No Life Left In Live Well Network

ABC will shut down the diginet in January, replacing it with some form of local programming, probably a news channel.

ABC-owned digital subchannel Live Well Network is shutting down in January 2015 after nearly six years in operation, according to an email sent to staffers this morning by Rebecca Campbell, president of ABC Owned Television Stations, and Live Well Network Vice President Peggy Allen. They are shifting their over-the-air strategy to local programming, likely a news channel.

“We are announcing today that, after careful consideration, we are going to discontinue operating the Live Well Network, effective mid-January 2015,” they wrote.

Live Well Network is cleared in 64% of television homes, including 23% of homes on ABC Owned TV Stations in markets including New York, Los Angeles and Chicago.

It has set itself apart from other subchannels by airing original content such as travel show Sweet Retreats with Rene Slyer, rather than local weather or classic TV shows or movies as many other digital over-the-air channels do.

“Despite Live Well’s tremendous accomplishments in distribution and original programming, we made a strategic decision that our priority must be local content, and we want to maximize our investment in our core local news brands in the digital space,” Campbell and Allen wrote.

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Wagner Pereira says:

June 9, 2014 at 2:48 pm

Was just commenting to someone last week that there had been no news/publicity hype on Live Well in at least a year, so it was probably about to have it’s life support pulled by the end of the year. Official Announcement came sooner than even I expected.

Dale Godfrey says:

June 9, 2014 at 3:49 pm

It used to be we heard, “57 Channels and nothing’s on”. Today it is 200 Channels, give or take a dozen at any point in time!!

Ellen Samrock says:

June 9, 2014 at 4:11 pm

Live Well could have had a mass audience through a network of LDTV stations if only they hadn’t insisted on cable carriage. I think nearly all of us would have carried it.

Neil Strow says:

June 9, 2014 at 5:02 pm

We just finished the Whidbey Island of Sweet Retreats. Ironically, it aired last night. I am sad to see this Network stop producing such great programs. I absolutely loved Rene Syler — the host of the show and the crew Maureen, Patti, Brian Troy, and Eric, were incredibly gracious and so accommodating.

dave rawson says:

June 9, 2014 at 5:52 pm

I notice there is an ad on this page for Antenna TV. I hope that means my local station that now has Live Well will put Antenna TV on as a replacement.

Just Fine says:

June 9, 2014 at 8:40 pm

Curious what those non-ABC-O&Os that have Live Well will replace the channel with come January. My Live Well affiliate, WVEC, has Me-TV on its second subchannel (13-3). Knowing Gannett, they’ll probably turn it into a news channel. *sigh*

Cheryl Daly says:

June 9, 2014 at 8:40 pm

ABC’s move to program their O&O subchannels with their local news brands seems destined to meet the same fate as NBC Nonstop News. Nonstop News wasn’t making money (as reported awhile ago on this website). So NBC ended Nonstop and replaced it with Cozi TV. In a recent interview here on TVNewsCheck, the head of NBC-owned stations said that classic programming would remain on Cozi because it was bringing in revenue. Repurposed news was losing money.

Angela Foreshaw says:

June 9, 2014 at 10:55 pm

This was an awful channel. Bounce is better than this. Good to see it finally go away!

Harry A. Jessell and Mark K. Miller says:

June 10, 2014 at 3:15 pm

BizTV has local news options and is doing very well with its distribution. Perhaps some of the ABC affiliates will have an interest in Small Business, Entrepreneurs, and family wealth management. Lots of us need financial literacy.

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