Thursday, May 31, 2007

Earl Ubell Obituary

The New York Times has a nice piece on the life of Earl Ubell here.

And to add on to what was reported here yesterday, Ubell actually first joined WCBS in 1966 as "one of the first science and medicine reporters on television." He left in 1972 to become WNBC's news director before rejoining WCBS in 1978.

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Earl Ubell Passes Away

Former WCBS health and science reporter Earl Ubell passed away last night from Parkinson's Disease. He was 80 years old. CBS 2 News anchor Kristine Johnson reported the news on the noon newscast today, and added that funeral arrangements are pending.

Ubell joined Channel 2 in 1978 and retired in June 1995.

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Dozier Special On CBS Tonight

Exactly one year ago, CBS News correspondent Kimberly Dozier's crew was attacked while in Baghdad. They were embedded with the Army's Fourth Infantry Division Dozier, cameraman Paul Douglas and soundman James Brolan. Douglas and Brolan were killed while Dozier, after having been declared by doctors as dead, somehow survived.

Tonight at 10, CBS News will present Flashpoint. Hosted by Katie Couric, the special will tell not only Dozier's story but the stories of others who have been injured in Iraq.

CBS 2 News anchor Jim Rosenfield's interview with Dozier will air beginning on CBS 2 News at 5:00 today.

For a little over a year, Dozier was CBS 2's Middle East bureau chief based in Jerusalem. According to the NewsByte2 Archives, the bureau opened in March 2002 as the station sought to increase its international coverage in the months after September 11th. Dozier focused primarily on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict but also reported on the early months of the war in Iraq before returning to the network full time. put together a page with video of some of Dozier's reports for CBS 2 News and CBS News over the years.

Saturday, May 26, 2007

At The Met Repeat

It looks like CBS 2 News is repeating the "At The Met" special focusing on the Greek and Roman Galleries, according to promos. The show will air at 11:30 tomorrow morning and is hosted by Dana Tyler. It previously aired four weeks ago.

Thursday, May 24, 2007

May Numbers Are In

ABC 7 released the numbers this evening and they're available right here.

CBS 2 News Promotes Key Demo Gains in May Sweeps

The May sweeps period came to a close yesterday and CBS 2 News sounds enthused. A press release out this afternoon says the station is "the number two station in households in sign on/sign off standings for the third straight major sweep period."

CBS 2 News at 5:00 with Chris Wragge and Kristine Johnson finished in second place in both total households (a 2.9 rating) and in adults 25-54 (1.3, which is said to be more than double NBC 4's 5:00 and 5:30 newscasts' ratings in the demo). The newscast also showed big percentage gains from May 2006, up 44% in the demo and 32% overall, when it was anchored by Roz Abrams and Mary Calvi and did not have the benefit of the Judge Judy lead-in.

CBS 2 News at 6:00 with Dana Tyler and Jim Rosenfield finished in second place. CBS 2's press release seems to indicate that it finished in second overall, but only the demo rating, a 1.2, is listed. It also adds the caveat of "among English-language stations," which seems to indicate that WXTV or WNJU, both Spanish-language stations, are outperforming CBS 2 News. It posted year-to-year growth of 20% in the demo "and was the only New York station from the three major networks to show year-to-year growth in households" (which appears to exclude FOX 5).

CBS 2 News This Morning with Maurice DuBois and Kate Sullivan showed year-to-year growth of 9% overall, "the only New York station from the three major networks to show growth." Of course, FOX 5 and CW 11 have morning shows, too. CBS 2's 6 a.m. hour showed the most growth, 33% in the demo and 21% in households.

CBS 2 News at Noon showed growth of 14% in the demo over last year.

The ratings boosts, at least at 5 p.m. and 6 p.m., can be attributed to the lead-in. "Judge Judy" at 4:00 and 4:30 finishes in second in both households and the demo. "Judy" only returned to CBS 2 News in September and replaced "The People's Court," which routinely finished third.

It will be interesting to see all of the numbers in comparison to the other stations. This usually comes in the form of a WABC press release, but that has yet to come out. Press releases generally focus only on the good news, which is why information is limited. For instance, CBS 2 News at 11:00 was not mentioned at all here and neither was where the morning and noon newscasts finished in their respective races. And measuring gains in percentage looks impressive when the ratings were originally on the low side to begin with. But it seems that, for the first time in a while, CBS 2 News is showing some positive momentum.

Johnson Returns to CBS 2 News at Noon

Kristine Johnson returned as the anchor of CBS 2 News at Noon today, about one month after she returned to CBS 2 News at 5:00. Johnson, who gave birth to a son in March, anchored her last noon newscast on February 20 but remained on the 5:00 newscast until going on maternity leave March 1. She returned to CBS 2 News at 5:00 from maternity leave on April 23, just in time for May Sweeps, but Johnson did not return to CBS 2 News at Noon. At the time, the station told the Daily News that Johnson would "eventually" return to the noon newscast.

During Johnson's three month absence from CBS 2 News at Noon, co-anchor Chris Wragge anchored the half-hour newscast solo. Wragge was off today, so Johnson anchored solo. The only allusion to Johnson's return came when Money Watch reporter Alexis Christoforous welcomed her back to the noon newscast.

Monday, May 14, 2007

Wragge a Candidate for Saturday Early Show Co-Anchor

According to an article at announcing the arrival of WFOR-TV anchor Maggie Rodriguez as co-anchor of The Saturday Early Show starting June 1, CBS 2's Chris Wragge is on a short list of "viable candidates" to become co-anchor of the show, filling the vacancy left by Russ Mitchell's move to the weekday version of The Early Show in January of this year. The article lists James Brown of CBS Sports, and Jeff Glor, a national correspondent for The Early Show, as the other possible co-anchors of The Saturday Early Show.

Wragge, who became the co-anchor of CBS 2's Noon and 5PM newscasts with Kristine Johnson in November 2006 after serving as the station's sports director since July 2004, has appeared frequently over the past few months as a fill-in anchor on the weekday version of The Early Show, as well as on The Saturday Early Show with current co-anchor Tracy Smith.

Friday, May 11, 2007

More News In Less Time. Every Time.

Ten years ago tonight, "2 News" changed its name to "News 2" and adopted the above slogan to symbolize a faster newscast. The change included new logos, graphics, music and a new lead anchor team as Stephen Clark joined Dana Tyler at the desk.

The "News 2" name lasted until October 2000, when it was replaced by the "CBS 2 Information Network."

Monday, May 7, 2007

Three-Part Interview with "Son of Sam"

CBS 2 News is excited about Scott Weinberger's three-part interview with David Berkowitz, better known as the "Son of Sam." The interview comes on the 30th anniversary of Berkowitz's killing spree. The press release calls it "a surprising and revealing sit-down interview" and says that "new developments about the case" will be uncovered.

The interview airs at 11:00 beginning tonight and continuing on Tuesday and Wednesday. It's being touted as a "world exclusive," a phrase not used since Jim Rosenfield interviewed Golan Cipel last November.

Thursday, May 3, 2007

Glimpse of the Other Set

CBS 2 News showed the set that used to be used for the morning, noon and 5 p.m. newscasts. It has not been used since the morning of April 11th, just before CBS 2 News went high definition. The desk is not visible here and there seem to be very few changes: The monitors on the side displayed old CBS logos and Chris Wragge stood on a new platform.