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Brian McDonough, president and general manager of KY3 Inc., says its expanded news coverage plans were expedited by the recent Fox affiliate change.
Brian McDonough, president and general manager of KY3 Inc., says its expanded news coverage plans were expedited by the recent Fox affiliate change.

Market reacts to Fox affiliate change

Posted online
A number of significant moves in the local media market could be shaping the way news consumers in the Ozarks receive the latest information.

Perhaps chief among them is a new home for the Fox Broadcasting Co. affiliate. Following increases in programming fees by Fox, Koplar Communication’s KRBK-TV will begin its era as the local Fox affiliate on Sept. 1, taking the reins from Nexstar Broadcasting’s KSFX-TV. Nexstar has let go its affiliations with Fox in at least three other markets across the country.
Ted Koplar, president of St. Louis-based Koplar Communications International Inc., said the fees are a sign of the times.

“Whether we like it or not, the world of television is changing dramatically,” Koplar said.
The issue: Major networks are asking their affiliates to fork over higher percentages of the money received from local cable operators that retransmit their signals.

Koplar said the cost of doing business is climbing for stations across the country, but he felt the new deal with Fox was fair.

“The cost to ride a thoroughbred is well worth it,” he said. “If you believe people watch programming versus stations, then I think you’ll understand the reason why we thought Fox was so important to us.”

Koplar declined to disclose terms of the deal, but said the investment the company is making with the move, which includes expanding its studio within the Opfer Communications’ building on South Enterprise Avenue, runs into seven figures.

KRBK is currently an affiliate of MyNetworkTV, a secondary network for Fox. The station broadcasts programs such as “The Wendy Williams Show” and “The Daily Buzz.”

Fox programming, which includes shows such as “Glee” and “X Factor,” will be available on KRBK for customers of Dish Network, DirecTV, Mediacom and SuddenLink starting Sept. 1. Koplar said the station is scheduled to air on a variety of channels – for instance, channel 49 on Dish Network and DirecTV, and channel 10 through Mediacom cable.

KY3 Inc. President and General Manager Brian McDonough said the company is making several moves of its own. Beginning Aug. 22, KY3 will add 7 a.m. and 9 p.m. newscasts on sister station The Ozarks CW. “Ozarks Today,” KY3’s morning weekday newscast, also is adding an hour to its broadcast, for a 5–8 a.m. schedule. On Aug. 28, KSPR, the ABC affiliate managed by KY3 Inc., will add a 6 p.m. newscast on Saturdays and a 5 p.m. newscast on Sundays. KY3 is owned by South Bend, Ind.-based Schurz Communications.

McDonough said the company’s expanded coverage efforts had been in the works, but the timing of the moves was accelerated in light of the Fox affiliate change.

“There’s going to be a lot of sampling with what’s happening in the marketplace,” McDonough said.

Koplar, who has hired Clear Channel Communications Springfield Market Manager Paul Windisch as KRBK’s general manager beginning Aug. 17, said the new Fox affiliate aims to start its own news broadcasts in early 2012.[[In-content Ad]]

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