Thursday, June 25, 2009

Comment Moderation Enabled

We have decided to enable comment moderation until further notice.

Comments that are in poor taste, contain spam, or otherwise are offensive, will no longer be tolerated.

If you have a legitimate opinion on a story, that is one thing. Offensive jokes (such as those about the deceased) will not be tolerated.

Links to sites which we cannot verify are also not going to be tolerated from this point forward.

Any comment that violates these guidelines will be deleted upon our notification that it is awaiting approval.

We would appreciate your cooperation in this policy change.

This item is closed to comments.

~Jeremy Moses

BREAKING: Pop Star Michael Jackson Dead at 50

EDIT #3 8:40 PM: We will be disabling comments on this item until further notice. The last comment was in poor taste.

And, we will be considering implementing comment moderation at some point over the next 12 hours.

EDIT #2 8:20 PM: We have deleted a comment that we believe to be spam and/or unsafe.

While the anonymous person who posted this was probably trying to lighten things up, this is not the place to promote websites that *could* contain viruses.

Certainly, the jokes about Mr. Jackson are out there, and we can't help but chuckle sometimes...but, when there is a web address posted within a comment that we can't verify the safety of the address, we will delete that comment ASAP to protect our readers.

The original item (and the previous edit) are below....


EDIT: We now need to edit our story because, well, we goofed. 94.9 is actually going by calls WREW and is licensed to Fairfield. Sorry 94.9...

As most have heard by now, Michael Jackson, famous pop star, has died at age 50.

As we write this, WLWT-TV 5/Cincinnati and WXIX-TV 19/Newport both have live chats going on their respective websites.

We've also been listening to WKRQ-FM 101.9/Cincinnati and Holly Morgan is playing some Michael Jackson songs, and taking listener calls with their memories of Michael Jackson.

We've got reports that Rewind 94.9 (WREW-FM/Fairfield) is playing all Michael Jackson right now and, as we listen now, we can confirm it.

We haven't listened to others yet, but are going to try to shortly...and will report our observations later on...

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Well...Looks Like Furloughs (Maybe) Have Begun at WKRC

UPDATE 9:25 PM 6/24: Your Tri-State Media Watcher received a very nice email from Cammy today, in which she does indeed recall meeting yours truly a few times between 2001 and 2005. Below is the text:

Hi Jeremy! Thanks for the message… I think I do remember you! I was just filling in for a few days since both Tara and Brad were off. It wasn’t a strain at all… just a fun little trip down memory lane for me! I love doing sports… it’s the candy store!

There doesn't appear to be anything to the idea of furloughs having begun - just the coincidence of both WKRC sports anchors being off at the same time, and Dierking was asked to step in.

And an aside: We're glad to see local anchor people who have not lost touch with the people they are giving information to every day. Sometimes, people can become thick-headed and/or arrogant when they reach a position such as that Dierking holds. Not Dierking, and not several others for that matter. We don't want to name any specific examples, but we've heard of a few people who were just the opposite.

Our original post of last night is below.


We have WKRC-TV 12/Cincinnati on the TV here at the TSMW headquarters in the southern suburbs in Boone County, and something caught our eye.

Cammy Dierking doing...SPORTS?

Yes, it was most definitely the 4:00/5:00/5:30/10:00 PM anchor doing the sports just a moment ago on the 11 PM newscast.

We will be sending an e-mail to Dierking to find out why. (An aside: When Your Tri-State Media Watcher was still in high school a few years ago, I visited the Fountain Square WKRC studios frequently. This was between 2001 and 2005.) Our (very uneducated) guess is the furloughs that were earlier reported to be asked for at WKRC have been implemented.

It's not the first time Dierking has done sportscasts anywhere. Her WKRC bio says she was first hired at the station in 1988 as...well, a sports anchor and reporter. She also lists stints at the former Sports Time Network in town, as well as stations in North Carolina (Raleigh) and Nevada (Reno) on her resume.

Still, it was very unusual to see Dierking doing sports tonight. We had seen her working at 4 and 5 PM today as normal. We don't know if she did the 10 PM news. Our best guess is she did not, so she could do 10 PM sports.

