On July 29, Albritton Communications (based in Arlington, VA) announced that it is selling off its 8 TV stations to Sinclair Broadcasting Group, the largest independent television conglomerate in the US.
Albritton’s stations include:
KTUL - Tulsa, OK - www.ktul.com
KATV - Little Rock, AR - www.katv.com
WBMA/WJSU/WCFT - Birmingham/Anniston, Tuscaloosa, AL - www.abc3340.com
WCIV - Charleston, SC - www.wciv.com
WSET - Lynchburg/Roanoke, VA - www.wset.com
WHTM - Harrisburg, PA - www.whtm.com
WJLA - Washington, DC - www.wjla.com
NewsChannel 8 - Washington, DC - www.newschannel8.net
Sinclair is paying nearly a billion dollars for the stations:
The Washington Post reported on July 29 that Sinclair has paid a much greater price for the Albritton stations than anyone predicted. The issues for those of us involved in media justice work in this transaction are many, but in the economics alone, we might note that the sheer dollars involved demonstrate in hard cold cash the viability of broadcast in this country. Sinclair is essentially buying access to audiences, who apparently number many.
On a less positive note, we note that there is almost a complete absence of race and gender diversity present in the ownership of either company. Virtually all of the directors and principals in both companies are White, and only 9 are female (6 of those in Albritton), a trend seen across media conglomerates.