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Reporter Brittany Jeffers leaving CBS11


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After a relatively short stay, reporter Brittany Jeffers is leaving D-FW’s CBS11.

Lori Conrad, the station’s director of communications, confirmed Jeffers’ departure Friday and said her last day will be March 30th. She declined to comment further other than, “We wish her all the best.”

Jeffers joined CBS11 in August 2016 from Tulsa’s KOKI-TV. The University of Nebraska-Lincoln graduate was Miss Nebraska in the 2009 Miss America pageant, where she finished in the top 10. She could not immediately be reached for comment Friday.

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Local Nielsen ratings snapshot (Wed.-Thurs., March 21-22) -- A&M's number is up while numbers are down

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Texas A&M’s rare appearance in the NCAA basketball tournament’s Sweet 16 ended with a thud Thursday night when Michigan pounded the Aggies from start to finish in a 99-72 win.

What could have been something of a ratings bonanza for TBS ended up being a dud. Michigan-A&M averaged just 99,709 D-FW viewers while CBS’ down-to-the-final-seconds Loyola-Nevada game slurped up defecting viewers and ended up with 135,320.

But Thursday’s biggest basketball draw was CBS’ following Kansas State-Kentucky face-off, which ended in late night and averaged 178,053 viewers.

NBC’s two-hour episode of Chicago Fire hosed all competing programs with a Thursday night best of 220,785 viewers. Kansas State-Kentucky was tops with advertiser-prized 18-to-49-year-olds, though, drawing 81,136 to beat everything else in sight.

On Wednesday, Fox’s midseason hit 9-1-1 closed out its first season with prime-time’s top showing in total viewers (220,785). ABC’s Modern Family drew the most 18-to-49-year-olds with 71,774.

Preceding 9-1-1, Fox’s The X-Files limped out of view for good with last place finishes at 7 p.m. among the Big Four broadcast networks in both total viewers (64,099) and 18-to-49ers (12,482). Co-star Gillian Anderson has said she won’t be doing any more episodes, and Fox is unlikely to ask anyway.

Here are the Wednesday-Thursday local news derby results.

Wednesday -- Fox4 won at 10 p.m. in total viewers and 25-to-54-year-olds (main advertiser target audience for news programming) while as usual/always sweeping the 6 a.m. competitions as well.

NBC5 had twin wins at 5 p.m. The 6 p.m. leaders were TEGNA8 in total viewers and Fox4 with 25-to-54-year-olds.

Thursday -- TEGNA8 drew the most total viewers at 10 p.m. while Fox4 and NBC5 tied for the lead among 25-to-54-year-olds.

Fox4 ran the table at 6 a.m. and also was tops with 25-to-54-year-olds at both 5 and 6 p.m. CBS11 had the most total viewers at 5 p.m. and TEGNA8 finished first in that measurement at 6 p.m. CBS11’s 6 and 10 p.m. editions were preempted by the network’s basketball coverage.

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Further makeovers coming for TEGNA8's rising/early rising Daybreak program

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Touting a recent rise in the program’s ratings, TEGNA8 news director Carolyn Mungo has further big plans for Daybreak, which she says is “the most important show we do.”

In an internal memo obtained by unclebarky.com, Mungo (pictured above) notes that Daybreak has pulled even with NBC5 among 25-to-54-year-olds in the battle for second place in the most-watched 6 to 7 a.m. hour. Advertisers consider 25-to-54-year-olds to be the main target audience for news programming.

The station is intent on seizing that momentum, Mungo says. “We will be finally getting a set refresh at Victory (Park) in mid-late April,” she tells staffers. “SO -- by May we will have a new ‘brand’ logo launch, a more robust marketing campaign, and a new set! I wanted to thank the entire team for the hard work. I may not see you often, but the morning show is the most important show we do. I huddle with Sheena (Daybreak executive producer Sheena Autin) every day. It is exciting to see our upward trend. There is no stopping us.”

As previously posted, Daybreak began undergoing a major makeover last fall with what Autin has described as a “social-first, multi-screen show.” Three new young women, co-anchor Kara Sewell, traffic anchor Demetria Obilor and “social media editor” Janelle Brandom joined the Daybreak on-camera team while holdover co-anchor Ron Corning and meteorologist Greg Fields remained in place. Brandom left TEGNA8 earlier this month to pursue other opportunities. All three women have sizable social media followings on Instagram, Facebook and/or Twitter. Obilor is equal part traffic anchor and social media tracker with her daily “Speed Feed” segments.

