New Chicago GM on a Rampage


Our man Robert Feder writes: Sorry, but I’m just not interested in pictures of Kori Chambers and Anna Davlantes doing the tango on the morning show. I don’t need to read a list of “Chicago's top 10 cheating neighborhoods” or click on a lewd billboard about blowjobs (that's one place Feder and I differ). And I couldn’t care less which stupid video wins today’s “Facebook Faceoff.”

But suddenly this is the kind of garbage that’s been filling my news feed on Facebook day and night, courtesy of Fox Chicago News.

How did I become an unwitting recipient of this Fox effluvia? It apparently happened because I’m a fan of One More Thing, the signature commentaries Bob Sirott delivers at the end of the 9pm newscast he anchors with Robin Robinson. Early last year, when I saw Sirott had a Facebook page devoted to One More Thing, I added it to my own list of “Likes.”

Up until now, everything was fine. Once a day I’d receive a friendly little notice with a link to the text and video of Sirott’s commentary from the night before. If I’d missed seeing it on the air, it was a convenient way to catch up on whatever funny, insightful or clever twist on a story in the news — or some other Chicago-related topic — he had written to close out Fox 32 News at Nine.

Unfortunately, the recent arrival of a new vice president and general manager at Fox 32, a company man from Orlando named Dennis Welsh, ruined all that. Newsroom sources tell me Welsh is on a rampage to raise the station’s social media profile and boost its Facebook following — even if he has to play fast and loose to do it.

So earlier this week, Fox 32 eliminated Sirott’s One More Thing page along with other Facebook pages related to specific newscasts on the station, hijacked their followers and converted them to the Fox Chicago News page without their knowledge or consent. Instead of receiving one notice a day about something I’m interested in, now I’m getting inundated with dozens of posts I care nothing about. ("Do you believe in love at first sniff?" one post asked Thursday. "Does your spouse or significant other smell good to you?")

The obvious solutions to this bait-and-switch are either to hide the messages from my news feed or to drop Fox 32 entirely from my Facebook account, which is what I did last night.

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