WNBC/NY’s “Content Center” debuted to splashy graphics, low ceilings and low ratings, and the NBC 2.0 plans still call for some kind of 24 hour cable channel to be dubbed “NBC NY.” What the “content” of that channel will be–well that, like the launch date, seems to be a closely guarded secret. Or something.
The New York Post’s intrepid “Starr” Reporter Michael Starr tried to get someone at WNBC to agree to an interview, but had no luck. In a story in the Post today, Starr quotes NYC news insiders who say what many believe: “They’re doing it as cheaply as possible.”
And the folks at Chelsea Market continue to sleep well at night: “I don’t think they’re going to give NY1 a run for its money,” Starr quotes a local tv newser, talking about New York’s original 24 hour local cable news operation. Many–including execs at Time Warner’s NY1–expect NBC’s effort will focus a lot less on news, and a lot more on entertainment: “It makes sense for WNBC to focus on lifestyles rather than to compete with us,” said NY1 regional VP/GM Steve Paulus. “We feel that NY1 has become the place New Yorkers turn to for hard news.”
As New York’s O&O’s cut costs, offload experienced talent and focus on fluff, NY1’s motto “the only local news worth watching,” seems a lot less like a marketing concept than it did years ago.