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Monday, April 5, 2010

WLEX18 drops the ball majorly with storm coverage

***This article ran on examiner.com's Lexington, Kentucky site and was about a local issue.***

    It is currently 9pm and Lexington residents could be marveling at what was reported to be the best episode of Chuck of the season.  Instead, it left many people stewing and frustrated at the way WLEX18 NBC aired their programming tonight.  At least twice (then I stopped watching), commercial breaks aired intact, then there was several minutes of weather coverage, before a brief couple of minutes of Chuck, and then more commercials.  It was impossible to follow the story, as so much of it was cut out.  But, of course, not those advertisements!  My star review rating is for the network, its behavior, and its policies, not Chuck.


     Yes, there was a serious storm in Kentucky.  However, the scrolls at the bottom of the screen were plenty.  In 2010, most of us have cell phones and internet.  We can keep up-to-date with storms in our area, or any other emergency or breaking news in a variety of ways that do not interrupt beloved television shows.  I do not wish to be cold to anyone affected by the storm.  I certainly feel bad that they are facing it.  I am all for them staying informed, and that is why I hold no grudge for the scroll at the bottom of the screen, and even a map or logo in the top portion.  But there are much better ways for local networks to handle their coverage than to usurp series that viewers need to catch every week to stay up with the story.

     I called WLEX to complain, and the phone was answered by an extremely rude woman.  Her favorite line was "people may die".  They might, although I hope they don't.  That is definitely far more important than Chuck.  I don't disagree.  However, apparently WLEX doesn't believe it is more important than a commercial for cars or soda pop.  And the station had no answer for why they wouldn't air their news during those scheduled breaks.  After several minutes keeping my cool and trying to reason with the woman, just to find out if they could rerun the episode, or pass a message to management to change their policies, she continued to be incredibly rude and dismissive.  I then e-mailed the station.  Will that help things?  Probably not, but I urge you all to do the same, and then maybe it might.

     WLEX Lex18 NBC: 859-259-1818       E-mail: news@lex18.com

     By contrast, the local affiliates for Fox and the CW didn't even run a scroll.  If this storm was so bad, why were two other local networks not even covering it?  I did not check ABC or CBS, as their programming wasn't being recorded by my TiVos.  Please, WLEX18, join us here in this century, this decade.  And get someone with class and people skills to answer your phones.

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