Jacksonville/Tyler/Longview, Texas
United States
City Jacksonville, Texas
Branding KETK NBC (general)
KETK News (news)
Slogan Local, Experienced, Trusted.
Channels Digital: 22 (UHF)
Virtual: 56 (PSIP)
Subchannels 56.1 NBC
56.2 Grit
56.3 Ion Television
Owner Nexstar Media Group
(Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc.)
First air date March 9, 1987 (1987-03-09)
Call letters' meaning East Texas
Sister station(s) KFXK-TV, KFXL-LD, KLPN-LD
Former channel number(s) Analog:
56 (UHF, 1987–2009)
Former affiliations DT2:
NBC Weather Plus (2006–2008)
Estrella TV (2011–2015)
Transmitter power 1,000 kW
Height 458.8 m (1,505 ft)
Facility ID 55643
Transmitter coordinates 32°3′40″N 95°18′50″W / 32.06111°N 95.31389°W / 32.06111; -95.31389
Licensing authority FCC
Public license information: Profile

KETK-TV, virtual channel 56 (UHF digital channel 22), is an NBC-affiliated television station serving Tyler and Longview, Texas, United States that is licensed to Jacksonville. The station is owned by Nexstar Media Group, which also operates Longview-licensed Fox affiliate KFXK-TV (channel 51) and MyNetworkTV affiliate KTPN-LD/KLPN-LD (channel 47/48) under a shared services agreement with owner White Knight Broadcasting. All three stations share studios on Richmond Road (at Loop 323) in Tyler; KETK's transmitter is located near FM 855 in unincorporated northwestern Cherokee County.

KETK-TV was previously relayed on repeater station KETK-LP (UHF analog channel 53) in Nacogdoches. It originally simulcast KETK's entire schedule, but began to produce local news inserts focused on the Nacogdoches–Lufkin area by the late 2000s. KETK-LP's low-powered signal only covered the immediate Lufkin area, therefore requiring cable to view the station outside of the city. The station was carried by Consolidated and Suddenlink in Lufkin and Communicomm in Huntington.


KETK-TV station history

Prior to the station's sign-on, the UHF channel 56 allocation in the Tyler–Longview market was originally slated to be occupied by KTRG, which stood for the initials of the original owner and license applicant. However, the owner had to file for bankruptcy, effectively scuttling plans to launch the station. Amid a few hurdles, the license was purchased by new buyers, who applied to change the call letters to KETK. The station first signed on the air on March 9, 1987, taking the NBC affiliation from KLTV (channel 7), which had carried the network on a joint primary basis since it signed on in October 1954 and was relegated to secondary status in 1984. It was originally owned by Texas American Broadcasting. The station originally operated from studio facilities located on North Jackson Street in Jacksonville; its original transmitter facilities were located on a tower near Mt. Selman (between Jacksonville and Tyler).

A tornado, on a path from near Palestine to near Whitehouse in November 1987, passed just northwest and north of the center of Jacksonville. The original KETK offices and studio there were along the path, and suffered damage. It took less than two days for the station to get back on the air, but much longer for newsroom and other off-screen areas and functions to recover. Because KETK's broadcast tower and transmitter were located farther to the northwest, and away from the tornado, that facility was spared.

Texas American Broadcasting sold the station to Region 56 Network, a subsidiary of Lone Star Broadcasting in 1989. In September 1991, KETK signed on KLSB-TV (channel 19) as a satellite station to serve southern portions of the market that could not receive channel 56's signal (including Nacogdoches). KETK moved its operations to its current location on Richmond Road in Tyler in 1993. Lone Star then sold KETK to Max Television (later Max Media Properties) in 1996. In 1998, the Sinclair Broadcast Group acquired most of the Max Media Properties stations, including KETK. However, in early 1999, Sinclair sold the non-license assets of the station to the Communications Corporation of America, which operated the station via a time brokerage agreement.[1] Sinclair remained the license holder of KETK until 2004 when ComCorp acquired the station outright.

In 2003, Max Media (a company partially related to Max Media Properties) acquired KLSB-TV and converted it into standalone station KYTX, which became a CBS affiliate in April 2004 (the first in the market since KLMG-TV (channel 51, now KFXK-TV) switched to Fox in April 1991). KETK subsequently signed on a low-power translator on UHF channel 53, KLSB-LP (which later changed its call letters to KETK-LP in 2007) to relay its signal to the southern part of the market; the station shut down in 2012. In June 2006, Communications Corporation of America filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. Rival CBS affiliate KYTX (channel 19) sparked controversy by publicly announcing the ComCorp bankruptcy on its newscasts, for an entire week. ComCorp said in a press release viewers and staff would see no changes at the station. The company emerged from bankruptcy in late 2007.

On April 24, 2013, the Communications Corporation of America announced the sale of its television stations, including KETK-TV, to Nexstar Broadcasting Group. KFXK and KTPN were sold to Nexstar partner company Mission Broadcasting; in the case of KFXK, that station was sold to Mission to comply with Federal Communications Commission (FCC) duopoly rules. Nexstar continued KFXK's and KLPN's shared services agreement with sister station KETK.[2] The sale was completed on January 1, 2015.[3]

During March 2017, KETK celebrated its 30th anniversary on the air.

