The 16 Fox-owned stations that produce news are trying to change the way they do latenight news and “break out of the box.” Among the innovations are debates, interviews and commentary about controversial local issues. Says AR&D’s Jerry Gumbert: “Fox realizes, perhaps better than some broadcasters, that the same old content and same old format and presentation style are barriers to future growth and relevancy with consumers.”
Local TV’s low-rated MNT affiliate has calculated that it may be able find its place in the 45th largest TV market by focusing on the large local community with connections to the military. If successful, Freedom 43, as the station is now calling itself, could prove the value of seeking niche audiences other than those based of gender, age or ethnicity, says Hofstra media prof Bob Papper.
Academicians often come up with unconventional topics to study. And those involved in television are no exception. Here are four research projects that range from tracking the lipstick factor in female anchor credibility to weathercasters who think they’re God.