Independent station (North America)

Independent Station (North America)

Independent station (North America)

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An independent station is in the category of television terminology used to describe a television station broadcasting in the United States or Canada that is not affiliated with any television network.

Independent radio could be considered a similar concept with regards to community radio stations, although with a slightly different meaning (as many non-"indie" commercial broadcasting radio stations produce the vast majority of their own programming, perhaps retaining only a nominal affiliation with a radio network for radio news or syndicated radio programming).


During the 1950s and 1960s, independent stations filled their broadcast hours with movies, sports, cartoons, newsreels, filmed travelogues, and some local programming television programs, including newscasts. Independents on the air during this period would sign-on at times later than affiliated television network stations, some in the middle of daytime television.

Another source of programming became available to independent stations by the mid-1960s: Reruns of network programs which, after completing their initial runs, were sold into television syndication.

By the start of the 1970s, independent stations typically aired children's programming in the morning and afternoon, and movies and other adult-oriented shows (some stations aired paid religious programs) during middays. They counterprogrammed local network stations' news programs with syndicated reruns—usually sitcoms and hour-long...
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