Tag Archives: Issue 115

WWTV/WWUP-TV Holds 2nd Annual Family Field Day

On August 2, Heritage Broadcasting’s WWTV/WWUP (Cadillac) held its second annual Family Fun Day outside its studios.

The event featured sword swallowing, balloon animals, potato sack races, hopscotch and more!  Anchors Michelle Dunaway and Charlie Tinker took part in the activities too, throwing Frisbees and racing in potato sacks.

The event was presented as part of Cadillac Mayor Carla Filkins’ Fit City Challenge, which runs through September 18.

WJMN-TV Hosts Golf Scramble Event for Client Appreciation

On August 2, Nexstar Broadcasting’s WJMN-TV (Marquette) held the first ever Local 3 Golf Scramble event at the Marquette Golf Club.

It was an event to showcase appreciation for many of those who advertise with us. Members of the Local 3 sales staff partnered up with some clients for a day on the green.

“We’ve got people from every sector,” said Beckie Turner, Sales Manager at WJMN-TV. “We’ve got folks from Northern Michigan University out here today, Marquette County Sheriff’s Office, Peninsula Federal Credit Union. So we’ve got people from a lot of different sectors in the business community.”

WXYZ-TV to Present Exclusive Dream Cruise Coverage

E. W. Scripps Company’s WXYZ-TV (Detroit) will broadcast exclusive coverage of the Woodward Dream Cruise (presented by Ford), on Saturday, August 18, from 7 – 9 p.m. Aside from over-the-air coverage, the program will also stream live on the station’s website, mobile app and Facebook page.

In addition, a one-hour version of the program will be syndicated to television stations across the country.  That will air nationwide in late August and early September and will reach approximately 80 percent of U.S. households.

WXYZ 7 Action News anchors Carolyn Clifford and Dave LewAllen will host the program from a street-side stage in Birmingham. Anchors Alicia Smith, Keenan Smith, Glenda Lewis and Brad Galli will provide coverage from cruising hot spots along Woodward Avenue, including legendary Mustang Alley in Ferndale. Station  Meteorologists Dave Rexroth and Kevin Jeanes will join the fun; Dave will cruise Woodward in a classic Ford and Kevin will introduce viewers to car collectors all along the route. The show will capture the country’s passion for cars as more than 30,000 vehicles and more than one million visitors pack a 9-mile stretch of historic Woodward Avenue to join in the celebration.

An encore broadcast of WXYZ’s Woodward Dream Cruise special will air on WXYZ Sunday, August 19, from 10 a.m. to noon.

WDET-FM Joins Partnership to turn Detroiters Into ‘Documenters’

Next week, public radio station WDET-FM (Detroit) launches a partnership with City Bureau and Citizen Detroit that will help turn residents into reporters.

On August 13, City Bureau, WDET, and Citizen Detroit will host a public newsroom workshop open to all Detroit residents.

This will be a free public event that will introduce a program called “Documenters” which will partner with Detroiters in documenting public meetings.

Candice Fortman,  WDET’s Marketing and Engagement Manager, explained how the program will provide citizens with the opportunity to contribute to local news coverage in areas where most newsrooms lack resources.

Fortman says, “It’s not citizen journalism but it is a chance to teach citizens some of the skills of journalism and then also send them out to public meetings to take notes from those meetings because you know as much as I do that newsrooms do not have the same resources that they once had.”

“Often times, public meetings that are happening are not being covered because they don’t have enough people to send out to those meetings,” explains Fortman.

“So for the next few months, we will be training folks to go to those meetings, and all of the meetings we’ll be sending people to will be education meetings so public school meetings, charter meetings and even some surrounding Detroit suburban community meetings to make sure that we understand what’s happening.”

Hear Fortman discuss the project with Detroit Today host Stephen Henderson here.

David Bailey to Leave WZZM-TV for Real Estate

David Bailey

WZZM-TV (Grand Rapids) Investigative Reporter, David Bailey, has announced that he is leaving the station to start his own real estate business. He’s joining Clarity Realty, based on the west side of Grand Rapids. He is also opening his own company called “Depth of Truth” to help home buyers and sellers understand and negotiate real estate deals. David currently has his real estate license, will soon have his private investigation license and also plans to use his FAA drone pilot license, which he earned at WZZM, to do video work for his company.

“I am very proud of the work we’ve done on the Watchdog unit over the last three years to change laws and hold our government accountable to protect taxpayers,” said Bailey. “We’ve won several great awards! I have enjoyed working with the folks here at WZZM. I wish everybody at the station nothing but the best.”

