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Technical issue forces Oakland TV station KTVU off air

The logo of Oakland, California FOX station KTVU-TV (Logo: KTVU/Fox Broadcasting, Image: The Desk)

A technical problem forced Oakland television station KTVU off the air for several hours early Monday morning.

The problem started around 5 a.m. as KTVU (Channel 2) was broadcasting their morning news program.

On Twitter, the station said they were experiencing “technical difficulties,” which was later revealed to be a localized power outage. The outage appeared to mainly afflict the television station; a review of the Pacific Gas & Electric Company’s online outage map showed no widespread blackouts affecting Oakland, the San Francisco Bay Area community where KTVU’s studios are located.

Power was restored to the station around 9 a.m., the source said, but problems continued with some broadcast and feed systems used by KTVU.

KTVU was able to transmit a signal during the power outage, according to a source familiar with the issue, but the glitch left the station unable to deliver a feed to other systems. The glitch resulted in viewers with cable, satellite and some streaming platforms seeing a green screen most of the morning.

Other streaming platforms, including Fox-owned Tubi, replaced KTVU’s signal with a simulcast of NewsNow from Fox, the streaming news service operated by parent company Fox Corporation.

As of 10:30 a.m., the station is still showing NewsNow from Fox in place of KTVU’s daytime programming on most platforms.

Station officials do not believe the technical issues were the result of a cyberattack or other security issue, the source affirmed.

Two weeks ago, a cybersecurity issue was blamed for an outage affecting broadcast systems used by television and radio stations owned by Cox Media Group. KTVU was owned by Cox Media Group until 2014, when the station was sold to Fox Corporation.

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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).