WDNY Indianapolis' late local news comes on at 10 p.m., but everything else about the UPN newscast is different. In the middle of February sweeps, WDNY switched from NBC affiliate WTHR to local CBS outlet WISH to produce its news. A fresh anchor team from WISH features Scott Sander, Karen Hensel, meteorologist Angela Buchman and sports anchor Nicole Manske.
Why the change? Chalk it up to corporate synergy. WDNY parent Viacom is selling the station to LIN Television, so it seemed appropriate for LIN-owned WISH to take over the operation when WTHR's deal for WDNY's news expired. “We aren't just taking our 6 p.m. and 11 p.m. people and putting them on WDNY at 10 p.m.,” says WISH President/GM Jeff White. “We are putting resources behind this newscast.”
So far, early ratings returns have been modest. The newscast pulled a 2 or 3 rating in the last week of sweeps. WDNY's news is up against a 10 p.m. newscast on Fox affiliate WXIN, buoyed by American Idol. “A 9 rating should be achievable,” White says, adding, “After sweeps, we can evaluate the situation.”