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WPMY
Wpmy.png
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
Branding MyPittsburghTV
Slogan My Town, My Network!
Channel Digital: 42 (UHF)
Subchannels 22.1 MyNetworkTV
Affiliations My Network TV
Owner Sinclair Broadcast Group, Inc.
(WCWB Licensee, LLC)
First air date September 26, 1978[1]
Callsign meaning Pittsburgh MYNetworkTV
Sister station(s) WPGH-TV
Former callsigns WPTT-TV (1978-1998)
WCWB (1998-2006)
Former channels Analog:
22 (1978-2009)
Former affiliations independent (1978-1995)
UPN (1995-1998)
The WB (1998-2006)
Effective power 1 megawatt
Height 314.9 m
Facility ID 73907
Antenna coordinates 40°29′42.5″N 80°0′16.2″W / 40.495139°N 80.0045°W / 40.495139; -80.0045
Website www.mypittsburghtv.com

WPMY is the affiliate of MyNetworkTV in the Pittsburgh market. As My Pittsburgh TV, WPMY broadcasts on digital channel 42 (virtual channel 22.1) and is owned (along with WPGH-TV) by Sinclair Broadcast Group. Its transmitter is located in Monroeville, Pennsylvania. It has affiliated with MyNetworkTV since September 2006.

Until the end of 2006, WPMY featured The Tube music video channel on a digital subchannel.

Contents

Early History

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Early Success

Rising out of the ashes of the former WENS-TV, this station signed on the air on September 26, 1978, as WPTT, (which stood for Pittsburgh Twenty Two, the UHF channel on which it broadcasts) the market's second commercial independent station and its fourth UHF station (after WPGH-TV). It was owned by the Commercial Radio Institute (which later became known as Sinclair). It started out running a number of popular off-network sitcoms from the 1950s and 60s, off-network dramas and westerns, very old movies and network programming pre-empted by WTAE-TV, KDKA-TV and WIIC (now WPXI-TV). For a time the station WPTT aired the children's television program Captain Pitt, which featured old-time cartoons as part of the program.

WPTT also originated more of its own local programming with Prize Bowling, which originally began as Bowling for Dollars on ABC network competitor WTAE-TV for many years until its host was jailed for a lottery broadcast scam. The succeeding host was not received well by viewers, and ended up being canceled. WPTT took the opportunity to fill the void in the market with "Prize Bowling", first hosted by Pittsburgh radio legend Roger Willoughby-Ray and then by Pittsburgh Steelers announcer Jack Fleming. The show's success was modest at best, and was canceled after two years. Other programs of varying degrees of success were "The Ghost Host", "Eddie's Digest", and "Studio Wrestling".

The station also aired a newscast in the early 1980s, a rarity at this time for stations not affiliated with the then-major networks (ABC, CBS and NBC). This newscast was known simply as "WPTT news", and in the opening segment, the letters "news" were formed from a compass indicating the four cardinal directions. This opening segment, featuring then-anchorman Kevin Evans, appeared briefly (and was audible) on the movie Flashdance in a scene where Jennifer Beals' character returns home and turns on the television. The presentation was relatively low-budget, with the anchor simply reading copy, with no field video shots other than the weather read over a stock video shot denoting the conditions outside.

Relationship with WPGH

However, WPGH, which had hitherto been a rather low-budget operation, was purchased by Meredith Corporation in 1978, and became more aggressive with its programming strategy. Despite having a highly powerful signal that was double the coverage as WPGH (5 million watts visual compared to WPGH's 2.345 million), WPTT became unable to acquire newer shows, and ended up with programming that no other stations wanted. The station's ratings were very low, and it was considered as an "also-ran". For many years, WPTT languished as just another local independent channel, airing reruns of TV shows that were past their prime.

In 1990, after going through 3 owners, WPGH was put up for sale again. Sinclair put in a bid for the station in 1991 and won. However, the group struggled to obtain financing. As part of a deal, the group sold WPTT to its general manager Eddie Edwards (who had been with WPTT since its launch in 1978, and had become best-known as host of the station's locally-produced public affairs program "Eddie's Digest", targeted towards local African-Americans).

