Reaction to NJN’s Closure

By Jerry Henry

As the Senate vote failed to block NJN’s transfer to New York-base WNET, the inevitable became clear to many.  NJN’s 40-year run as the state’s television and radio voice was coming to an end.  For fans of public media like College of New Jersey communications professor Terry Byrne, it’s another independent voice lost.

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31 Responses to Reaction to NJN’s Closure

  1. A Viewer says:

    This should have been the headline on the Star-Ledger (recalling the NY Daily News in 1976): CHRISTIE & LEGISLATURE TO NJN VIEWERS: GO TO HELL!!!
    These clowns don’t care about the people of this state. What’s next? The repeal of OPRA? I’m laying odds, given their druthers, in this current attitude, they would do it in a heartbeat and bring back the smoke filled backroom deal making era. This way, WE THE PEOPLE, would be ignorant as to what is going on in Trenton!

    • P Echt says:

      I will miss you unbiased nightly voice. You covered the issues of NJ with dignity up until the bitter end. My only hope is that everyone there goes on to bigger and better things, thank you

      • Jo Ann Yates Cubberley says:

        OH – I agree with P Echt!!! I had tears in my eyes as I watched the last “Reporters’ Roundtable” last Friday. And I am SO sad, watching distinguished careers being wasted in this move. Good luck and my blessings to the entire staff.

  2. David Weiner says:

    Now CC, GN, SA,Sr. and JD control the media and the message.

    • Eileen Antolino says:

      Thats right, thats what it was all about…orchestrating the message or just eliminating the messenger. The NJN crew were timeless and I do hope they all go on to their full potential. NJN has now gone the way of Camelot.

  3. lew says:

    Face the reality, we are already part of NY as a result of years of immigration. Just ask other shoppers in your supermarket where to get a good bagel. They will tell you they go back to Manhattan!

  4. Eileen D. Zack says:

    It is a sad day that yet another media voice goes silent.
    I have seen newspapers close, tv programs shrink and now this wonderful organ will no longer be seen, heard or enjoyed.

    The worst thing that can happen is to silence information to the public. The continued dumbing down of America continues.

    As much as I enjoy viewing WNET and WHYY, I always view NJN for the New Jersey stories and political voice since I moved back to NJ

    This is a true tragedy for the citizens of New Jersey. It will become apparent after it is too late if they do not already realize it now as I have.

    Thank you for all your wonderful news, news stories, political programs and your many artistic shows and films.

    To all the people behind the cameras, in the offices as well as on camera personalities a big hug to say I will sorely miss you and all your efforts to bring many years of programming to all who tuned in day after day and week after week.

    Good luck in your future endeavors and may good fortune smile on all.


  5. David Burns says:

    I actually remember watching the first broadcast of New Jersey Network on a black and white TV with a UHF converter some 40 years ago. Over the years New Jersey Network became the indispensible source for news in New Jersey, and a source of pride for the entire state, probably the only one. I had the joy of meeting Michael Aron and Larry Stuepnagel when the covered events that I attended. While I did disagree with some of NJN’s decisions (particularly the cancellation of the Uncle Floyd Show), I will miss its reach, focus, and enthusiasm for New Jersey.

    i still have some glimmer of hope for NJN because WNET is a professional operation who are putting their reputation, prestige, and fundraising ability on the line for New Jersey. I hope they will maintain an informative and lively newscast and much of the PBS schedule including my bother’s favorite Brit Coms and Doc Martin. I also hope my other favorite show Reporters Rountable stays on as the only real analysis of Trenton. I wish all the best in finding jobs to the camera crews, engineers, and technicians. I hope that many of the trusted reporters and analysts will continue with the new entity. Thanks for a great 40 years. Tomorrow will be a sad day for New Jersey, hopefully not a tragic day as well.

  6. Mark says:

    It’s a sad day when NJN news goes. I watched this program for decades and at some point our so called leaders will realize they made a big mistake. Just want to Thank all of You for your dedication in broadcasting and wish you well.

