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TV Notes, 07/31/02

Wednesday, July 31, 2002

By Rob Owen, Post-Gazette TV Editor

Weekend cable ratings

Coverage of the rescue of the Quecreek miners boosted ratings for cable networks over the weekend, particularly on Saturday night.

From 11:15 p.m. to 3 a.m. Saturday as news broke rapidly, CNN's ratings were 619 percent above normal for that time period year to date. FNC's ratings were up 580 percent and MSNBC's ratings were up 132 percent.

CNN averaged 2.3 million viewers, FNC averaged 2.1 million viewers and MSNBC averaged 755,000 viewers.

Sussi leaving WPGH

Tom Sussi, reporter for Channel 53's 10 p.m. newscast, will leave the station later this month for a job at WXIX, the Fox affiliate in Cincinnati.

Sussi, who has been at WPGH almost two years, will be an investigative/consumer reporter at WXIX.

"For me, it's a better opportunity professionally," he said.

Sussi came to Pittsburgh under former news director Tom Burke with expectations of doing more investigative reporting. He said that didn't coincide with what current news director John Poister had in mind.

"I have an opportunity to do more of the work I want to do, and that's why I'm leaving," Sussi said. "There's no bad blood. Our philosophies are just different. John did right by me. I even used him as a reference."

Sussi said he hopes WPGH will add more newscasts in the future.

"This is a good product, and they need more news so they'll have more visibility in the public."

Poister said Sussi will have good opportunities at his new station.

"I think it will be good match for him," Poister said. "I know people there and it's a good station. They do good job."

Poister said Sussi's position at WPGH will be filled.

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