WGN-TV

WGN-TV
Chicago, Illinois
SloganChicago's Very Own WGN
ChannelsAnalog: 9 (VHF)
Digital: 19 (UHF)
AffiliationsThe CW
OwnerTribune Company
(WGN Continental Broadcasting Co., Inc.)
FoundedApril 5, 1948
Call letters meaningWorld's
Greatest
Newspaper (referring to its owner, the Chicago Tribune)
Former callsignsNone
Former affiliationsCBS (1948-1953)
DuMont (1948-1956)
Independent (1956-1995)
The WB (1995-2006)
Transmitter Power110 kW/415 m (analog)
645 kW/453 m (digital)
Websitewgntv.trb.com


WGN-TV, channel 9, is a television station in Chicago, Illinois. It has been owned by the Tribune Company since its inception, and is currently the Chicago affiliate of The CW Television Network. WGN-TV's studios and offices are located in the North Center neighborhood of Chicago, and the station transmits its analog signal from the John Hancock Center and digital signal from Sears Tower.

WGN Television is one of several flagship properties owned by the Tribune Company, which also operates radio station WGN (720 kHz.) and publishes the Chicago Tribune, whose slogan ("World's Greatest Newspaper") was the basis for the call letters used by both stations. Locally in Chicago, Tribune also operates cable news channel Chicagoland Television (CLTV), which shares resources from both WGN-TV and the Tribune.

WGN-TV is also a pioneering superstation, and continues to program an alternate feed for cable and satellite subscribers in the United States, known as Superstation WGN.

History

WGN Television began test broadcasts in February 1948 and began regular programming on April 5 with a two-hour special, "WGN-TV Salute to Chicago", at 7:45 p.m.

Early on, WGN-TV was affiliated with the CBS and DuMont networks, sharing both with WBKB (channel 4). As a sidebar to the February 1953 merger of ABC and United Paramount Theatres, channel 9 lost its CBS affiliation. CBS had purchased the license to operate channel 4 in Chicago (now WBBM-TV, which later moved to channel 2), and moved all of its programming there, leaving channel 9 with DuMont. When DuMont ceased operations in 1956, WGN-TV became an independent station.

After becoming a full-time independent, WGN-TV spent much of the next two decades as the top-rated independent station in Chicago, offering a variety of general-entertainment programs including movies, sports, off-network reruns, and children's shows. For much of its existence, channel 9 produced much of its own programming at its local studios. Notable WGN-TV productions included several incarnations of the immensely popular Bozo's Circus, Ray Rayner and His Friends, and Garfield Goose and Friends. WGN-TV also telecasted performances of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, beginning in 1953, when Fritz Reiner was the orchestra's music director. From 1974 until 1982, Phil Donahue's syndicated talk program originated from WGN-TV.

The station has also had a long association with the Chicago Cubs baseball team, which has been aired on WGN-TV since the station's inception. (The Tribune Company purchased the National League franchise in 1981.) During its history, WGN-TV has also been the over-the-air home of Chicago's American League franchise, the White Sox, the NBA's Chicago Bulls, and the NHL's Chicago Blackhawks, and has often broadcast football and basketball games of local college teams, such as Northwestern University, DePaul University, Loyola University, and other teams of the Big Ten Conference.

The station began broadcasting via satellite in 1978. This signal was picked up by many fledgling pay-cable television systems as well as directly by satellite dish owners. This continent-wide exposure elevated WGN-TV to superstation status. Along with WOR-TV (now WWOR-TV) in New York City and WTBS (now WPCH-TV) in Atlanta, WGN-TV was among the first local stations to become a superstation.

But as WGN-TV gained national exposure, the station became vulnerable locally and underestimated WFLD-TV's ability to buy top-rate shows like M*A*S*H, Happy Days and All in the Family. As a result, WFLD (channel 32) finished ahead of WGN-TV in the ratings by the end of 1979. WGN-TV continued with its format, acquiring top-rate programming and competing with WFLD even after additional independent stations signed on.

In 1990, due to "SyndEx" rules, WGN-TV launched a separate national feed with alternate programming about half the time. It was a similar situation at WWOR-TV and the national "WWOR-EMI Service".

In 1994, weekday morning children's programming was replaced by WGN Morning News. This was eventually dropped by the national feed, supposedly because certain segments of the newscast are not allowed to air outside the Chicago area. The national feed still airs the station's other newscasts, however. Also in 1994, the The Bozo Show was moved from weekday mornings to Sunday mornings until 2001, when the program was controversially discontinued by station management.

