WPIX

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This article is about the New York City television station. For the NYC radio station formerly called WPIX-FM, see WQCD.
WPIX
Image:Wpixcw11-1.jpg
New York, New York

<tr><th style="vertical-align: top; text-align: right;">Branding</th><td style="text-align: left;">CW 11</td></tr>

Channels 11 (VHF) analog,
33 (UHF) digital

<tr><th style="vertical-align: top; text-align: right;">Translators</th><td style="text-align: left;">64 W64AA New York, N.Y.</td></tr>

Affiliations CW
The Tube (on digital subchannel 11.2)
Owner Tribune Company
(WPIX, Inc.)
Founded June 15, 1948

<tr><th style="vertical-align: top; text-align: right;">Call letters meaning</th><td style="text-align: left;">New York's Picture (PIX) Newspaper (after the Daily News, its founding owner)</td></tr><tr><th style="vertical-align: top; text-align: right;">Former affiliations</th><td style="text-align: left;">Independent (1948-1995)
WB (1995-2006)</td></tr><tr><th style="vertical-align: top; text-align: right;">Transmitter Power</th><td style="text-align: left;">123 kW/405 m (analog)
265 kW/448 m (digital)</td></tr> <tr><th style="vertical-align: top; text-align: right;">Website</th><td style="text-align: left;">cw11.trb.com</td></tr>

WPIX, channel 11, is a television station in New York City. It has been owned by the Tribune Company since its inception, and is currently an affiliate of the CW Television Network. The station's signal covers the three-state New York metropolitan area, and WPIX is also available as a regional superstation via satellite and cable in the United States and Canada.

From January 1995 to September 2006, this station was affiliated with the WB television network. Prior to 1995, WPIX was one of the leading independent stations in the country.

Contents

[edit] History

[edit] Independent station

WPIX made its on-air debut on June 15, 1948. Like its longtime Chicago sister station, WGN-TV, its call letters come from the slogan of the newspaper that founded it. In this case, it was the New York Daily News, whose tag was "New York's Picture Newspaper". Both the paper and the station were owned by the Tribune Company. Then and now, WPIX's studios and offices are located in the News Building, at 220 East 42nd Street in Midtown Manhattan.

Through the early 1990s, WPIX was operated separately from the other Tribune television and radio outlets through the News-owned license holder, WPIX, Incorporated, which (starting in 1966) also operated WPIX-FM (101.9 MHz., now WQCD). The WPIX stations were separated from the Daily News in 1991, when British businessman Robert Maxwell bought the newspaper. Tribune retained WPIX and WQCD, and the radio station was sold to Emmis Communications in 1997.

From the outset, WPIX featured programming that was standard among independents: movies, syndicated reruns of network programs, children's shows, public affairs programming, religious programs, and sports -- specifically, the New York Yankees baseball team, which WPIX carried from 1951 until 1998. At various points, WPIX also aired the New York (baseball) Giants, the New York Giants and New York Jets football teams, the NHL's New York Rangers, and the NBA's New York Knicks.

In the 1960s, WPIX, like the other two major independents in New York -- RKO General's WOR-TV (now WWOR-TV) and Metromedia's WNEW-TV (now WNYW) -- struggled to acquire other programming. By the early 1970s, WPIX was the clear number-two independent station in the city, behind WNEW-TV. It offered a wide selection of programming including cartoons, off-network sitcoms, dramas, a strong library of movies and Yankees baseball. It identified on-air as 11 Alive from 1977 to 1986, a slogan made popular by stations like Atlanta's WXIA-TV, who started using "11 Alive" themselves in 1976 and still do so today.

WPIX suffered through a dry spell, ratings-wise, in the late 1980s and early 1990s. During this time, now-Fox-owned WNYW and a resurgent WWOR, then owned by MCA/Universal, relegated WPIX to sixth place among New York's VHF stations. After a new general manager, Michael Eigner, was transferred to WPIX from Los Angeles sister station KTLA in 1989, the station engineered a slow turnaround that eventually resulted in WPIX becoming the leading independent station in the New York market. In 1994, the station became the exclusive home of the New York City Marathon, carrying the five-borough running event for the next five years.

[edit] WB affiliation

In January 1995, WPIX became an affiliate of the WB network. Through Tribune's ownership interest in the WB (initially 12.5 percent in 1995, and later expanded to 22 percent), channel 11 could have been referred to as the WB's "flagship" station -- though this is a designation in name only. The Warner Bros. Television division of Time Warner was the majority owner of the WB, and programming was distributed from the WB's facilities in Los Angeles.

