That’s a fact, Jax: Stations swap networks in Jax

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July 15 — The big network shuffle occurred today in Jacksonville, a move that has Orlando ties. Longtime CBS affiliate WJXT-Channel 4 decided earlier this year to leave the net after a 50-something year relationship. It was all about money — the network previously paid the station to air its shows; now CBS wants reverse compensation, where stations pay it to air network shows. Going independent is a risky move for WJXT, which has been the No. 1 station in the Jacksonville market for years. CBS, meanwhile, slides its programming over to Clear Channel-owned WTEV-Channel 47, which was previously Jax’s UPN affiliate. Former WESH anchor John O’Connor (shown with new co-anchor Paige Kelton and CBS’ Dan Rather) is heading CBS47 News’ 6 and 11 p.m. newscasts. But the real Orlando tie to this story is corporate. Post-Newsweek owns WJXT and Orlando’s CBS station, WKMG-Channel 6. WKMG’s affiliation agreement with CBS isn’t up for renewal for a couple of years, but what happens in Jacksonville with WJXT will affect "Local 6." If WJXT has success as an independent, that might be the way Channel 6 goes when its deal with CBS is up. If WJXT tanks as an indy, Post-Newsweek will likely pay CBS whatever its wants to keep WKMG with the network.

About Roger Simmons 549 Articles
Roger Simmons has been blogging about Orlando television since 2001. You can email him at roger@rogersimmons.com