Producers of TEGNA8’s 6 and 10 p.m. weekday newscasts might be a bit surprised to hear that Daybreak is the station’s most important program. But Mungo has a point. The early morning editions, which begin at 4:30 a.m. on all four major competing stations, in large part make their own beds. They aren’t dependent on any network lead-in programming, which still makes a big difference at 10 p.m. in particular. And there’s potentially an overall younger pool of viewers looking to get a handle on traffic or weather before heading off to work, sending their children off to school, or both.

Unclebarky.com has noted Daybreak’s momentum among 25-to-54-year-olds in several of the daily “ratings snapshot” posts. Both TEGNA8 and NBC5 still have miles to go before reaching any ratings parity with Fox4’s Good Day, which didn’t lose a single weekday all winter in either total D-FW viewers or 25-to-54-year-olds.

In Tuesday’s 6 to 7 a.m. ratings, for instance, Fox4 drew double the total viewers of either TEGNA8 or NBC5. Among 25-to-54-year-olds, it more than doubled TEGNA8’s total and tripled that of NBC5’s. CBS11 basically remains a non-factor across the board.

Mungo does not talk to your friendly content provider. TEGNA8 has a content-sharing agreement with Fort Worth’s Star-Telegram.

Email comments or questions to: unclebarky@verizon.net

Jenny Anchondo exits Fox4 (updated Thursday p.m.)


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Surprising many of her colleagues, Fox4 anchor-reporter Jenny Anchondo has left the Dallas-based station, effective immediately.

“Today is my last day at Fox4,” she said in a newsroom memo sent Wednesday, March 21st. “I wanted to send a quick note of encouragement before my departure.”

Anchondo, best known for anchoring the early morning weekend editions of Good Day, told Fox4 staffers that “this can be a tough business but don’t let it steal your passion. You got noticed and hired for a reason. Continue to shine and perfect your craft and do what you do best for the people who trust us with their news. I’ll be staying in town. Wishing you the absolute best.”

Anchondo has not returned a message asking for further comment. Fox4 vice president/news director Robin Whitmeyer referred an inquiry to a Fox corporate spokesperson in New York, who confirmed Anchondo’s March 21st departure.

Anchondo joined Fox4 in October 2013 from WXIN-TV in Indianapolis. She immediately began anchoring the Saturday and Sunday Good Day programs while also reporting three days a week. That may have been a sticking point. Sources at Fox4 say that Anchondo much preferred anchoring and didn’t relish going out in the field.

Other sources say Anchondo’s exit was amicable and that Fox4 fully intended to sign her to a new contract before her current one expired. But Anchondo reportedly initiated talks with management and eventually asked to be freed to pursue other opportunities.

She’ll have a standard non-compete clause of at least six months that would prevent Anchondo from appearing on-camera at a rival North Texas station during that time. Anchondo and her husband, Heath, had their first child, a daughter, last summer.

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Local Nielsen ratings snapshot (Tues., March 20) -- The Voice & Fox4's local news are top prime-time scorers

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NBC’s The Voice led off with dominant ratings Tuesday night before Fox4’s 9 p.m. local newscast finished off the prime-time hours with another strong showing.

A total of 334,739 total D-FW viewers tuned to The Voice at 7 p.m. while CBS’ competing NCIS ran second in that hour with 185,175 viewers. The Voice also won among advertiser-craved 18-to-49-year-olds with 68,653.

At 8 p.m., another NCIS repeat won with 213,663 total viewers. But ABC’s black-ish drew the most 18-to-49-year-olds from 8 to 8:30 p.m. (40,568) and Fox’s The Mick took the 8:30 to 9 p.m. slot (34,327).

Fox4’s local news then swept the 9 p.m. hour with 227,907 total viewers and 71,774 in the 18-to-49 age range. That made the newscast Tuesday’s top draw in this key demographic.

ABC’s second episode of For the People drew little interest from the people. It bombed with just 56,977 total viewers and 6,241 in the 18-to-49 realm.

And now for Tuesday’s local news derby results.

TEGNA8 impressively overcame ABC’s lousy For the People lead-in to win at 10 p.m. in total viewers while NBC5 pulled in the most 25-to-54-year-olds (main advertiser target audience for news programming).

Fox4 again ran the table at 6 a.m., also swept the 6 p.m. competitions and had the most 25-to-54-year-olds at 5 p.m. NBC5 drew the most total viewers at 5 p.m.

Email comments or questions to: unclebarky@verizon.net