(defunct, served as translator of KETK-TV)

(logo for KETK-LP, when the station was known as KLSB-LP)
Nacogdoches/Lufkin, Texas
United States
City Nacogdoches, Texas
Branding NBC 53
Channels Analog: 53 (UHF)
Affiliations NBC (2004–2011)
Owner Communications Corporation of America
(Comcorp of Tyler License Corp.)
First air date 1991 (1991)
(as full-power station KLSB-TV)
2004 (2004)
(as a low-power station)
Last air date 2011 (2011)
Call letters' meaning K East Texas K
(derived from parent station KETK-TV)
Former callsigns K53IQ (2004)
KLSB-LP (2004–2007)
Class LPTV

KLSB-TV station history

Prior to KETK-TV's sign-on on March 9, 1987, the Jacksonville-based station intended on providing a signal to both the Tyler–Longview and Lufkin-Nacogdoches areas (Nielsen Media Research designates the two areas as a singular market, although television station signals from Tyler and Longview could not reach Lufkin and vice versa due to the distance between these areas). KETK later moved its main studio facilities from Jacksonville to a new complex in Tyler; in 1991, the station arranged to simulcast its programming in east-central Texas, serving southern portions of the market that could not receive KETK's channel 56 signal, on a newly licensed UHF station in Nacogdoches, KLSB-TV (channel 19), which would be operated by KETK-TV under a local marketing agreement. KLSB-TV signed on the air on September 1, 1991; it ran the majority of the KETK program schedule, with the only differences being local commercials, and in some timeslots, local news inserts.

Max Media, a company partially related to former KETK owner Max Media Properties, purchased KLSB-TV in 2003. Upon acquiring the station, Max Media terminated the LMA with the Communications Corporation of America (which bought KETK in 1998) and signed an affiliation agreement with CBS to become the market's first affiliate of that network since KLMG-TV (channel 51, now KFXK-TV) switched to Fox in April 1991. It also leased a building in southeast Tyler that formerly operated as a four-screen movie theater to serve as the station's new studio facilities. That winter, Max filed an application with the FCC to change the station's callsign to KYTX. Channel 19 dropped the KETK simulcast on April 11, 2004, and officially joined CBS the following day on April 12. On April 13, the FCC officially granted the call sign change to KYTX. On June 13, 2004, the station relocated its transmitter facilities farther north of the original transmitter facility to expand its signal to the Tyler and Longview areas, to a new tower located south of New Summerfield.

KETK-LP station history

After the conversion of channel 19 to CBS, the Nacogdoches–Lufkin portion of the Tyler–Longview television market was left without over-the-air access to NBC programming. KETK then entered into an LMA to lease programming time on a new low-power UHF station on channel 53 in Lufkin, assuming the former full-power station's calls as KLSB-LP. As with KLSB-TV, the station began simulcasting KETK-TV's full schedule, except for local commercials, with advertising aimed at the Lufkin and Nacogdoches area. The station's call sign was changed to KETK-LP on April 13, 2007.[4]

On September 1, 2009, KETK-LP's transmitter was shut down. However, its programming remained available in the area via cable on Suddenlink Communications, which also carried NBC programming and KETK news simulcasts from the station in high definition. The station had a construction permit to build digital transmitter facilities, with plans to operate a digital signal on UHF channel 27 under the callsign KETK-LD. The FCC canceled both KETK-LP's license and digital construction permit – its digital transmitter facility was never built – at some point in 2011 or 2012.

Digital television

Digital channels

KETK-TV's digital channel is multiplexed:

Channel Video Aspect PSIP Short Name Programming[5]
56.11080i16:9KETK-DTMain KETK-TV programming / NBC
56.2480i4:3GritGrit TV
56.3IONIon Television

On September 8, 2006, KETK launched a second digital subchannel carrying NBC Weather Plus; the national Weather Plus feed was shut down on December 1, 2008. One month later on January 1, 2009, KETK replaced the local feed of Weather Plus with Me-TV. In 2011, the subchannel switched to Estrella TV after the affiliation moved to former CW affiliate KCEB (channel 54).

Analog-to-digital conversion

KETK-TV began operating a full-power digital signal on UHF channel 22 on June 17, 2006. The station began testing high definition broadcasts of NBC programming on September 1 of that year, and started airing NBC programming in 1080i HD full-time four days later on September 5.

During the analog television era, the station's UHF channel 56 signal had the designation of having the highest channel allocation of any NBC affiliate. This ended after the high-band UHF channels (52-69) were removed from broadcasting use during the digital television transition on June 12, 2009. There was speculation that between the original transition deadline of February 17, 2009 and the new federally set deadline of June 12, 2009 that KETK would change its on-air station branding to reflect its physical digital channel 22.

