KIRO CBS-affil vs KSTW CBS-owned

With recent staff departures stirring the pot, the question becomes is KIRO in danger of losing its CBS affiliation, which could move to the CBS-owned station in Seattle, KSTW, Channel 11? CBS has been shrinking, too, lately.

Author: Wayne Lynch

Retired TV journalist, on-air and manager, former university writing professor and station trainer, published author of a sports team biography, Kent State U alum, Pittsburgh native and self-appointed Seattle TV news critic. Read Wayne's updates now at MEDIA MAVEN

6 thoughts on “KIRO CBS-affil vs KSTW CBS-owned

  1. I could be wrong, but I think I remember reading around 2020 that KIRO and CBS had agreed on a new 10-year contract. I agree that it makes sense for KSTW to eventually re-affiliate with CBS, but the network’s long-range future is uncertain, because parent company Paramount Global has been losing $$$ and is entertaining purchase offers.

    1. You are correct John, and we don’t know what a Paramount sale would mean on the CBS news side. Complicated. KOMO has turned KUNS into a true duopoly, KING has KONG, and FOX 13 has FOX13+ (the old J0E TV) so it makes me wonder if CBS would want to BUY KIRO and have two stations as well, and create a fourth duopoly in this market. Lots of inventory, for sure.

      1. I think there’s still a bunch to figure out here.

        Let’s assume the Sony/Apollo deal to acquire Paramount comes to pass. The rumor is that they will sell the television assets, including CBS. I would have to think that Apollo’s existing assets under Cox Media would be on the block as well – they seem much more interested in Paramount’s movie assets than they do in the TV and radio side of things.

        At that point, who knows what will happen. I would have to think that whoever ends up with CBS – whether that be a spun-off company or some suitor – would want at least one of KIRO or KSTW. Given how broadcast is trending, I think it’s less likely they end up with both and instead we’d see someone like Nexstar buy the other network and put CW on it.

        Regardless I think the cuts at KIRO are demonstrating that Apollo wants out of broadcast. The most likely outcome of that, IMO, is that the Seattle DMA becomes CBS O&O.

        1. Good points, Sullim4. As an aside, CW ratings are still very soft in primetime, but they are moving more to live sports, albeit LIV Golf and Some ex-Pac12 football. KOMO is tryng a hybrid model with ARC Seattle, Sinclair’s National Desk, CW prime and a local show in the A.M. Have seen no ratings but the morning show is mostly pablum to the second power.

  2. I don’t question the possible sale of KIRO, but not to CBS. CBS owns KSTW and can move the network affiliation to KSTW without COX selling KIRO to CBS directly.
    CBS has a contract with KIRO for a limited number of years.

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