TAMPA, Fla.—Locast, a nonprofit streaming provider of local broadcast TV, has added Tampa, St. Petersburg and Clearwater, Fla., to its list of TV markets where it is available. Locast says that it will offer more than 45 local TV channels for free via the internet for viewers in these areas.
Locast’s goal is to provide access to important local news and other information. For the Tampa market that includes hurricane and storm coverage as hurricane season officially begins and updates on the coronavirus pandemic as beaches re-open in Florida.
The more than 3 million viewers in the Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater market will be able to watch local TV content for free through the Locast app or website, available as long as local TV stations continue to broadcast, said David Goodfriend, Locast founder and chairman.
The addition of the Tampa market brings Locast’s total number of markets served to 19 in the U.S., with more than 1 million reported users.
Locast is still in the middle of a lawsuit over its ability to stream local TV channels for free. Locast maintains that it is able to rebroadcast local stations without a copyright license from broadcasters because of the Copyright Act of 1976 provision for nonprofit translator services. However, the major networks—ABC, CBS, Fox and NBC—are challenging Locast on this argument. Goodfriend ultimately believes that Locast will prevail in court.
For more information on Locast, visit www.locast.org.
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