The Grinch Behind 415 Media

Rich Lieberman
Rich Lieberman does not play well with others. If you’ve read his blog, 415 Media, you get the impression Lieberman hates everybody in tv news and news-talk radio. There must be the rare newsy that gains the respect of Rich Lieberman, I’m sure. There has to be at least one. Most of the San Francisco area talking heads get a dressing down each day, and the more familiar I become with the talent in that region, I think Lieberman may be dead-on with his critiques.

Concerning Ryan Yamamoto, formerly with KOMO 4 news, now the main anchor at KPIX 5/SF: There is a rumor that Yamamoto will be demoted. Apparently, the powers that be at KPIX, have seen the light, according to Lieberman. Ryan Yamamoto is not a strong presence as a news anchor. He might do well with short feature stories, like covering the opening of a skateboard park. Then again, his energy level may not be up to it.

I agree with Lieberman on his assessment of Anne Makovec, another from KPIX, who we now see as the anchor of KSTW’s Seattle Now News. Makovec is a stiff.

I want to say that is where our similarities end. Because Rich Lieberman is just a guy who hates everybody in San Francisco radio and tv. I try to stay current with his blog, but sometimes I have to turn away, because his assessments become angry and the toxicity of his posts starts bringing gloom to the room. PSM readers know that, as George W. Bush said, “I’m a loving guy” and the harshness of Lieberman’s posts is sometimes overwhelming.

Rich Lieberman lets it all hang out. He has attracted a huge following. You either love him or hate him.

There are legions of females in the SF Media who despise him, and have tried to cancel, dox, and de-monetize him. —
Twenty-nine female journalists from around the San Francisco Bay Area have united against a local blogger who has made comments about many of them in his posts they describe as disturbing and sexist, commenting on the “boob power” of one anchor in one story and headlining another “Boner of the Day.”

Describing himself as a feminist, Lieberman said he treats women with respect, decency and admiration and said some of his best friends are women.
SFGate.com/September 2020

These femi-nazis, uh, ladies, were somewhat successful, causing the loss of at least one advertiser. This comes with the territory. Some may think he is mysoginistic, vile, hateful. Rich Lieberman gives his honest take on the state of radio-tv media in the San Francisco area, pulling no punches, often getting personal, getting down into the mud. The more insiders willing to spill the tea with him the better. There seem to be quite a few that will rat out a co-anchor or someone in management.

  • There’s a certain person at Circle7 who has a substance-abuse problem that the bosses are aware of–they haven’t told him to get his act together (yet) but they probably should.
  • Comcast hires CHEAP people because they’re cheap. I’m not at all surprised that that shit Sunday show that airs is a total EMBARRASSMENT. But Comcast (NBC Sports Bay Area) doesn’t care.
  • KCBS is running promos nonstop about its new “wow” guy, Bret Burkhart, yet in the spot, it never says when Bret is on. That’s dumb enough but even more telling is how KCBS is highlighting a “story-teller” anchor who is nothing more than a former KGO retread.
  • Those lines are just within one of Rich Lieberman’s recent blog posts. Day in and day out, non-stop, station personnel are exposed in the caustic manner that his readers expect from him. Many disagree in comments on the pages of 415Media. There is a give and take of opinion, but 99.99% of the time, everybody sucks according to Rich Lieberman. And he stands by his opinion. He happily lays out the case as to why they suck so bad.

    Rich Lieberman’s scorched-earth style is opinionated, unforgiving and relentless. 415Media is like passing a car wreck on the freeway. You don’t want to see the carnage, but just can’t turn away.

  • KPIX doesn’t just need a new, thorough cleansing, it needs a new look, a fresh scent of paint. Its news presentation is stale and uninviting but worse, its set is vanilla and crummy. All you have to do to confirm is to take a look at their product. Yuck.
  • KTVU, meanwhile is stuck with mundane, boring Martin and over-exposed, has-been Roberta Gonzales.
  • KPIX’s woeful Amanda Starrantino. A total vanilla wafer and about as genuine as a Hayward 7-11.
  • KRON isn’t 1990 anymore. Gone is Jim Paymar, Pete Wilson, Bob Jimenez, Evan White and Sylvia Chase.
    But it’s 2022. Times have changed. Hell, even Darya Folsom, has (sometimes) read the room.
    I’ll regret the last sentence –you get my drift. I’m sure I’ll have ample opportunities to rip KRON.
  • *I remember Darya from Phoenix tv news. If she could have worn a cheerleader outfit to get more attention, she would have. A bit of an airhead, as I recall.

    At PSM, we hear rumblings, unhappiness in the newsroom, lousy pay, shithead news director, brown-nosing co-worker. It’s the same in all markets. Rich Lieberman prefers to tear open the curtain, revealing more than you might expect to learn about the Bay area personalities behind the microphones, and their bosses. Check it out at 415Media. It gets ugly, wear your mask and stand back six feet.

