Monday, June 29, 2009

Meet the NBC All-Stars: Ann Curry

Ann Curry is the news anchor of NBC News' "Today," America's number one morning news program, and the anchor of "Dateline NBC," the network's award-winning newsmagazine. Curry joined the "Today" show in March of 1997, and in May 2005, she was named co-anchor of "Dateline NBC." Curry also regularly substitute anchors for "NBC Nightly News with Brian Williams."

Curry has distinguished herself in global humanitarian reporting frequently traveling to remote areas of the world for under-reported stories. During the span of one year, from March 2006 to March 2007, she traveled three times to Sudan to report on the violence and ethnic cleansing taking place in Darfur and Chad. While there, she provided in-depth reports focusing on the victims who have been caught in the deadly conflict of that region, and she also conducted exclusive interviews with Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir and Chadian President Idrsiss Deby.

In spring 2008, Curry broadcast live from the Democratic Republic of the Congo where she reported on the horrific struggles of the women and children from the city of Goma. She also traveled to Serbia in 2008 where she examined the deplorable conditions of Serbia's mental institutions. Curry was the first network news anchor to report on the humanitarian refugee crisis caused by the genocide in Kosovo in 1999, reporting for NBC News from Albania and Macedonia.

Curry has conducted numerous exclusive interviews with world leaders and dignitaries including a one-on-one with Dalai Lama during his trip to the U.S amid violence in Tibet in April 2008, and a sit-down with former Pakistan Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto just two months before her assassination in December 2007. Curry also talked to Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari in his first-ever interview with an American news organization.

Other Curry exclusives include Liberia's Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf, the first female elected President of an African nation; the first highly sought after interview with Thomas Hamill, the truck driver for Halliburton subsidiary KBR, who escaped captivity in Iraq; the first interview with accused spy Wen Ho Lee after he was cleared of all charges of espionage against the United States; and the first interview with the parents of the McCaughey septuplets. Curry also repeatedly landed the first exclusive interview with Lance Armstrong after his Tour de France wins.

In July 2006, Curry reported on the Israel-Lebanon war, and she was one of the only American reporters to file stories on both sides of the conflict from Beirut and Northern Israel. In the summer of 2005, Curry traveled with First Lady Laura Bush throughout Africa to examine the continent's HIV/AIDS epidemic, women's rights and education.

She was the first network news anchor to report from inside the tsunami zone in Southeast Asia, filing reports from Sri Lanka for all NBC News and MSNBC programming. As part of "Today's" unprecedented Ends of the Earth series, Curry has extensively examined the effects of climate change traveling to Antarctica and the South Pole in November 2007, and climbing Mount Kilimanjaro in November 2008.

In the first two weeks following the attacks of September 11, Curry reported live from ground zero every day. When the United States bombed Al Qaeda targets in Afghanistan in November 2001, she reported extensively from the USS Theodore Roosevelt in the Arabian Sea, and landed the first exclusive interview with the war's military commander, General Tommy Franks. Curry reported from Baghdad in the weeks leading up to the war in Iraq, and then from the USS Constellation as the war began, interviewing fighter pilots who flew the first wave of bombing runs over Iraq. She also filed reports from inside Iraq, from Qatar, and Kuwait during the first weeks of the war.

Curry first joined NBC News in August 1990 as a Chicago-based correspondent. In 1992 she was named anchor of "NBC News at Sunrise." She later helped launch MSNBC and then became news anchor at "Today." Before coming to NBC, Curry was a reporter for KCBS in Los Angeles. In 1981, she was a reporter and anchor for KGW, the NBC affiliate in Portland, Oregon. Curry began her broadcasting career as an intern in 1978 at KTVL, in Medford, Oregon, near her hometown, rising to become that station's first female news reporter.

Curry has earned four Emmys Awards, four Golden Mikes, several Associated Press Certificates of Excellence, two Gracie Allen Awards, and an award for Excellence in Reporting from the NAACP. In June 2007, Curry was honored with the Simon Wiesenthal Medal of Valor for her extensive reporting in Darfur. She has been awarded by Americares, Save the Children, the Anti-Defamation League as a Woman of Achievement, and the Asian American Journalists Association, receiving its National Journalism Award in 2003. She has also won numerous awards for her charity work, primarily for breast cancer research.

Curry graduated from the University of Oregon School of Journalism in 1978.

Source: NBC

Friday, June 26, 2009

Spotlight Feature: Dealing With Multiple, Breaking News Stories

by Frank Macek

In the 15 years I have been working at WKYC, Thursday had to be the one day where more breaking stories happened at once than I had ever seen. On September 11th, 2001, for example, we all focused on one big event. But, what happened on Thursday can quickly become a news staff's worst nightmare.