However, the analog transmitter failed during the early morning hours of March 27, 2009, due to a malfunction of the cooling system at the transmitter facilities. Because of the cost and time involved that it would have taken to repair the analog transmitter, KETK filed a Notice of Suspension of Operations with the FCC and permanently shut down its analog operations over UHF channel 56 on March 27, 2009. The station's digital signal remained on its pre-transition UHF channel 22,[6] using PSIP to display the station's virtual channel as its former UHF analog channel 56, however KETK removed on-air references to its channel position several months prior to the transition in 2008 and only brands by its call letters.


KETK serves the Tyler–Longview–Lufkin–Nacogdoches market,[7] which includes Smith, Gregg, Wood, Upshur, Franklin, Camp, Rusk, Cherokee, Angelina, Nacogdoches, Houston, San Augustine, and Sabine counties,[8] but with their antenna signal, also includes all or parts of Anderson, Henderson, Van Zandt, Hopkins, Rains, Navarro, and Freestone counties in the DallasFort Worth market, Titus, Morris, Cass, Marion, Panola, and Shelby counties in the Shreveport market, Trinity County in the Houston market, and Leon and Madison counties in the BryanCollege Station/WacoTemple Market,[9] although the station is considered "significantly viewed" in Trinity County.[10]


KETK-TV carries the entire NBC network schedule; however, it delays the network's overnight lineup (consisting of a rebroadcast of the fourth hour of Today and the CNBC program Mad Money) by one hour due to paid programming. It is also one of a handful of NBC stations that carry Days of Our Lives at noon (instead of the network-recommended 1:00 p.m. or alternate 2:00 p.m. timeslots); NBC owned-and-operated station KXAS-TV in the adjacent market of Dallas–Fort Worth has also carried the soap opera in that slot since September 2013. Syndicated programs broadcast by KETK include Dr. Phil, The Doctors, Rachael Ray, and Entertainment Tonight, among others.

News operation

KETK-TV presently broadcasts 26½ hours of locally produced newscasts each week (with 4½ hours on weekdays and two hours each on Saturdays and Sundays). The station also produces the seasonal sports program Friday Football Fever, which airs on Friday nights during the final 15 minutes of the 10:00 p.m. newscast during the high school football season and is hosted by sports director Danny Elzner. In addition, the station produces 12½ hours of locally produced newscasts each week (with 2½ hours on weekdays) for Fox-affiliated sister station KFXK-TV.

KETK is one of only three former ComCorp stations that produced their newscasts in-house (the others being fellow NBC affiliates KTSM-TV in El Paso and WVLA-TV in Baton Rouge, Louisiana). Due to insufficient funds for most ComCorp stations to produce their own newscasts, KETK served as a hub for the news operations for most of ComCorp's television stations, it produced pre-recorded newscasts for most of its Fox affiliates including Longview-licensed sister station KFXK-TV, KWKT in Waco and its College Station satellite KYLE, and KMSS-TV in Shreveport, Louisiana. Previously, the station also provided pre-recorded newscasts for the Baton Rouge virtual duopoly of WVLA and Fox-affiliated sister WGMB (it produced in-studio news segments for WVLA's evening newscasts from 2009 to 2010, when that station began producing its evening newscasts locally once again following the Deepwater Horizon oil spill; however, WVLA's weekend newscasts were still pre-recorded at the KETK studios).

The station promotes its weather team as having the "Most Powerful Radar in East Texas", which is branded as "KETK Live Doppler Skywatch". Also, KETK is the only station in the market to have four college degreed meteorologists on its weather team. Since its sign-on, KETK has finished a modest second behind market leader KLTV. In 1998, KETK began producing a 9:00 p.m. newscast each weeknight for KFXK under a news share agreement; initially receiving strong ratings, ratings fell after the program's original anchors left channel 56, plus due to logistical problems resulting from delays from Fox Sports programming overruns, that caused the program to be tape delayed to allow KETK to produce its own 10:00 p.m. newscast on schedule; the program was eventually canceled by 2001.

From July 2008 to October 2009, KETK was the solid #2 television news outlet in East Texas. KLTV led the local news ratings by far, with over 70,000 households, while KYTX was a distant third. However, in November 2009, KETK dropped to a distant third place behind both KLTV and KYTX, although KETK's ratings were expected to recover after The Jay Leno Show was dropped by NBC in February 2010. KETK restored a primetime newscast on KFXK on January 28, 2008, with the debut of a half-hour weeknight-only 9:00 p.m. newscast; it subsequently began producing a two-hour weekday morning newscast from 7:00 to 9:00 a.m. for channel 51 in September 2011. On April 23, 2010, KETK became the second television station in the Tyler–Longview market (after KYTX) to begin broadcasting its local newscasts in high definition.

Notable former on-air staff

In other media

In deleted scenes from the 2009 film Brüno, the title character (played by Sacha Baron Cohen) visits the KETK studios and meets with news director/anchor Neal Barton and sports director Danny Elzner. The two signed releases to appear in the film, expecting to talk about small-town news in the United States. Instead, the interviews conducted by the flamboyant Brüno character drifted towards the topic of homosexuality. The scene culminated with an interview that "Brüno" did with a local white supremacist, who threatened to call the police on him when his behavior became too overtly homosexual.


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