In 1995, WGN-TV became a network affiliate once again, this time with the newly-launched WB Television Network, which was operated by the Warner Bros. Television division of Time Warner, and of which the Tribune Company held a minority ownership. Channel 9 aired primetime WB network programming in the Chicago area but chose not to air Kids' WB, the network's block of children's programs. Those shows aired instead on WCIU-TV (channel 26), which in the Fall of 1995 had dropped its Spanish-language Univision affiliation for an English-language, general entertainment schedule. Initially, Superstation WGN aired WB primetime and children's programming nationally. This was done to make WB programming available in areas not yet served by a WB affiliate. In 1999, at the network's request, Superstation WGN stopped carrying primetime WB and Kids' WB network programming.

In November 1999, WGN-TV and WCIU-TV entered into a programming arrangement involving sports coverage. Selected Bulls and White Sox games produced by and contracted to air on WGN-TV, and a handful of Cubs contests, air on WCIU-TV for the Chicago market only. This is due to network affiliation contracts limiting the number of programming preemptions per year [1], and also due to rights restrictions put in place by the National Basketball Association which limit Superstation WGN's national feed to air only fifteen Bulls games per season [2]. The remaining games produced by WGN-TV are only carried on channel 9 in Chicago and WCIU-TV.

In 2004, WCIU-TV dropped Kids' WB programming and it was moved to WGN-TV's local signal.

In January 2006, The WB and UPN announced that they would merge to form a new network, The CW Television Network. On the same day the new network was announced, it also signed a 10-year affiliation agreement with most of Tribune's WB stations, including WGN-TV. The new network launched on September 18, 2006. The Superstation WGN feed does not carry any CW programming.

The Chicago area feed of WGN-TV is also available in Canada to subscribers of the Bell ExpressVu and Star Choice satellite services, as well as most Canadian cable services. ExpressVu has always carried the Chicago area feed but Star Choice and cable services used to carry Superstation WGN. This situation changed on January 17, 2007 when Shaw Broadcast Services, the primary supplier of Superstation WGN in Canada, switched to the local Chicago area feed.

In November 2006 WGN-TV's corporate cousin, the Los Angeles Times, reported that Tribune had been seeking potential buyers for its television stations in Chicago, New York City, and Los Angeles. The report claimed Tribune, who was experiencing financial problems, made the inquiries in case they were unable get permanent waivers of the Federal Communications Commission's cross-ownership rules regarding their ownership of newspapers and broadcast licenses in the same city [3]. [1] In Chicago, the co-ownership of WGN-AM-TV and the Chicago Tribune has been under grandfathered protection since the rules went into effect in 1970. However, Tribune's print and broadcast properties in the New York and Los Angeles markets (among others) were not. This dilemma may still face Sam Zell, the Chicago investor who agreed to purchase the Tribune Company in April 2007 and will take the company private.

Until October 1, 2007, WGN-TV carried The Tube on its digital subchannel. WGN-DT2 is currently an SDTV simulcast of the main WGN-DT channel.

Hijack



On November 22, 1987, during The 9 O'Clock News sportscast, WGN-TV's analog broadcast signal was hijacked for approximately 25 seconds by an unknown person wearing a Max Headroom mask. This was only the first incident of that night involving the interruption of a television station's broadcast signal. Approximately two hours later, Chicago PBS station WTTW (channel 11) had its broadcast interrupted by the same person. WGN-TV's analog transmitter is atop the John Hancock Center and engineers were almost immediately able to thwart the video hacker by changing the studio-to-transmitter frequency, thus cutting the hacker off. Unfortunately for WTTW, its transmitter is atop Sears Tower and it was unable to stop the hacker before enduring almost two minutes of the hacker's interruption. These two stations are two of only three existing victims of what is called "broadcast signal intrusion". Subscription television network HBO is the other victim -- having its signal intercepted during a movie broadcast in April 1986.