Earlier in the day, we had the confirmation the Cavs acquired Shaquille O'Neal and a new day was beginning in Cleveland. This was a huge story in itself. Besides Lebron, Shaq is the biggest player to come to the Cavs in recent years.

Cuyahoga County Commissioner Jimmy Dimora unloaded both barrels on his Republican critics, denying any wrongdoing and getting a lot off his chest.

We heard the bad news Farrah Fawcett lost her battle with cancer.

Severe weather was breaking out across northeast Ohio. The first round of storms brought several thunderstorms warnings. The second round looked even more threatening as it headed across the lake and began to intensify just in time for the start of the 6 pm newscast.

Then we heard the shocking news that Michael Jackson was being rushed to the hospital. We wondered if this was just another chapter in the entertainer's saga or if something bigger was at hand.

Soon, we found out as online and news sources began to confirm the worst: Michael Jackson was dead at age 50.

Five big stories...the last two were late breaking...what do you lead with?

That was the question our news team and other stations in the city had to face. Which was more important? On any other day, they all could lead the newscast.

But since local stations usually give precedence to a local story lead first, it was logical that we would acknowledge the Shaq deal, then get right to weather. Storms were potentially the most life threatening to our viewers. We were still waiting for official confirmation of Jackson's death.

That was the decision.

Following weather, it was to the Michael Jackson story, the full Shaq deal, and Dimora. Farah Fawcett would wind up further down the rundown.

These types of decisions are what the producers and news management face every day. They are decisions that must be made almost instinctively.

However, Thursday was an exceptional day. How would you have handled the day? I think our team played it just right.

News: NBC Announces Fall Premiere Dates

NBC has released the premiere dates for our new and returning series on Channel 3 this fall.

  • 9/13: Football Night in America at 7 pm; NBC Sunday Night Football at 8:15 pm
  • 9/14: The Jay Leno Show at 10 pm
  • 9/15: The Biggest Loser at 8 pm
  • 9/17: Saturday Night Live Weekend Update Thursday at 8 pm; Parks and Recreation at 8:30 pm; The Office at 9 pm; Community at 9:30 pm (Community moves to Thursdays at 8 pm on October 8)
  • 9/21: Heroes at 8 pm
  • 9/23: Parenthood at 8 pm; Law & Order: SVU at 9 pm
  • 9/25: Law & Order at 8 pm; Southland at 9 pm
  • 9/26: Dateline NBC at 8 pm; Saturday Night Live at 11:30 pm
  • 9/28: Trauma at 9 pm
  • 10/15: 30 Rock at 9:30 pm

Promo: Channel 3 News - People & Invitation

Here are two of our brand new Channel 3 News promos and our connection to the people of our community.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

News: DTV Readiness Improves Slightly Following The Transition

The Nielsen Company reported Wednesday that 2.1 million American households, or 1.8% of the U.S., still could not receive digital television signals through the week ending June 21st. This is an improvement of 400,000 homes since the week of the June 12th digital television transition.

In the Cleveland/Akron/Canton market the number fell to 38,276 households from nearly 55,000 prior to June 12th. Still, this number represents 2.51% of all local viewers who are not receiving digital tv signals "over the air."

One factor playing into these numbers may be these households can still get limited signals from low power tv stations that were not forced to switch to digital.

Across the nation, Nielsen estimates 59% of the completely "unready" homes receive at least one low power station or a foreign station from Mexico or Canada that also remain analog.

And in many markets, an average of 3.6 low power stations remain available to viewers who may be content with that limited programming, for now.

Source: Nielsen

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

"Tonight" Sidekick Ed McMahon Dies In LA At 86

LOS ANGELES - Ed McMahon, the loyal "Tonight Show" sidekick who bolstered boss Johnny Carson with guffaws and a resounding "Heeeee-ere's Johnny!" for 30 years, has died at a Los Angeles hospital. He was 86.

Publicist Howard Bragman says McMahon died early Tuesday at Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center surrounded by his family.

Bragman didn't give a cause of death, saying only that McMahon had a "multitude of health problems the last few months."

Source: The Associated Press

Monday, June 22, 2009

News: Forests Becoming Dumping Ground For Old TVs

Special to the Director's Cut
By Glenn Farley

A few miles from Washington's Interstate 90 there is a pristine waterfall feeding a crystal clear stream.

At the base of that waterfall sits two old analog TVs and a computer monitor.

