WFXT, WBZ to Share in Boston

Fox O&O WFXT and CBS O&O WBZ are set to announce a video-sharing agreement in Boston. The stations will share video for general market news, along with a helicopter for traffic reports and breaking news.

The agreement is to kick off June 1."There's been success with this in a few other markets, and I know stations in Boston want to enjoy the same benefits," says WFXT VP/General Manager Gregg Kelley.

Kelley says the other stations in the market are welcome to join the share, though "no formal talks" have taken place at this time. He also said the partnership will not result in layoffs at the Fox station in the near-term, though the longer-term picture is "yet to be determined."

The Fox-owned stations have been sharing with NBC's owned stations in several markets, such as Philadelphia, Chicago and Dallas; all markets where both networks own a station will feature a "Local News Service" (LNS) pact in the coming months. NBC does not own the NBC affiliate in Boston; Sunbeam TV does. Hearst-Argyle owns the ABC affiliate, WCVB.

Fox- and CBS-owned stations are already partners in the LNS venture in Chicago, along with NBC and Tribune.

As in other markets, the Boston agreement is designed to free up reporting resources to cover enterprise stories.

Michael Malone

Michael Malone, senior content producer at B+C/Multichannel News, covers network programming, including entertainment, news and sports on broadcast, cable and streaming; and local broadcast television. He hosts the podcasts Busted Pilot, about what’s new in television, and Series Business, a chat with the creator of a new program, and writes the column “The Watchman.” He joined B+C in 2005. His journalism has also appeared in The New York Times, The Philadelphia Inquirer, Playboy and New York magazine.