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San Diego, California
United States
Branding NBC 7 (general)
NBC 7 News (newscasts)
Slogan Coverage You Count On
Channels Digital: 40 (UHF)
Virtual: 39 (PSIP)
Subchannels 39.1 NBC
39.2 Cozi TV
Affiliations NBC (O&O)
Owner NBCUniversal
(Station Venture Operations L.P.)
First air date November 14, 1965; 48 years ago (1965-11-14)
Call letters' meaning NBC San Diego
Sister station(s) KNBC
Comcast SportsNet Bay Area
Comcast SportsNet California
Former callsigns KAAR (1965–1968)
KCST(-TV) (1968–1988)
Former channel number(s) Analog:
39 (UHF, 1965–2009)
Former affiliations Independent (1965–1973)
ABC (1973–1977)
Transmitter power 370 kW
Height 566 m (1,857 ft)
Facility ID 35277
Transmitter coordinates 32°41′48″N 116°56′6″W / 32.69667°N 116.93500°W / 32.69667; -116.93500
Licensing authority FCC
Public license information: Profile

KNSD, channel 39, is an owned-and-operated television station of the NBC Television Network, located in San Diego, California, USA. KNSD maintains studios at the NBC Building in downtown San Diego, and its transmitter is located southeast of Spring Valley in San Diego County. The station is known on-air as NBC 7 San Diego, derived from KNSD's cable channel position in the market on the cable systems serving the San Diego area (Time Warner Cable, Cox and AT&T U-verse).

From 1997 to 2013, LIN Media owned a minority interest in KNSD alongside NBCUniversal through a share in the holding company Station Venture Operations L.P. (which also owned sister station KXAS-TV).[1] In February 2013, LIN pulled out of the joint venture, giving NBC 100% ownership.[2]


Early history[edit]

The station went on the air on November 14, 1965 as KAAR, San Diego's first UHF outlet and first independent station. The station originally operated from the building once occupied by the National Pen Company, located in the neighborhood of Kearny Mesa, 10 miles (16 km) northeast of downtown San Diego. However in 1966, a fire destroyed the KAAR transmitter, and the station was off the air for more than a year. Channel 39 was sold to Western Telecasters Inc., controlled by the Texas-based Bass family,[3] and returned to the air in January 1968 as KCST (the new call letters standing for "California San Diego Television").

For a four-year period from the late 1960s to the early 1970s, Western Telecasters tried to take the ABC affiliation from XETV (channel 6)–a station licensed across the Mexican border in Tijuana but which broadcast exclusively in English, with a studio in San Diego. XETV had been San Diego's ABC affiliate since 1956 under special arrangement between the Federal Communications Commission and Mexican authorities, subject to renewal by the Commission every year. Upon the FCC granting its annual renewal to ABC/XETV in late 1968 Western Telecasters countered, claiming that the presence of KCST made it no longer necessary for an American television network to affiliate with a Mexican television station.[4][5]

In May 1972, the FCC revoked XETV's permission to carry ABC.[6] As the only other commercial station in the market other than CBS affiliate KFMB-TV (channel 8) and NBC outlet KGTV (channel 10), KCST took over the ABC affiliation in two stages: Daytime programming moved to channel 39 in June 1973, followed by primetime and all other shows by July 1, 1973.[7] Four months earlier in March, Western Telecasters agreed to sell KCST to Storer Broadcasting, owner of major network affiliates in the Eastern and Midwestern United States.[8] The sale was completed on September 30, 1974; shortly afterwards, Storer added the -TV suffix to the KCST callsign. The switch and sale changed channel 39's fortunes, transforming the low-rated independent into a major player in the market. Riding on the heels of ABC's ascent to first place nationally during the 1975-76 season, KCST also out-rated its network-affiliated rivals locally.[9] XETV, meanwhile, took over as San Diego's independent station until 1986, when it became a charter affiliate of the Fox Broadcasting Company.

Switch to NBC[edit]

KNSD's logo as NBC 7/39, variations of which were used from January 1, 1997 to January 31, 2011.