Somebody picked this spot to throw them away.

Friends of the Trail, a non-profit organization based out of North Bend, specializes in cleaning up debris and garbage left in the forest.

Wade Holden runs the organization.

He says they're finding lots of TVs dumped, and even shot up in places where people do target practice.

"I'm sure there's lots of people doing the right thing. There's always going to be that small percentage of people who don't," said Holden.

The Washington state Department of Ecology says 15 million pounds of TVs, monitors and other hazardous electronics were legitimately recycled so far this year, and still, people bring TVs out to the woods to dump them or shoot at them.

Friends of the Trail says the DTV transition has made it worse.

"It's probably several hundred, I would say, so far this year," said Ed Dodd, also with Friends of the Trail.

It's hard to imagine why people go to the trouble of ditching their old technology out in nature when they can do it in town for free.

Former WKYC Graphic Artist Brian Chalmers Passes Away

Our heartfelt condolences to the family and friends of former WKYC graphic artist, Brian Chalmers, who passed away suddenly over the weekend.

Brian spent a decade as part our WKYC family and was responsible for many of the daily news graphics you saw on Channel 3 News.

As many of you know, Brian was also well known for his next generation work on the WMMS Buzzard logo that was originally brought to life by David Helton.


The memorial service for Brian has been moved to the North Royalton Christian Church, 5100 Royalton Rd. (Rt.82) in North Royalton this Saturday, June 27, with visitation from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., followed by the service at 1 p.m.

The church is just west of State Rd. (Rt.94) on the north side of Royalton Rd.

You can leave your thoughts on Brian's facebook page: CLICK HERE

John Gorman has a nice tribute to Brian at the following link: CLICK HERE

Friday, June 19, 2009

News: 2009 Excellence In Journalism Award Winners Announced

Congratulations are in order to several of my WKYC colleagues, once again.

WKYC-TV won four awards including a first place award for Television Spot News at the 2009 Ohio Excellence in Journalism Awards at the Press Club of Cleveland. The event was held Friday evening at the Marriott Downtown Cleveland at Key Center.

Here is a list of WKYC winners:

1. Television Spot News - First Place
Paul Thomas, Mike Greene, Danielle Fink
"Officer Owens Shot"

2. Television Spot News - Second Place
Danielle Fink, Randy White, Brian Johnson
"Fuel Tank Rescue"

3. Television General News - Second Place
Dave Summers
"At the End of the Day"

4. Television Human Interest - Second Place
Monica Robins, Sarah Montgomery, Shane Snider
"Sleep Deprivation"

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Behind The Scenes: WKYC Tower Construction

It's finally over - the DTV transition.

As many of you know, the entire engineering team of WKYC worked their butts off to make this happen on time and to give you a much improved "over the air" signal after years of us being stuck on digital channel 2.

One of those actively involved in the construction of our new tower and transmitter, Dave Kushman, built a brand new webpage where you can see the behind the scenes.

Our sincere thanks to Dave and everyone else involved in making WKYC the best television station in Cleveland.

To visit Dave's page: CLICK HERE

Friday, June 12, 2009

News: Al Roker Visits The West Side Market Friday

CLEVELAND -- You see him every morning live on the Plaza in New York City. He is the NBC Today Show meteorologist.

Al Roker took the show on the road Friday and returned home to Cleveland.

Roker was live at the West Side Market and even took some time to talk with our own Mark Nolan and Hollie Strano.

You might remember the days when Al was a meteorologist for WKYC.

News: WKYC-TV Channel 3 Launches "Hero Central"

Channel 3 is unveiling a new series of reports we are calling "Hero Central," where we spotlight people taking the initiative to help others in these trying times.

Our first spotlight focuses attention on what you can do this weekend to help fight a growing problem in our communities: hunger.

Nearly one in every four Ohio children is listed as "food insecure," which means they don't know where their next meal is coming from.

Channel 3, in partnership with the Cleveland FoodBank, the Cleveland Indians and Giant Eagle, are helping to address the problem this weekend.

Kids who bring a non-perishable food item to this Sunday's Indians game will get a free ticket to that night's game or tickets to any other game that falls on a "Kids Fun Day."

Adults who bring non-perishable items to Monday's or Tuesday's game will be given the same offer.

Giant Eagle will then match the amount of food donated and donate the entire amount to the Cleveland FoodBank.

"Over recent months, we have noticed our shelves are more and more bare," says Lou Keim, of the West Side Community Corner in Cleveland, a facility that helps families in need of food.

"We are seeing a lot of families that we saw years ago, who thought they were done needing our services, but they are back," Keim says.