As WB network and syndicated daytime programming (such as Maury, Judge Mathis, and The Jerry Springer Show) became more prominent on channel 11's schedule, most of the station's local-interest programming began to disappear. WPIX was once home to the St. Patrick's Day, National Puerto Rican Day and Columbus Day parades, and Macy's Independence Day fireworks program. Along with the New York City Marathon these events moved to WNBC-TV, and the Marathon and the Macy's show are now carried on the NBC network.

WPIX lost its over-the-air broadcast rights to the Yankees to WNYW following the 1998 baseball season, more a result of regional cable sports networks (in this case, the Madison Square Garden Network) gaining team broadcast rights, leaving broadcast stations with fewer games to air. In 1999 the station replaced them with the New York Mets, which up until that point had spent their entire televised history with WOR/WWOR. Ironically, beginning in 2005, over-the-air Yankees broadcasts were aired by WWOR, which was as synonymous with the Mets as WPIX was with the Yankees.

However, in recent years, WPIX has revived The Yule Log, a special holiday program that combines Christmas music with a film loop of logs burning inside a fireplace. The Yule Log aired on Christmas Eve and/or Christmas morning, initially from 1966 until 1989, and viewer response brought it back in 2001. The revival of the Yule Log as proven to be just as popular, and several other Tribune-owned stations have carried the WPIX version, complete with its audio soundtrack, over the past several years. Channel 11 also airs a live broadcast of the Midnight Mass, from St. Patrick's Cathedral, on Christmas Eve.

As children's programming began to fade from broadcast television, The WB dropped its morning cartoon block in 2000, leaving the time for local stations to carry their own programming. On June 5 of that year, WPIX launched the WB 11 Morning News (now CW 11 Morning News), which has grown to challenge the established network morning programs as well as its more direct competitor, WNYW's Good Day New York. The station continues to carry Saturday morning cartoons from Kids WB, but the afternoon cartoon block was discontinued on December 30, 2005.

Image:Wpix-911.jpg
Screencap of the frozen WPIX image.

On September 11, 2001, the transmitter facilities of WPIX as well as eight other New York City television stations and several radio stations were destroyed when two hijacked airplanes crashed into and destroyed the World Trade Center towers. The station's lead engineer, Steve Jacobson, was lost in the tragedy. WPIX's satellite feed eerily froze on the last image received from the WTC mast; the image remained on the screen for much of the day until WPIX was able to set up alternate transmission facilities (the microwave relay for WPIX's satellite feed was also up there). Since then, WPIX has transmitted its signal from the Empire State Building.

[edit] From the WB to the CW

On January 24, 2006, the WB and UPN networks announced that they would merge. The newly combined network would be called the CW, the letters representing the first initial of its corporate parents CBS (the parent company of UPN) and Warner Bros. Television. On September 18, 2006, WPIX became the CW's New York affiliate. Unlike in its relationship with the WB, Tribune does not have an ownership interest in the CW -- meaning, once again, WPIX is the network's "flagship" station in name only.

In the summer of 2006, WPIX started its transition to its new network by unveiling its branding and logo, CW 11, with on-air promos, on-screen program bugs, and an outdoor advertising campaign. WPIX was officially re-branded as CW 11 on September 17, 2006, the day before the CW launched. The rebranding began with the 10 p.m. newscast, which aired at the conclusion of the WB's final night of programming. Prior to the newscast, the station aired a video montage of past WPIX logos, starting with a 1948 test pattern (similar to the one pictured in the logo gallery below) and concluding with the official unveiling of the new CW 11 logo.

In April 2006, WPIX started broadcasting 24-hour music video channel The Tube on one of its digital sub-channels.


[edit] News programming

Appropriate for a station owned by the Tribune Company and originally linked to the Daily News, news has played an important role on WPIX from the station's beginnings. WPIX won national acclaim in 1956 for its filmed documentary coverage of the collision, and later, sinking of the New York-bound oceanliner SS Andrea Doria off the coast of Nantucket.

During the late 1970s and early 1980s, WPIX used the Action News title and format for its local news programs, complete with its theme music, "Move Closer to Your World". A 30-minute newscast aired at 7:30 p.m., and a one-hour program (at some points it was also 30 minutes) ran at 10:00 p.m..

From June 1980 until June 1990, WPIX produced and syndicated Independent Network News (INN), a national newscast for independent stations. The program featured the same talent that worked on WPIX's local newscasts. WPIX transmitted the national show's live feed weeknights at 9:30 p.m. ET. In New York, WPIX paired a 10 p.m. replay of the national show with a live local newscast at 10:30 p.m., called the "Action News Metropolitan Report."

