“Akron/Canton News” Moves Its Late Edition

Time Warner Cable/WKYC’s “Akron/Canton News” is moving its second daily broadcast.

Akron Beacon Journal TV columnist R.D. Heldenfels reports that the 9 PM local news program produced for TWC by the Cleveland NBC affiliate moves to 10 PM starting on Monday. That’s the original late slot once occupied by the show when it was “PAX 23 News”, over air on WVPX/23. The 6:30 PM edition of “Akron/Canton News” doesn’t move.

WKYC news VP Dick Moore calls the new/old later time a “better fit” for news viewers, and it certainly takes it out of the 9 PM entertainment programming race. But there’s one other possibility that neither Moore, or Heldenfels, mentions.

The recent move to air Cleveland Indians games on TWC 23 almost makes this time slot change a necessity. Continuing with a 9 PM start on that channel this spring would push “Akron/Canton News” well past 9 PM on most nights, and maybe as late as 10:30 PM after post-game shows. For that matter, what happens to the 6:30 PM “Akron/Canton News” broadcast if the Indians’ new network produces a pre-game show to a 7 PM start game?

There is one alternate possibility in both cases – either TWC moves “Akron/Canton News” to another unused cable channel, or that they don’t run it live during Indians’ conflicts…and solely offer it on their special on demand channel (1123). The other problem with moving the show time-wise is technical at WKYC’s end…they can’t do it live any earlier than 6:30, or later than 10:30, due to WKYC’s own newscasts. The show’s switched out of WKYC master control in Cleveland, and a moved show wouldn’t be able to use the live services of Channel 3’s sports and weather folks.

Anyway, there ARE options for the show after the cry of “Play Ball!”…we just don’t know what they’ll do at this early stage in the game.

And can’t you just tell that Heldenfels is tired of answering mailbag question after mailbag question from people who “can’t find” the newscast which used to be on over-air channel 23? You can almost read his frustration in this paragraph: “The Akron/Canton news is on Time Warner Cable position 23. That is not broadcast Channel 23, which used to have the news, and is on cable position 4. This is cable position 23, between Home Shopping Network (position 22) and CNN (position 24).”

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