Among them is Amanda Voytovich, a mother of two who is going back to school to try to get a job as a nurse's assistant.

"I come here to get food for my son as often as I can," she says. "I always tried to help the community, and now the community is giving back to me."

DTV Arrives: Television Stations End Analog Broadcasts

Special to the Director's Cut Blog
By Mike O'Mara

The dawn of digital television is getting a big reception today. But the big question is whether some TV owners will be getting any reception at all.

History was made a few seconds after 10 a.m. this morning on WKYC TV3 as Michael Cardemone said, "Good morning! welcome to 'Good Company' today." Regular television programming in analog was suddenly over for WKYC. The digital age for television had truly begun.

Thousands of old unconverted television sets went to a silent black screen across Northeast Ohio. For viewers who had not updated their old analog televisions with a digital converter box and a good antenna, life became challenging.

The switchboard at WKYC lit up. Receptionist Katrina Thompson and a phone bank of engineers were ready for the outpouring of calls.

"Hi. I am not getting any signals on my TV. What happened?", said one of the 300 callers.

On Fulton Road, at the DTV Walk-In Help Center, volunteer Irma Colon has been answering questions all day.

"The key is getting people to go to the TV menu and do a re-scan of the channels," said Colon. "You wouldn't believe how many people have the converter box but forget to scan the channels."

Israel Torres and his mother came to the center for help. "I should have taken care of this before," said Torres.

He added, "When I turned on the TV this morning I went 'uh-oh!' It's like now, OK, I've got to do this after putting it off for too long."

Conversion day just happened to also be trash day in the City of Cleveland. All across the city, we found televisions dumped on the tree lawn.

Melvin Demmmings stopped his city dump truck and said, "Oh, we've been seeing a lot of TV's today. You wouldn't believe how many we've picked up."

Liz Fontanez watched the crew load her old TV into the compacter. "My kids bought all new TV's," said Liz, "so we didn't need the old analog one. I'd rather switch than fight."

WKYC is a "nightlight" station for the Cleveland/Akron/Canton market. Those who have not yet made arrangements to receive a digital signal will see information instructing them how to do so in both English and Spanish. The information includes addresses of walk-in help centers and phone numbers for more information. You can also log on to for help on-line.

It's estimated that more than 1 million homes are unready for the switch. Cable and satellite subscribers won't be affected.

The changeover was supposed to take place last February. But the government's fund for $40 converter box coupons ran out of money, prompting the delay.

The Federal Communications Commission has put 4,000 operators on standby for calls from confused viewers, and set up demonstration centers in several cities.

  • For a list of walk-in centers for Northeast Ohio: CLICK HERE

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Program Note: Frank Macek To Guest on Wave's Morning Show Friday 6/12/09

Your Director's Cut blogger, Frank Macek, will be a special guest Friday morning on the Wave Morning Show with Tom Murphy sometime between 8 and 8:30 a.m.

We'll be talking about the important transition to all digital television that will occur later in the morning at 10 a.m.

Tune in... 107.3, The Wave.

News: WKYC Becomes The "Nightlight" Station for Cleveland Market Friday

Starting Friday morning at 10 a.m., WKYC will become the "nightlight" station for the Cleveland, Akron and Canton market area after tomorrow's switch to all digital television.

That means WKYC's analog signal on Channel 3 will remain on the air for 2 more weeks to help inform digital stragglers about what to do to receive digital TV.

The programming on this channel will only be DTV transition and EAS information in English and Spanish. In other words, if a viewer can see this channel 3 analog signal on their TV, they will see and hear a message that they have a problem.

The programming on the channel will help them understand what they need to do to receive a digital TV signal.

Most of the Cleveland stations will flip the all digital switch at 10 a.m. Friday morning.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Behind the Scenes: 6/10/09

For those of you who love a sneak peak at "behind the scenes", here are a couple of pictures from today taken by my directing colleague Matt Babb.

Romona Robinson hard at work preparing for tonight's 6pm newscast. You can see a bit of Jim Donovan in the background getting ready for tonight's sportscast:

Producer Carrie Young and Director Frank Macek are discussing a couple of ideas for tonight's 11pm edition of Channel 3 News. Does this look staged?:

To See More Photos:

Leno Hits the Air Earlier Than Expected...

Seems that the Jay Leno is already hitting the airwaves.

Starting this week, NBC began airing a nightly promo for Jay's brand new show at exactly 10 p.m. This leads into the hour's regularly scheduled programming.