Katie Reider Special Tomorrow Night

UPDATE 6/28/09 6:05 PM: We were asked in the comments to this item if the special will re-air.

The answer for you Katie Reider fans out there is: "Yes, it will."

The repeat will be next Sunday night at 6 PM.

We get this news from the Kiese Blog - and will be reaching out to officials at WCET 48/Cincinnati for more information...

WCET will be airing a one-hour special, titled "No Retakes 2009: The Lives and Love of Katie and Karen Reider". The show airs at 8 PM tomorrow night.

As locals may know, Katie Reider, a local singer/songwriter, died last July at age 30 from a cerebral hemorrhage. (A personal aside: A cerebral hemorrhage also killed Your Tri-State Media Watcher's grandfather just over 2 years ago.) Reider's music won 5 local music awards and had been featured on several programs televised nationally, on networks like Lifetime, ABC, and (in 2005) on the WB hit show Dawson's Creek.

According to Kiese:

Local filmmaker Robert Parish produced the film, which includes video from the Katie Reider band playing at the Taste of Cincinnati in May, some 2005 Reider concert clips, and interviews, including one with her partner, Karen Boone Reider. About one-third of the show will be from the "No Retakes" YouTube videos posted by Karen as she drove cross-country with their two children. (Search YouTube for No Retakes Katie Reider.)

Here's a YouTube clip of the show:

This has been sitting in the email box for a bit...

We got all of this via email from Friend of TSMW John Hingsbergen, the "Program Director in Exile" of WMUB-FM 88.5/Oxford (which now is a repeater of WVXU 91.7/Cincinnati).

WMUB received a whole mess of awards at two different ceremonies recently. The first list is from the Public News Directors, Inc. the weekend of 6-13/14, in what they call Division C (those with only 1-2 full time news staff):

Division C

Best Writing
Second Place
“Threshold Choir #2”
(produced by Cheri Lawson)

First Place
“Fast Fungi”
(produced by Tana Weingartner)

Breaking News
First Place
“Windstorm Aftermath”
(Gary Scott & Tana Weingartner)

First Place
“Purple Haze”
(Commentator Jennie Kiffmeyer)

Soft Feature
First Place
“Threshold Choir #1”
(Cheri Lawson)

Spot News
Second Place
“Palin in West Chester”
(Tana Weingartner)

First Place
“Student Protest”
(Gary Scott)

Before that, they received awards from the Ohio AP Broadcasters, and these were given in the "medium-sized markets" category:

Best use of sound, 1st place, Cheri Lawson, on-air host, for “Double Dutch Champions” and 2nd place, Tana Weingartner, news producer, for “Miami Stomp Dance.”

Best broadcast writing, 1st place, Gary Scott, news director, for “Model-T Party” and 2nd place, Jennie Kiffmeyer, a commentator, for “Purple Haze.”

Best documentary or series, 1st place, John Hingsbergen, program director, and Gary Scott, “WMUB Election Forums.”

Best feature reporting, 1st place, Cheri Lawson, “Threshold Choirs” and 2nd place, Tana Weingartner, “The Two Miamis: Neepwaantiiyankwi.”

Best continuing coverage, 2nd place, Tana Weingartner and Gary Scott, “Windstorm Aftermath.”

Best enterprise reporting, 2nd place, Gary Scott, “Sewing for Soldiers.”

Best anchor, 2nd place, Cheri Lawson.

Best reporter, 2nd place, Tana Weingartner.

“WMUB won more awards than any other public radio station in Ohio for work in 2008. I could not possibly be prouder of the immensely talented group I have been privileged to work with at WMUB,” said Cleve Callison, WMUB general manager.

We would like to congratulate WMUB on all of these awards! Well done!

Monday, June 22, 2009

DTV Update - Why Is VHF An Issue?

We received an article from Friend of TSMW Rich Emery last week about the problems with VHF signals nationwide, including here in Cincinnati, where WCPO-TV/DT 9 and WKRC-TV/DT 12 both are experiencing trouble.

I spoke with Kurt Thelen at WKRC, and he had a few things to say about it.