“David has been able to shine the spotlight on issues facing taxpayers and protect the vulnerable in his role as our Watchdog investigative reporter,” said Janet Mason,13 On Your Side President & General Manager. “David will bring the same investigative skills and passion to his next career. We wish him much success in the next chapter of his life.”

“It’s all about trust, honesty, transparency, and authenticity,” Bailey said. “I’ve seen the dark side of the local real estate market firsthand from my vantage point as an investigative reporter and as a home buyer. I am not going to allow my clients to be cheated and manipulated.”

David’s last day at the station is August 26.

Barrett Tryon Joins WILX-TV

Barrett Tryon

WILX-TV (Lansing) announced that Barrett Tryon has joined the station’s news team as an anchor and reporter in July 2018.

Tryon was most recently the morning anchor for a group of four NBC affiliates in western Montana. Barrett attended college at Drake University in Des Moines, while also working for KCCI-TV there. He would later work at CBS News and Fox News Channel, both in New York City, a brief stint in Los Angeles, followed by a few years in the Rockies at KRDO-TV in Colorado Springs.

He also worked at WDAF-TV in Kansas City as a technology reporter, KLAS-TV in Las Vegas, and a second stint in Colorado Springs for KKTV-TV.

While in Colorado Springs, Tryon won an Emmy for “Best Newscast” and was voted “Best Twitterer” for 3 years in a row by readers of two separate newspapers.

FCC Opens Rulemaking to Get Repack Funding for Radio

According to a report in Inside Radio, the upcoming spectrum repack could cost the radio industry millions of dollars in expenses. To address the issue, the FCC proposed a set of rules that would determine how the repack funds set aside by Congress to offset the costs will be spent.

It is estimated that approximately 500 full-power FMs will be disrupted by the repack, either by being forced to power down in order to accommodate engineers working on a television station’s antenna, or by moving to a backup facility, if available. In some cases, an FM could be permanently displaced from a TV tower according to engineers, although the FCC says the number is likely to be very small.

The proposed rules would provide up to 100% of funding for stations that must relocate because of a repack. The same offer would go to FMs that are permanently or temporarily required to modify their facilities because of the process. The Commission proposes to use what is described as a “graduated, prioritized system” to cover the costs that stations would face when purchasing or modifying auxiliary sites as radio confronts disruption from the upcoming TV repack.

The proposal suggests how much money an FM or FM translator gets would depend on how much disruption the station faces. The FCC has proposed stations off the air for between 24 hours and 10 days would receive up to 50% reimbursement of their eligible costs to construct new backup facilities or upgrade an existing one so at least 80% of the service area is covered. For stations that would be off the air for more than 30 days, the FCC proposed 100% of their costs be covered.

$2.3 million of Public Funding Used for Gubernatorial Primaries

According to a report in Gongwer, four gubernatorial candidates who qualify for public funding toward their gubernatorial primary have received $2.34 million so far as reported by the Department of State (DOS).

Under Michigan’s campaign finance law, candidates for governor can receive matching contributions from the state for every donation up to $100 to a total maximum match during the primary season of $990,000. DOS officials reported that the maximum will be less this year because of the number of candidates and the funds available. The two Democrats have received the most funding so far: Gretchen Whitmer at $929,395; Abdul El-Sayed received $908,153. GOP gubernatorial candidate Lt. Governor Brian Calley has received $264,958 from two requests totaling $335,336. His primary opponent Attorney General Bill Schuette received $233,479 from two requests totaling $422,659.

Michigan Engineering Day September 21

Note:  this event is presently full, but interested attendees may place their name on a waiting list in the event of cancellations.

Nautel, in conjunction with Comrex, Double Radius, ERI, Munn-Reese, Optimized Media Group, Wheatstone and the MAB, are hosting a one-day series of engineering sessions for engineers in northern Michigan. This will be a full day of non-sales-oriented training, focused primarily on smaller market broadcasters who must get every watt they can out of every piece of equipment.

The event is scheduled is September 21 at the Hometown Inn in Indian River.

This is being provided at no cost to attendees, with breaks and lunch included, and will consist of eight presentations, each running 40-45 minutes, with 10 minutes at the end of each time slot for questions/discussion – a short “round table” period where attendees can discuss what was presented and add their own thoughts/ideas.