News personalities

Anchors

  • Jackie Bange - 9 p.m. Weekend Anchor
  • Robin Baumgarten - Morning Anchor
  • Robert Jordan - 9 p.m. Weekend Anchor
  • Micah Materre - Noon Anchor
  • Tom Negovan - Noon Anchor
  • Allison Payne - 9 p.m. Anchor
  • Larry Potash - Morning Anchor
  • Steve Sanders - 9 p.m. Anchor

Reporters

  • Antwan Lewis
  • Dina Bair - medical
  • Ana Belaval
  • Jane Boal
  • Muriel Clair
  • Julian Crews
  • Juan Carlos Fanjul
  • Judie Garcia
  • Holly Gregory
  • Marcella Raymond
  • Dean Richards - entertainment & in-house announcer
  • Amy Rutledge (also anchors on CLTV)
  • Julie Unruh
  • Valerie Warner (also anchors weekdays 5-5:30 a.m.)

Weather

  • Paul Konrad - Mornings
  • Tom Skilling - Chief Meteorologist (12 p.m and 9 p.m.)
  • Tim McGill - Staff Meteorologist (also seen on CLTV)
  • Jim Ramsey - Weekends (also seen on CLTV)
  • Keenan Smith - Staff Meteorologist (also seen on CLTV)

Sports

  • Rich King - WGN News at Nine (weekends)
  • Dan Roan - Sports Director WGN News at Nine (weeknights)
  • Pat Tomasulo - WGN Morning News

Notable news alumni

 
  • Gary Park
  • Rick Rosenthal
  • Jim Ruddle
  • Randy Salerno
  • Alan Sealls
  • Tom Shaer
  • Fred Shropshire
  • Wendell Smith (D)
  • Roseanne Tellez
  • Roger Triemstra
  • Jack Taylor
  • Harry Volkman
  • Jim Williams
  • Joanne Williams
  • Bill Weir
(D) - deceased

See also

References

1. ^ Confirmed by WGN-TV "WGN-TV Contact Page". Accessed June 8 2007.
2. ^ Chicago Professional Sports L.P. & WGN Continental Broadcasting Co. vs. National Basketball Association. 961 Fed. 2d 667 (7th Cir. 1992)
3. ^ [2]

External links




Tribune Company
Corporate Directors: Jeffrey Chandler | Dennis Fitzsimons | Roger Goodan | Enrique Hernandez | Betsy Holden | Robert S. Morrison | Patrick Mullen | William Osborn | Christopher Reyes | William Stinehart | Dudley Taft | Kathryn Turner | Miles White
Television Assets: CLTV | Comcast SportsNet Chicago | Superstation WGN | Tribune Broadcasting | Tribune Entertainment | Tribune Studios
Television Stations: KCPQ | KDAF | KHWB | KPLR | KSWB | KTLA | KTWB | KTXL | KWBP | KWGN | WATL | WBDC | WBZL | WEWB | WGN | WGNO | WLVI | WNOL | WPHL | WPIX | WPMT | WTIC | WTTV | WTXX | WXIN | WXMI
Radio Stations: WGN
Newspapers: AM New York | Baltimore Sun | Chicago Tribune | Hartford Courant | Los Angeles Times | Newsday
Misc. Assets: Chicago Cubs | Tribune Publishing
Annual Revenue: $5.73 billion USD (2% FY 2005) | Employees: 23,200 | Stock Symbol: NYSETRB | Website: www.tribune.com
City of Chicago

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Nickname: "The Windy City", "The Second City", "ChiTown", "Hog Butcher for the World", "City of the Big Shoulders", "The City That Works"
Motto: "Urbs in Horto
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A slogan is a memorable motto or phrase used in a political, commercial, religious and other context as a repetitive expression of an idea or purpose.

Slogans vary from the written and the visual to the chanted and the vulgar.
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In broadcasting, a channel is a range of frequencies (or, equivalently, wavelengths) assigned by a government for the operation of a particular television station or radio station.
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Analog television (or analogue television) encodes television and transports the picture and sound information as an analog signal, that is, by varying the amplitude and/or frequencies of the broadcast signal.
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Very high frequency (VHF) is the radio frequency range from 30 MHz to 300 MHz. It is also known as the meter band or meter wave as the wavelengths range from ten to one meters.
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Digital Terrestrial Television (DTTV or DTT) is an implementation of digital technology to provide a greater number of channels and/or better quality of picture and sound using aerial broadcasts to a conventional antenna (or aerial) instead of a satellite dish or
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Cycles per second: 300 MHz to 3 GHz
Wavelength: 1 m to 100 mm Ultra high frequency (UHF) designates a range (band) of electromagnetic waves whose frequency is between 300 MHz and 3 GHz, which is 300 MHz to 3,000 MHz.
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An affiliate is a commercial entity with a relationship with a peer or a larger entity.

