As FTVLive told you, Fox and Cox decided to trade stations, in which Cox gives Fox KTVU in the San Francisco and Fox is going to give Cox their stations in Boston (WFXT) and throw in Memphis (WHBQ) as well.
The staff at WFTX Fox Boston thinks that have gotten the short straw on the deal. “No one in the newsroom is happy,” said a Fox Boston insider to Boston Herald. “No one here knows what’s happening.”
The staff thinks that Fox 25 News Director Paul McGonagle is a dead man walking at the station.
Current KTVU GM Tom Raponi is making the move to Boston when Cox takes control. Staffers fear that Raponi will be bringing KTVU News Director Lee Rosenthal with him.
Staffers point out that Rosenthal was at the helm during his station’s most embarrassing moment: the unintentional airing of an insensitive joke about the identities of the pilots flying the Asiana Airlines jet that crash-landed at San Francisco Airport last year.
Insiders are also worried about possible talent changes. KTVU has seen an exodus of veteran reporters and anchor talent, prompting some locals to wonder if the same will happen in Bean Town.
“Anyone who is making any money has to be worried,” said another station spy to the Herald.
That would be, most notably, marquee player Maria Stephanos, and possibly morning news commentatorDoug “VB” Goudie.
“Maria is loved and is the heart of the station,” said our spy. “The rest of the talent, who knows?”
Raponi wouldn’t speculate about any on-air changes, saying he hasn’t had time yet to even watch the Fox 25 newscasts.
“The announcement was just made two weeks ago,” he said. “Right now we’re focused, along with the Fox executives, on visiting each other’s properties to introduce ourselves to our respective news staffs. There’s been a lot of great work done there in Boston and I hope to go in and talk with the folks who are doing all that great work and go from there. That’s the way I’ve done it for the past 34 years.”
Raponi, who began his TV career in New York and has spent the past 19 years at KTVU, said he’s eager to return to the East Coast and to “compete in a great market like Boston.”
“Although I’m not a native,” he said, “I’m looking forward to getting out my shovel and Sorel boots.”
The staff might not be looking forward to his move as much as he is.