The new promos have started simple and will get more involved the Director's Cut Blog has learned as the summer moves along - including mini-monologues to get the prime time audiences of NBC familar with Jay and his comedy.

All this leads up to his scheduled debut on Monday, September 14th on NBC and WKYC.

Be watching weeknights at 10 p.m. for the new promos!

News: 2.8 Million Homes Still Unready for Transition to Digital TV

By Frank Macek

In their last report issued on Wednesday before the June 12th switch to all digital tv, Nielsen is reporting that 2.8 million homes across the nation are still unready for the transition with just two days to go.

This number is nearly half what it was in February when President Obama requested a delay from February 17th to June 12th. Nielsen reports the number of homes "unready" fell from 5.8 million to 2.8 million by Wednesday.

Nielsen also estimated that 36% of "unready" TV sets from November 2008 were ready as of the end of April. Most purchased a digital converter box (70%), while some subscribed to cable (20%) and the rest to satellite (10%).

The Cleveland/Akron/Canton DMA is the 12th most "unready" market of the 56 metered by the ratings company. This translates into 3.67% or 55,965 homes that still need to take steps to receive all digital signals by Friday or lose their over-the-air (OTA) coverage.

Nationwide, African Americans and Hispanic homes are disproportionately "unready", while those aged 55+ are most prepared.

If you are wondering how Nielsen determines an "unready" vs "ready" tv set, an "unready" set is one that IS NOT connected to a cable service, satellite service, or a digital converter box - or is a newer tv with an internal digital tuner.

To read or download the complete report: CLICK HERE

Source: Nielsen

Tuesday, June 09, 2009

WKYC's Tom Meyer Receives Ohio AP Award for "Best Continuing Coverage"

Our congratulations to our WKYC colleague, Tom Meyer for his first place finish in the Ohio Associated Press Broadcasters Awards announced Monday in Columbus.

Tom's shocking story "Strip Search" won "Best Continuing Coverage" for a large market television station.

The judges rated his coverage as a "well researched story, with good visuals and sound. Fantastic job not only obtaining the tape, but getting the woman's husband to speak. A shocking story."

For a complete list of winners, you can visit the AP's website: CLICK HERE

Monday, June 08, 2009

News: Cleveland Behind On DTV Readiness

Special to the Director's Cut
By Mike O'Mara

If you are watching Channel 3 using a trusty old TV with a rabbit ears antenna, time is running out.

Friday June 12, we're switching to the new all digital TV format, along with all major TV stations across the country.

John Gensel, a DTV expert at hhgregg is pumped up. "Its finally here, it's the switch over we've all been waiting for and we're finally moving from analog into digital."

But Gensel warns that thousands of people in the Cleveland area are still unprepared for the end of analog when those old sets that have no converter box and no digital antenna suddenly go to hash instead of video.

On Cleveland's near west side, community activists say that several thousand people could be out of luck when DTV takes effect.

Irma Colon runs the DTV walk in center at Lin's Omni Square on Fulton Road.

"Honestly, I thought I would be done with my job in a month", Colon said, "but I think I'm going to be here longer than a month because the people around here are not ready."

Mark Wojciechowski walks up to the help desk and says to Irma, "I have antenna TV and I'm looking to update to something digital. I've heard about those government coupons."

Karen Shepard is next in line with her grandchildren, Tiffany and Sammy. "I ordered a converter box and they sent a coupon," said Shepard, "but the coupon was already expired. What do I do now?".

"Quatro, quatro, quatro," Irma says in Spanish to Maria Rivera, reminding her that there are only four days left to get a converter box. Cleveland is one of the least prepared cities in the country.

Said Colon, "there are so many who aren't ready, especially Spanish speaking people. Many don't speak English very well and they don't understand all the warnings. I am trying to help."

If you need help:

The Cleveland walk in center contact number is (216) 323-3981.


Unless noted below, here are the hours for the following locations.

Now until June 19: Monday - Sunday, Noon - 8 p.m. June 20 - July 31: Friday 4 p.m. - 8 p.m. Saturday and Sunday: 10 a.m. - 4 p.m.


  • Lin's Omni Square 3167 Fulton Road Cleveland, OH 44109 (Bilingual)

  • Five Points Community Center 813 E. 152nd Street Cleveland, OH 44140

  • Fatima Family Center 6700 Lexington Ave Cleveland, OH 44103

  • Harvard Community Services Center 18240 Harvard Avenue Cleveland, OH 44128

  • Merrick House 1050 Starkweather Cleveland, OH 44113

  • Cleveland Public Library Woodland Branch 5806 Woodland Avenue Cleveland, OH 44104

  • City of Lakewood Division of Aging 16024 Madison Lakewood, OH 44107

News: Ad Spending Down 12% in the 1st Quarter

By Frank Macek

Bad news continues for U.S. media companies as ad spending fell 12% in the first quarter of 2009 according to a new report from Nielsen.

