Will Los Angeles viewers looking for news coverage on KCET really be interested in "traditional Korean wedding ceremonies, the finer points of conveyor-belt sushi, Japanese trade policy or men in diapers wrestling over a large ball"? That's what Los Angeles Times media reporter James Rainey is wondering in a column today (Jan. 5). Those stories ran one recent evening on Newsline from NHK, which KCET substituted for PBS NewsHour.
Now that the station is independent from PBS, its main programming, particularly its news, comes from different sources, including the Japanese broadcaster. Rainey sees that as an "attempt to fob off Asia- and Euro-centric news of the day on an audience that may be interested in a worldwide reach, but would much prefer it delivered by known personalities."
Rainey also terms KCET's decision to dump PBS "daring and possibly foolish."