Definitions

WUAB

WUAB

WUAB, identified on-air as "My43 WUAB", is the MyNetworkTV affiliate in Cleveland, Ohio. The station is licensed to the suburb of Lorain, and it shares a studio in downtown Cleveland with sister station WOIO, Cleveland's CBS affiliate. Its transmitter is located in Parma, Ohio. The station also serves as the default MNTV affiliate for Erie, Pennsylvania; and is available on most cable systems in northwest Pennsylvania.

Prior to 1995, WUAB was one of the leading independent stations in the country. It was Cleveland's UPN affiliate from 1995 to 2006.

The station, along with WOIO, is currently owned by Raycom Media and are the largest stations in that group. WOIO now manages WUAB's news division producing a 10 p.m. newscast under the banner "19 Action News at 10".

History

WUAB had the humblest of beginnings. United Artists Broadcasting (owned by the studio with the same name, then a Transamerica property) was its original owner, bringing the station to life on September 15, 1968. Don Marcus of Marcus Advertising handled the first promotions for the station and the Cleveland billboards read "September 15th. Our First Date". It was the second commercial UHF station in the area; WKBF-TV had beaten it to the air by eight months. Its main studio was in a combination bowling area kiddie's room and a trailer in a shopping center (Parmatown) in Parma, with sales offices in downtown Cleveland. WUAB quickly overcame a shaky start to become one of the country's top independent stations. The station's talents, such as Linn Sheldon, had been polished TV personalities with experience on Cleveland's network affiliates. WUAB offered Japanese live-action and cartoons dubbed into English including Johnny Sokko, Speed Racer, Astro Boy, Ultraman and Marine Boy.

Originally, WUAB's slogan was Channel 43 plays favorites. Most of these favorites were cartoons, syndicated off-network sitcoms, movies (dubbed "United Artists' Star Movies"), and religious shows. WUAB broadcast these shows out of a new facility on Day Drive in suburban Parma, which opened on September 7, 1970.

Both WUAB and WKBF struggled to be profitable, despite the deep pockets of both stations' owners (WKBF was owned by Kaiser Broadcasting). Both signed on everyday at around 10 a.m. and went off the air by 1 a.m.

By September 2, 1974, WUAB had clearly established itself at the leading independent in Cleveland. Kaiser opted to shut down WKBF and purchase a percentage of WUAB on March 28, 1975, but United Artists kept majority control. WUAB therefore acquired the programming rights to most of WKBF's stronger shows. WUAB now signed on at 6 a.m. and signed off very late at night.

On September 6, 1977, Field Communications bought the rest of Kaiser's share in its television outlets. WUAB and KBSC in Los Angeles were not included in the sale. KBSC was sold to National Subscription TV while WUAB was sold (by both United Artists/Transamerica and Kaiser) to the Gaylord Broadcasting Company on September 6, 1977. Under Gaylord, WUAB continued as a broadcasting powerhouse, and cemented its status as one of the leading independent stations in the country.

The station pulled off a major coup on September 2, 1980 by winning the broadcast rights to the Cleveland Indians of baseball's American League. The station also became broadcast home of the NBA's Cleveland Cavaliers. During this time, it appeared on several cable systems in Ohio, as well as West Virginia, Pennsylvania, Kentucky, and Western Ontario. The station disappeared from most cable systems outside Cleveland in the 1990s, but is still available in Columbus, Erie and Youngstown on cable.

In more recent times, the station was seen on cable as far south as New Castle, Pennsylvania (which is part of the Pittsburgh television market despite being considerably closer to Youngstown), and was the only such station from Cleveland in the city. This was the case until early 2008 when Comcast, which had acquired the handful of former Adelphia cable systems in the Pittsburgh market (including New Castle) to go along with its already-dominating presence in the area, removed it from their channel lineup after the station's local contract with Comcast expired. The station's former spot on Comcast channel 7 has yet to be replaced, though it is likely to be filled with either WYFX, WBCB, or MY-YTV (all from Youngstown), since none of them are currently on the channel lineups in the city.

WUAB remained the leading independent into the 1980s. Channel 61 returned to the air as WCLQ on March 17, 1981, but made no headway against WUAB, and eventually became home-shopping station WQHS-TV. On May 19, 1985, WOIO signed on with an entertainment format as well. Both WOIO and WUAB went head to head, with WBNX-TV joining the competition on December 1, 1985. WUAB turned down an affiliation with Fox on October 9, 1986--one of the few long-established major-market independents to do so. WOIO snapped it up, and soon overtook WUAB in the ratings.

WUAB debuted the "10 O'Clock News" on January 4, 1988. It was the second attempt at a primetime newscast in Cleveland. The original news team consisted of anchors Romona Robinson and Bob Hetherington, Frank Carivello, and Gib Shanley.