  7. VINCE says:

    You all can be very proud of the fine services that you have given us here in NJ over the last 40 years.It was quite apparent watching over the years that the staff was a family of folks that cared about our state, and each other as an organization,rather rare commodities these days.
    Nothing WNET does will replace NJN’s quality and commitment. They can’t their station as Public Broadcasting Service.
    I wish you all well, you certainly deserve it

  8. James Schroeder says:

    It’s a sad day for the state of New Jersey. NJN has given us 40 years of outstanding progamming and a news division covering NJ second to none. NJN filled a void in providing New Jerseyans with a full complement of information about New Jersey public affiars and New Jersey politics that we never have received nor never will receive from NYC and Philadelphia media outlets. All of the staff at NJN were consummate professionals. The news was delivered to us in a non-partisan, highly professional manner. Over time Michael Aaron became the personification of what high quality professional journalism is all about. I’m sorry but exchanging Michael Aaron for the slickster, Steve Adubato Jr,. is like trading Mother Theresa for Lindsay Lohan. What a sham. We’ll wait to see how often WNET comes to South Jersey. Chris Christie gets to add another chit to his GOP bonafides as he pursues his national aspirations but he has destroyed an organization that was a truly outstanding New Jersey institution.
    Best wishes and good fortune to all of the great professional staffers at NJN.
    Jim Schroeder

  9. Christy Shaner says:

    I do not usually comment on boards, but I feel so compelled to do so here now.

    I am 33 years old and admit I have only started to watch the NJN nightly news for about the last year or two. This was after getting more and more frustrated with the other NY and PA based news channels that never reported on the important issues going on here in NJ, and to me, always seemed biased. NJN news is the only place I have been able to hear any non-tainted news for NJ. I have been watching it faithfully at 6pm every night ever since the first time I found the NJN newscast. I really wish I would of found out about this newscast sooner than only a year or to ago.

    It disturbs me so how polictians can just dictate the faith of so many people’s lives, the viewers and the workers, just on a political whim. I truely believe that this handover was NOT for money-saving issues, but for pure politics and a way to stop one of the only places to hear news that is not tainted by the same. And I am also very upset and dissapointed that the Senate refused to stand ny NJN. As a public worker family, we are all too familiar with how they all have turned their back on us all. It is a very sad time in NJ.

    But why I am really writing this is to say my words to Hooker, Aaron, Kessler, all newscasters, people behind the cameras, writers, staff, EVERYONE who is employed by NJN~
    Thank you so much for all of your hard work over the years. Like I said, I do not usually write any opinions on sites at all. But tonight, I truely sit here in tears, hoping that all of you will have luck in any future endeavors. If the governor has ANY bit of care ( although I doubt it), I really hope that he will atleast find other public job openings to give you instead of just tossing you out as he has done with NJN itself.

    My husband and I are very upset about this whole turnover and really feel for all of you who work at NJN. We wish you the best. If there is anything we can do to help save your jobs; petitions, letters, vocalizing,etc., please let us know.

    Big hugs and love to all! You are all Truely our NJ!
    Christy Shaner

  10. Sarah Harnick says:

    Ellen expresses my feelings exactly. No matter how much private news organizations try to fill the very large void created by the demise of NJN, none of those attempts will equal the quality, consistency and objectivity of NJN.
    I’ll miss you all.

  11. Linda S says:

    I agree with you Christy. I was shocked at how visceral were my emotions; I too have recently shed tears watching these final broadcasts. Tonight will be so very sad. NJN/NJN News has been part of my “everyday” for such a long time. I fear an incredibly unfillable void will be left…

  12. eileen says:

    So sad I love this station. They tell the truth.There is only junk on NJ stations. I listen to NJN all day. I am so upset This state and country is all one sided,It does not matter Dem or republican.All the same.

  13. Timothy Frith says:

    Tonight, a 40-year run for NJN will be history.

  14. Regina says:

    I am very sorry not only for the talented people at NJN who are losing their jobs, but that the citizens of New Jersey are losing the best government watchdog we had. It’s ironic that government-funded broadcast stations are the only ones which provide serious, thorough and thought-provoking news and programming–corporate-controlled news media are sex & violence, T&A, sell sell sell machines. I loved watching NJN and will miss the nightly news.

  15. Jenn says:

    Can you play Positively New Jersey one last time?
    Will miss NJN.

  16. rose says:

    this is the loss of a true resource to the people of NJ .

    in the not too distance future, the loss will become very clear.

    also, what plans were made to archive all the 40 years of history captured by njn?

  17. NJmom65 says:

    Christy, WNET will hire maybe 15 – and no special consideration will be given to any of the NJN workers. I suspect they want to run the whole operation with college interns on the cheap not with seasoned professionals. What a shame, NYC will treat NJ as a poor step sister. Prepare to see a lot of hype but no substance from the new NJTV.

  18. Cathy Williams Carroll says:

    I watched NJN from my new location in northwestern Washington. There was no better place to get news of my beloved home state. Sober, reflective, cutting-edge, in-depth news. Shame on the governor and legislature! You screwed a lot of people out of their livelihood and pensions, but mostly you screwed the good people of NJ out of the most excellent source of pertinent news. Shame!

  19. Scott Cunningham says:

    Had tears watching the farewell, my satelitte had a timer set for 6:00 every weeknight to go to NJN, my kids ribbed me for shouting at the politicians that were reported on. You were unbiased and kept me up to date as to what was going on under the gold dome and I hope someone can step up and fill that spot, if not the same politicians that sold you down the river will do what they want to instead of what we sent them there to do. You also covered the entire state with many stories in the south jersey area were I live, I fear those NEW YORKERS won’t find their way past the center of our state, and Philly stations only care about beach reports because their residents are invading it all summer. I will miss you all and wish you the best of luck in your futures. STAND PROUD YOU SERVED NJ WELL !!

  20. Mo says:

    I work for the State of NJ in Trenton and would always see and talk to Jerry Henry and Jim Hooker! What nice gentlemen! Now due to the so called POLITICAL MOB, I will lose my NJN!

    I wish Jim and Jerry the best of luck on all they want to accomplish after this unnecessary fiasco!

  21. Ismael/Passaic says:

    I can’t believe the long term damange that this Governor has done to NJ in such a short period of time. Eliminating NJN is yet another example of his attack on education. I am so upset about losing NJN, but I know that no matter how much we cry, we can’t bring it back.
    But please WNET, bring back Reporter’s Roundtable! It was a weekly Friday night tradition in out home.

  22. Carole Papale says:

    Thank you to Michael, Jim and ALL the professional reporters and staff. We happily saw your work everyday and we loved your dedicated unbiased coverage of everything New Jersey.

    NJN News and it’s loyal viewers did not deserve the cavalier cast-off delivered by our
    senate and governor. Every dime ever spent on NJN was a wise investment in our quality of life. The hidden agendas that were served are disgustingly apparent.

    Good Luck to all as you take a new road. Please know you’ll be missed. Your sad viewers
    wish you well and hope to see you somewhere on the horizon very, very soon.

  23. anthony bubadias says:

    the people of nj have lost a voice now all facts and information will be edited to meet a shadow agenda, now a certain group has control over vital facts and information, the station was a strong link to the voice of the people .this was all preplaned no one person should have the power to take away a voice for the people , we will not know truth from facts , so much for town hall meetings , time to leave new jersey , a very disapointed voter

  24. Edward Micallef says:

    We will also miss this wonderful asset we had. The news staff in front of and behind the scenes is one that my wife and I have come to truly enjoy over the years.
    I have nothing positive to say about the lawmakers and the governor who championed this event.
    In New Jersey, life becomes more and more negative. We have pollution, so what do they do? build more houses. Traffic and bad roads, build more strip malls, access roads and put 10 or 15 traffic lights at each corner.
    Enjoy health benefits that you took a pay cut from the private sector to get a public job, remove them like a King would.
    Love a public TV and radio entity/NJN, sell it out and don’t question King Chrisitie..
    Good luck NJN crew, my wife and I will miss you!!!

  25. Kevin Olson says:

    NJPTV gave me my start in television so it will always be a fond memory to me. Amoung many other acomplishments over the years, it taped and aired many great shows including one of the finest humorists in US history, Jean Shepherd and one of the great NJ advocates, Uncle Floyd. NJN has a lot to be proud of and will remain in the hearts and minds of most true-blue New Jersians. Sad to say, NJ got the just the idiot windbag they voted for who has kept the good people of NJ hostage to his middle class-hating designs. Many of your neighbors, NJ state workers, are currently being conned out of their hard-earned futures while no corporate interests suffer in the least, of course. Welcome to NJ’s new tomorrow.

  26. Josh says:

    The only recourse we have as long time supporters of NJN is to NEVER watch WNET. EVER!
    Let’s send a message. Let’s tell those who think they know what’s best for us by boycotting
    WNET. In the words of the Great Actor Peter Finch.. “I’m mad as hell, and I’m not going to
    take it anymore”! Spread the word! The revolution has begun!

  27. Christian, NYC says:

    Not sure if the board even allows posts anymore, but I thought I’d try and add my voice: here’s somebody from NYC who used to watch NJN news just to find out what’s actually going on – none of the other PBS stations even do local news anymore, and what news means in NYC is completely beyond me.

  28. Ed Micallef says:

    My wife and I have been watching the new NJTV news, though it is an interesting format, We much prefer the NJN news format, which was superior.
    If anyone from NJN news reads this, we miss you.

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