC team as "Chief Investigative Reporter."

From this afternoon's press release:


"Tom Meyer, one of Cleveland's most respected investigative reporters, will be joining the WKYC news family as Chief Investigative Reporter," announced WKYC President and General Manager Brooke Spectorsky. "Tom will join channel 3 starting in mid-October and on the air by mid-January" added Spectorsky. "For now, Tom is still under contract with WOIO, so Northeast Ohio viewers will need to be a bit patient before they can see him on Channel 3."

Read the full press release on, Click Here

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Where Are They Now?: Terry Burhans

This month on the Director's Cut Blog, we have been busy tracking down former WKYC Meteorologist Terry Burhans for our monthly "Where Are They Now?" feature.

For those of you watching WKYC in the late 80s/early 90s, Terry was a colorful part of the Channel 3 Weather Team with Meteorologist Steve Brown branded as "Brown and Burhans." His humor and unique style made him one of Cleveland's most talked about personalities on the air at the time. Steve & Terry starred in the station's very first High Definition Video promotional spot.

Today, Terry calls San Diego home. He's currently forecasting at the Fox Affiliate, XETV Channel 6 handling the weekend duties for both the morning and evening broadcasts.

His 10 PM weekend weather reports have been a part of Fox 6 since 2000. Every Saturday & Sunday morning from 7 to 9 am, Terry also does the weather updates for their local show "Fox in The Morning." He reports live from locations around San Diego at interesting and memorable events.

Terry started his broadcast career in Baton Rouge while a Journalism student at Louisiana State University. While in the Army, he trained as a meteorologist. After graduating from LSU with a B.S. in Journalism in 1978, he was off to Chicago to broadcast for the NBC Owned and Operated station, WMAQ.

From there, Terry blew into Cleveland at WKYC. In 1992, San Diego called and he's been there ever since. His wife of 25 years and their 20 year old son live in Tierrasanta,CA. Also since 2000, Terry has taught in the Media Communications Department at Grossmont College.

If you would like to contact Terry, you can reach him at XETV, 8253 Ronson Road, San Diego, CA 92111.

To watch video clips of Terry, click on the video to watch. If you can't see the video below, CLICK HERE

News: Top 25 Television Moments

Our Gannett partner, USA Today, continues its 25th Anniversary celebration with Weekly Top 25 Lists. This week's list looks at the Top 25 Television Moments:

1. 9/11 coverage (2001)
2. Fox Network is launched (1986)
3. "The Oprah Winfrey Show" (1986)
4. "The Sopranos" (1999)
5. "NYPD Blue" (1993)
6. The OJ Trial (1994)
7. "The Simpsons" (1989)
8. "The Cosby Show" (1984)
9. "The Real World" (1992)
10. Johnny Carson's last show (1992)


Monday, May 14, 2007

Director's Alert: Gannett Broadcast CEO to Retire

Roger Ogden, the man who helped change the face of television news, is retiring from the Gannett Co., owner of WKYC-TV.

Most recently, Ogden, 62, was the president and CEO of Gannett's broadcast division - a title he assumed in July 2005 after leaving his 9 year post as President and General Manager at KUSA in Denver.

Ogden, who drove two Denver news operations to the top of the TV ratings during a 22-year career, announced in McLean, Va., that he'll retire on July 2.

Locally, Ogden has been key in Channel 3's sucess...working tirelessly with WKYC Vice President and General Manager Brooke Spectorsky to get the station to where it is today. He was actively involved with representing the affiliates to NBC and helping jump start the first, all digital TV channel called "NBC Weather Plus."

Ogden joined KUSA-Channel 9 (then called KBTV) in 1967, and had a brief stay in Louisville, Ky., before returning in 1981 to become general manager at KCNC-Channel 4. Once again, he rejoined KUSA until his promotion in 2005.

In March 2006, he added the title of senior vice president of design, innovation and strategy at Gannett. Last year, he engineered Gannett's purchase of KTVD-Channel 20 in Denver.

In a Gannett press release, he said, "I've always said I'll know when it's time and that time has come."

News: NBC Announces Its Fall Lineup

To View NBC's Fall Preview: Click Here
UPDATED: 7/17/07

8-9 p.m. "Chuck"
9-10 p.m. "Heroes"
10-11 p.m. "Journeymen"

8-9:30 p.m. "The Biggest Loser"
9:30 pm-10 p.m. "The Singing Bee"
10-11 p.m. "Law & Order: Special Victims Unit"

8-9 p.m. "Deal or No Deal"
9-10 p.m. "Bionic Woman"
10-11 p.m. "Life"

8-8:30 p.m. "My Name Is Earl"
8:30-9 p.m. "30 Rock"
9-9:30 p.m. "The Office"
9:30-10 p.m. "Scrubs"
10-11 p.m. "ER"

8-9 p.m. "1 vs 100"
9-10 p.m. "Las Vegas"
10-11 p.m. "Friday Night Lights"

8-9 p.m. "Dateline NBC"
9-11 p.m. Drama Series Encores

SUNDAY (Fall 2007)
7-8 p.m. "Football Night in America"
8-11 p.m. "NBC Sunday Night Football"

SUNDAY (January 2008)
7-8 p.m. "Dateline NBC"
8-9 p.m. "Law & Order"
9-10 p.m. "Medium"
10-11 p.m. "Lipstick Jungle"

Thursday, May 10, 2007

News: Lester Holt to Anchor "NBC Nightly News" Weekend Edition

Lester Holt will add anchor duties for "NBC Nightly News" on Saturday and Sunday evenings to his roster, effective immediately.