On August 14, 1990, Gaylord sold WUAB to Cannell Broadcasting, headed by actor/director Stephen J. Cannell. Though the station performed adequately in the ratings under Cannell ownership, the company was unable to restore the station to its former glory. On September 5, 1994, Malrite Communications, owner of WOIO, signed a local marketing agreement with Cannell, and as a result, WOIO and WUAB became sister stations. WUAB was still technically owned by Cannell, but the station was now managed in tandem with WOIO. Both stations moved to a location at downtown Cleveland's Reserve Square.

WOIO became the market's CBS station after an affiliation swap with the area's longtime CBS affiliate, WJW, On September 5, 1994, they moved most of its sitcoms and syndicated cartoons to WUAB. Fox Kids went to WBNX. On February 6, 1995, WUAB began producing two daily newscasts to be aired on WOIO in addition to their own 10 p.m. newscast under the moniker "Cleveland Television News". Although WOIO was the senior partner in the LMA, it had no news department before becoming a CBS station. Unfortunately for both stations, WJW moved its late newscast to 10 pm, and made Cleveland Television News look amateurish by comparison.

WUAB ended its long run as an independent on January 14, 1995, when it became the market's affiliate for both the UPN and WB networks, with UPN as the primary affiliation. At the time, Cleveland was one of the largest markets not to have separate WB and UPN affiliates. The dual-affiliation did not cause channel 43 any problems at first, as both networks only programmed for a few nights of the week. Current owner Raycom purchased Malrite in 1996.

On September 1, 1997, WUAB became solely affiliated with UPN, and The WB signed an affiliation with WBNX.

When the Federal Communications Commission began allowing television duopolies in 2000, Raycom purchased WUAB outright on May 10 of that year.

WUAB dropped children's programming (beyond the FCC-required 3 hours of E/I-compliant programming) to carry more infomercials in 2003. As of 2006, WUAB offers advertisers more infomercials time slots than any other Cleveland area broadcaster; an average of 90 half hour infomercials per week. This fills a large part of WUAB's weekend dayparts and overnight schedules.

WUAB ranked #24 in overall ratings among all the UPN affiliates during the November 2005 ratings sweep period. Source: TV Week.

Coverage in Canada

The station is readily available over-the-air to Kingsville, Leamington, and Pelee Island in southern Essex County, Ontario, and was once listed in the TV Guides for those communities (and Windsor, Ontario; though the station's signal wasn't strong enough to reach Windsor and Detroit. Unlike WKYC-TV, WEWS-TV, and WJW, it was not one of the stations from Cleveland carried on local cable in those three locations.

WUAB has been on cable channel 20 in London, Ontario since 1976. It is the only Cleveland station carried in London today.

Cleveland Cavaliers

WUAB has been the longtime "free TV" home of the Cleveland Cavaliers. which aired from October 1973 to April 1987, and since October 1994.

Under a new deal with FSN Ohio, Channel 43 will simulcast 5 Cavaliers regular season games, as well as select playoff games per year with FSN, which is the Cavs' main TV partner.

Thanks in large part to LeBron James, Cavaliers games have been big ratings grabbers for the station over the past few years.

Lake Erie Monsters

Beginning in 2008, WUAB will also simulcast select Lake Erie Monsters hockey games with FSN Ohio as well.

My Network TV

In a major announcement, CBS Corporation and Time Warner announced on January 24, 2006, that they will close their respective UPN and WB networks and jointly launch the CW Network on September 19, 2006. Shortly after the announcement of the CW Network, News Corporation announced that it would launch My Network TV for stations left out of the merger.

On March 7, 2006, 6 days after competitor WBNX gained the CW affiliation, WUAB was announced as an affiliate of My Network TV, along with two other Raycom Media-owned stations.

On July 14, 2006, WUAB began showing off its new logo "My 43" on air, as well as identifying as "My 43, WUAB" in its promos and legal ID. The station also temporarily shut down their webpage in anticipation of the launch of My Network TV.

Occasionally as time now permits, WUAB may now carry CBS network programs should they be preempted by WOIO in the event of a special, a breaking news story or any other emergency.

My43 also broadcasts "19 Action News at 10 HD", which is produced by sister station WOIO. The news on My43 also began broadcasting in high definition on October 21, 2007. WUAB began broadcasting in the 720p format after their switch from UPN to My Network TV in September 2006. The newscast on WUAB is also 720p, even though the news on WOIO is 1080i.

The Tube Music Network

Up until October 1, 2007, The Tube Music Network was carried on DT-43.2. On that same day, the network ceased operations. Currently, DT-43.2 displays the following message.

Due to circumstances beyond our control, The Tube Music Network will no longer be available. Please do not call either your cable provider or WUAB as the decision to cease operations was solely that of The Tube Network. For more information go to www.thetubetv.com WUAB DT43.2 Lorain Cleveland.

The fate of DT-43.2 is currently unknown.

Past Names

  • Channel 43 1968-1999
  • Hometeam 43 1999-2002
  • 43 The Block 2002-2005
  • WUAB UPN 43 2005-2006
  • My43 WUAB 2006-Present

External links

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