The love that often speaks its name: NYC’s Fox 5 and ’24’

The Columbia Journalism Review looks askance at the time-honored practice of local affiliate news shilling for their network’s prime-time line-up. Sample excerpt from Fox 5 News:

Twenty-one minutes into the broadcast, Senecal’s bright visage appeared to tell Fox’s viewers what was in store: “It’s [the] fifth season, the ratings have surged. So why is 24 the hottest show on TV? We’ve got the secrets of its success coming up.”

Those viewers were then forced to wait until 10:43 to hear Senecal’s breathless report. “Hit is right, and there are lots of reasons the show is such a huge success,” said one of that evening’s anchors, Dari Alexander. Senecal introduced her piece by explaining that her own family members are some of the biggest fans of the show: “So for all of you 24 fanatics out there, no, you are not alone. In fact, there are more and more of you each and every day.”

Anyway, I’ll miss this kind of banter when all of prime-time shifts to video on demand in a few years. How will local newscasts fill the time?