On June 27, 1977, in the wake of its new success as America's number one television network, ABC moved its San Diego affiliation from KCST to KGTV, causing an affiliation swap that ended with KCST taking KGTV's former NBC affiliation.[10][11] ABC had never been happy with the way that its San Diego affiliation had ended up on KCST in the first place, and had sought a way to get back on VHF at the first opportunity. This move did not please Storer, who retaliated by dropping ABC from KCST's then-sister station, WITI-TV in Milwaukee, in favor of CBS, with which Storer had strong relations. Around the same time, KCST adopted the "Channel's Alive" station image package from Peters Productions, rebranding as "39 Alive".[citation needed]

In 1985, the Storer stations were taken over by Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co.. Two years later, KCST and the other Storer stations were sold to Gillett Communications (except for former Storer flagship WTVG in Toledo, Ohio, which was sold separately to a local employee/investor group). On September 16, 1988, the station changed its call letters to the current KNSD, and began calling itself "Channel 7/39" (in reference to both its cable and over-the-air channel positions) on-air.[12] Gillett restructured into SCI TV in 1991, after Gillett defaulted on some of his bond purchases. After SCI filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in 1992, its stations were sold to New World Communications.

KNSD's logo as NBC San Diego, used January 29, 2011 to June 2011. A modified version reflecting the NBC 7 San Diego branding was then used until July 11, 2012; during this time, the station's website continued to use this logo.

New World then entered into a deal with News Corporation that would result in most of New World's television stations (which were primarily CBS affiliates, along with a few ABC and NBC stations) switching from their "Big Three" network affiliations to join Fox, causing the network's affiliations in the affected markets relocating from UHF to VHF stations. However, KNSD retained its NBC affiliation since Fox's San Diego affiliation was already on VHF through XETV. KNSD and WVTM-TV in Birmingham, Alabama were both sold to NBC in May 1996, the sale becoming final that August; that following January, KNSD modified its on-air branding to "NBC 7/39". In October 1997, NBC sold a 24% minority stake in KNSD to LIN Television, with NBC acquiring majority control (76%) of KXAS-TV in Fort Worth from LIN in exchange. The deal closed on March 2, 1998, marking the official launch of the new NBC/LIN joint venture (controlled by NBC) known as Station Venture Operations, LP.[13]

Under the traditional definition, KNSD is the only network-owned station in San Diego. The station blamed its woes on its UHF status in the past, but as viewers migrated to cable television (San Diego has one of the highest cable penetration rates in the country), along with most of the market's UHF stations branding by cable channel or calls rather than physical channel, along with VHF analog stations transitioning to digital UHF, the issues with its position on the UHF dial have been reduced.[9] KNSD formerly owned KNSD-LP (channel 62), which was leased to Entravision to expand the coverage area of KTCD-CA.

In the spring of 2001, KNSD moved its studios and offices into the NBC Building, a redeveloped high-rise office building in downtown San Diego, which includes a glass enclosed street-level news studio resembling that of the Rockefeller Center street side studio used by NBC's Today in New York City.

In February 2013, LIN Media reached a deal with NBC to withdraw itself from the joint venture as part of a corporate re-organization. As a result, NBC re-gained full ownership of KNSD.[2]

Digital television[edit]

Digital channels[edit]

The station's digital channel is multiplexed:

Channel Video Aspect PSIP Short Name Programming[14]
39.1 1080i 16:9 KNSD-HD Main KNSD programming / NBC
39.2 480i Cozi TV Cozi TV

On December 20, 2012, KNSD and other NBC-owned stations began carrying Cozi TV on digital subchannel 39.2. Cozi TV is a classic television network (similar to Me-TV, Antenna TV and ThisTV, among others) which replaced NBC (California) Nonstop, which had been carried on subchannel 39.2 since 2011.[15]

Analog-to-digital conversion[edit]

KNSD shut down its analog signal, over UHF channel 39, on February 17, 2009, the original date in which full-power television stations in the United States were to transition from analog to digital broadcasts under federal mandate (which was later pushed back to June 12, 2009). The station's digital signal remained on its pre-transition UHF channel 40.[16][17] Through the use of PSIP, digital television receivers display the station's virtual channel as its former UHF analog channel 39. After KFMB-TV, KGTV and KSWB-TV went digital-only on February 17, KNSD became one of only three full-power English-language stations in the San Diego market (not counting XETV or XHDTV, which are licensed by the Mexican government, but broadcast in the English language) that continued to transmit an analog signal for regular programming; the other two were KUSI-TV and KPBS.[citation needed]


