In New York, WCBS Takes Advantage of NBC Missteps

By Andrew Gauthier 

The New York Observer

In the month of December, for the first time in modern history, CBS’ flagship station in New York, WCBS-2, scored a major victory at 11 p.m.–surging ahead among late night news viewers, and winning the entire month in total households with a 4.9 rating, narrowly topping the formidable WABC-7 newscast (4.8 rating) and trouncing Sue Simmons and Chuck Scarborough at the floundering WNBC-4 (3.0).

A quick canvassing of our sources failed to turn up anyone who could remember the last time WCBS-2 had scored such a victory in the 11 p.m. news battle. “It’s the first time in a generation,” said one source.


Somebody at the station might want to send a thank you card to Jeff Zucker.

To wit: much of the credit for WCBS-2’s revival at 11 p.m. undoubtedly goes to the CBS local stations chief Peter Dunn and his team, who have done much to improve the station’s products. But among local news observers there’s also a pervasive belief that the resurgence of WCBS at 11 p.m. wouldn’t have been possible without a strong assist from decisions made in recent years by NBC Universal chief Jeff Zucker. More…