Broadcast networks

In a radio network or Television network, an affiliate is a radio station or TV station that agrees to carry the broadcasts of, but is not owned by, the network.
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The CW Television Network

Type Broadcast television network
Country  United States
Availability     United States
 Canada
 Puerto Rico
 Mexico
Slogan Get Into The CW
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Ownership is the state or fact of exclusive rights and control over property, which may be an object, land/real estate, intellectual property or some other kind of property. It is embodied in an ownership right also referred to as title.
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Tribune Company

Public (NYSE: TRB )
Founded 1847
Headquarters Chicago, Illinois

Key people Dennis FitzSimons, Chairman, President & CEO
Scott Smith, President of Tribune Publishing
John Reardon, President, Tribune Broadcasting
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April 5 is the 1st day of the year (2nd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. There are 0 days remaining.

Events

  • 456 - St. Patrick returns to Ireland as a missionary bishop.

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19th century - 20th century - 21st century
1910s  1920s  1930s  - 1940s -  1950s  1960s  1970s
1945 1946 1947 - 1948 - 1949 1950 1951

Year 1948 (MCMXLVIII
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In broadcasting and radio communications, a call sign (also known as a callsign or call letters, or abbreviated as a call) is a unique designation for a transmitting station.
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In broadcasting and radio communications, a call sign (also known as a callsign or call letters, or abbreviated as a call) is a unique designation for a transmitting station.
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An affiliate is a commercial entity with a relationship with a peer or a larger entity.

Broadcast networks

In a radio network or Television network, an affiliate is a radio station or TV station that agrees to carry the broadcasts of, but is not owned by, the network.
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CBS Broadcasting, Inc. (CBS)

Type Broadcast radio network and
television network
Country  United States
Availability    National; also available in  Canada,  Mexico, and the Caribbean
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DuMont Television Network

Type Broadcast television network
Country  United States
Availability    Defunct
Founder Dr. Allen B. DuMont
Key people Dr. Thomas T.
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An independent station is television terminology used to describe a television station broadcasting in the United States or Canada that is not affiliated with any network.

Overview


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The WB Television Network

Type Defunct broadcast television network
Country United States
Availability    United States,  Canada, and  Mexico (Northern)
Founder Jamie Kellner
Owner Time Warner
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In radio telecommunications, effective radiated power (ERP) is determined by subtracting system losses and adding system gains to the actual electrical power output of a transmitter.
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1 metre =
SI units
1000 mm 0 cm
US customary / Imperial units
0 ft 0 in
The metre or meter[1](symbol: m) is the fundamental unit of length in the International System of Units (SI).
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A website (alternatively, Web site or web site) is a collection of Web pages, images, videos or other digital assets that is hosted on one or several Web server(s), usually accessible via the Internet, cell phone or a LAN.
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television station is a type of broadcast station that broadcasts both audio and video to television receivers in a particular area. Traditionally, TV stations made their broadcasts by sending specially-encoded radio signals over the air, called terrestrial television.
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City of Chicago

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Nickname: "The Windy City", "The Second City", "ChiTown", "Hog Butcher for the World", "City of the Big Shoulders", "The City That Works"
Motto: "Urbs in Horto
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Tribune Company

Public (NYSE: TRB )
Founded 1847
Headquarters Chicago, Illinois

Key people Dennis FitzSimons, Chairman, President & CEO
Scott Smith, President of Tribune Publishing
John Reardon, President, Tribune Broadcasting
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The CW Television Network

Type Broadcast television network
Country  United States
Availability     United States
 Canada
 Puerto Rico
 Mexico
Slogan Get Into The CW
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North Center is both a community area and a neighborhood (Northcenter) located on the North Side of city of Chicago, Illinois.

North Center is bordered on the north by Montrose Avenue, on the south by Diversey Parkway, on the west by the Chicago River and on the east by
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John Hancock Center at 875 N. Michigan Ave. in Chicago, Illinois, is a 100-story, 344 m (1,127 ft) tall skyscraper designed by structural engineer Fazlur Khan of Skidmore, Owings and Merrill.
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The Sears Tower is a skyscraper in Chicago, Illinois. It has been the tallest building in the United States since 1973, surpassing the World Trade Center, which itself had surpassed the Empire State Building only a year earlier.
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