    Author: Jason Remington

    Creator, Admin, & Editor of PugetSound.Media, former broadcaster at KAMT/Tacoma, KRPM FM/Tacoma, KJUN/Puyallup, KASY/Auburn, KTAC AM/Tacoma, KBRD FM/Tacoma, KMTT FM/Tacoma, and KOOL FM/Phoenix. - Jason Remington Airchecks

    20 thoughts on “The Grinch Behind 415 Media

    1. Just like ftvlive, Rich has the talent agents as his main sources. Dare to mention that and he will kill the comments. The Bi-polar thing is pretty odd because one minute he is missing his mother (again!) or he is running his strange “Black Anchor” fantasy. Don’t fall for his “special access” subscription offer. He really has awful bookeeping of his paid members. He is a C+ ebegger…but he does get a few scoops now and then…when he’s not pretending to be a long gone newspaper gossip hack.

    2. Lieberman’s entertaining, but much of what he writes is clearly made-up, especially the nonstop catfights between female anchors and the imminent departures of local reporters heading to New York, Los Angeles or Washington, D.C. (They never go anywhere.) Many of the anonymous comments on Lieberman’s blog saying how great he is seem suspiciously as if they were written by Lieberman himself. And comments that are critical of Lieberman rarely get published.

    3. Where do I begin. He’s the biggest joke in the “blogosphere.” He’s always predicting things—ten a day—and when you say enough and are vague enough eventually a few do happen. That’s how Nostradamus’ “predictions” work. Every newsroom goes through upheavals periodically and people leave per the normal course of affairs, but ten times a week he says “A top anchor was seen having lunch with suits from New York” or whatever. Eventually someone leaves and he says “You read it here first! I called it six months ago!” Yeah, well, that’s like saying “Someday it’s going to rain.” And then it rains. Big deal. He did score big with the Frank Somerville DUI story and the local papers did try to take away some of his glory by not crediting him. I did feel for him for that but that’s a rare scoop for someone who’s too fast to hit the “publish” button before he’s paid any attention to all the squiggly red lines under many words in his posts. I seriously think he skipped grade school or something because he can’t spell words any ten-year-old should be comfortable with. As for his claim that TV is a visual medium to cover up his sexism, I’ll point out that he’s talked about female anchor and reporter boobs but never male bellies or gray hair. He never praises anybody except slightly once in a while, and pines for the days of Evan White and Van Amburg, but I’ll bet if there was blogging back then he would have dissed them as well, and longed for…what, Edward R. Murrow and Herb Morrison.

      Lieberman is an embittered joke—unmarried, unsuccessful (he could not get hired as a fill-in writer at one of the stations he deplores) and dependent on scrapings from his 415 Media “business” and probably welfare or social security. But he writes fantasy pieces where he’s in a swanky bar and some hot woman is hitting on him. I was about to say what a joke, but it’s not. It’s sad, really.

      1. “…and pines for the days of Evan White and Van Amburg, but I’ll bet if there was blogging back then he would have dissed them as well, and longed for…what, Edward R. Murrow and Herb Morrison.”

        LOL! Herb Morrison. Clever line. Thanks for that one.

        1. I revised it to add “Ida Tarbell and Silence Dogood,” as well as add several other points, but for some reason the software published the original. Ah, technology!

          1. Initial comments are held for moderation and the second copy went to Spam folder. Adding your revised comments to compare and contrast.

    4. Where do I begin? He’s the saddest joke in the “blogosphere.” He’s always predicting things—ten posts a day—and when you say enough and are vague enough eventually a few do happen. That’s how Nostradamus works. Every newsroom goes through upheavals periodically and people leave per the normal course of affairs, but ten times a week he says, “A top anchor was seen having lunch with the suits from New York” or whatever. Eventually someone leaves and he says, “You read it here first! I called it six months ago!” Yeah, well, that’s like saying someday it’s going to rain. And then it rains. Wow. He also likes to stir up the pot over the slightest things. There is no *major embarrassment* at KTVU for not hiring Kyla Grogan. It does them no credit, but this sort of oversight happens all the time in the business everywhere. I doubt anyone at the station cares today that she landed at KRON. And to top it off, when she was at KTVU he didn’t advocate for her. He wrote openly about how he didn’t like her and didn’t think she was anything special, yet as soon as they didn’t hire her f/t he acts as though it’s the biggest tragedy since NBC nixed Conan O’Brien.

      He *did* score big with the Frank Somerville DUI story and the local papers took away some of his glory by not crediting him. I did feel for him for that, but that’s the rare scoop for someone who’s too fast to hit the “publish” button before he’s paid any attention to all the squiggly red lines under the words in his posts. I seriously think he skipped grade school because he can’t spell words any ten-year-old should be comfortable with, and he mixed metaphors and twists meaning to the point that he sometimes ends up writing the opposite of what he means. Just trying to decipher the “grammar” in some of his posts make me sympathetic for the plight of Jean-François Champollion.

