WWSB is to debut 7:00 p.m. news, starting September 14th.

WWSB 40 (Cable 7) / Sarasota – Bradenton – Venice – North Point, FL (“ABC 7”)

FIRST ON THE BLOG (other than Florida NewsCenter): WWSB is usually not known for adding newscasts. Starting next month, it will.

Just like the last story we posted, on Monday September 14th, 2015, WWSB 40 (Cable 7, we’ll use 7 for the rest of this post) will be adding a weeknight half-hour newscast at 7:00 p.m. Titled, ABC 7 News at 7:00, this will replace Who Wants To Be A Millionaire? in that timeslot. The newscast will be anchored by newly-hire Alan Cohn, who has worked in the Tampa Bay market before for WFTS 28 from 2009-2012.

This newscast will compete against Tampa-based WFLA 8 for local weeknight news at 7:00 p.m. in the market and would be one of two Sarasota-based newscasts at 7:00 p.m., alongside cable-ONLY SNN: Suncoast News Network (but this would be the ONLY Sarasota-based 7:00 p.m. news over-the-air in the market). ABC 7 Suncoast Weather with AMS-CBM/Sealed Chief Meteorologist Bob Harrigan and Sports Director Don Brennan are also expected to be a part of the new broadcast.

According to an announcement from WWSB 7 to the staff, in a post obtained from Florida NewsCenter, it reads that the 7:00 p.m. newscast is…

“… a smart, sophisticated local news show with an Investigative point of view.  The show will include a quick recap of the day’s headlines and weather followed by a long form report on a featured topic of the day and a live round table discussion with a Community leaders.  The target audience is working professionals who are not home in time for the early evening news.”

Basically, what sounds like a regular newscast. Anyways, more news for WWSB 7 is really good news, since Sarasota-based news is not much seen in the market.

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6 thoughts on “WWSB is to debut 7:00 p.m. news, starting September 14th.

    • Its been that way for decades. Even Sarasota has their own 24-hour local news channel, SNN: Suncoast News Network, that’s different from Tampa Bay’s other stations and their own local news channel, Bay News 9.

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  1. The reason for a Sarasota ABC affiliate goes back to when WTSP/10 was the Bay Area’s ABC affiliate. Channel 10’s transmitter is well north of those of the other stations in the Bay Area, up around Tarpon Springs or New Port Richey. This is done to avoid interference with WPLG/10 Miami. As a result, Channel 10 could not put a decent signal into Sarasota/Bradenton, so in 1971 that part of the market got its own ABC station. When WTSP went to CBS in the aftermath of WTVT’s becoming a Fox o&o and WFTS getting ABC as part of Scripps’ deal to switch four of its stations (the others being in Baltimore, Cincinnati, and Phoenix) to ABC in exchange for keeping WEWS Cleveland and WXYZ Detroit in the ABC fold (CBS affiliates WJW and WJBK had also become Fox o&os), ABC wanted to drop WWSB but didn’t. However, CBS is harder to get now in Sarasota, and I think (somebody correct me on this) that the cable company brings in WINK/11 Fort Myers.

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