As part of a midday expansion of INN starting in 1981, Channel 11 also experimented with a newscast at 12:30 p.m. anchored by Marvin Scott. During the decade, WPIX also offered INN affiliates "The Wall Street Journal Report," a business-oriented show; and From the Editor's Desk, a Sunday newsmaker show hosted by Richard D. Heffner.

The station dropped Action News in 1984 and renamed its programs as The Independent News. In 1986, the national INN newscast, which was contained within the 10:00 show, was renamed USA Tonight, while the 7:30 program retained the title Independent News. When INN was cancelled, the 7:30 program ended as well, and WPIX focused its efforts on the 10:00 program. Currently, WPIX uses segments within its newscasts to cross-promote Newsday, the Melville, New York-based daily newspaper purchased by Tribune in 2000.

Over the years, channel 11 has won many awards for news, and was the first independent station to win a New York-area Emmy Award for outstanding newscast, first gaining the statuette in 1979 and earning it again in 1983. It was a significant comeback for a news operation that was accused of falsifying news reports broadcasts in the late 1960s, such as labeling stock footage as "via satellite", and saying a voice report was live from Prague when, in actuality, it was made from a pay telephone in Manhattan. As a result, a group called Forum Communications — led by future PBS and NBC News president Lawrence Grossman — approached the FCC to challenge WPIX Inc.'s license to operate channel 11, but after years of litigation, WPIX and the Daily News prevailed in 1979.

WPIX was also famous for the many post-news editorials from the mid 70s to the Early 90s that were "anchored" by Richard N. Hughes, VP of News Operations. Editorials which branded the legendary tagline "What's your Opinion? We'd Like To Know."

As a sidenote, WPIX's questionable news gathering practices of the late 1960s became fodder for jokes, and may have been the inspiration for Chevy Chase's running gag on the Weekend Update segments of Saturday Night Live in 1975-1976 in which he would introduce a "file report" from a correspondent in the field, and as the file report (some of which used clips of old 1930s cartoons or comedy one-reelers that were passed off as "File Footage," although the clips had almost nothing to do with the story being reported) ends, the "correspondent" is revealed to be Chevy himself, in the studio, using an alias and holding his nose to get the "pinched" effect of voices heard by telephone.

[edit] Newscasts

  • CW 11 Morning News - Monday-Friday 5:00-9:00 a.m.
  • CW 11 News at Ten - every night 10:00-11:00 p.m.
  • CW 11 News Closeup - Sundays 6:00-6:30 a.m.

