Bob Klingle is out at WHAS-TV. His resignation is effective March 23, and he plans to stay in Louisville and pursue other opportunities, according to a report on the Business First web site.
That’s the official story, now here’s some speculation. It’s certainly no secret that WHAS-TV is on a ratings decline. In news, WLKY-TV won the morning race and at 11 p.m., time periods in which WHAS-TV has done much better in the past. I was told by one insider that the 10 p.m. experiment on WBKI-TV isn’t attracting a significant audience. WHAS-TV’s news product has frequently focused on weather non-events, carrying on about potential storms, while the competition moves on to real news. I hear there’s been plenty of in-house turmoil over the morning show.
When an official release says “pursuing other opportunities,” that’s just a code for being forced out the door. So Klingle may be the fall guy for the station’s poor performance in the February sweeps. Or, the 50-year-old GM, who’s been in the TV business for 25 years and at WHAS for seven, may really be ready to move on to something else, as the C-J reported.
The question is…will the bloodletting stop there? Some fingers will point to News Director Aaron Ramey, brought in by Klingle, whose position may be in the most jeopardy. It will be an interesting story to follow.