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I think it's a bit of a stretch to call WGN a "network" -- it's actually just a local TV station that also has a separate satellite feed. What's on the national feed isn't necessarily what's on in Chicago. For instance, although "Raymond" is listed on their Channel 9 website, it's not shown in their national "superstation" listings. Since they have only purchased the rights for the program in the Chicago market, they can't beam it anywhere else.


That said, it would be nice if syndicators would offer the option of HD versions of their programs. HOW they would distribute it is unknown -- most shows are sent via plain ol' analog C-Band satellite, and that ain't HD. In the future, they'll probably be a push to switch to digital delivery, particularly for server based systems such as Pathfire, and that might be the thing that makes HD a reality for syndication. Though here again, if it means they have to prepare TWO versions of the show each day (one 4:3 NTSC and one 16:9 HD), it's gonna take one hell of a push to get that going. Remember, virtually all syndicated program these days is "barter," which means it contains some commercial material that's sold by the syndicator and integrated into the show -- this means a station cannot "library" a program, but rather they must take a NEW feed of the show for each airing -- a feed which contains the barter spots which have been sold for this run.


Considering that most syndicators seem to use the cheapest equipment possible to slap their shows together (has anyone ever looked at the syndicated SIMPSONS episodes? They're UNWATCHABLE), getting them to embrace HD seems like a longshot. We shall see ...
 
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