Changes And Other Stuff

It’s a changing world, but even more so in local media…

THE CURIOUS CASE OF WINW…ER…WCER: When last we visited the world of Curtis A. Perry III, operator of gospel daytimer WINW/1520 Canton, he was basically drowning in water – radio wise.

The station, which he claims to own through a time brokerage-to-purchase agreement (despite license transfer paperwork not being filed with the FCC), has been off the air since earlier this year. The FCC deleted WINW’s license, saying the station didn’t respond to a letter that Perry says they received too late.

There has been quite a bit of vandalism to the station’s Martindale Avenue transmitter site, including copper theft and transmitter damage, and we’re pretty sure the WINW towers are being held up by bailing wire and gum.

What a difference a few weeks makes.

Perry told his tale of woe to the Canton Repository, but that tale of woe has turned into one of triumph.

That’s because Perry has started another time brokerage-to-purchase deal with a facility that’s in much better shape than the silent WINW – Melodynamic Broadcasting’s WCER/900.

Friday, Perry took over operations of WCER, and flipped the station’s talk/religious format to his own gospel music format, dubbing his new operation “Joy 900 WCER”.

The Perry LMA not only ended the station’s curious mix of second-tier and third-tier conservative talk, and religious talk.

The format change ended Dick Waco’s long-running “Original Big Band Show”, which had been on WCER on Saturday mornings…and started back in 1968 on WHBC/1480.

(And no, Alex Jones fans, it’s all about the money…WCER was Northeast Ohio’s home of the Austin TX-based syndicated conspiracy talker.)

Now, with Perry mounting a new time broker-to-purchase of WCER, what happens to his efforts to save WINW?

They would appear to be unnecessary, given that WCER is a better facility, even at half the power of WINW…its 500 watts are non-directional and cover Stark County like a glove, and even WCER’s 75 watt night power can reach inner city Canton and parts of Massillon…give or take skywave interference from CHML/900 in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada.

And of course, WINW is a daytimer, with no night power at all.

As of now, there’s no new FCC activity either on the deleted license of WINW, or on the license of WCER, but this did just happen.

We don’t know what studio facility Perry is using to operate WCER, but educated guesses put him at his own former WINW studios on West Tuscarawas Avenue in downtown Canton…and not at WCER’s facility at 22nd and Whipple…

GMC?: OMW hears that at least one more change is coming to the morning news block at Scripps ABC affiliate WEWS/5 in Cleveland, which has been known as “Good Morning Cleveland”.

It’ll be the departure of one of the show’s remaining cast members, with reporter/anchor Curtis Jackson still remaining as fill-in anchor.

As of yet, there are no rumblings as to who will take over for Pete Kenworthy and Kimberly Gill on a permanent basis. As reported below, Gill and Kenworthy did their last “GMC” on Tuesday morning, and were out the door after finding out WEWS would not renew their expiring contracts…

THREE FOR TRAVIS: Time Warner Cable local spokesman Travis Reynolds has sent us quite a few interesting items, but we haven’t gotten around to posting them yet. Now, we will.

* The dominant local cable system is jumping into the Harry Potter craze with both feet. Travis tells us that there are actually still (as of late Monday morning) free vouchers for tickets to see an opening day screening of the latest Harry Potter film:

Time Warner Cable customers can receive free movie ticket vouchers for an exclusive, opening day screening of the final Harry Potter film, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 2 in 3D.

The vouchers, redeemable for four (4) general admission tickets to the July 15, 1:05 p.m. show at Cinemark Valley View, are available at Time Warner Cable’s Strongsville store. Vouchers** will be distributed to Time Warner Cable customers on a first-come, first-serve basis.

The vouchers, while they last, are only available at TWC’s Strongsville office on Dow Circle, and not at other TWC offices. The vouchers do not guarantee you’ll get a seat – we imagine the show will be packed – so the cable company advises those who get the vouchers show up early at the theater.

Travis also tells us they’ll give away four tickets and various Harry Potter promotional items this week via the TWCable_NEO Twitter account.

The TWC giveaway is just one of two for the cabler in the entire company – the other showing is in Staten Island NY…

* Northeast Ohio and Western Pennsylvania TWC customers can now add Digital Cable services they don’t already have, such as premium movie channels…directly from their digital cable box.

How it works:
• When a customer tunes to a channel not currently subscribed to, a prompt will appear offering the opportunity to upgrade and listing the price.
• The customer presses the SELECT button and the order is placed. If the customer has established a Purchase PIN for ordering Movies On Demand they will be required to enter it at this time. (Note: Time Warner Cable recommends that every customer utilizes the purchase PIN and parental control PIN features to avoid unexpected charges.)
• Once the purchase is accepted, a confirmation screen appears and the new service will be available. If an error occurs the customer will be prompted with a phone number to call Time Warner Cable to complete the transaction.

There’s nothing in the TWC press release about being able to shut off Digital Cable services (i.e. removing a premium network like HBO) via the box, so we’ll assume you’ll still have to pick up the phone for that…

* The cable company has beefed up its iPad app. From a release:

TWCable TV™ 2.0 includes a variety of brand new features including over 100 live channels, an enhanced program guide, remote DVR manager, and the ability to change channels on your set-top box from your iPad. Now you can watch even more of your favorite networks on your iPad from any room in the home.

The iPad app is free to TWC video customers with broadband Internet service, and is available, as always with iOS, in the iTunes Store. If TWC plans a similar app for other tablets (Android, etc.), it hasn’t announced such plans…

GOOD PROFILE: He’s clearly one of Cleveland TV’s nicest guys, and veteran Local TV Fox affiliate WJW/8 “Fox 8 News” sports anchor John Telich got a nice profile in a local newspaper recently.

The Lake County News-Herald’s Theresa Neuhoff Audia profiled Telich in an article called “For John Telich, it’s a marathon, not a sprint”.

Telich has been with WJW since 1980, and for anyone who knows him, they know that article name is not an accident (or a saying from the original “Joe Schmo Show”).

From the News-Herald:

While working in South Dakota, Telich did a story on a man who ran the Boston Marathon. It motivated him to start running. He became hooked and has done numerous endurance events over the years. He completed his first triathlon in 1985 and to this date he’s done more than 100.

He’s also competed in three Ironman distance races, which is a 2.4-mile swim, followed by a 112-mile bike ride and a 26.2-mile marathon.

The article says Telich (who is 58, by the way) is next set for the 100 mile “Burning River” endurance run later this month, which starts in Willoughby Hills and winds through the area to its eventual finish in downtown Cuyahoga Falls.

But it’s not just his running, or extensive sports knowledge, that makes John Telich unique.

Telich said he strives to be friendly with everyone. It’s the way he was raised.

“I just try to be nice to people,” he said. “Being nice isn’t hard, but it does go a long way.”

And as the News-Herald notes, Telich tries to be nice to people with his presence in social media. He’s an avid Twitter and Facebook user, and we’ve communicated with him in that way quite a bit over the past year or so…and he’s always been kind and gracious to us…

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