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Fubo TV to swap local CBS affiliates with national feed

A Fubo TV guide listing shows an event for the 2022 FIFA World Cup.
A Fubo TV guide listing shows an event for the 2022 FIFA World Cup. (Graphic by The Desk)

Streaming service Fubo TV will drop live feeds of CBS affiliates in more than 160 television markets in favor of a national feed of CBS programming that doesn’t include local news programming.

The move comes after the affiliate board for the network rejected multiple offers from CBS parent company Paramount Global to extend a current deal that allows Fubo TV to offer live feeds of their stations to subscribers.

For years, CBS affiliates have allowed Paramount Global to negotiate distribution on upstart streaming services at a time when customers were increasingly moving away from cable or satellite. A deal with Fubo TV under those terms expired on Monday, with no agreement from CBS affiliates in place to extend it.

In the absence of a deal, Paramount Global has provided Fubo TV a national feed of CBS to offer subscribers in areas where the company doesn’t own the local broadcast station. This week, Fubo TV began notifying customers that the national CBS feed will replace their local CBS affiliate on the service until a new deal is reach.

Fubo TV subscribers won’t lose national CBS news, prime-time and sports programming. But those who live in areas where CBS doesn’t own the affiliate won’t receive local news programming, and might miss out on some syndicated shows like “Wheel of Fortune” and “Jeopardy!” that certain CBS affiliates have the rights to in some markets.

Customers who receive the following CBS stations won’t be affected by the issue:

  • KCBS (Channel 2) in Los Angeles
  • KCNC (Channel 4) in Denver
  • KDKA (Channel 2) in Pittsburgh
  • KOVR (Channel 13) in Sacramento
  • KPIX (Channel 5) in San Francisco
  • KTVT (Channel 11) in Dallas
  • KYW-TV (Channel 3) in Phialdelphia
  • WBBM (Channel 2) in chicago
  • WBZ-TV (Channel 4) in Boston
  • WCBS (Channel 2) in New York City
  • WCCO (Chanel 4) in Minneapolis
  • WFOR (Channel 4) in Miami
  • WJZ-TV (Channel 13) in Baltimore
  • WWJ (Channel 62) in Detroit

Fubo TV subscribers who don’t see their local CBS station listed above will likely find their local affiliate dropped from the service, including those who live in areas where Nexstar Media Group, Sinclair Broadcast Group, the E. W. Scripps Company, TEGNA or another media company owns the local affiliate.

While no Fubo TV subscribers will lose national CBS programming, some customers may still want access to their local CBS affiliate for local news and syndicated shows that won’t be offered by the streaming service any longer. Those customers can switch to Paramount Plus ($10 a month) to access their live CBS feed, or a comparable streaming service like YouTube TV ($65 a month) or Hulu with Live TV ($70 a month).

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About the Author:

Matthew Keys

Matthew Keys is the publisher of The Desk and reports on the business and policy matters involving the broadcast television, streaming video and radio industries. He previously worked for Thomson Reuters, Disney-ABC, Tribune Broadcasting and McNaughton Newspapers. Matthew is based in Northern California, has won numerous awards in the field of journalism, and is a member of IRE (Investigative Reporters and Editors).