Wednesday, June 28, 2006

DirecTV Cleveland HD Locals Are Up - Well, Some of Them

As expected, and reported earlier by OMW, DirecTV has lit up their Cleveland market "local-into-local" HDTV service.

A press release from the company states that the initial offering only includes WKYC/3 (NBC), WEWS/5 (ABC) and WJW/8 (FOX). As far as the other channels are concerned, DirecTV says they are "in discussions with the owner of the CBS affiliate and (hope) to add this station to the DIRECTV lineup in the near future."

That affiliate, of course, would be Raycom Media's WOIO/19, and it's not like we're surprised that Reserve Square has thrown the proverbial monkey wrench into the proceedings. They were a tough negotiator with Time Warner and Adelphia before the services came to an agreement with them to add WOIO's HDTV offerings.

Don't expect, even if there's an agreement with Raycom, for the HDTV feed of WUAB/43 to show up right away on DirecTV.

At the onset of the HDTV "LIL" service, DirecTV is only offering the ABC, CBS, NBC and FOX affiliates. As we also reported earlier, local regional sports networks will also be offered in HDTV (SportsTime Ohio and FOX Sports Net Ohio), but it doesn't appear that either WB or UPN affiliates will be shown before those affiliates change their networks in the fall.

The market's current WB Network affiliate, Winston Broadcasting's WBNX/55 Akron, has not yet lit up its under construction digital facility. It's still not clear if that will happen before the station turns to the new CW Network in September...

1 comment:

Steven said...

This is welcome news about Direct TV. I hope Dish Network follows in offering local HD channels. I've heard that the future CW Cleveland affiliate, WBNX, is working with Warner Cable to carry their upcoming HD channel via fiber optics. I hope Warner Cable is cooperating. I'm tempted to switch from Dish to Warner if I'll be able to see the CW in HD this fall, as I don't want to use an antenna.