Friday, March 4, 2011

WNYW Topples WPIX in 10 p.m. News Race

By Jerry Barmash

 The February sweeps period ended with significant victories for WCBS-TV and WABC-TV.

However, in the fight for 10 p.m. dominance, WNYW/Fox 5 with Ernie Anastos and Dari Alexander kept its distance from WPIX.

Analyzing the Nielsen rating provided to FishbowlNY by both stations, there is some room for intepretation. But, what is clear, WNYW had a significant victory in the pivotal Adults 25-54 demographic.

The PIX News at Ten anchored by Jodi Applegate registered a .8 rating for the month, while Channel 5 notched a 1.8 in the key demo.

In terms of the Household rating, WNYW doubled WPIX, 3.6 to 1.8.

Applegate, you’ll recall, joined WPIX in October to helm a sleeker evening newscast directly from the newsroom.

Jim and Kaity
The Daily News reported that after Multiple Emmy Award winning PIX 11 anchor team Jim Watkins and Kaity Tong were demoted to make way for solo anchor  Jodi Applegate, the reaction to WPIX/Ch. 11's overhauled 10 p.m. news was swift - and ugly.

Faced with perennial also-ran status in the 10 p.m. race and late news in general - in part driven by corporately mandated smaller budgets - the folks at Ch. 11 argued that a radical change was better than nothing.They went in understanding that some core viewers would not like it. They were right. Loads of readers e-mailed, called Ch. 11 and posted negative comments on Facebook.
"The new broadcast is awful," wrote viewer Angel Garcia.

"It's a shame. I really liked watching the 'News @ 10,'" wrote Maureen Bryan. "If it continues like this, I will not be watching any longer."

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