Will affiliates have to pay for programming?

Lin TV’s CEO Vincent Sadusky said on a conference call this week that he expects the networks will begin doing just that. According to Media Daily News, Sadusky referred to the NFL as the logical starting point:

“If you want the NFL or incremental NFL games, this is a pretty pricey thing for the network. We’d like you guys to help us out with that.”

It may not be cash–a more typical type of reverse compensation–but requests for more spots in the game for the networks to sell themselves, he said.

Among others, I’ve been predicting this for years, and it’s been pretty obvious since ABC first started selling its programs online two years ago. The network/affiliate relationship — as we’ve known it from the beginning — is history.

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