What the Devil was B&C Doing?

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Editor: When Broadcasting & Cable asked for a photo of the Fox6 WBRC anchor team, we were told that it would be used in a correlating story about the purchase of eight former Fox O&Os by Local TV LLC. We certainly couldn't imagine that our highly regarded and award-winning journalists, Janet Hall and Scott Richards, would be cast as “Demons or Angels” in a slumping television station ripe for the capture by a private equity firm.

While I do not believe that you intentionally framed our anchors between pitchforks and halos and incorrectly cast WBRC as a broadcast bargain-basement purchase, remorse lies in the responses we have received from around the country questioning our demise.

In reality, we deliver 60% of the adult 25-54 rating points in local news in the Birmingham DMA between five stations producing local news, according to Nielsen's November 2007, February 2008 and May 2008 sweeps periods. Katz Millennium estimates our share of the local advertising revenue to be the highest in the top 40 DMAs. We are the seventh-highest-rated television station in the country, according to the Media Audit, May 2008. And within the past year we have been named as Corporate Citizen of the Year in Birmingham by the local chapter of the National Philanthropy Day.

As editors of a valuable national trade publication, you might see why we bristled and took exception to your Aug. 25 front page. Possibly the only accurate correlation that can be made between WBRC and “Demons and Angels” is that our competitors must think we made a deal with the devil to remain in our market-leading position.

The true “Angels” in Birmingham are the ones who let us into their homes each day, support our advertisers and participate in the numerous community programs we shine our broadcasting light on to make a positive difference. Plus, we are very proud to be working with Oak Hill Capital Partners and Local TV LLC to creatively build our business in these challenging economic times.

Wearing halos in Birmingham,


Dennis C. Leonard


VP and General Manager


WBRC


Birmingham, Ala.

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