Kudos to KNBC

Los Angeles-based KNBC-TV wrapped up a week-long “Road Trip” this past Friday in downtown Riverside. The NBC-owned station spent the entire week broadcasting a large portion of its 5 p.m. newscast from 4 different locales within Inland Southern California.

Paul Moyer and Colleen Williams

LA/Ontario Int’l Airport


Live from the Mission Inn

The week kicked off with Monday’s live remote from the California Citrus State Historic Park in Riverside, and included a look at the area’s citrus history as well as the region’s recent explosive growth.

Tuesday was spent in San Bernardino, visiting an outreach center of the city’s “Operation Phoenix” program as well as spotlighting efforts at the city’s fledgling San Bernardino International Airport.

Wednesday saw the crew spend time in Temecula, reporting on the area’s highly-regarded schools and exploring the city’s old town and wine country districts.

Thursday was Ontario’s day as the newscast setup shop at LA/Ontario International Airport, reporting on the region’s rise as the distribution hub for Greater Los Angeles.

Friday closed out the road trip back in Riverside, this time with the historic Mission Inn serving as the backdrop for reports on the eclectic hotel’s Festival of Lights, its “Famous Fliers’ Wall” as well as a revered look at nearby Riverside National Cemetery.

Although our first reaction in hearing about the remote broadcasts was one of curiosity mixed with trepidation, we must acknowledge the station went above and beyond what was expected. The daily broadcast was not simply a case of moving the anchor desk outside the studio and reporting the news. Not at all. In fact, the news team tailored large portions of the hour-long newscasts with local informational pieces — something rarely seen on LA television, particularly with regards to Inland Southern California.

So, what does this mean? Probably nothing, as indeed next week will likely be business as usual. But, based upon the quality and type of reports we saw this past week, we hope KNBC is wising up to the need at better serving the entire metropolitan region. Although 10 million people do in fact live in LA County, the phenomenal growth within Greater Los Angeles over the past 20-30 years has pushed the outlying population within the adjacent 4 counties to 8 million (of which, 4 million reside within Inland Southern California alone). That’s a rather large — and growing — chunk of the overall viewing audience.

However, we should clarify exactly what it is we’re seeking. Indeed, it would be nice to have a nightly newscast tailored more for the residents of Inland Southern California. Yes, this would include the typical news, weather, sports and traffic. But beyond that, we’re not asking for more Hollywood-influenced, “sensationalized” local news reporting. Instead, we’re asking for more community-focused news — insightful reporting on local politics, in-depth analysis of the Inland region’s rising economic power and demographics or simply previewing an upcoming weekend festival or even a quick history lesson about the area. Indeed, that’s what we’re seeking.

Truth be told, the only chance of ever getting this will likely depend upon the Inland region securing its own major television station. But, for one week at least, that’s what we got. Kudos, KNBC.



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