Posts Tagged ‘WTEV’

UPDATE: WTEV/WAWS cuts anchor team…

UPDATE: As Florida News Center reported earlier this week, Jacksonville duopoly WTEV/WAWS is blowing up their lead anchor team to “start over from scratch.” We reported that Mark Spain, Paige Kelton, and Tera Barz were on the chopping block and that the axe might not stop there.

The Jacksonville Business Journal now confirms the latter. We now know that station is blowing up their morning team as well. Morning anchors Mike Barz (the husband of Tera Barz) and Lynnsey Gardner will also be out of the door when their contracts are up.

We hear that Cox Communications (the owners of WTEV/WAWS) have began to look for talent to poach from their other stations around the country, to fill the pending vacancies. Stay tuned to Florida News Center for any further developments.


05 2014

WTEV/WAWS to cut lead anchor team & start over…

Sources tell Florida News Center that Jacksonville duopoly WTEV/WAWS is in the process of replacing its entire lead anchor team.

Lead anchors Mark Spain (right#1), Paige Kelton (right #2), and Tera Barz (right #3) (who’s husband Mike Barz anchors on the morning show) are all reported to be on the chopping block. While the anchors are still with the station”s” currently, they have been told that their contracts will not be renewed when they are up…and the axe may not stop with the lead anchor team.

Despite increases in past ratings books, WTEV/WAWS has often lagged behind competitors WJXT and the duopoly of WTLV/WJXX. Insiders tell Florida News Center that the station plans to “start over from scratch,” “reshaping the look of Action News.”

This news has devastated station staff, who are now all afraid of being next on the chopping block. One staffer called the moves by the station “desperate” and mentioned that “everyone is on edge.” Station staff have been told to keep silent, “or else.”

When asked about the anchor shake-up, WTEV/WAWS News Director Bob Longo, told our friends over at, “out of respect for our employees, we don’t publicly discuss personnel matters.”

Sources at other Cox Communications owned stations (the media company which purchased WTEV/WAWS in 2012) tell Florida News Center that the call has been sent out corporate-wide, to fill the to-be-emptied anchor chairs at the Jacksonville station. Does this mean that Cox might be poaching talent from its other owned stations?

Stay tuned to Florida News Center for further details.


05 2014

Why does JAX TV news suck?….

(from – There’s one question visitors from outside the area often ask me — and a question I ask myself on occasion: Why does local TV news suck so much?

You’d think that, in a region with more than a million people, we’d have something better, that there would be room for more voices, more perspectives, more analyses, more deep dives.

You’d be wrong.

There are exceptions, of course. First Coast News (whose newscasts are shared by our local NBC and ABC affiliates) has a nice investigative team, helmed by former Folio Weekly editor extraordinaire Anne Schindler, which can be counted on for interesting stories every now and again….Cont….

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04 2014

The FCC tightens media ownership/”sharing” rules…

(from – The Federal Communications Commission voted Monday to crack down on cooperation between broadcasters.

In a contentious vote that attracted scrutiny from Republicans in the agency and on Capitol Hill, the FCC approved an order that will keep broadcast companies from sharing resources on advertising sales.

Under current FCC rules, a single broadcast company cannot own more than one of the top four broadcast stations in a media market.

But prior to the agency’s actions on Monday, a broadcast company could use a Joint Service Agreement (JSA) to control advertising sales across multiple broadcast stations. Critics of this practice said it allowed broadcasters to control multiple stations in practice without technically violating the agency’s ownership rules….Cont….

How could this impact Florida? There are seven markets in Florida where a company owns, manages or has influence on more than one TV station in a market: West Palm Beach (WPTV & WFLX), Jacksonville (WAWS & WTEV, WTLV & WJXX), Pensacola/Mobile (WEAR & WFGX, WPMI & WJTC…soon to be WKRG/WALA/WFNA), Fort Myers (WBBH & WZVN), Tallahassee (WTWC, WTLH, WTLF), and Gainesville/Ocala (WGFL, WMYW, WNBW), Orlando (WOFL & WRBW), Miami (WTVJ & WSCV).


04 2014

Russell Colburn to leave WALA, headed to Jax…

WALA-TV reporter Russell Colburn is leaving his position at the Mobile/Pensacola station. The station announced his departure last Friday via their Facebook page.

Sources tell Florida News Center that Colburn is headed to the WTEV/WAWS duopoly in Jacksonville.

Colburn joined WALA in February 2011, serving as a videographer and reporter.

//hattip to


02 2014