Native American channel joins WYCC

FNX logoA full-time digital television network featuring content exclusively about Native Americans and indigenous people around the world debuts Friday in Chicago.

Coinciding with the start of Native American Heritage Month, the FNX Channel — which stands for First Nations Experience — premieres at 7 a.m. on WYCC-Channel 20.2, the digital tier of the City College of Chicago’s public television station. Continue reading

Terkel winners ‘celebrate our common bonds’

Studs Terkel

Studs Terkel

Chicago’s world renowned documentary filmmakers Steve James and Gordon Quinn have been named recipients of 2014 Studs Terkel Community Media Awards.

Since its founding in 1966, their Kartemquin Films has been a collaborative mecca for emerging talent and a leading voice for independent media. Their documentaries examining and critiquing society through stories of real people have included such acclaimed films as “The Interrupters,” “Hoop Dreams” and “The New Americans.” James recently completed a film based on Roger Ebert’s memoir, Life Itself.

Also receiving the prestigious awards from the nonprofit Community Media Workshop will be Steve Bogira, reporter for the Chicago Reader, and Alejandro Escalona, Web editor and former political editor for Telemundo Chicago. Continue reading

Brunson’s back on the eat beat

Ted Brunson

Ted Brunson

Ted Brunson, who stepped down last May after more than three years as creator, host and producer of “Chicago’s Best,” is back on the beat.

Starting Thursday, Brunson will present an online video feature spotlighting notable neighborhood restaurants and bars for DNAinfo.com/Chicago, the hyperlocal news website launched last November. “Good in the Hood with Ted Brunson” will appear several times a month. Continue reading

McNeil’s a no-show at the Score

Dan McNeil

Dan McNeil

Never far from drama, Dan McNeil is at it again.

The veteran Chicago radio personality has been off the air since Monday when he called in shortly before the start of his midday show on sports/talk WSCR AM 670 to say he wasn’t coming to work.

No explanation has been given to listeners, but colleagues said McNeil, 52, is dealing with personal problems and family issues. It’s not clear when he will return to the Score.

Filling in for McNeil alongside co-host Matt Spiegel on the show from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. weekdays has been Laurence Holmes.

Continue reading

Robinson ready to ‘explore other opportunities’

Robin Robinson

Robin Robinson

The men who run WFLD-Channel 32 want you to believe that Robin Robinson is happy to be walking away at the end of November from the top news anchor position she has held for the past 26 years.

They also hope you believe she will be thrilled to be fronting “Chicago at the Tipping Point” reports on the 9 o’clock newscast she has anchored since its inception.

How does she really feel about it? Continue reading

WGN’s Cochran ‘off to a great start’

Steve Cochran

Steve Cochran

Steve Cochran found encouraging news in the first full ratings report since he took over as morning personality on a revamped WGN AM 720.

Nielsen Audio figures released Monday showed the Tribune Broadcasting news/talk station tied for seventh place with a 4.0 percent share among all listeners, and tied for 24th with a 1.8 share among those between 25 and 54 — virtually unchanged from the previous month’s survey. Continue reading

Up next: Davlantes out at Fox

Anna Davlantes

Anna Davlantes

Anna Davlantes, the morning news anchor who brought a strong Chicago connection to WFLD-Channel 32, is leaving the Fox-owned station after four years.

“I’m grateful to management for the opportunities I’ve had at the station and will have an announcement about my new position very soon,” Davlantes said in a statement released by her bosses. Her last day as co-anchor of “Good Day Chicago” will be Nov. 8. Continue reading

Robin Robinson’s remarkable run

Robin Robinson

Robin Robinson

Here’s to you, Ms. Robinson.

Over the past 26 years, six men have occupied the Monday-through-Friday night anchor desk at Fox-owned WFLD-Channel 32. And alongside all of them has been one woman — Robin Robinson.

The Chicago native and veteran broadcast journalist has been there since “Fox 32 News” debuted Aug. 3, 1987. She’d worked three years before that as a reporter and weekend anchor at CBS-owned WBBM-Channel 2. “Everybody said I’d disappear if I went over to Fox,” Robinson told me years later. Calling her a survivor is an understatement.

Now Robinson, 56, is being forced to step down as anchor, sources said. Once the change takes place (probably after the November sweeps), she’ll appear once or twice a week on the 9 p.m. newscast with special reports under the banner of “Chicago at the Tipping Point.” Continue reading

Fox hires two more from out of town

Melody Mendez

Melody Mendez

The parade of unknowns continues at Fox-owned WFLD-Channel 32.

Melody Mendez, host of “The Everyday Show” on KDVR-TV, the Fox affiliate in Denver, and Jake Hamilton, entertainment reporter at KRIV-TV, the Fox-owned station in Houston, are the latest imports headed for “Good Day Chicago.” Continue reading