Thelen tells us that he and his team have driven around the I-275 loop with portable equipment, and have had a good signal at that range. However, the station has lost quite a few viewers around the area, and Thelen says it was a combination of bad equipment being sold to viewers as well as bad modeling by the FCC.

According to Thelen, some antennas and converters are leaving the upper half of the VHF band completely out, and aren't picking them up. For whatever reason, the converters "drop off about mid-band and then pick it back up in the UHF band", Thelen tells us.

Thelen tells us that he knows an engineer who is going to a symposium being held by the FCC, and the FCC is expected to address the issue later today.

Thelen also blames flawed computer modeling by the FCC for the reason WKRC, WCPO and other stations have had issues with VHF broadcasting, as it looks like those stations may have needed double the amount of power to keep all of their viewers. Thelen says, "I think broadcasters and viewers got the short end of the stick."

However, some of the problems are end-user related. Thelen tells us that many of the issues with individual viewers have been easy fixes so far, including cases where the converters and TV's weren't picking up the new DT 12 signal because they were stuck on the old RF 31 information. In those cases, deleting all the information that was in the converter, followed by a re-scan, has worked.

We'll keep you informed as to what happens with the VHF situation here at TSMW and TSDTW...

NEW THIS MORNING: Local12 Launches I-Phone application

We received this via our personal twitter (

John Gumm (follow him at twitter)announced this morning that WKRC-DT 12/Cincinnati has launched an I-Phone application which will give viewers local news and weather directly from their I-Phone.

You can find it via the I-tunes store on...well, I-tunes.

Of course WKRC already gives viewers the opportunity to get local news as a podcast via the station's website...

Saturday, June 20, 2009

More on the New Direction of TSMW, and a few thoughts on your feedback

We are continuing our coverage of media, of course - but are waiting for comment on a story, before we publish it.

This being said, I have decided to take a few minutes on this late Friday night/early Saturday morning to comment on the feedback I received on my post about our new direction.

The feedback was generally good. Believe me when I say that I am looking forward to posting new and improved blogs.

However...I feel compelled to acknowledge a comment received about 20 minutes ago, in which I was told that I should continue voicing my opinion.

While it is not my intent to fully silence my opinions...the post drew me to make a point.

We are being seen here at TSMW as a professional effort. I am being seen as a professional journalist.

As our effort may well be read by newsrooms in the three-state area we cover, it is important that we avoid speculation as much as possible, especially in matters of employment. We don't wish to scare anybody into believing that their jobs aren't secure...that reflects badly on us if we do, and we lose standing in the journalistic community that way.

However...speculation and opinion are two slightly different things. Opinion is our thoughts about some news item/something we ourselves have seen that has been confirmed. Speculation, on the other hand, is just, as our friends at Ohio Media Watch would say, "throwing things at the wall and seeing what sticks."

Professional journalists should avoid speculating as much as possible. And that is why we've undertaken a greater emphasis on fact finding when it comes to posting news stories. But...opinions will still be a part of Tri-State Media Watch. It's just not going to be a large part of what we do...

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

The New Direction of Tri-State Media Watch

Dear Readers,

You may be wondering what prompted the break this week to "consider the direction of this blog".

While I do not wish to go into details of what was said, I would like to say that the reaction was prompted by a rather scathing email from a local station owner, in which the credibility of the blog was called into question.

So, what's the new direction of the blog?

The new direction will hopefully professionalize this effort that we call a "blog", and maybe bring more respect to this effort. It will definitely change it for the better.

What this means: I will no longer openly speculate. My opinions will be occasional (and I will continue to solicit imput from you, the reader) but will no longer include speculation.

No longer openly speculating about things means this: I will be digging for information. If you tip me to something, I'll be even more dogged than I have been previously.

Does that mean I will be spending 24 hours a day operating this blog? No - but it DOES mean I will be making every effort to track down something.

Hopefully, down the line this will mean less need for other sources to stories, and more, first-run information.

By the way - this will NOT impact my personal blog, Personal Thoughts and Observations from N KY. That blog will continue a laidback style, and will continue to feature personal musings as needed.

