Longtime KFTY manager changes careers

John Burgess, the longtime general manager of KFTY TV-50 in Santa Rosa, is leaving broadcasting to become a partner in launching Money Matters Sonoma County, a hyper-local business and investments website, according to the Santa Rosa Press Democrat. He was news director and then station manager at KFTY, which on Oct. 1 became an affiliate of Azteca America under new ownership. Burgess said his toughest day at the station was on Friday, Jan. 26, 2007, when he carried out instructions

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KFTY 50 flips to Spanish language programming

Stan Atkinson KFTY-TV 50 in Santa Rosa — the channel that gave broadcasters Jon Miller and Stan Atkinson their start — flipped yesterday to Spanish-language programming. In 1972, a former KNBC executive, Kit Spier, put the station on the air from a studio that had been a former postal distribution center at Fifth and Davis in Santa Rosa. The station was undercapitalized and left the year a year later. (This op-ed from the Santa Rosa Press Democrat gives the early

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Four stations will pull analog plug Tuesday

The FCC has allowed four stations here shut off their analog transmitters on Tuesday, but the major network stations all plan to continue transmitting in both analog and digital until June. Bay Area stations switching are: KCNS 38 SF — to Channel 39 KFTY 50 Santa Rosa — to Channel 32 KICU 36 San Jose (transmitter at Sutro) — staying at 36 (it had used 52 as its digital channel in the past month) KOFY 20 SF — to Channel 19

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UHF station to try ‘citizen journalism’

Clear Channel-owned KFTY-TV Channel 50 in Santa Rosa, which abruptly canceled its money-losing newscasts Jan. 26, is now getting some ink for its plans to solicit news reports programming from its viewers. The Chron reports in a front-page story Sunday that media executives nationwide are eager to see whether the independent UHF station can make money from citizen journalism. Clear Channel’s Steve Spendlove (pictured) plans to ask people in the community — its independent filmmakers, its college students and professors,

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Santa Rosa TV newsroom abruptly closes

Clear Channel on Friday abruptly pulled the plug on its local news operation at its KFTY-TV 50 in Santa Rosa, laying off 13 employees who produced its newscasts at 7 and 10 p.m. including anchors Ed Beebout and Tricia Hua (both at right). Neither newscast aired that evening. General Manager John Burgess said in a statement on the station’s Web site “We are no longer in a position to access the advertiser base required to maintain two long form newscasts.”

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