Media in the Tampa Bay Area
The Tampa Bay media market is Florida's second-largest metropolitan area with a variety of print, online and broadcast media outlets serving the region. The U.S. Census Bureau estimates the population for the Tampa-St. Petersburg Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) at 2,733,761 as of July 1, 2008. The Tampa Bay media market also includes Citrus, Manatee, Sarasota and Polk counties, which are outside the Tampa Bay area. Polk County is also served by media from Orlando.
The Tampa Bay Times (known as the St. Petersburg Times from its founding in 1884 until January 2012) is the largest newspaper by circulation in the southeastern United States at over 400,000, which is over 50% more than Florida's next largest newspaper, the Orlando Sentinel. It distributes a free Monday-through-Friday tabloid called tbt* in most areas of Hillsborough, Pinellas and Pasco counties.
The Tampa Tribune was first published as a daily newspaper in 1895. Besides the main edition, "the Trib" publishes a portfolio of standalone weekly newspapers throughout the region, including the Plant City Courier & Tribune, Brandon News & Tribune, South Shore News & Tribune, Northeast News & Tribune, Carrollwood News & Tribune, South Tampa News & Tribune, Northwest News & Tribune, Central Tampa News & Tribune, The Suncoast News, and the Spanish language CENTRO Tampa.
The Tampa Bay area is also served by a variety of regional newspapers and weeklies. La Gaceta is a weekly trilingual (English, Spanish and Italian) newspaper published in Tampa's historic Ybor City since 1922. Two newspapers serve the local black community: the Florida Sentinel Bulletin (Tampa) and The Weekly Challenger (St. Petersburg). Creative Loafing (also known for a time as the Weekly Planet) is the area's primary alternative weekly. The Oracle serves the University of South Florida and its surrounding community. The Tampa Bay Business Journal is the region's business publication of record. The Osprey Observer is a weekly that serves East Hillsborough County with five separate publications, three of which carry the Osprey Observer moniker and a fourth, The Christian Voice that is distributed through local churches.
Several cities outside the Tampa-St. Petersburg core but within the Tampa Bay media market have smaller-circulation daily newspapers with overlapping coverage and distribution areas. They include The Bradenton Herald, Sarasota Herald-Tribune, The Ledger of Lakeland, The News-Chief of Winter Haven (published by The Ledger), the Citrus County Chronicle (based in Inverness), Hernando Today (based in Brooksville) and Highlands Today (based in Sebring). Both of the Today newspapers are published by The Tampa Tribune.
The Tampa Bay area is the nation's 14th-largest TV market and largest TV Market(DMA) in the state of Florida, according to Nielsen Media Research, with 1.78 million TV households.
Fourteen television stations serve the region:
- WEDU (Channel 3, PBS)
- WFLA (Channel 8, NBC)
- WTSP (Channel 10, CBS)
- WTVT (Channel 13, Fox)
- WUSF (Channel 16, PBS)
- WCLF (Channel 22, Trinity Broadcasting Network)
- WFTS (Channel 28, ABC)
- WMOR (Channel 32, independent)
- WTTA (Channel 38, My Network TV)
- WWSB (Channel 40, ABC, Sarasota)
- WTOG (Channel 44, The CW)
- WRMD (Channel 49, Telemundo)
- WFTT (Channel 50, Telefutura)
- WVEA (Channel 62, Univision)
Local cable-only stations include Bay News 9 and Bright House Sports Network (operated by Bright House Networks) and SNN Local News 6 (operated by Comcast Cable, in partnership with the Sarasota Herald-Tribune).
The Tampa Bay area is the nation's 19th-largest radio market, according to Arbitron Research. More than 70 radio stations, split almost evenly between the AM and FM band. Most major programming formats are represented. Clear Channel Communications is the biggest owner of radio stations in the area, followed by Cox Media Group and CBS Radio. In addition, many Orlando-area stations can be heard in the northern and eastern reaches of the metropolitan area.