The challenge has been set for Tri-State Media Watch to grow into a better blog - and it is one that I, as a blogger and a future professional, will undertake gladly.


Jeremy Moses
Editor of Tri-State Media Watch and Tri-State DTV Watch

WVQC Needs Help

Jonathan Goolsby sent us word from our friends at WVQC, where he is now a PR Volunteer. Below is his email in full, as it's pretty self explanatory that the station needs help with a few pieces of equipment.

Hey Jeremy,

Could use some help getting the word out about this . . .

I'm volunteering as a PR rep for Media Bridges in Cincinnati and the new WVQC low-power FM station launching this fall.

Was coordinating with our FM Facilitator, Katie Finnigan, yesterday; we're wondering if you might be able to help us spread the word about some rather pressing needs.

As we try to launch the station, we find ourselves in need of equipment.
Given some of the consolidations in the Cincinnati radio market over the last few years, we thought there might be some folks out there who could lend a hand and donate used equipment. We're desperately seeking:

A 250-watt FM transmitter and stereo coder
Emergency Alert (EAS) System
Automation software
Sound board
Internet stream-hosting software that will allow us to exceed 5,000 concurrent listeners (as of now we can host only 5,000 at a time without anybody getting booted; fortunately our stream's listener base has grown to the point that we have been maxing out!)

Other miscellaneous equipment we could use:

An on-air light
6-line telephone interface
Professional microphones and booms
Any other radio equipment

When we get our LP transmitter going, we will broadcast to a radius of about 3 - 5 miles from downtown Cincinnati, encompassing Clifton, Corryville, southern Hyde Park, southern Norwood, Mt. Adams, Walnut Hills, Mt. Auburn, Western Hills, Price Hill, Columbia-Tusculum and parts of Northern Kentucky.

Our internet stream, "The Bridge," will rebrand to become an online version of WVQC in early August, soft-launching the LP station.

Programming will be designed by our all-volunteer radio staff. We're excited to be one of the few locally-controlled options on the Cincinnati FM dial.

Any chance you could help us spread the word? As always, we're also looking for underwriters and volunteers!

If you have any of this equipment, send an email to Katie Finnigan at Katie at mediabridges-dot-org. (We wanted to make sure spambots don't get hold of that email address and send her needless spam.)

Monday, June 15, 2009

Extending My Break

UPDATE 4:00 PM: I am no longer considering shutting down this blog or Tri-State DTV Watch. After a good night's sleep, I decided that would just be a kneejerk reaction and would not be right.

However, I'm trying to decide what direction I would like the blog to take.

Therefore, the hiatus will continue while I make this decision.


While I reconsider the direction of this blog, OR consider shutting it down entirely, I am putting the blog on hiatus for the rest of this week.

Major news will be posted ASAP...but there will be no regular updates until Friday, June 19.

Friday, June 12, 2009

BREAKING: WOTH Back Up - For REAL this time!

I just got word from Rich Emery via my personal twitter account that WOTH-DT 25 (RF 47), is back on the air tonight as of 8 PM.

WOTH's digital signal has, of course, been off the air since last weekend, with problems from a messed-up feed line on the WCPO/WOTH transmitting tower at I-71 and McMillan Avenue...

Thursday, June 11, 2009

You'll need a crowbar...

...To pry us away from the TSMW/TSDTW Laptop this week!

As you're seeing, we're jam-packed full of information about the DTV transition that happens...hold on, we gotta double check...yep, TOMORROW.

All of the details are available on our companion blog, Tri-State DTV Watch!

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Furloughs to Hit WKRC-TV 12

We get this from the Kiese blog, and it's more bad news in the job market...but better than the alternative...

WKRC-TV 12/Cincinnati is going to implement furloughs, by order of Newport Television, which is requiring them at all of its operations, including corporate.

In a statement, Newport Television said:

"In these difficult economic times, Newport Television has implemented a companywide 10-day unpaid furlough program for the rest of the year for all employees, including corporate staff. In the midst of the current financial challenges, we believe this to be the most advantageous and least disruptive of the available options for our employees."