      As for his claim to cover up his sexism that TV is a visual medium, I’ll point out that he’s talked about female anchor and reporter boobs, clothing and hair but never male bellies or hair. He never praises anybody except ever so slightly once in a while, and pines for the days of Evan White and Van Amburg, but I’ll bet if there was blogging back then he would have dissed them as well, and longed for…what, Edward R. Murrow and Herb Morrison? Ida Tarbell and Silence Dogood?

      Lieberman is sad and embittered—unmarried, unsuccessful (he could not get hired as a fill-in writer at one of the stations he deplores) and dependent on scrapings from his 415 Media “business” and some form of public assistance. But he writes fantasy pieces where he’s in a swanky bar quaffing an expensive drink while some hot woman is hitting on him. I was about to say what a joke, but it’s not a joke. It’s sad, really. He sometimes talks about his trips to a therapist. That man or woman must be rich.

      1. Wiki References, for the rest of us:

        Ida Minerva Tarbell was an American writer, investigative journalist, biographer and lecturer. She was one of the leading muckrakers of the Progressive Era of the late 19th and early 20th centuries and pioneered investigative journalism.

        Mrs. Silence Dogood was the pen name used by Benjamin Franklin to get his work published in the New-England Courant, a newspaper founded and published by his brother James Franklin. This was after Benjamin Franklin was denied several times when he tried to publish letters under his own name in the Courant.

      2. To be fair to Rich, FTVLive has turned the Nostradamus BS into an art form in ways Lieberman never has. Scott will say something is going to happen and maybe a year later it actually happens and then he takes credit for being “right”. News flash: Things don’t take a year to happen in the TV News business. If an anchor is on the outs, they get jettisoned. If some executive is on the ropes, they get taken out. TV Newsrooms, particularly at the national level, can’t afford to wait a year to pull the trigger if the trigger needs to be pulled. So whenever Scott takes credit for something he prognosticated a year earlier, my eyes roll back so hard they do a 360.

        But back to Lieberman…

        I can’t believe anyone subscribes to his blog. He does not churn out real news frequently enough to justify a subscription. Most of the time it’s him just recycling his talking points (Ryan Yamamoto sucks, Amber Eikel is in trouble, etc) A couple of years ago it was Trixie Watkowski that constantly got the Lieberman treatment but I guess he got bored or something because he’s stopped talking about her. He’s really rode roughshod over Sarah Donchey which I just do not understand at all because I’ve seen her in action and she is fully capable and doesn’t give off a whiff of L.A. TV the way others in the Bay Area do (Audrey Asistio for example). And he’s been hyper critical of Heather Holmes too, especially her wardrobe which, honestly, in a world of Darya Folsoms, Amanda Starrantinos, and Audrey Asistios, is actually kind of tame by comparison.

        While some of the comments on his blog are undoubtedly Rich himself, I’d say most aren’t. But boy can some of them be mean bastards. Some of them rake long time anchor Jessica Aguirre over the coals for supposedly having facelift/Botox treatments when it’s patently obvious to anyone who has watched her since she came to the Bay Area in the 90s that she’s had nothing of the kind.

        The site isn’t a very nice place to visit, in all honesty…

    5. Rich comes dangerously close to getting himself sued sometimes. But I guess what protects him is he has no money! His is a gossip site with a little information and NO understanding of how a newsroom works or how news is gathered. His writing seems to be more of a vendetta against people who have either fired him in the past or wouldn’t hire him now. Yes, the contemporary news scene is a mess. He never points out the obvious, though: the internet has taken advertising dollars from the once-mighty broadcasting networks. They will never dominate again because people are throwing their advertising dollars away on click-farm sites, so the commercials on TV news are for ambulance chasing lawyers and that store in the south bay that sells cut-rate diamonds that are probably cubic zirconia.

      So how can they maintain the level they had 20 years ago? Answer: they can’t. But even if they could, come someone as illiterate and ill-tempered as Rich get a job in that world? Hardly. This is why I don’t get why he’s bothered so much. Bay Area TV has finally sunk to his level. Okay, that’s cruel. Bay Area TV still gets (most of) its facts right and spells (most of) its full screens and supers correctly. That puts it above Lieberman, who typically has at least one error per sentence in every post and whose idea of “reportage” is to say “Bay Area news is getting worse and worse” over and over again. You don’t say?

      If would be interesting if he could use his blog to educate people on the seismic shift that’s happened in TV news and advertising in the past decade, similar to what Bob Hoffman does in his excellent, award-winning blog. This degridation of news has happened because of people like Mark Zuckerberg and Jack Dorsey, not because of Aaron Pero and Amber Eikel, though I’m no fan of the latter two. Maybe if he explained that his blog would serve a purpose greater than venting and personal vendettas. Maybe.

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