Tag Archives: ABC News

allmedia.com watch: A Few Examples of Why Legacy Media Have a Credibility Problem


Wonder why the media have a credibility problem? Here are some today’s headlines from Tom Petner’s website about broadcasting at http://www.the247newsroom.com:

**ABC News has paid $215,000 for Casey Anthony scoops.  Julie Moos at the Poynter Institute reports on a witness at the murder trial of Casey Anthony who testified that he was paid $15,000 by ABC News to license a snake photo…and that this is the latest revelation that ABC News has paid licensing fees for access to interviews, including $200,000 to Casey Anthony while she was under investigation but before she was charged with killing her daughter.

**There’s a touch of sleazy irony here…NBC’s Chris Hansen caught in his own videotape sting.  The National Enquirer reports: Predator Catcher Chris Hansen Caught Cheating!

**New York market – Weathercaster Heidi Jones pleads not guilty to faking police report that she was sexual assaulted.  But her lawyer said the case should be tossed because it has dragged on for too long.  Jones’ lawyer, Paul Callan, tells the NY Daily News, “”We are going to seek dismissal of the indictment on the grounds she’s been denied a speedy trial.”

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allmedia.com watch: A Small World Story and Building a Résumé


I was testifying in a libel trial in Ebensburg, Pa., today. The defendants included Peak Media, which owns and runs the ABC/Fox stations in Johnstown, Pa.

As I headed toward the courthouse I ran into Frank Quitoni, the owner of Peak Media. I had never met Mr. Quitoni even though he and I worked for ABC News. As we walked toward the courthouse, he mentioned that he saw that I had worked for ABC News and recounted that he had been the coordinator of the coverage of the hijacking of TWA 847 in Beirut in 1985. The aircraft was taken by Hezbollah and held on the tarmac for two weeks. A Navy seaman was killed during the hijacking.

I said that I found his statement a bit surprising since I was the coordinator of the ABC News coverage of TWA 847 in Beirut. Well, he allowed, he was in Cyrus, where we sent our videotape for transmission because the satellite had been destroyed in Beirut.

Following is part of Mr. Quitoni’s official biography on the Peak Media website:

“He was also in charge of the major news remotes throughout the world such as the first live broadcast from Vietnam, the TWA hijacking in Lebanon, and the Mexican earthquake, to name a few.”

I guess “news remotes” may qualify the bio enough to get by, but he certainly wasn’t the coordinator of the news coverage. My name was one of those on the three national Emmy nominations ABC News received that year.

It is a small world! Better be careful what you take credit for. Someone may know more about it than you do!

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allmedia.com watch: Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, Two Giants of TV, Move On


Jeff Gralnick and Rick Kaplan, two legendary newsmen, were known as Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid when they worked together at ABC News in the 1980s. I am not entirely sure whose nickname was which, but I am pretty sure Gralnick was Butch and Kaplan was the Sundance Kid. In any event, Gralnick was the executive producer of ABC World News Tonight and Kaplan was senior producer.

Gralnick died yesterday at the age of 72. Kaplan announced yesterday he’s leaving as executive producer of the CBS Evening News. When I worked overseas for ABC, I never really got to know either one of them well. They were in New York. I usually was in the Middle East. Those who knew Gralnick better have posted some memorable comments and thoughts at http://on.fb.me/lvoBUL Both went on to work and lead programs at nearly all of the networks.

Gralnick eschewed a coat and tie in the newsroom. He almost always wore a Brooks Brothers bush jacket and blue jeans–the producers’ uniform back then. Kaplan liked sweater vests. Both were well over six-feet tall and literally towered over the ABC newsroom.

I remember how we would wait for telexes from Gralnick out in the field to see if he liked or disliked a story we did. The most memorable one for me was, “It ran.”

Wherever Gralnick and Kaplan have gone, they have been remembered. RIP, Jeff. Good luck, Rick.

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