Skip to main content

The week that was


Anthrax in the newsroom is no joke. KCCI-TV
Des Moines, Iowa, reporter-anchor Steve Oswalt, a 15-year veteran, was fired last wek for sprinkling face powder at work and joking that it was anthrax. Station officials would not comment. ...

office in Kandahar, Afghanistan, was accidentally hit during a U.S. bombing raid, but there were no injuries. ...

The Tribune Co. helped raise more than $16 million for the Disaster Relief Fund to assist emergency workers and service agencies, and $14 million of that came from employees and the public. ...

The Rosie O'Donnell Show
shut down last this week in response to the anthrax scare at NBC's
New York headquarters, where Rosie
is taped. ...

American Women in Radio and Television
canceled its launch party for Making Waves: The 50 Greatest Women in Radio and Television.
Citing FBI and Justice cautions about possible terrorism, AWRT says the event, slated for Oct. 25 in New York, will be rescheduled.


has given a full-season order for new comedy Scrubs,
and CBS has given a season pass to The Guardian,
the most-watched new show of the season. ...

is moving its annual ESPY Awards
ceremony from February to July, in part because the Sept 11 terrorist attack contributed to delaying the Super Bowl until Feb. 3, the day before the ESPY show was originally scheduled. ...

The debut of The WB
drama Smallville
set some ratings records: the network's best-ever ratings in adults 18-34 (4.5 rating/12 share) and the most viewers ever for a WB premiere (8.4 million). ...

In syndication-ville, King World
has cleared Dr. Phil
in 86% of the U.S. ... Sally Jessy Raphael
has signed a new multi-year deal to continue her talk show at Studios USA
. ...

will kick off its 15th Broadway on Bravo
festival on Nov. 5 with a live version of Victor/Victoria
and film versions of other big Broadway hits of the past. Bravo has also produced 50 short films on Great White Way stars and will show them through the fest, which goes to Nov.11. ... Because of low ratings, ABC
pulled Friday-night reality series The Mole II
but it will return later.... At presstime, the network also said its upcoming reality show, The Runner,
is being delayed, because "at a time when we are actually trying to chase down people in this country, the timing seemed wrong for a show in which we are asking viewers to effectively do the same thing," said ABC Entertainment co-chair Lloyd Braun. ... TV Land
kicked off its week-long I Love Lucy
marathon Oct. 15 with eight episodes that pulled in an average 1.2 Nielsen rating.


The National Association of Broadcasters
and the Consumer Electronics Association
will launch a marketing campaign in four cities in 2002, enticing consumers to buy digital TVs. ...

The National Cable & Telecommunications Association
said it will create "executive suites" on the exhibit floor for the National Show May 5-8 in New Orleans. The booths-in-a-box will include screening and conference rooms and customized signage and are intended to provide companies a presence on the floor without having to build a booth. ...

Requiring cable operators to carry broadcasters' analog and digital channels imposes a burden even on upgraded systems, the NCTA
told the FCC. It hired PDS Consulting
to rebut an earlier NAB study. PDS says operators plan to use their increased capacity for high-def and other advanced services. ...

Institutional Investor
magazine again named Morgan Stanley's Richard Bilotti
the top cable analyst. The poll of money managers named Bank of America's DougShapiro
second and Bear Stearns's Ray Katz

In the entertainment sector—including TV networks—Merrill Lynch's Jessica Reif Cohen
ranked first, Bilotti ranked second and CS First Boston's Laura Martin,
who is leaving the company, ranked third.


Milwaukee's highest-rated 10 p.m. newscast in May was WTMJ-TV. Also, the city owns Miller Park, the new baseball field. An Oct. 15 Focus misreported both facts.