The sales closed on August 29, 1991 with Sinclair acquiring WPGH from Renaissance Broadcasting in the fall of that year. The best programming from WPTT's schedule was moved to WPGH. Eddie Edwards acquired WPTT without programming and began to run Home Shopping Network programming 24/7 on WPTT in September, which led to the station being dropped from the area's cable systems. Edwards then made a deal with Sinclair to buy time on his station from 3pm to midnight, and get the cable systems to reinstate WPTT on their lineups.

The deal took effect in January 1992 with WPTT airing cartoons, sitcoms, movies and dramas from Sinclair which had no room to air on WPGH. Sinclair's air time on the station expanded in 1993 to begin at noon. WPTT began to run older syndicated cartoons, as well as Disney cartoons which it picked up from KDKA.

Network Affiliation

UPN

WPTT affiliated with UPN in early 1995, becoming UPN 22. Sinclair's air time on the station increased later that year to begin at 6am as well and by 1997, WPTT and WPGH moved together into one building.

The WB

WPMY's previous "WB 22" logo.

WPTT dropped the UPN affiliation in 1998 (which moved to WNPA-TV) and affiliated with the The WB instead. The station also changed its call sign to WCWB to reflect its new affiliation. The WCWB calls had previously been on the NBC affiliate in Macon, Georgia, currently WMGT-TV; the WPTT calls were later on 1360 AM in Pittsburgh before changing to WMNY in 2008.

Sinclair finally bought back WCWB from Eddie Edwards in 2000 after the FCC relaxed its rule, allowing one company to own two television stations in the same market. WPGH is the senior partner in the duopoly because of its Fox affiliation and because it was established earlier.

As a WB affiliate, WCWB aired cartoons from Kids WB, off-network sitcoms, reality shows, court shows, talk shows and movies, as well as WB prime time programming. After the CW launched, WPMY kept the syndicated programs along with MyNetwork TV's two prime time programs, but Kids WB moved to WPCW. WPMY now airs infomercials and syndicated children's programming where Kids WB had previously aired.

MyNetwork TV

On January 24, 2006, it was announced that The WB and UPN would merge into a new network, The CW. As a result of this merger, WPCW (the former WNPA, and a former UPN O&O) became the CW affiliate, and on September 5, Channel 22 began carrying the Monday-through-Saturday MyNetwork TV block from Fox. On April 17, WCWB changed its call letters to WPMY to reflect this (plugs for MyNetwork TV and The Tube now use the WPMY calls). On August 14, 2006, WPMY rebranded itself as My Pittsburgh TV to promote MyNetwork TV, also different cable companies, carry WPMY on different channels. (The official moniker is "My Pittsburgh TV", even though the logo reads like "My TV Pittsburgh".) Unlike many other former WB affiliates switching to MyNetwork TV, WPMY continued to air The WB's primetime schedule in the late night hours until September 18, 2006, when The CW launched.

The station no longer uses the "22" moniker in any form on the station except for FCC-mandated station identification purposes. With Comcast being the dominant cable provider in the Pittsburgh region (Armstrong Cable also has systems in Armstrong, Butler, & Indiana counties, and a very small portion of Lawrence County) the station is commonly on channel 10 on Comcast systems, and thus WPMY is often advertised on-air as "Comcast channel 10", somewhat taking a virtual channel route.

Digital TV

Virtual
Channel
Video Aspect Programming
22.1 720p 16:9 Main WPMY programming / MyNetworkTV HD
22.2 480i 4:3 SDTV simulcast of WPGH-TV

Analog shutdown

WPMY signed off its analog signal as part of the analog television shutdown and digital conversion on February 17, 2009,[2] even though the deadline had been extended to June 12th.[3] WPMY was one of three stations in the Pittsburgh market to still use the original signoff date, alongside sister station WPGH-TV and WQED-owned WQEX. Both WPMY and WPGH kept their analog signals up for some time afterwards airing an infomercial from the National Association of Broadcasters about the DTV transition as part of the SAFER Act before signing off completely March 19th.

External links

References

  1. ^ The Broadcasting and Cable Yearbook says September 26, while the Television and Cable Factbook says September 29.
  2. ^ http://hraunfoss.fcc.gov/edocs_public/attachmatch/FCC-07-138A2.pdf
  3. ^ http://pbrtv.com/blog/entry_902.php

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