In addition, he will continue as co-anchor for the weekend editions of "Today" as well as a news correspondent and anchor sub for the weeknight "Nightly News," plus file stories for MSNBC.

Lester replaces John Seigenthaler whose contract was not renewed recently due to cost cutting moves by the network.

Also as we mentioned first on our blog, NBC recently launched the nation's first evening newscast in High Definition. Plus, they are in the process of building a brand new, state of the art studio to replace the one that Tom Brokaw and now Brian Williams have been using since 1999.

Brian mentioned last Friday Night before signing off for good from the studio that the set's background has been a looping one minute tape of the MSNBC Assignment Desk in New Jersey. You may have noticed the "hardest working guy" walking into the shot and leaning over once every minute in the background.

In the interim, "Nightly News" is being anchored from a temporary set that was used for its Election Coverage last year. The new studio should be ready to air later this year.

WKYC airs Nightly News every night at 6:30 PM.

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

News: 90% Of Kids Under 2 Watch Too Much TV

I love studies....since I'm more of a numbers crunching geek when it comes to ratings, statistics and such....So here is another one to ponder and this is rather startling:

According to another recent study by the University of Washington, nearly 90% of all U.S. kids who are under the age of 2 - and as many as 40% of babies under 3 months are regular watchers of TV including DVD's and videos.

The American Academy of Pediatrics estimates our kids watch 4 hours of TV every day. They go on to say that they recommend children under 2 not watch any at all. Older kids should watch no more than 2 hours a day of "quality" TV.

The study also finds 29% of parents believe baby-oriented TV and DVD programs offer educational benefits.

Courtesy: University of Washington

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

News: Former Ch 3 News Director Travelling The Country

A number of our readers are local TV folks, so this story is specifically for it relates to former WKYC News Director Dick Moore. Dick was here before Mike McCormick and led Channel 3 to some of its highest news ratings ever.

Dick is currently flying across the country in a 2002 C172SP (N5296Z). It's a fuel-injected, single-engine, four-seat airplane that cruises at 115 knots (125 mph) . Dick is taking a break from his teaching duties in South Carolina to visit locations across the country, including a overnight stop in Cleveland coming soon.
While travelling, he is blogging about his experiences which I invite you to follow along with. It's a look at what life can be after TV. There is hope, folks! His blog is:

Director's Alert: Carole (Chandler) Sullivan Returns to WKYC

Carole Sullivan has rejoined the Channel 3 team it was announced by acting News Director Rita Andolsen. For now, she will be working as a part-time reporter on the 6 p.m. newscasts on Tuesdays and Wednesdays. Her first day back was Tuesday, May 15th.

Carole and her family recently returned to Cleveland and we are thrilled to have her back as part of our news team.
Prior to moving to Michigan to join her husband Mike Sullivan, Carole was co-anchor of "Channel 3 News Today" with John Anderson and Hollie Strano.
Her husband recently joined the Cleveland Browns organization which faciliated her return to the Channel 3 News family.

Monday, May 07, 2007

News: Top News Anchors

The three broadcast network news anchors - Charles Gibson of ABC News, Katie Couric of CBS News, and Brian Williams of NBC News - are known by over three-quarters of Americans, according to a new Gallup poll. Collectively, they are rating less positively by Republicans than Democrats.

Of the three anchors, Couric has the most negative rating.

Poll highlights include:

* 35% of Americans say they watch the nightly network news programs "every day" while another 16% say they watch several times each week. Only 19% say they never watch the evening news.
* 62% percent of Americans have positive opinion of Charles Gibson while 16% have a negative
* Brian Williams' ratings are similar to Gibson's, with 59% of Americans rating him positively and
18% negatively.
* For Katie Couric, 51% rate her positively while 33% rated her negatively.

Read the entire analysis at: Click Here

Courtesy: Gallup Poll

News: On-line TV Viewing Increasing

Almost half of European viewers are now watching TV online according to a news study conducted by StrategyOne for Motorola.

The French are the most avid online viewers, with 59% turning to the web to watch shows, followed by Italians, Brits and Germans.

Some 57% of viewers said they want the ability to go online with their set-top box during a live TV broadcast to check sports statistics or shop for fashion show items while 35% said they want the ability to pause, fast forward or rewind live TV.

The reason this study is relevant to US Viewers is that we tend to follow behind the Europeans in how we adapt new technology, like both digital broadcasting and now on-line viewing.

From the Mailbag: Station Opens

From: Joanne in Cleveland

Q: Who does those opens for your local news? They did a really nice job of transitioning into and out of the sponsor's logo. I've noticed it on the Time Warner Cable opening, but I also noticed the ones for Key Bank and University Hospitals. Very nicely executed.