Local lifestyles and infotainment program Streetside San Diego and Spanish-language newscast Noticias Mi San Diego (the latter of which was a holdover from KNSD's operation of KBOP-CA) were local programs previously produced by KNSD; these programs, along with the station's weekend morning newscasts, were canceled on December 5, 2008 as a result of budget cuts at the station.[18] Being an NBC O&O station, KNSD airs the entire NBC lineup and airs several syndicated programs in its daytime lineup. They include (in order of what time they air on the station) Access Hollywood (followed by its Live counterpart), Steve Harvey, The Ellen DeGeneres Show, Wheel of Fortune, and Jeopardy!.[19]

News operation[edit]

With the addition of California Nonstop, KNSD currently produces 29½ hours of local news each week (with 5½ hours on weekdays and one hour on weekends), however due to NBC Sunday Night Football, the Sunday 6 p.m. newscast is typically preempted during the NFL season. Unlike most NBC owned-and-operated stations, KNSD does not carry a newscast on weekend mornings. The 11 p.m. newscast was rebroadcast at 4 a.m. weekdays (immediately before the network's early morning news program Early Today, which leads into its local morning newscast) until October 24, 2012. On October 25, 2012; Early Today was moved to 4 a.m. weekdays to accommodate the newly expanded NBC 7 News in the Morning starting at 4:30 a.m.

In 1973, as KCST, the station started a news department, with Harold Greene (later to gain fame in Los Angeles) as news director and lead news anchor. On October 28, 2005, KNSD began producing a nightly half-hour 10 p.m. newscast for Tribune Broadcasting-owned KSWB (channel 69; which was a WB affiliate at the time), following the shutdown of KSWB's in-house news department,[20] although KSWB continued to produce local news updates during its simulcast of Los Angeles sister station KTLA's weekday morning newscast from the station's Kearny Mesa studios. KNSD's news outsourcing agreement with KSWB ended on July 31, 2008, when that station resumed in-house news operations upon switching its affiliation from The CW to Fox.[21]

From June 2009 to October 2011, weather forecasts during the evening newscasts were presented by meteorologists from Los Angeles sister station KNBC,[22] making KNSD the only network-owned station in the United States and one of the few stations in North America to outsource weather forecasts to a co-owned station; that month, KNSD moved all weather forecasts in-house with the hiring of three weather anchors (including chief weather anchor Dagmar Midcap, previously with Atlanta CBS affiliate WGCL-TV) and the promotion of Jodi Kodesh from reporter to morning weather anchor.[23] In December 2010, KNSD underwent major renovations for the first time since moving to the new studios in 2001. The new look debuted on December 13, 2010.[24] The studio itself mainly mirrors that of Today, and served as its first step towards HD newscasts.[25]

On January 29, 2011, KNSD became the fifth television station in the San Diego market, and the last NBC-owned station to produce its local newscasts in high definition, although not all field reports are shot in true HD. The station also implemented a new logo and on-air design designed by NBC Artworks and the advertising agency Mother New York, and dropped the NBC 7/39 brand in favor of simply NBC San Diego (later revised to NBC 7 San Diego).[26] The "block" graphics and branding used in this period (which featured similarities to the design of the NBC Nonstop channels) were to be implemented by the remaining NBC O&O's (and were used by their websites during the same period), but KNSD was the only O&O to use the scheme on-air before dropping it in favor of a revised design first adopted by sister station KNTV.

News/station presentation[edit]

Newscast titles[edit]

  • Channel 39 Eyewitness News (1973–1976)
  • 39 News Alive (1976–1981)
  • NewsCenter 39 (1981–1988)[27]
  • News San Diego (1988–1994)
  • KNSD News (1994–1997)
  • NBC 7/39 News (1997–2011)[28]
  • NBC San Diego News (January–June 2011)
  • NBC 7 San Diego News (June 2011–June 2013)[29]
  • NBC 7 News (2013-present)

Station slogans[edit]

  • "39 Alive!" (1976–1979; station image package by Peters Productions, San Diego)
  • "San Diego's Leader in Electronic Journalism" (1985–1987)
  • "Covering All of San Diego County and Beyond" (1987–1990)
  • "We're There When You Need Us" (1990–1991)
  • "News – San Diego (as in K-N-S-D)" (1990–1993)
  • "Coverage You Can Count On" (1993–2012)[citation needed]
  • "Coverage You Count On" (2012–present)
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News team[edit]