We here at TSMW HQ know about furloughs. Your Tri-State Media Watcher's mother was required by her company, based downtown, to take two weeks off recently.

Of course, nobody wants to see the alternative had the furloughs not been implemented, but we can only imagine that it would have required layoffs...

Meanwhile, over at WCPO-TV 9/Cincinnati, the staff there is already taking a ten percent cut in pay, receiving five paid days off in exchange, at the order of their owners at Scripps Broadcasting, and at the Enquirer, they're in the midst of THEIR second round of furloughs...with no indication that this will be the last...

Monday, June 8, 2009

WOTH again with signal...

UPDATE 8:20 AM: Uhhhhh, never mind.

A follow up tweet tells us that now, it's WRTV 6/Indianapolis now on the WOTH frequency, or at least, broadcasting on 25.1.

Original item is below...

WOTH-LD 25/Cincinnati's signal is back up and running somewhat again this morning, according to Rich Emery.

They have low signal strength, but no picture or audio yet. Also, WAVE 3/Louisville is quite viewable this morning once again.

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Finally, Answers to the WOTH question...UPDATED 12:00 AM 6/8

LATEST UPDATE Midnight 6/8/09: We have been informed by Rich that, apparently, there's a technical issue on the WOTH/WCPO tower, with regards to the line that feeds the WOTH antenna.

No timeline on restoration.

What follows is a post on the AV Science Forum from 3:36 PM today from someone calling themselves ShaneWKRP, who we believe works for Block Broadcasting as an engineer:

Just a heads-up, everyone. The problem with digital channel 25 has been isolated. It's not an easy one, though. Our transmitter's in as good shape as ever, but there is an issue with the line that feeds our antenna. Problems located up on the tower are always a tough fix, so bear with us please.

Thanks to Nitewatchman, 513Tech, Thorax, and everyone else for all the kind words and input. You guys are our eyes and ears in the field and we really appreciate it!

UPDATE: Rich sends word today that indeed, the station that appeared yesterday WAS indeed WAVE-DT/TV 3 out of its city of license of Louisville, KY.

If you are receiving the WAVE 3 signal on your converters, please email us at

Original item follows...

We just received word from Rich Emery about WOTH-LD 25 (RF 47), and its recent problems.

We're hearing that WOTH's digital transmitter had to be taken down, and is expected to go back up in a few days...

And in a related note: Rich tells us that this morning, something appeared on his digital converter, registering as 3.1, 3.2, and 3.3.

His guess (and it sounds dead on from here) is that the station that appeared is WAVE-TV/DT 3/Louisville, Kentucky, which is broadcasting on RF Channel 47.

Hmmmm, wait a minute, we see a connection here.

WOTH-LD is ALSO licensed guessed it, RF 47!

That could explain why WOTH had to take its transmitter down...because WAVE 3 is causing interference with WOTH 25...

Either way, hopefully they get that worked out!

Thursday, June 4, 2009

BREAKING: 1160 To Conservative Talk

Well, they fooled us here at Tri-State Media Watch for SURE!

Following a week or so of stunting on 1160AM, which seemed to indicate that it would flip to Christian (and we believe the stunting will continue until the talk switch is flipped, either that or it will go silent for the next 11 days, which we can't see them doing), the station is now WQRT-AM 1160/Florence...and it's about to be...a conservative talk station!

That's right.

The station now will have a conservative talk lineup beginning June 15, according to John Kiesewetter @ the Enquirer.

Here is the currently expected lineup (minus the 4-6am slot, which isn't filled right now):

6-9 am.: Washington Times
9 am-noon: Laura Ingraham
noon-2 pm: Neil Boortz
2-5 pm: Dave Ramsey
5-8 pm: Dr. Laura Schlessinger
8-10 pm: Jerry Doyle
10 pm-1 a.m.: Rusty Humphries
1-4 a.m.; Phil Hendrie

Quick update re: WCPO-DT

NOTE: This item will be posted to TSDTW in the morning, as soon as Your Tri-State Media Watcher wakes up, mainly because there's more to it than we'll be able to tell you tonight, without going crosseyed.