All sectors of the media declined $3.8 billion dollars compared to the first three months of 2008, including sales on the web.

Spanish language cable tv, cable tv, internet and network tv fared the best with losses of less than 5% year to year...while national newspaper, spot tv for smaller markets, B-to-B magazines and local Sunday supplements lost at least 25% of their business.

Local television for larger markets was down 15.6% That was actually worse than local newspapers or spot radio.

Some bright spots include an increase in spending on African American television which grew 7.9%.

Direct response advertisements also increased 14% thanks to spending from Heat Surge Heaters, Snuggie Blankets, Rosetta Stone Computer Software and Video Professor Computer Software.

Other increases include quick service restaurants (McDonald's, Wendy's, Burger King, etc.), restaurants, and wireless telephone services.

For the complete news release: CLICK HERE

Source: Nielsen

Don't Forget To Rescan Your Converter Boxes Friday

Finally, the last week of analog broadcasting has arrived for television stations as the "big switch" will occur this Friday, June 12th. The time of the switch will vary by stations, but must be completed by midnight Friday.

For those "over the air" watchers who have not taken steps to make your old sets DTV ready, you need to get a converter box and new digital antenna by THIS Friday. The government still offers two, $40 coupons per households to be used toward the purchase of a new box.

This little box attaches to your old TV set and will begin picking up the new digital TV signals over the air.

Cable and satellite subscribers do not have to do anything.

For those of you who already have a DTV converter box, you will also need to take action this Friday. You will need to use the "rescan" or "auto scan" feature on your converter boxes (usually a menu option under "setup" on your converter box remote control).

This "rescan" will give you an update of tv station signals as some stations will be changing digital channels.

WKYC will move from VHF to UHF as digital channel 17 at 10 a.m. this Friday morning. If you don't rescan your boxes, you will not get channel 3 where you see it now on your converter box.

And one final point to keep in mind. Digital TV is NOT necessarily high definition television. All new televisions are digital...but unless your new tv is an HDTV, you will NOT receive programming in high definition, only digitally. If this is the case, you may still receive a 4x3 picture ratio, instead of a wider 16x9 picture.

And, those old antennas up on your roof may not work either. In order to get digital television, you should get a newer antenna as well. Those can be either indoor or outdoor systems and range in price. (Since WKYC is moving from a VHF to a UHF channel, you may not receive the over the air signals if you have a VHF only antenna). It is recommended for optimal viewing, you get a newer antenna, especially if you are in fringe areas or have trouble receiving over the air signals due to obstacles around your house.

For more information on DTV, CLICK HERE

Promo: Romona & Conan in Late Night

Here's our new on-air promo for Channel 3 News at 11 PM with Romona Robinson and the new "Tonight Show with Conan O'Brien.

It's worth staying up late for!

Friday, June 05, 2009

WKYC Receives 17 Emmy Award Nominations

Congratulations to my colleagues at WKYC for a total of 17 Emmy Award Nominations from last night's Lower Great Lakes Emmy Award Nomination party (held in Cleveland at Fat Fish Blue).

The following are categories the station was nominated in:

Channel 3 News at 6: Romona Robinson, Rita Andolsen (News Director)

Channel 3 News Today: Rita Andolsen (News Director)

Channel 3 News Weekend Morning Show: Matthew Babb, Caitlin Kollar, Jeff Maynor, Julie Ocepek, Jamillah Riase, Kim Wheeler

Investigative Reporting: Sugarcreek Slaughter - Tom Meyer

Spot News: Willoughby South Lockdown - Dave Summers

Breaking News: Burke Plan Crash - Romona Robinson, Danielle Fink, Kim Wendel

General Assignment within 24 hours: Winter Rescue - Dave Summers

General Assignment no time limit: Secret Weapon - Tom Meyer, Tom Genovese

Continuing Coverage: Strip Search - Tom Meyer, Brandi Paulson, Tom Genovese

Politics/Government: City Hall Nepotism - Tom Meyer, Sarah Montgomery

Weather Newscast: Betsy Kling

Sports-News Single Story: Running Down a Dream - Paul Thomas, Brandi Paulson Mike Harris

Sports-News Single Story: Camp Woodward - Lynn Olszowy

Community Affairs: Lake Erie Beyond Surface: Jeff Reidel, Vagn Steen

Promotion News Promo: Strip Search - Mac Mahaffee

Crafts: Photographer: Lynn Olszowy

Crafts: On-Camera Talent-Reporter: Tom Meyer Composite

The Awards will be announced on Saturday, September 12th, at the Intercontinental Hotel in Cleveland.

