After toying with the idea of making the CW the first ever broadcast network to transition to a fully live-streamed model, co-owners CBS Corp. and Time Warner Inc. have re-upped the network's affiliation deal with Tribune Media.
The home of Arrow, The Flash and Jane the Virgin will remain available over the air on 12 Tribune stations in major markets including New York and Los Angeles, accounting for 28 million households and covering 25 percent of the U.S. TV market.
However, the CW will migrate to 21st Century Fox-owned WPWR-TV, leaving Tribune incumbent WGN-TV as an indie station. The switch is expected to take place on Sept. 1.
The CW and Tribune had been at impasse in their negotiations, unable to agree to terms on reverse compensation money — that is, the amount of broadcast retransmission licensing dollars kicked back to the network.
CBS and Time Warner division Warner Bros. had been pondering an SVOD version of their CW Network as the broadcast station affiliation agreement the two companies used to start the network 10 years ago was ready to expire.
According to Bloomberg, the pair were discussing a monthly subscription service that would cost $2 to $4 a month, delivering live streams of CW shows to the network's younger viewership, along with the usual SVOD smorgasbord of on-demand content.
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