[edit] Current Personalities

Anchors

Weather

Sports

Reporters

[edit] Former Personalities

  • Bill Biery - host of Beachcomber Bill/longtime staff announcer (1964-1980s)
  • Paul Bloom - reporter/anchor during early to middle 1970s (now at KUSI-TV in San Diego)
  • Joe Bolton - weatherman/children's show host ("Officer Joe")/announcer (1948-1976; deceased)
  • Steve Bosh - local/INN anchor (1977-1983; now at KUSI)
  • Jack Cafferty - anchor during the early 1990s (now at CNN)
  • Frank Casey - reporter (1970s-1980s)
  • Marysol Castro - traffic reporter, WB 11 Morning News (now at Good Morning America)
  • Pamela Chan - reporter (1998-2004)
  • Kirstin Cole - reporter (2000-2001; now at WCBS-TV)
  • Barry Cunningham - reporter from late 1980s-late 1990s
  • Morton Dean - local/INN anchor (1985-1988)
  • Jonathan Dienst - local news reporter (1997-2001; now at WNBC)
  • Vince DeMentri - former reporter in 2003
  • George J. Durna - Local/INN/reporter, news announcer (1982-1989)
  • Jerry Girard - sports anchor (1968-1993)
  • Rosemary Gomez - reporter during 1990s and early 2000s
  • Bob Grant - commentator (1974-1975)
  • Donna Hanover - local/INN anchor (1983-1990)
  • Joe Harper - anchor (1973-1976; deceased)
  • Pat Harper - local/INN anchor (1973-1985; deceased)
  • Bob Harris - weatherman during 1980s
  • Brad Holbrook - local/INN anchor (1983-1989; now anchor of BusinessWeek Weekend)
  • Marc Howard - reporter/anchor (1968-1974; now at KYW-TV in Philadelphia)
  • Heather Holmes - former Long Island Correspondent
  • Jackie Hyland - reporter (2000-2005; now at WFAA-TV in Dallas)
  • Bill Jorgensen - local/INN anchor (1978-1982)
  • Tasha Jamerson - former reporter from 2005-2006, now at WTXF in Philadelphia
  • Jeff Kamen - reporter (1970s-1980s)
  • Kevin Kennedy - reporter/anchor (1950s-1960s)
  • Sean Kimerling - weekend sports anchor/reporter (1997-2003, deceased)
  • Polly Kreisman - investigative reporter (2000-2003)
  • Kip Lewis - sports anchor (2004-2005)
  • Doris Lilly - entertainment/gossip reporter (1974-1977; deceased)
  • Bill Littauer - reporter/announcer (1970s-1980s)
  • Pauline Liu - reporter during 1990s-early 2000s
  • Lynda Lopez - entertainment reporter, WB 11 Morning News (2000-2002; now at WWOR-TV)
  • Ralph Lowenstein - staff announcer/public affairs program host (1974-1993)
  • Jeffrey Lyons - film critic (1970-1991; now at WNBC)
  • Tim Malloy - reporter/anchor during 1980s and early 1990s (now at WPTV in West Palm Beach)
  • Rex Marshall - anchor/announcer (1948-1949 and 1967-1968; deceased)
  • Chuck McCann - children's show host (1959-1966)
  • Jack McCarthy - announcer/children's show host ("Captain Jack")/St. Patrick's Day Parade host (1948-1992; deceased)
  • Ed Miller - reporter/weekend anchor (1988-1995; now a correspondent for America's Most Wanted)
  • Melinda Murphy - traffic reporter, WB 11 Morning News (2000-2003)
  • Neil Myers - special features reporter (1970-1973)
  • Lee Nelson - anchor/news director (1968-1971; deceased)
  • Julian Phillips - reporter during mid-1990s (now at Fox News Channel)
  • Sally Jessy Raphael - reporter/anchor during early 1970s
  • Tim Ryan - sports anchor (1970-1972)
  • George Scharmen - weekend anchor (1975-1977)
  • Toni Senecal - entertainment reporter (2000-2006; now at WNYW)
  • Patti Smith-Barrett - former reporter from 2001-2005
  • John Tillman - reporter/anchor/announcer (1948-1967)
  • Roberto Tirado - weatherman during late 1970s
  • Lynne White - co-anchor, WB 11 Morning News (2000-2005)
                     =Bloomberg Business Report==
  • Linda Bell
  • Deborah Kostrun
  • Nicole Pedellini

[edit] Public affairs and special events

In addition to its news-oriented broadcasts, WPIX was a leader in public-affairs and special events programming, inspired by its roots as the television station of the Daily News. Early on, it offered the first in-depth program to look at New York City government, called City Hall. WPIX children's show personality "Captain" Jack McCarthy anchored the station's coverage of the St. Patrick's Day Parade (now aired by WNBC), and the station later added the Columbus Day Parade and National Puerto Rican Day Parade to its stable. Later on, the station produced Essence, a TV show inspired by Essence magazine and hosted by the publication's chief editor, Susan L. Taylor.

Editor's Desk host Heffner was and still is the host of the longtime interview show The Open Mind, which was produced by channel 11 in the 1970s, 80s and 90s (and was concurrently aired on PBS stations) before moving to other New York studios.

[edit] Logos

WPIX's famous Circle 11 logo -- which closely resembles the World Trade Center -- was first unveiled in 1969. (A Yankee Stadium advertising billboard for WPIX with the Circle 11 logo appeared that year.) It had become the official station emblem by 1974.

The station dropped it when it adopted the 11 Alive moniker in 1976, but re-incorporated the Circle 11 into 11 Alive print ads in 1984 and the Yankee broadcast intros in April 1985. The Circle 11 returned full-time in 1986.

The station's first WB 11 was first unveiled during WPIX's broadcast of the 1994 New York City Marathon, and eventually became the full-time logo, augmented with the WB logo after the station became a WB affiliate in 1995.

The station's current CW 11 logo was first used for promos and teasers announcing the imminent change to the CW, and then first used as a full-time logo on the station's CW 11 News at Ten on on September 17, 2006. The newscast was preceded by a graphic of all of WPIX's logos throughout the years, ending with the new CW 11 logo.

[edit] Logo gallery

[edit] See also

[edit] External links


Coordinates: 40° 42' 43" N 74° 0' 49" W

Superstations in North American markets

United States: KTLA | KWGN | WAPA | WGN / US feed | WKAQ | WPIX | WSBK | WTBS | WWOR / EMI

Mexico: XEW | XHAW | XHCNL | XHDF | XHGC | XHIMT

See Also: American networks | List of American Over-The-Air Networks | Local American TV Stations (W) | Local American TV Stations (K) | Canadian networks | Local Canadian TV Stations | Mexican networks | Local Mexican TV Stations | Superstations | North American TV | List of local television stations in North America </div>

WPIX

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