New owners shake up television in the Indiana capital.
Locast, the nonprofit streaming service focused on local TV stations, said Wednesday that it has debuted in its 24th U.S. market, Indianapolis. The streaming service also said it now has 1.7 million users.
Four cities in Indiana are suing Netflix and other video companies, claiming that online video providers and satellite TV operators should have to pay the same franchise fees that cable companies pay for using local rights of way.
The last year has been a tumultuous one for TV broadcasters in the 27th market. One local media buyer called the current picture “utter chaos.” When CBS moved its affiliation from WISH to WTTV, the latter added another 24.5 hours of local TV news to the market mix. And to fill the CBS hole, WISH increased its local news offering 42%, to 64.5 hours per week. WRTV also added newscasts, upping its weekly amount to 40 hours. WXIN, already a local TV news heavyweight, broadcasts a whopping 66 hours per week while local ratings king WTHR airs 38.5.
Spending is flat but demand is increasing for the end of the year. That comes as the market readies for a major shakeup when CBS changes affiliates in January.
Next up on the streaming provider’s list is Cincinnati, Columbus, Indianapolis and San Antonio. An actual launch date hasn’t been set, but the company is hoping to go live in those cities by year’s end.
The former executive news director at KHOU Houston takes over at Dispatch’s Indianapolis NBC affiliate on Jan. 12.