We know now what WCPO-TV/DT 9 (RF 10) is about to do when the analog shutdown commences next week.

As we told you on TSDTW a week ago, WCPO plans to be the very first full-power commercial station to shut off their analog transmitter, doing so just after midnight the morning of June 12.

Now, we know why.

That's because they aren't fully on their post-transition facility.

More details in the morning...and we think this may be part of why WBQC-CA 38 and WOTH-LP 25/Cincinnati are having troubles viewing the station now. It turns out, those transmitters are...ta-da...mounted to the WCPO-TV/DT tower in Walnut Hills.

Again, more in the morning, on our companion blog Tri-State DTV Watch...

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

2 Stories While We Were Out

EDIT 12:35 AM 6/3: There goes the hiatus idea...LOL.

By the way, after two days to think about the personal situation, we're back - and we're only planning one more day off tomorrow...I am going to be tweeting to my personal twitter tomorrow, so if something breaks and we hear it, we'll tweet it there.

The personal twitter is at

And by the way, reading the AllAccess bulletin, we're hearing 40 people are out over at R&R. Truly a sad day for that publication, made more so by that piece of news. We'll have more about this tomorrow night, we're sure.

We were out in Northgate, so we didn't find out about these until just before 11...but the first is the one we really want to get to, because it is a blockbuster...

Radio And Records Gone!: If you're above age, say, 25, you know who we're talking about.

Radio and Records magazine, owned by the people at Nielsen, was the premier trade mag for those in the radio industry from about 1975 up to 1995 or so.

Then this little thing we call the "internet" came along. Oh sure, R&R built its own website, but then these things we here at TSMW (and our friends at OMW) call "blogs" became all the rage. (This is in no way meant as a slam toward our good friends in the Akron/Cleveland area; we here at TSMW were inspired by them to begin this effort here nearly 7 months ago!)

And of course, there's the factor of sites like AllAccess, which we get information from for some reports when we hear about it. (Our friends at OMW use them a lot more, but, being new to that, we haven't figured it all out yet.)

Anyway, to the meat of this report...

Radio and Records closed today after 36 years in business. In fact, it literally shut up shop online, minutes after OMW posted their report at 4:35 PM! We got the bulletin through AllAccess at 1:30 PM but, unfortunately, were already out the door and headed northward.

Of course, R&R is another casualty of the downturn in the media/advertising of course we're sad to see it go.

WOTH Problems?: We had a tip from Max Abel in North College Hill that WOTH-LP 25/Cincinnati isn't working digitally, or at least wasn't this afternoon.

We're forwarding this on to WOTH engineers to diagnose the trouble for Mr. Abel...but we'd like to know if the problem is more widespread than just there.

We think it could also be related to work on the WCPO-TV/DT tower, which is where WOTH's antenna is, but we'd like to make sure.

If you've been receiving WOTH's digital signal, email us at We'd love to know if you've experienced this, too...but again, we're going to do some independent checking, too...

A Couple Midday DTV items...

We have word about a newly-scheduled DTV test for tomorrow, per WKRC-TV 12/Cincinnati.

The details are at Tri-State DTV Watch.

Monday, June 1, 2009

Taking the hiatus early.

Indeed, due to my mental state, it's impossible to concentrate on media stuff right now.

Further updates as to my personal situation will be at Personal Thoughts and Observations.

Link is at right.

That is all.

FD-Day for WDJO?

Earlier this weekend, we speculated that WDJO-AM 1160/Florence would flip to all Christian "by Monday".

Monday is here, making this "FD-Day" or Flip Decision Day...and well, it sounds like they haven't totally pulled the trigger. But they may at any time today, unless the way the station had been over the weekend, is how it will always be. We don't guess they're going to want to re-run the pharma ad every 60-90 minutes indefinitely, so we still look for the flip today.

We'll be tuned in off and on throughout the day.

By the way, if you go to and click on the listen live link, you'll definitely get a different broadcast there, than you do on WDJO on the regular this writing, they are doing the "Dusty Rhodes Morning Magazine", which is the same broadcast being heard on 1480AM WCIN/Cincinnati at the moment...