Last week's Observer had an interesting piece on how NBC's local newscast is changing, becoming multiplatform, by harnessing the raw ambition at the New York Film school. DJs -- or digital journalists -- are cost-effectively taking the place of traditional old school anchors, reporters, manging editors and tech crew. This has been building for several years now, as the old way of doing things in the tv news world grew increasingly obsolete (read: bleeding ratings) with the advance of the digital age.
Digital operations at the NBC local Media Group, which squandered the intellectual capital of some of the most important bloggers in the city during last year's NBC Blogger's Summit -- which came to naught -- is making up for lost time. Former Daily Newser Greg Gittrich, for example, will be a news editor. Now, from the salmon-colored weekly:
"After several delays, executives at NBC Universal and WNBC-4 are at last on the verge of launching their 24 hour, 7-day-a-week 'hyper-local' digital news channel in New York, The Observer has learned.
"NBC executives first announced their plans to launch the digital, cable channel back in May of 2008. Initially, the plan was to roll out the channel (which, at the time, various news reports described as a potential challenger to Time Warner’s NY1) by the fall of 2008. But the channel’s debut has since been delayed a number of times.
"What exactly the channel will look like has been a hot topic of speculation in recent months among local TV newshounds in New York.
"Now the wait is almost over.
Earlier this week, in an internal email obtained by The Observer, Michael Horowicz, WNBC-4’s News Manager told staffers that the launch of the channel, dubbed "New York Nonstop," is 'imminent.'"
Our guess is that the news pieces will have the look of Current TV's pods -- does that make Al Gore a pioneer? -- and it will enhance the ranks of young documentarians around (imagine in 20 years if "Best Doc" at the Oscars is a bigger draw than, say, film score). If this approach catches fire it is not inconceivable that NBC might repeat the format with affiliates across the country. More here.