Local stations’ news model going national with NewsNet
By Matt Collins Article may include affiliate links
The team behind several 24/7 local news stations is taking its model national with the launch of NewsNet — a 24/7 news channel without pundits, panels or shout shows, built from the ground up with over-the-air broadcasters in mind.
“In recent years, we’ve heard more and more complaints about existing 24/7 national news channels,” explained Eric Wotila, president of NewsNet, in a statement.
Wotilla lead a team that launched a 24/7 local news channel covering northern Michigan and then helped launch five TV stations in Nebraska.
The new national channel is scheduled to launch late this year.
Launching a new network has been a long process, which began with an Kickstarter campaign under the network’s working title, “LNN.”
Feedback from that campaign, which was not funded, reinforced the demand for a 24/7 news channel focused on scripted headlines rather than talk and opinion.
“The key to NewsNet’s success will be our affiliates,” explained Wotila, “and we’re currently reaching out to stations across the country who are interested in bringing quality news programming to their markets by carrying NewsNet on one of their subchannels.”
In addition to providing a 24/7 network feed with room for affiliates to insert their own local advertising — and even their own local news breaks, if they desire, NewsNet aims to make it easy for small stations to get into the local news business, as well. The network is offering its affiliates an optional, turnkey local news production service for a small fraction of the cost of building their own news operation.
“In addition to providing national news to stations across the country, we want to bring the success of our existing 24/7 local news channels to other stations,” explained Wotila, “and by offering turnkey production of local news cut-ins airing on local NewsNet affiliates, we hope to do just that.”
The network is currently seeking affiliate partners and will also have a presence at NAB, and will be available to meet with stations interested in affiliation throughout the conference.