WHIZ-TV

WHIZ-TV
Zanesville, Ohio
United States
Branding WHIZ-TV (general)
WHIZ-TV News (newscasts)
Slogan Our Focus is On You!
Channels Digital: 40 (UHF)
(to move to 30 (UHF))
Virtual: 18 (PSIP)
Affiliations NBC (secondary through 1966)
Owner Southeastern Ohio Broadcasting System, Inc.
(Southeastern Ohio Television System)
Founded May 23, 1953 (1953-05-23)
Call letters' meaning We're
Here
In
Zanesville
Sister station(s) WHIZ (AM), WHIZ-FM
Former channel number(s) 50 (UHF analog, 1953–1955)
18 (UHF analog, 1955–2008)
Former affiliations CBS/ABC (1953–1966)
DuMont (1953–1955)
all secondary
Transmitter power 620 kW
500 kW (CP)
Height 169 m (554 ft)
168 m (551 ft) (CP)
Class DT
Facility ID 61216
Transmitter coordinates 39°55′42″N 81°59′7″W / 39.92833°N 81.98528°W / 39.92833; -81.98528
Licensing authority FCC
Public license information: Profile
CDBS
Website www.whiznews.com

WHIZ-TV, virtual channel 18 (UHF digital channel 40), is an NBC-affiliated television station licensed to Zanesville, Ohio, United States. Owned by the Southeastern Ohio Broadcasting System, WHIZ-TV maintains studios and transmitter facilities on Downard Road in Zanesville.

Although this station is somewhat overshadowed by network affiliates in the nearby Columbus market such as fellow NBC affiliate WCMH-TV, WHIZ-TV provides local news to its limited local area. In addition, WHIZ-TV provides local sports programming, including local high school basketball games on Fridays. It is the only major commercial television station in Zanesville, with the other local stations being PBS member station WOUC-TV (Ohio University at Athens) and a TBN repeater (WOOH-LP).

History

Construction on WHIZ-TV began in 1952 at the Downard Road site for Zanesville's first television station. On May 23, 1953, WHIZ-TV began broadcasting on channel 50, with just enough power to reach the 500 or so television sets in the Zanesville area. A year and a half later, WHIZ-TV moved to channel 18, and increased its power output to 186 kW in addition to operating broadcast translators on channel 71 (W71AB) in Coshocton and channel 80 (W80AA) in Cambridge. In 1986, channel 18 increased power output to 589 kW with a new antenna, and introduced stereo sound.

WHIZ-TV has been a primary NBC affiliate since the station began, but until 1966 cherry-picked programming from CBS and ABC as well. It also aired some DuMont programming in the 1950s. As WHIZ is the only commercial station in the area, Charter Spectrum's area system supplements the area with the Columbus stations.

In 2003, WHIZ-TV began broadcasting in digital on channel 40.

On July 25, 2008, WHIZ was knocked off the air when its power combiner failed. While the station was able to restore its digital signal, it was determined that there was no way to restore the analog signal until early 2009. Since this meant the analog signal would have only been back online for two months before shutdown of analog signals for all full-service stations, WHIZ decided to permanently cease analog broadcasting.[1]

WHIZ is seen on cable systems in several adjacent counties, including Coshocton, Guernsey, Hocking, Licking, Morgan and Perry. It is shown on cable as far south as Nelsonville, Ohio and used to be on cable systems as far west as Lancaster, Ohio but has not been carried on cable any farther west than Perry County, the Buckeye Lake region and Granville, Ohio in several years.

WHIZ-TV has retained its NBC affiliation despite the recent trend of NBC stripping affiliations from very small markets or stations that are technically in major markets but serve a very small portion of those markets in order to protect the main affiliates in those markets. Since 2014, this has happened to WMGM-TV in Wildwood, New Jersey (to protect NBC O&O WCAU in Philadelphia), WHAG-TV (now WDVM-TV) in Hagerstown, Maryland (to protect fellow NBC O&O WRC-TV in Washington, D.C.) and KENV-DT in Elko, Nevada (to protect NBC affiliate KSL-TV in Salt Lake City); as Zanesville is considered a separate market from Columbus, WHIZ-TV is unlikely to lose its affiliation to protect WCMH-TV unless Muskingum County (already part of the Columbus–Marion–Zanesville, OH Combined Statistical Area) were to be collapsed into the Columbus media market.

Programming

Syndicated programming on WHIZ-TV includes Steve, Access, The Ellen DeGeneres Show, and Family Feud.

Other stations

The WHIZ Media Group also owns and operates radio stations WHIZ AM and WHIZ-FM ("Z-92"). Formerly the company operated WCVZ-FM ("Highway 102") prior to its replacement by WWCD ("CD101 @ 102.5"); WWCD owner Fun With Radio, LLC now operates the station via WHIZ Media Group through a local marketing agreement (technically, WHIZ Media Group still owns the station). WHIZ stands for "We're Here In Zanesville".

Until early 2008, WHIZ also operated CW Plus stations in Zanesville, WBZV; and Parkersburg, West Virginia, WBPB. After their closure, it was replaced on cable lineups by WWHO in Zanesville, and WQCW in Parkersburg. The CW Plus has since been reinstated on Zanesville cable lineups, now operated directly by the various cable providers serving the market.

References

  1. "DTV TRANSITION STATUS REPORT". CDBS Public Access. Federal Communications Commission. 2008-10-16. Retrieved 2008-10-26.
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