Snow coverage dominates viewer comments - WSLS 10 NBC in Roanoke/Lynchburg Va

Snow coverage dominates viewer comments

By Jay Warren

Winter weather has headlined almost every WSLS newscast for the past week, and along with that has come a long list of school and church closings. But one viewer doesn't like our new graphics for those closings.

Ted Lawrence of Salem wrote, “Thank you for displaying public information such as closings and weather information. I want to share my opinion with you as a viewer as to how you are displaying this information. I find it very annoying that you display this information by boxing around the HD signal versus Ticker Tape type information at the bottom of the screen. I find this so annoying because you are wasting my HD video area, so much so that I look for a station that does not do this.”

WSLS responds: Thanks for the email. Because of FCC rules and regulations, we can't run a ticker at the bottom of the screen because someone using Closed Captioning would lose that information. Because WSLS views it as emergency information, we have to run the information at the top of the screen so it can be seen be all. Still, our closing graphics take up less space on screen than other television stations.

WSLS Reporter Ashley Roberts's interview with Roanoke Mayor David Bowers, where he appeared somewhat defensive about the city's snow removal, generated mixed reaction.

Vern Danielson of Roanoke wrote, “I have the sense that Ms. Roberts was ill prepared. She showed video of a Salem street that was clear and dry and video of a Roanoke street that had not been plowed. The two streets appeared to be of very dissimilar categories … i.e. primary, secondary, neighborhood, arterial etc." Danielson went on to question how many streets Ashley actually drove down in Roanoke and Salem before ending with, “Ms. Roberts appeared to have insufficient information.”

WSLS responds: Thanks for the comment. While Ashley didn't drive on all the streets of Roanoke and Salem, we did have multiple crews including Ashley out on the roads in both localities and all of them came back with the same video and results: the streets in
Salem were in far better condition that the streets in Roanoke. And Mayor Bowers was given ample opportunity to explain why that was in Ashley's story.

Another viewer had a different take on Ashley’s story.

Martha of Roanoke County emailed, “When Ashley Roberts spoke with Mr. Bowers he appeared overly defensive... showing no respect to her or her position. I personally think he needs to make a public apology to her. He also needs to realize in order to get respect you have to earn it, even if your title is Mayor. Although, Ashley showed him all due respect, its more than she should have done.”

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Roanoke, VA 24022-0010

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Fax: 540.343.3157

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