Robservations on the media beat:
After 34 years as the City Colleges of Chicago’s public television station, WYCC-Channel 20 will be going off the air. But it’s no surprise. The decision was prompted by the sale of its broadcast license in the FCC spectrum auction in April. Since then, City Colleges has eliminated most of the station’s staff. Ron Schofield, executive director of WYCC, confirmed in a letter to contributors that the station will “cease broadcasting services” on October 25. “Please know that you still have an option for PBS and public media programming and we encourage you to tune to WTTW [Channel 11] and visit wttw.com,” he wrote.
Remember when Mark Giangreco tweeted that President Donald Trump was a “cartoon lunatic” and called people who voted for him “simpletons”? For that, the veteran Chicago sports anchor was suspended for two weeks without pay in February by ABC-owned WLS-Channel 7. Last week ESPN anchor Jemele Hill tweeted that Trump was a “white supremacist who has largely surrounded himself [with] other white supremacists.” For that, Hill received a reprimand but no suspension or loss of pay. Although both companies are units of Walt Disney Co., clearly their policies aren’t on the same page. Giangreco, who has never spoken out about his suspension, declined to comment Tuesday.
With the Chicago Sun-Times planning to pack up and move to the West Loop in November, editors are facing a dilemma: Their new digs at 30 North Racine Avenue cannot accommodate the newspaper’s vast archives, so some of the files will be moved to off-site storage. But what to do with more than six decades of movie press kits — including priceless photos of Hollywood history? (They can’t be sold because the rights belong to the studios.) “I’m not sure that they have any unique value for us,” said Sun-Times CEO Edwin Eisendrath. “If you know someone who wants them, send them our way.”
Dave Ramsey, the syndicated financial talk show host, has been tapped to emcee the 29th annual National Radio Hall of Fame induction ceremony November 2. The black-tie optional event will be at Chicago’s Museum of Broadcast Communications. In addition to Chicago radio legend John Records Landecker, this year’s inductees include Sean Hannity, Robin Quivers, Tom Barnard, Bobby Bones, Bill Handel, Joseph Field and Bob Sievers. Tickets are available at radiohof.org. A commercial-free audio feed will be streamed online by TuneIn.
Alison Laffe, a former Milwaukee-based advertising executive for Gannett Co., has joined the Chicago Sun-Times as senior vice president of advertising. Laffe most recently was senior director of client services and digital strategy for USA Today Network. She previously was senior director of advertising at the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. At the Sun-Times she will report to CEO Edwin Eisendrath.