NBC launching 24/7 local news channel


If the concept works, NBC Local Media President John Wallace plans for other NBC O&Os to do likewise.

Rebuilding and rebranding, WNBC’s Rockefeller Center operations are being transformed into a “content center” to create and distribute programming across various platforms. That won’t be completed until early next year, but the “hyper-local” DTV news channel should launch this fall. The WNBC call letters are taking a backseat and the local news product, in whatever form, is being branded NBC New York.

The New York market already has two 24/7 local news operations on cable: Time Warner’s NY1 in Manhattan and Cablevision’s News 12 Long Island.

RBR/TVBR observation: This is somewhat like what Allbritton Communications has been doing for some time now in Washington, DC, with WJLA-TV (ABC) and NewsChannel 8 on local cable systems. With local TV newsrooms already updating their news websites 24/7, we expect to see quite a few take the next step and launch a local version of CNN/FNC/MSNBC. If the potential ad dollars are there, stations will be rushing to be first with their full-time hyper-local news.