Dropping BBC, WLIW will produce new news program

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WLIW in New York is dropping BBC World News, which it has distributed to pubTV since 1998, and producing a new half-hour international news program for pubTV, working title Your World Tonight. KCET in Los Angeles will be the new distributor of the BBC nightly newscast. The BBC has been investing in a separate newscast on its own cable channel, BBC America, and had indicated it might limit the number of pubTV stations that could carry BBC World News, WNET president Neal Shapiro told The New York Times. “It would have meant 60 to 70 percent of the public broadcasting audience would lose access to the show,” said Shapiro, and BBC execs made it “pretty clear that the future of the BBC was not intertwined with public broadcasting.” BBC Worldwide America exec Michele Grant said the BBC doesn’t want the pubTV and cable newscasts to compete for the same time slot but is still committed to keeping a broadcast on pubTV. Marc Rosenwasser, Shapiro’s former colleague at NBC News, will produce the new WLIW program.

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