Two Short Weekend Takes

Just a couple of items and things on our mind(s):

Item 1: OMW’s been writing a lot about WARF/1350 midday host Joe Finan, due to the debut of his show on liberal talk “Radio Free Ohio”. But we also hear he’ll make a TV appearance starting Sunday night.

Over the transom from our good friend Scott Fybush at NorthEast Radio Watch, via a mailing list – Finan will be one of many folks appearing in the documentary “Rock ‘n Roll Invaders – The AM Radio DJs”. It starts running on the Discovery Times cable/satellite channel on Sunday night at 8 PM, and repeats throughout the President’s Day weekend. Check your digital cable guide for the channel…here on the Lost Adelphia system it’s digital cable channel 104. Time Warner Northeast Ohio’s lineup shows it at channel 137.

Among the reported highlights in this 1998 documentary: Finan remembers the raucous Miami DJ convention which helped launch the era of radio payola. Listeners who only know Finan from his talk radio career on WNIR/100.1 – and now WARF – may have only heard vague recollections of his disk jockey past, and his involvement in those scandals of radio’s bygone era. And oddly enough, as folks like New York State attorney general and gubernatorial candidate Eliot Spitzer make waves about Radio Payola 2006, Joe’s safely on the sidelines doing talk radio.

Item 2: Are we the only ones who care about the poor analog video quality of ABC network programming on Cleveland affiliate WEWS/5? Consider these two samples of screen shots taken today from WEWS-DT’s digital feed (via Adelphia cable).

Our first example is game action. We dare you to tell us what ranking NC State is. Is it 15? 18? 16? We can’t tell. (Click on the picture for a slightly larger version.)

The second example is from the stands. NC State is playing, we believe, “Virgiiniia Tech”. Or at least, that’s what the graphic looks like.

Last fall, during an ABC broadcast Ohio State football game on WEWS, the score graphic was so bad, we thought the Buckeyes were playing MIIIIII. (It was “MINN”, or Minnesota.) The pictures we’ve posted here are actually the clearest that video signal can be…on a TV, it’s much, much worse. Perhaps we need to break out a camera instead of a video card capture. Anyway, the artifacts are much more apparent if you click on each of the above photos for a larger version.

The lines do not show up during WEWS’ “NewsChannel 5” or other local programming. And when a HDTV NBA game broke up and had to be forced into SD by the network a couple or three weeks ago, the non-retouched ABC SD feed looked pristine.

We’re not sure what’s causing it. Today, the analog picture (Adelphia 805) and the analog-converted digital simulcast picture (Adelphia 5) looked just as bad. Maybe ABC analog programming always looks that bad on WEWS, which we don’t see because we watch the digital/HD channel whenever possible. Any insight on this would be appreciated, particularly if any readers happen to frequent 3001 Euclid Avenue…

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