KIAH's "NewsFix": The Anticipated TV News Revolution Begins Saturday, But We Won't Be Covering It

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The world, or at least that portion of it peopled by journalists, is mightily anticipating Channel 39's Saturday night newscast.

Why would they care about a weekend newscast that Houston barely watches? Because most of them will be gleefully hoping it will be an epic disaster.

KIAH is owned by the Tribune Company, which has ravaged the Chicago Tribune and has been promising a "revolutionary" approach to news in the TV stations it owns around the country. Houston is first up, with an anchorless, YouTube-y format known as NewsFix.

For many months, journalists have chortled about the over-the-top memos from Tribune executive Lee Abrams, an "ideas guy" who no doubt thinks outside the box and fired off many, many thoughts about the Tribune's paper and TV reporting until he lost his job.

(One of the memos, which attempted to show the TV news template he was trying to break up, featured a raunchy Onion TV clip. It came as Tribune execs were under fire for sexist behavior generally.)

As we say, the journalism world will be ready to pounce. (There's even a Hitler in Downfall video.)

Not us. We're conflicted out.

Our Craig Hlavaty -- wisely deemed the most camera-ready personality available in the Press newsroom -- will be appearing regularly in a Hair Balls segment of the show. He's been busy taping bits for a while now.

Tribune execs, including Lee Abrams before the fall, met with Press editor Margaret Downing and publisher Stuart Folb about the partnership.

We're as curious as anyone else to see the results. But the reviews will have to come from somewhere else.

Keep the Houston Press Free... Since we started the Houston Press, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Houston, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Houston with no paywalls.

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Join the Press community and help support independent local journalism in Houston.


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