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August 29, 2022 5:07 pm  #1

Could This "Old Newscast" Idea Work Here Again?

There's a station in Scranton, Pa., of all places, that's proving everything old is "news" again. WNEP-TV has begun "airing" old day and date newscasts from 1983 on YouTube and its app, so viewers can tune in and see what happened in their town back in the 80s. 

It features some of the old tech and some of the even older news personalities who are now long gone. And it's a unique trip down memory lane that seems to be attracting a lot of eyeballs, especially when it comes to weather.

“We have the backyard weather where our meteorologists are outside,” [WNEP-TV digital director Shawn] Dunn says. “So you will see them out there with the old magnet board where you will see sunny, partly cloudy and some of the graphics at the time were state of the art and you look at them now and it is amazing to see how much has changed.”

I like this idea, although it's hardly original. Back when CHUM owned CP24, they used to run vintage CityPulse newscasts overnight as filler. And to their surprise, they became popular with the late night crowd, who tuned in to see "The Way We Were" and many now long-gone on-air news people, like Gord Martineau, Mark Dailey, Anne Mroczkowski, Peter Gross, Peter Silverman and Jim McKenny, among others. 

It was quite a nostalgia fest and I have it on pretty good authority that City TV still has a huge library of tapes in their possession that they took with them to their new building when they left Queen W.  What a great treasure trove that would be to see some of those again, especially if they corresponded to the actual same day in history. 

(Yes, there are some shows on YouTube from collectors, but it's not quite the same as it being "today in history.")

The only problem would be the branding - Rogers has worked hard to erase "CityPulse" from people's memories (with some success) and replace it with "CityNews." And such a rerun would only bring it back again. Still, if they could sell it with current commercials inserted, they could make money for literally doing almost nothing. I think it's an interesting concept, but they'll probably never do it. 

Which is too bad. They have a huge library. What a shame to use it only for stock footage.

WNEP Scranton Streaming Archived Newscasts From The 1980s 


August 29, 2022 6:41 pm  #2

Re: Could This "Old Newscast" Idea Work Here Again?

I've watched every second of old news clips that exist on YouTube from my home town. I'd watch this for sure.

There's a group on Twitch that watches old Simpsons episodes every Thursday recorded on VHS from their original airings, and the comments are the liveliest during the commercial breaks.


August 29, 2022 7:14 pm  #3

Re: Could This "Old Newscast" Idea Work Here Again?

How common was it for stations to record their own newscasts, and then retain them? Especially back in the 80s and 90s.

I would definitely be interested in this. I used to watch Rewind on CP24 and always found it fascinating.


August 29, 2022 8:00 pm  #4

Re: Could This "Old Newscast" Idea Work Here Again?

The "Master Control" channel on YouTube has what appear to be in-house recordings of '90s newscasts from what are now two CTV2 stations - CKVR Barrie and CHRO Pembroke/Ottawa. There are some "Total News" and "VRLand News" episodes in there, and from 'RO, Pembroke-produced newscasts from the Mid-Canada and BBS eras, as well as some early New RO (NewsSixOttawa) material, and some other Ottawa Valley surprises.

This 1993 edition of CKVR Total News looks and sounds as if it came straight off of a 1-inch or Betacam tape:



August 29, 2022 8:28 pm  #5

Re: Could This "Old Newscast" Idea Work Here Again?

Retrontario, an absolutely great subsite on YouTube, has a number of old CityPulse newscasts in the collection, along with IDs, promos and other clips. 

If you've never visited, be prepared to stay for a while. It's a classic timewaster that you won't want to leave. 

Retrontario on YouTube

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