Life After Local News

Scranton’s Times-Tribune has a story following up with local WYOU a year after the Mission Broadcasting station scrapped its local news. The story finds that the former reporters remain pretty heartbroken by the shuttering of the newsroom, and the comments show that some viewers feel the same way.

The paper reports:

Dave Kuharchik, who was WYOU-TV’s chief meteorologist from 1999 until last year, said he misses everything about the station. “WYOU became a part of my family. I got married, bought a house, had kids, started seeing gray hairs form (during his time at WYOU),” Mr. Kuharchik said. “I had a lot of fun and got to work with a lot of great people and management.”

Here’s the link to when WYOU, which is managed by Nexstar, made its announcement last spring.

I did a similar story about WYOU and the state of local news a few weeks ago–specifically, how no affiliated stations that we know of followed suit and scrapped their local news too in the past year. I spoke with a GM a few hours ago who told me, with no prompting, that the #3 and #4, and perhaps even #2, news stations in a given market will start to drop off en masse not too far into the future. Broadcast execs I spoke with in Vegas this week, on the other hand, seemed to think there’d always be a place for good, innovative local news.

Mission E.V.P. Dennis Thatcher still seemed genuinely sad about the demise of WYOU’s news when we spoke. He said they’d tried everything to make it work, but it just didn’t fly.

Some former WYOU news viewers, however, really miss it.

Comments “Missing WYOU”:

I so wish that they would reconsider bringing WYOU back to its many loyal viewers. Speaking only for myself, I much preferred WYOU over the other stations. Channel 22, WYOU, has been a friend to so many, for so many years. It had a distinct and unique feel to it, making one feel comfortable and home at the end of a long day.

It would be absolutely wonderful if they could manage to somehow bring it back on to the airwaves. WYOU’s loyal viewers are still here……..waiting.

Michael Malone

Michael Malone, senior content producer at B+C/Multichannel News, covers network programming, including entertainment, news and sports on broadcast, cable and streaming; and local broadcast television. He hosts the podcasts Busted Pilot, about what’s new in television, and Series Business, a chat with the creator of a new program, and writes the column “The Watchman.” He joined B+C in 2005. His journalism has also appeared in The New York Times, The Philadelphia Inquirer, Playboy and New York magazine.