Find out more →

Get unlimited access. Become a digital member!

Monday, July 29, 2013

Allbritton to sell TV stations, including KATV in Little Rock, to Sinclair

Posted By on Mon, Jul 29, 2013 at 9:38 AM


KATV, Channel 7 in Little Rock is set to have a new owner.

The current owner, Allbritton, has struck a deal to sell its TV stations, including KATV, to Sinclair Broadcast Group for $985 million.

Allbritton will hang onto Politico.

Allbritton's ownership has been mostly invisible to Arkansas at large, but it was believed to have influenced General Manager Dale Nicholson's decision to do on-air endorsements of George W. Bush over Al Gore in 2000.

If anything, Sinclair has more of a reputation for supporting conservative politics. It prevented its ABC affiliates from airing a 2003 Nightline episode that announced the names of military killed in the Iraq war. It saw the show as undermining the war effort. It pre-empted prime time programs on 62 stations to air a controversial and critical documentary on 2004 presidential candidate John Kerry. It fired its Washington bureau chief for criticizing the film. In 2010, it aired multiple times an infomercial slamming President Obama, airing it in critical swing states. In 2012, it aired a special on presidential campaign issues that was criticized as heavily slanted against President Obama. The corporation's political contributions have favored Republican candidates.

Here's one rundown of Sinclair's political history.

The FCC must approve the deal, but the parties hope to close it by the end of the year.

In reporting the news, KATV added this note on-line:

As a note to our viewers, KATV wants to emphasize that this is only a behind-the-scenes business matter happening at the corporate level. KATV will continue to bring you the best local news, weather and sports coverage you have counted on us to provide for more than 50 years.

Let's hope that turns out to be true. Sinclair history offers some reason for concern.

Tags: , , , ,


Speaking of...

Comments (7)

Showing 1-7 of 7

Add a comment

Subscribe to this thread:
Showing 1-7 of 7

Add a comment

More by Max Brantley

Most Shared

Most Viewed

  • ASU quarterback says someone killed his dog

    Arkansas State University Quarterback Fredi Knighten posted a photo recently on the Internet that said his dog had been stolen and killed, then returned to him. ASU thinks the episode is unrelated to the university or football.
  • Arkansas auditor finds friendlier court for $160 million U.S. savings bond claim

    State Auditor Andrea Lea this week found a friendlier court for her claim to take state possessionof perhaps $160 million in unclaimed U.S. savings bonds for the state's benefit.
  • Task force appears set to move forward with tweaked private option; battle looms over managed care

    The Health Reform Task Force had its penultimate meeting today; by law, it must issue a report with recommendations by the end of this year. All indications are that the task force will recommend continuing the private option with a few GOP-friendly tweaks. The governor will be negotiating with the federal government on just what shape the private option (perhaps with a snappy new name) will take in 2017 and beyond, once the state's current agreement with the feds comes to an end. The once hotly controversial issue has been fairly muted in task force discussions. The fireworks, instead, have come with how to handle the rest of the Medicaid program, with the state's consultant, the Stephen Group, suggesting that the state could save hundreds of millions of dollars by moving to managed care.
  • Tuesday's open line and news roundup

    Here's the open line and news roundup.

Most Recent Comments



© 2015 Arkansas Times | 201 East Markham, Suite 200, Little Rock, AR 72201
Powered by Foundation