Well....That Didn't Work

Last placed WJZY's (Charlotte) newscast of the future has become a thing of the past.

In a desperation move, WJZY tried launching corporate initiative to re-engineer the traditional TV newscast.

It failed. 

Even pandering to a low common denominator has not helped the station’s woeful news ratings, a distant last in each time period in which it competes against others.

The Fox O&O drew industry attention when it launched an hour-long 10 p.m. newscast in January 2014 designed, Fox executives said, to appeal to a new generation of viewers hungry for substance, not flash.

Traditional male/female “voice of God” anchor teams went away. There was no anchor desk, but rather a series of big screens used to introduce stories. Crime news was reported only when the public was menaced, like with a prison break. Reporters were based outside Charlotte to increase regional coverage. Reporters were photographers too, recording and editing their own video.

It was billed as the newscast of the future. 

But now, the newscast of the future has no future in Charlotte. 

Plagued by technical problems and relying on journalists with little experience, it had an amateurish quality. Viewers turned away.

At the time of the launch of the non-traditional newscast, WJZY GM Karen Adams (pictured) said that Fox Television Stations CEO Jack Abernethy wanted the network’s newest station to experiment with fresh approaches.

“He said he wanted me to create the newsroom of the future and the culture that would support it,” Adams said in an interview last year.

Adams has been reassigned in the company and a search for a new GM is on. 

How bad was it? WJZY’s 6 p.m. news audience, according to Nielsen, is around 5,700 viewers, only a third of the number of people watching “People’s Court” at that hour on its sister station WMYT.


H/T Charlotte Observer