The idea came after a slow news day in Nashville. “Every story fell through,” he said. “The producers finally said, ‘just go find something for the 4:30 newscast’. It happened to be the day Verizon released its first iPhone. I got my hands on one and compared it to AT&T’s iPhone. The next day I had all of these e-mails from viewers asking more questions about the phones.”
“I thought, if that many people are interested in a story like this one, why isn’t someone covering technology in local news,” he said.
A few months later, “What the Tech?” went on the air at WKRN, WAAY in Huntsville, AL, and a few months after that, WPSD in Paducah, KY.
“I’ve never seen viewers respond to stories like these,” Jamey said. “I get questions all the time in e-mail, and hardly a week goes by when a handful of people stop to ask me a tech question. Everyone has a smartphone, most everyone is on Facebook. We’re downloading apps like they’re going to run out of them, and we’re constantly talking about technology that’s changing our lives. Viewers want to see cool gadgets, get gift ideas, find out how to do things with their phones and computers.”
“And there’s no place on television they can tune in to get it. There are two weather channels and dozens of sports channels. Of course every station covers those too. But you won’t find a consumer technology channel or segment even if you look. People are looking for this stuff and since technology affects us all, it is the big story. And local news is missing it because news departments don’t have enough reporters to cover it.”
Jamey left his position as a news reporter at WKRN to pursue taking “What the Tech?” to other stations. Prior to Nashville’s ABC affiliate, Jamey anchored and reported at WREG in Memphis, WHNT in Huntsville and WJSU, now located in Birmingham.