New local television streaming app to launch in Twin Cities

Locast goes live tomorrow

Laura Oakes
August 10, 2020 - 2:29 pm
Televisions

Getty Images/AFP/Staff

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A new service is launching tomorrow that will allow Twin Cities residents to get their local TV channels for free--without having to subscribe to cable, satellite, or a streaming service: It's an app called "Locast" and it's permitted under a federal law that allows non-profits to re-transmit broadcast signals.

Former Dish Network executive and FCC legal adviser David Goodfriend is its chairman and founder and says that this service is something that a non-profit should be able to do. 

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"The deal was always supposed to be that broadcasters got this valuable public resource called an FCC license in exchange for giving you free local news, weather, sports and public information. We just make sure that that bargin is alive and well."

The major broadcast networks at risk of losing billions in the licensing fees that they charge the cable and satellite companies have sued to stop Locast from operating. Locast has countersued and the case is still in federal court. Goodfriend says Locast does depend on viewer donations, asking people to commit to $5 a month.

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