|Country of origin||United States|
|Running time||120 minutes (four 30-minute infomercials)|
|Production company(s)||Various; inventory sold by WorldLink|
|Picture format||480i (SDTV)|
|Preceded by||4Kids TV (2005–2008); FoxBox (2002-2005)|
|Followed by||Xploration Nation (September 2014; select markets only)|
Weekend Marketplace is a two-hour block of paid programming airing on Fox that debuted on January 3, 2009, replacing the 4Kids TV cartoon block due to the termination of the network's time lease agreement with 4Kids Entertainment. The block, which airs on Saturday mornings, is programmed solely with infomercials, which usually air on networks and broadcast television stations during late night and early morning timeslots; such programming, however, has not previously been scheduled on a regular basis by a major broadcast television network.
In some markets beginning September 13, 2014, Weekend Marketplace is able to be substituted with the internally syndicated Xploration Station block produced by Steve Rotfeld Productions, which provides two hours of educational and informational programming for stations; Fox O&O's and Tribune Broadcasting, along with several other affiliate groups and individual stations are currently carrying this block instead. Fox continues to offer Weekend Marketplace to stations which chose to purchase E/I programming off the open syndication market; notably the Fox stations (and one CW station) of Sinclair Broadcast Group are under the latter arrangement, as are two stations under the ownership of the E.W. Scripps Co. (Fox affiliate WFLX and MyNetworkTV affiliate WMYD).
Branding and title issues
Despite being carried by Fox, the block features no network branding or in-house promotional advertising (or even references to the "Weekend Marketplace" title) for the duration of the block – due to the fact that as it carries infomercials, commercial breaks do not appear during those featured within the block – and is only used mainly as a placeholder title within television listings and industry media; most stations which carry the block disregard this title when they distribute their listings to guide providers, and it usually is listed as four separate segments of "paid programming" instead so that viewers are not misled about the block's content. In addition, Fox stated that it ultimately intended to have the block contain programs that resemble normal programming (albeit still prominently advertising a product), though this never occurred. Presently the block consists of four traditional 28½-minute infomercials, with short-form direct response commercials airing at the end of each half-hour; no local station breaks are shown beyond a five-second station identification slot (to fulfill Federal Communications Commission rules) at the top of the first hour.
The block normally airs from 10:00 a.m. to noon Eastern and Pacific Time, the second half of the timeslot previously used for 4Kids TV; the remaining two-hour time period occupied by the first half of the predecessor block was returned to the network's affiliates, for use to air syndicated, locally-produced lifestyle brokered programming, or local weekend morning newscasts.
Currently due to the Xploration Station transition and the removal of Fox O&O's and Tribune from carrying the block, the block's reach is unknown, but it previously aired until the 2014-15 season on 95% of Fox's stations, both owned-and-operated stations and affiliates. Most, if not all, of the stations that declined to carry 4Kids TV – such as Miami affiliate WSVN and Detroit owned-and-operated station WJBK – have similarly declined Weekend Marketplace (two of the exceptions are Cleveland affiliate WJW and O&O KTBC in Austin, which aired the infomercial block after having declined the network's children's block under its Fox Kids, Fox Box and 4Kids TV iterations for many years). However, it does not appear that all of the non-Fox stations that picked up 4Kids TV in such markets have continued with the infomercial block (Detroit MyNetworkTV affiliate WMYD airs the block, however CW affiliates KASW in Phoenix and WBNX-TV in Cleveland, MyNetworkTV affiliate WBFS-TV in Miami, and independent station WMLW-TV in Milwaukee declined to carry it). It is unclear whether or not, since the infomercial buyers pay the network for national network reach on the Weekend Marketplace, the Fox affiliates who refuse to carry the block have to compensate Fox and/or the infomercial buyers for the lack of broadcast coverage in that market.
Sinclair's KMYS in San Antonio, which switched from MyNetworkTV to The CW in September 2010, continues to carry the block in lieu of Fox-affiliated sister station KABB and instead airs The CW's children's block, Vortexx (programmed by Saban Brands, which acquired most of 4Kids's program library in 2012) during overnight periods inaccessible to most children, likely as the station was unable to revoke the deal to carry Weekend Marketplace. Likewise, Vortexx's successor, One Magnificent Morning (a brokered E/I block from Litton Entertainment), will be programmed in the same fashion (KMYS already carries three hours of E/I programming purchased from syndication, allowing it to meet the regulations).