  • Dagmar Midcap - chief weather anchor; weekdays at 4:00 and weeknights at 5:00, 6:00 and 11:00 p.m.
  • Jodi Kodesh - weekday mornings (4:30-7:00 a.m.)
  • Whitney Southwick - weekdays at 11:00 a.m.; also weekday morning traffic reporter
  • Greg Bledsoe - weekend mornings (7:00-8:00 a.m.)
  • Lauren Lee - weekends at 6:00 and 11:00 p.m.


  • Jim Laslavic - sports director; Sundays-Thursdays at 6:00 and 11:00 p.m.
  • Derek Togerson - sports anchor; Fridays and Saturdays at 6:00 and 11:00 p.m.

Notable past on-air staff[edit]


  1. ^ "Company Overview of Station Venture Operations Lp". Company profiles. Business Week. Retrieved 21 August 2012. 
  2. ^ a b "LIN exits NBC joint venture, plans reorg". Retrieved 13 February 2013. 
  3. ^ "KAAR(TV) sale approved for $1.1 million to Bass." Broadcasting, September 4, 1967, pg. 9. [1]
  4. ^ "U asks FCC aid in quest for ABC." Broadcasting, November 18, 1968, pg. 46. [2]
  5. ^ "ABC resists shift to San Diego U." Broadcasting, December 23, 1968, pg. 37. [3]
  6. ^ "Beginning of the end for XETV-ABC association." Broadcasting, June 5, 1972, pp. 36-37. [4] [5]
  7. ^ "San Dieqo truce approved." Broadcasting, March 12, 1973, pg. 57
  8. ^ "Storer to pay $12 million for San Diego UHF." Broadcasting, March 19, 1973, pg. 48. [6]
  9. ^ "ABC's gains are turning television upside down." Broadcasting, March 29, 1976, pp. 19-20. [7][8]
  10. ^ "In Brief." Broadcasting, June 7, 1976, pg. 24
  11. ^ "In Brief." Broadcasting, March 7, 1977, pg. 26
  12. ^ Brass, Kevin (September 16, 1988). "No respect: For Channel 39, UHF exile has meant long, hard battle for hearts and minds of viewers". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved February 13, 2013. 
  13. ^ "NBCUniversal 2011Annual Report/ 10K". NBCUniversal. Retrieved October 19, 2012. 
  14. ^ RabbitEars TV Query for KNSD
  15. ^ Exclusive: NBC Local Media Sets 'Nonstop' Launch Dates, Broadcasting & Cable. Retrieved on 2011-12-22.
  16. ^ "DTV Tentative Channel Designations for the First and the Second Rounds" (PDF). Retrieved 2012-03-12. 
  17. ^ CDBS Print. Retrieved on 2011-12-22.
  18. ^ Peterson, Karla (December 6, 2008). "KNSD/Channel 39 drops 3 local-news shows, lays off 12". U-T San Diego. Retrieved December 7, 2008. 
  19. ^  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  20. ^ KSWB news changes hands; 30 to lose jobs, U-T San Diego, September 22, 2005.
  21. ^ Trading places: Fox, CW switch network channels, U-T San Diego, August 1, 2008.
  22. ^ KNSD's local forecasts to originate in L.A., U-T San Diego, June 25, 2009.
  23. ^ Weathercaster Dagmar Midcap Joins KNSD, TVSpy, October 25, 2011.
  24. ^ NBC San Diego Set Redesign Timelapse. Retrieved on 2011-12-22.
  25. ^ Check Out Our New Set. Retrieved on 2011-12-22.
  26. ^ "San Diego station rolls out HD look with new NBC brand". NewscastStudio. Retrieved 13 February 2013. 
  27. ^ KCST Newscenter 39 1986 (Now KNSD NBC 7/39)
  28. ^ NBC 7/39 News Open (1997)
  29. ^ NBC 7 News at Noon Open
  30. ^ "William Jefferson Clinton interview with Rolland Smith of KNSD-TV, San Diego". 22 October 1993. Retrieved 12 March 2013. 

External links[edit]