Robservations on the media beat:
- The closing of WGN-Channel 9's employee cafeteria, the beloved "Cafe Nueve," was treated sarcastically -- and hilariously -- as a full-blown media event Thursday on the Tribune Co.-owned station's morning show. (Here is the link.) But it was hardly the biggest news of the day at 2501 W. Bradley Place. In a further consolidation of the station and CLTV, Marty Wilke, vice president and general manager of Channel 9, was given oversight responsibility for the cable news channel. Steve Farber, who had been CLTV's general manager, was named vice president/operations for both outlets. "The WGN/CLTV partnership has already strengthened our position as Chicago's local news leader across all platforms," Wilke said in a statement. "There is a lot more opportunity ahead as we work together to build these great brands." Staffers are bracing for more layoffs as Tribune Co. bosses regionalize their station operations.
- One of Farber's first tasks in his new role managing special projects for Tribune Broadcasting's station group could involve launching a television talk show for radio provocateur Mancow Muller. Details are sketchy, but insiders say studio space at Channel 9 has been reserved to tape a pilot, which would feature a live audience and a format similar to "The Jerry Springer Show."