On January 1, WIIH will no longer broadcast Univision’s Spanish-language programming to central Indiana households. Indianapolis, in the top quarter of Hispanic-American media markets, already lost its Spanish-language TV news program, and now Univision, the only Spanish language TV programming available on broadcast TV locally, is getting its plug pulled as well. The failure of WISH to renew its agreement with Univision will keep the channel’s programming off of local cable and dish providers as well. Local radio stations are hoping to step into the void, but it leaves me wondering, are Spanish speakers not a valuable market segment? Since I work at the Indianapolis Star and live in an area of the city where Spanish a part of street culture and commerce, I asked the publisher of the Indianapolis Star, Michael Kane, what the company is doing to reach out to Spanish speakers. He informed me that the company is producing niche publications for that market, so niche in fact that if you aren’t on a mailing list or frequenting certain businesses, you’d probably never know they exist. That’s good but frankly I wish we’d do better. I’d like to see a Hispanic community liaison in the newsroom or some focused attempt to represent the concerns of a vibrant, growing local community. Like it or not – and apparently, bigoted Indystar.com commenters do not – America is becoming bilingual. Ignoring the social and economic concerns of the Hispanic community will come back to haunt us in the future. What are your thoughts?