Presentations planned are as follows:

8:45 – 9:40 a.m. Alex Hartman, Optimized Media Group: “Studio maintenance and optimization”

9:40 – 10:35 a.m. Comrex: “Audio over IP – the hows and the whys”

10:35 – 10:50 a.m. Morning break (pastries and beverages)

10:50 – 11:45 a.m. Mike Erickson, Wheatstone: “Getting the most out of your processor and what to do when it just doesn’t sound right”

11:45 a.m. – 12:40 p.m. Double Radius: “STLs and wireless IP – best practices”

12:40 – 1:10 p.m. Lunch (sandwich assortment with deli salad)

1:10 – 2:05 p.m. Ed (E.T.) Trombley, Munn-Reese: “LTE interference mitigation for when the cell company calls”

2:05 – 3:00 p.m. Don Roudebush, ERI: “Care and feeding of the FM antenna system”

3:00 – 3:15 p.m. Afternoon break (brownies)

3:15 – 4:05 p.m. Jeff Welton, Nautel: “Lightning protection and facility grounding practices”

4:05 – 5:00 p.m. Round table/Panel – Welton/Trombley/Hartman: “Transmitter maintenance and cost of ownership/operation”

In keeping with the theme (Engineering on a Budget), this will be a no-frills day of hardcore engineering topics. Attendance is limited to the first 25 to sign up.

As the event is currently “sold out”, you may still get on the waiting list by contacting Jeff Welton at Nautel ([email protected]), or Jacquelen Timm at MAB ([email protected]).  Email timestamps are used to select the first 25 for this session, as well as using the total count of registration requests received to determine if there is enough interest for the MAB to continue this as a yearly tradition. Please include: Name, Email, Phone and Company (Station).


A Presentation on Legal Issues for Podcasters – Who Owns What?

David Oxenford - Color
David Oxenford

By: David Oxenford, Wilkinson Barker Knauer LLP

On July 25, I spoke at Podcast Movement 2018 – a large conference of podcasters held in Philadelphia. My presentation, Legal Issues In Podcasting – What Broadcasters Need to Know, was part of the Broadcasters Meet Podcasters Track. The slides from my presentation are available here. In the presentation, I discussed copyright issues, including some of the music rights issues discussed in my articles here and here, making clear that broadcaster’s current music licenses from ASCAP, BMI, SESAC and even SoundExchange don’t provide them the rights to use music in podcasts. Instead, those rights need to be cleared directly with the holders of the copyrights in both the underlying musical compositions as well as in any sound recording of the song used in the podcast.

I also discussed how, when podcasters are delivering advertising messages, they need to make clear that the messages are sponsored. We have written about the FTC’s requirements that when someone is paid to promote a product online, they need to disclose that the promotion was sponsored. See our articles here and here. Also discussed, and covered in the slides, were issues about defamation and invasion of privacy (and how concerns like these can become more serious in a podcast than in a broadcast as a broadcast is ephemeral – once the broadcast is over, it is gone – but a podcast tends to be permanent, providing evidence of any content that may be of legal concern). I also touched on privacy and security issues. One topic not covered in the slides, but suggested to me by a podcaster at a reception earlier at the conference, was the question of who owns the podcast.

This is a topic that I have discussed before in various presentations about digital media issues for broadcasters (see, for example, the presentations linked to in my articles here and here). But it seems that it is likely to be one that comes up more and more as traditional media companies expand their digital offerings, and employ independent contractors to prepare the new podcast content, or use employees in ways that were not previously part of the scope of their employment. This may become a particular concern if a podcast takes off, and the content becomes valuable. As we wrote here, independent contractors normally own the rights to the content that they create, unless it is specifically assigned in a written agreement to the company that hired them. So if you are using contractors to create podcasts or any other content, make sure that you explicitly get the rights to that content.

Employees, on the other hand, traditionally create content for their employer – particularly where that content is part of the employee’s job description. But, where the content creation is not part of the employee’s job description, things could potentially become murky. Employers are always best advised to make clear with employees, just as they do with any contractor, who owns the content that the employee creates.

We will write more about podcasting legal issues in future posts. Podcast Movement was an exciting conference where there seemed to be much interest in the legal issues about which these creators should be thinking. There is no FCC that establishes a legal framework setting out the restrictions on the podcaster’s operations, so the law needs to be pieced together from general legal principals and those established by other agencies. More to come on these topics in future posts.

David Oxenford is MAB’s Washington Legal Counsel and provides members with answers to their legal questions with the MAB Legal Hotline. Access information here. (Members only access).

There are no additional costs for the call; the advice is free as part of your MAB membership.