For a complete list of all nominations: CLICK HERE

Thursday, June 04, 2009

News: New Monica Robins Blog

As part of the WKYC Information Center, several of our staff members are doing a little bloggin' of their own.

Here is another new blog to check out when you get a little web surfing time.

  • Monica's Daily Dose - WKYC Senior Health Correspondent and Noon & 7 PM news anchor Monica Robins blogs about the world of health and medicine.

For more blogs from the WKYC Digital Broadcast Center: CLICK HERE

Many of our staff members also have profiles on Facebook. You can sign up for a free account and join our fan page to interact with many of us online about the station and the news stories we cover.

On Facebook: CLICK HERE

On Twitter: CLICK HERE

Behind the Scenes: 6/4/09

For those of you who love a sneak peak at "behind the scenes", here are a couple of pictures from today taken by various WKYC staffers.

Abby Ham with local National Spelling Bee contestant Anamika Veeramani of North Royalton on the morning show:

Channel 3 News live truck having a bad day:

Eric Mansfield and Betsy Kling working at their desks before the 7 pm broadcast:

Update: It's UP!

I know there has been a lot of interest in our new tower facility as we get ready to switch to Digital Channel 17 next Friday.

It was a big day at WKYC today as our brand new digital antenna was officially raised into place. The antenna is a 10,000 pound piece of equipment that will be beaming new digital signals to your tv set very, very soon.

As you have heard, we have been building a brand new tower to hold both antennas for WKYC and WVIZ.

Stay tuned for more on this next week as we get set to flip the switch next Friday, June 12th at 10 a.m.

Wednesday, June 03, 2009

WKYC, The Cleveland Foodbank & Indians Team Up For Free Tickets

Bring kid friendly food to Progressive Field on June 14th and receive a free kids ticket!

It's part of our Kid's Fun Food Drive as we help the community during these trying times.

The DTV Countdown Begins

Special to the Director's Cut
By Kristen Dahlgren

Around the country, the countdown is on. But in less than 10 days, this won't be just a test.

At midnight on June 12th the era of analog TV ends for good, broadcasters will only be sending digital signals.

And while call centers are now flooded with questions on the conversion, and even after years of preparation and Congress pushing back the deadline from this February to June, experts say millions still aren't ready.

"The estimates right now are that maybe three million households or so that are not yet prepared. And these are estimates so there's no registry of where these people live and we wont know until there's an analog shutoff on June 12th," said FCC Commissioner Robert McDowell.

For many, these are confusing times.

"I've heard people talking about it, some people are giving up television, it just seems like a big hassle to them," said consumer Cheryl Brennan.

But those in the know say its really quite simple, if you have cable or satellite you're fine, but if you have rabbit ears or an external antenna, you may need a digital converter box.

The government is urging everybody to get ready now and help others who may need it so that June 12 doesn't bring a big shock.

For more information go to

Tuesday, June 02, 2009

Director's Alert: Leno to Debut September 14th

The Director's Cut Blog has learned that the new "Jay Leno Show" will debut on Monday, September 14th according to sources at NBC. That is one full week before the official launch of the Fall TV season.

On the final episode of "The Tonight Show with Jay Leno" the host reminded viewers not to get too teary-eyed during his last stint behind the desk he has occupied for 17-years by reminding them that he would be back on NBC this fall with his new venture "The Jay Leno Show" (Monday - Friday, 10:00 p.m. - 11:00 p.m. ET) on NBC and WKYC.

During his final bow as the host of "The Tonight Show" Leno signed off saying, "Thank you for watching. Please give Conan as much support as you've given me throughout the years. Good night. We'll see you in September."

Leno, recently named America's Favorite TV Personality by the 2009 Harris Poll, announced in December of 2008 that while he will be leaving "The Tonight Show" he will remain at NBC and embark on an adventure that marks a new era in television.

"The Jay Leno Show" will be the first-ever entertainment program to be stripped across primetime on broadcast network television and will showcase many of the features that have made Leno America's late-night leader for more than a dozen years.

News: Conan Debut Best in 4 Years for "Tonight Show" Monday Ratings

Monday night's premiere telecast of "The Tonight Show with Conan O'Brien" generated "Tonight's" highest metered-market household rating for a Monday edition in more than four years and the seventh-highest Monday in the 17 years since Jay Leno began his run as "Tonight" host in May 1992, according to in-home viewing figures from the 56 local markets metered by Nielsen Media Research.