A: We do most of our graphics in house. We have a super graphics department who use the latest in animation, and more recently - 3D animation - for our show opens and the transitions you see between tapes.

Send your mailbag questions to:

New Feature: Get to Know Team 3 - Chris Tye

This month, I'm adding yet another new feature about working behind the scenes at WKYC...called "Get to Know Team 3." We'll kick it off with WKYC General Assignment Reporter/Fill-In Anchor, Chris Tye -

Q: How long have your been working in the business?

Chris: My interest in broadcasting began at a very early age. It included doing mock weather forecasts on the living room wall and turning curtain rods into microphones around the house. Not a pretty childhood picture, but intriguing nonetheless. I broke into the business, like many do, by way of internships. Growing up in Chicago, I interned at a handful of radio stations (WGN-AM, WBBM-AM, WLUP-FM, WCKG-FM) throughout high school and college. I also interned at WLS-TV in Chicago, as well as WEWS-TV here in Cleveland while I attended John Carroll University. So, I've been involved (unpaid) in broadcasting for thirteen years. I've been paid to be part of it for nine years.

Q: What is your favorite part of your job?

Chris: I get a charge out of two parts of this business in particular: breaking news and feature reporting. Breaking news is great because you're there on the ground floor of a story that could keep the public's attention for weeks, months or years. Collecting reportable details, vetting off-the-record 'tips" to see if they pan out and talking to the key players right off the bat is hugely interesting to me. On the other end of the spectrum, feature stories - stories that delve into great emotion or struggle or success-- are very rewarding. Since I moved to Cleveland almost three years ago I've gotten to meet some people who live extraordinary lives. Being able to meet them and craft their story along-side them is also a treat.

Q: What other cities have you worked in?

Chris: My first on air job was in Traverse City, Michigan at the NBC station WPBN ( In TV-talk, that is market 118. But I didn't work in Traverse City proper. I was a bureau reporter for the town of Petoskey. If you look at the map of Michigan, it is at the very top of the "lower peninsula". I was a one-man-band, a phrase that describes reporters that report, shoot and edit their own work. I had no photographer, no editor - you learn a lot about yourself when you work alone in northern Michigan in February. What I learned most was to appreciate having co-workers. After Traverse City (TC to the locals), I moved slightly south to Grand Rapids, Michigan (GR to the locals). I worked in GR at WZZM-TV ( for four years and loved it. Great people, great friends were made there, and I was able to do enough quality work to become a blip on the radar screen at WKYC. I joined the team here in 2004.

Q: What has been the most memorable story you've covered?

Chris: Each station has opened doors to me that would have never opened if I didn't have a credential as a member of the working press. In Traverse City I was able to report on the engineer that replaces the lights at the top of the very, very tall Mackinac Bridge. The structure that connects the Lower Peninsula to the Upper Peninsula is a stunning structure. More stunning is seeing a man tie himself to the cables of the bridge and walk up and down it. We traveled to the top with him one cold March morning, it was fascinating.

In Grand Rapids I was able to interview the likes of John Kerry, Jesse Jackson and Gerald Ford. Hugely rewarding one and all. I also created a niche reporting franchise we called "Real Life, Real People". These are feature stories that introduced our viewers to some remarkable "everyday" folks. Like the man, at the age of 79 built his own home without any help or machinery, the blind woman who creates artwork that sells for thousands of dollars, and a family who used covert maneuvers to hide the fact that after three years, their serviceman son would be coming home from Iraq. Great stuff.

Q: Who in the broadcast business is your role model?

Chris: Growing up in Chicago I was a huge fan of Ron Magers. Ron was the principal anchor at WMAQ for many years, and then moved to WLS. I always thought he was very polished, very respectful and fair.

In the reporting ranks I remain a huge fan of ABC news correspondent Robert Krulwich (who now works at NPR). He always took an unconventional look at the ordinary stories. That is something I try, but don't always succeed at doing. Other role models include Paul Meinke (WLS-TV), Bob Dotson (NBC News), Boyd Huppert (KARE-11, Minneapolis) and Steve Hartman (CBS News).

Q: What is in your car's CD player?

Chris: I recently moved to the iPod. On the most played list are the bands U2, The Rolling Stones, Ben Harper, Buddy Guy and Sheryl Crow.

Q: What do you do to relax when you are away from work?

Chris: I love to play golf. Often when I work at night (3pm-11pm) I will try and play a round somewhere in Cleveland in the morning. I play with some co-workers and, on occasion, or with people who work the same shift at other stations. I also enjoy traveling and heading back to Chicago for visits with family.

Q: What's your favorite vacation destination?

Chris: I am a huge fan of Ireland. I am heading back to our family's homeland this fall for a golf trip. I also enjoy going back to my old stomping grounds in northern Michigan. It is a great place to vacation if you've never been.

Q: What's your favorite TV show?

Chris: The Sopranos, Curb Your Enthusiasm, Lost and 24 top the list.
Feel free to email Chris: