Lafayette, LA (KPEL News) - Change is hard. You've heard those words and, if you have more than two dozen candles on your birthday cake, you know how true they are. The Lafayette, Louisiana, TV market has seen more than its share in the last year. With the exception of KLFY, the look and feel of the other television stations who provide news and weather to the Acadiana area have adjusted either who delivers news at the desk or how they deliver that news to the public.

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KLFY/KATC/News 15
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The most obvious and talked about changes came at KATC. Viewers saw the two night anchors switch channels and the morning show team exit, with a newer face fronting the show. Not only is change hard when you live your professional life so visibly, it affects the consumers of your content, and they are quick to let you know how they feel.

The product KATC delivers today is incredibly different than what their regular viewers were accustomed to. The level at which they express their pleasure or displeasure over the new format is likely directly related to how invested they felt from the beginning.

The KATC local leadership, with the help of Senior Reporter Jazmin Thibodeaux, got in front of the camera recently to share their thoughts and explain why they made the shift in delivery. General Manager Sean Trcalek and New Director Nichole Cyprian admit that the changes were a shock to their systems as well, but they both believe that the new format allows the station to better cover the individual parishes they serve in the greater Lafayette area.

The story was shared by the station on social media and, not surprisingly, Facebook users threw up their responses to the piece.

Here are a few takeaways based on the comments posted under the story:

  1. People may not be watching the on-air news product, but the KATC product as a whole still has many followers who watch on social media and digital platforms.
  2. Largely, users understand that the format change was mandated by KATC's parent company Scripps, and don't necessarily hold the local leadership team accountable for decisions made at the corporate level.
  3. The KATC weather team, led by veteran Lafayette meteorologist Rob Perillo, is still popular among on-air and digital viewers.
  4. Viewers became frustrated with reporters not investing the time to learn the pronunciations of names and words in the Lafayette area.

The overwhelming majority of the hundreds of comments paint a bleak picture of viewers' feeling toward the ABC affiliate, with many of them declaring their allegiance now to one of the other two stations.

Despite there being hundreds of comments, it's important to note that there are thousands of potential viewers in the Lafayette area. It will be interesting to see if KATC shares any of the feedback they get directly from people who watch the video. You can send your thoughts directly to them by emailing feedback@katctv.com.

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