NPR's "Morning Edition" carried a piece today that made the point that ethnic media are faring better than more traditional newspapers, radio and TV stations. It cited Univision's KMEX and La Opinión as success stories, but left out that Telemundo and La Opinión have been hard hit by layoffs. Cost-cutting at the L.A.-based Spanish-language paper has included unpaid furloughs, elimination of the copy editing desk and scaling back of coverage. Rival Hoy recently went weekly, from daily.
There is a true local success story, though:
"We're the largest Asian TV station, serving the largest Asian population in the United States," says KSCI vice president Eric Olander. "People refer to us often as the Asian Univision."
Olander says that while other media companies are laying people off or closing down, his station is actually expanding. KSCI recently launched a new local evening news show in Korean, and a local morning show in Chinese.
The two-hour, live Power Breakfast spotlights local traffic and weather reports, news and quirky features from Los Angeles and Asia. The perky show is anchored by Yiyi Lu and Andy Chang, who both grew up in Los Angeles watching Chinese TV with their parents, and American shows like Friends and The Simpsons.
Veronica Villafañe chronicles the ins and outs of Hispanic media nationally at her Media Moves blog.