The Monday debut of "The Tonight Show with Conan O'Brien" averaged a 7.1 rating, 17 share in metered-market households, "Tonight's" strongest "overnight" results since the January 24, 2005 telecast featuring a special tribute to Johnny Carson.

Last night's 7.1 rating in the metered markets is up 82 percent versus the "Tonight" second-quarter average of a 3.9 rating in the 56 local markets metered by Nielsen.

Versus his final telecast of "Late Night" on February 20, Conan was up last night by 173 percent (7.1/17 vs. 2.6/8).

Conan won last night's time period by a 154 percent margin over CBS's "Late Show with David Letterman" (7.1/17 vs. 2.8/7) and beat the combined results in that hour of "Late Show" and ABC's "Nightline" (2.7/6) and "Jimmy Kimmel Live" (1.2/4 with an encore telecast).

"The Tonight Show with Conan O'Brien" was Monday's #1 telecast in the metered markets, rating ahead of all primetime telecasts on all networks.

At 12:35 a.m. ET, "Late Night with Jimmy Fallon" (2.5/9) delivered its highest metered-market rating to date for a Monday telecast, topping even the show's March 2 series premiere (2.3/8). Jimmy generated a 47 percent increase over the show's 1.7/6 average for the quarter to date and dominated the hour over CBS's "Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson" (1.6/5).

Conan has taken over as host of "Tonight" after a dominant run as host of "Late Night" from September 13, 1993 through February 20, 2009, a period during which he won 57 out of 57 quarters in adults 18-49 over "Late Late Show" competition.

National ratings for last night's "Tonight," including demographics and viewer totals, are due from Nielsen on Thursday, June 11.

Source: NBC

Monday, June 01, 2009

DTV: Walk-in Converter Box Help For Cleveland

With less than two weeks left until the June 12 Digital Television switch, the FCC has announced that the following locations will offer walk in antenna and converter box assistance.

Viewers also have the option to call 1-888-CALL-FCC (1-888-225-5322) or enter their ZIP Code at to be referred to an FCC contractor to provide in-home assistance with converter boxes and antennas.

The walk in center contact number is (216) 323-3981.


Now until June 19:

Monday - Sunday, Noon - 8 p.m.

June 20 - July 31:

Friday 4 p.m. - 8 p.m.
Saturday and Sunday: 10 a.m. - 4 p.m.


Lin's Omni Square
3167 Fulton Road
Cleveland, OH 44109

Five Points Community Center
813 E. 152nd Street
Cleveland, OH 44140

Fatima Family Center
6700 Lexington Ave
Cleveland, OH 44103

Harvard Community Services Center
18240 Harvard Avenue
Cleveland, OH 44128

Merrick House
1050 Starkweather
Cleveland, OH 44113

Cleveland Public Library
Woodland Branch
5806 Woodland Avenue
Cleveland, OH 44104

Conan O'Brien Makes His "Tonight Show" Debut Tonight on WKYC

Conan O'Brien makes his "Tonight Show" debut tonight.

The audience line outside Conan's new west coast studio began forming in the wee hours, with die-hard fans ecstatic about the new "Tonight Show" host.

After 17 years at the helm, Jay Leno officially handed off "The Tonight Show" seat to Conan last Friday.

As the first and longest running late night show in television history, "The Tonight Show" has always been number one in its time slot, and as only its fifth host in 55 years all eyes will be on Conan to continue the winning streak.

Even as he cracked nervous jokes about the new job, he was serious about one thing: He's gotta make'em laugh.

"What helps me is just to focus on the job at hand and think, really, nothing's changed," he said.

Helping him do that will be some old late night carry-overs, like Triumph the Insult Comic Dog and Andy Richter, his old side kick.

Still, don't expect the same show in a different time slot.

He'll have some heavy hitting names to help him do that this week, starting with Will Ferrell and Pearl Jam tonight, and Susan Boyle and Tom Hanks tomorrow night.

Jay Leno Wraps Up His Tenure On "The Tonight Show

"The Tonight Show"'s Jay Leno put the wrapped up 17 years as host of the program Friday night.

The funniest moments from the show's trademark "Jaywalking" segment got a final showcase and Jay welcomed his successor, Conan O'Brien as his final guest.

When it came time to say farewell, Jay said hello to the 68 children born to show staffers during his time as host.

Jay returns with a new prime-time show this fall.

In case you missed his farewell, you can watch it below: