Joint Statement Of Commissioners Ajit Pai And Michael O’Rielly On Three More TV Stations Going Dark Under The FCC’s New JSA Policy
As a result of the Federal Communications Commission’s crackdown, and after more than 58 years of providing service to Central Nebraska and Northern Kansas, KHAS in Hastings, Nebraska went dark on June 13.
That same day, KNDX in Bismarck, North Dakota and KXND in Minot, North Dakota also went off the air because of the Commission’s decision.
Before the Commission’s restriction on JSAs, agreements were in place to save these three stations: KHAS, an NBC-affiliate, was slated to be purchased by Excalibur Broadcasting; and, KNDX and KXND, FOX affiliates. These transactions, however, were blocked by the Commission’s new rules prohibiting the use of JSAs in these markets. So what has the Commission’s JSA crackdown yielded?
Gray Television’s KMOT is now serving as the NBC affiliate and FOX affiliate for Minot through its use of multicast channels, while KXND has gone out of business. And that is not all. Gray Television has also announced that three more stations -- KXJB in Fargo, North Dakota; KAQY in Monroe, Louisiana; and KJCT in Grand Junction, Colorado -- will soon go dark because of the Commission’s JSA restrictions. Their programming will be transferred to Gray stations in those markets.
As a result, Gray Television will earn a greater share of local advertising revenue in Hastings, Bismarck, Minot, Fargo, Monroe, and Grand Junction than would have been the case with the JSAs that were originally proposed. Are these the victories for competition that critics of sharing agreements were hoping to see? Or has the real goal all along just been to drive television stations off the air?
Joint Statement Of Commissioners Ajit Pai And Michael O’Rielly On Three More TV Stations Going Dark Under The FCC’s New JSA Policy GOP Commissioners: Is FCC Driving Stations Off Air (B&C) More stations close after FCC crackdown (The Hill)