Media in Atlanta

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As of 2011, metro Atlanta is the ninth-largest media market in the United States. Due to apparent over-estimates of population growth in the 2000s (decade) by the U.S. Census Bureau, this rank is a decrease from two years prior as a result of the 2010 U.S. Census.

In 2009, metro Atlanta was the eighth- or seventh-largest market, with over 2.3 million TV households and 4.3 million people aged 12+. According to Nielsen Media Research, it ranked eighth in television broadcasting, having recently slightly surpassed the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area, and not far behind the South Florida metropolitan area). According to Arbitron, it ranked seventh in radio broadcasting, now just ahead of the Philadelphia metropolitan area and not far behind the greater Houston/Galveston metropolitan area.[1]

Cox Enterprises, a privately held company controlled by siblings Barbara Cox Anthony and Anne Cox Chambers, has substantial media holdings in and beyond Atlanta. Its Cox Communications division is the nation's third largest cable television service provider;[2] the company also publishes over a dozen daily newspapers in the United States, including The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. WSB AM, the flagship station of Cox Radio, was the first broadcast station in the South.

Television[edit]

The Atlanta metro area is served by many local television stations, and is the eighth-largest Nielsen designated market area (DMA) in the U.S. with 2,310,490 homes (2.0% of the total U.S.).[3]

Cable/satellite networks[edit]

Atlanta is a major cable television programming center. Ted Turner began the Turner Broadcasting System (now merged with Time Warner media empire) in Atlanta, where he bought a UHF station that eventually became TBS. Turner established the headquarters of the Cable News Network at CNN Center, adjacent today to Centennial Olympic Park. As his company grew, its other channels – the Cartoon Network, Boomerang, TNT, Turner South, Turner Classic Movies, CNN International, CNN en Español, CNN Headline News, and CNN Airport Network – centered their operations in Atlanta as well (Turner South has since been sold). Also now fully part of Turner is truTV. The Weather Channel, owned by Landmark Communications until it was purchased by NBCUniversal, Bain Capital, and The Blackstone Group in September 2008, has its offices in the nearby Cumberland/Galleria edge city. The first nationwide music video programming on cable television, Video Concert Hall, a precursor to MTV, was created in Atlanta.[4]

Local stations[edit]

The Atlanta area has 13 full-power TV stations, running a total of 27 TV channels from 27 TV networks and local sources. Over-the-air digital subchannels are shown as subitems, the main channel is always on the x.1 subchannel and is or was simulcast on analog (over-the-air and cable). Cable listings are shown for Comcast, the dominant local broadband TV provider. For digital cable, three-digit whole numbers are for set-top box users, while decimal numbers are in-the-clear (non-encrypted) QAM for cable-ready ATSC tuners, and have occasionally been changed. These numbers are the physical RF TV channels and the transport stream identifier (TSID) as they are transmitted from the headend, however some are mapped with PSIP to have the same number as over the air. For HDTV stations, an SDTV version (often a separate feed) is mapped on set-top boxes to the original analog cable channel number. Since March 16, 2009, all Atlanta TV stations that air local news are now in HD, with WXIA 11 first, then WSB 2, followed by WGCL 46, and WAGA 5 last.

As of April 2013, the following stations and channels are seen in the area:

Since autumn of 2012, WUGA-TV 24 Toccoa (32.1) is also seen on DirecTV in metro Atlanta, though it covers mainly Athens and northeast Georgia. It carries mostly GPB Knowledge (see channel 8.3 on WGTV), with some of its own programming being substituted. Surprisingly, over-the-air subchannels 2.2, 8.2, 8.3, 11.2, 34.2, and 36.2 are all seen on Comcast digital cable, even in the most limited basic service tier, even though must-carry does not apply to those channels. These are on channels 248, 247, 246, 211, 250, and 244 for former Wometco systems. Charter carries 2.2, 11.2, 36.2, and 36.3 on 126, 84, 111, and 83.

Mobile TV[edit]

Along with two stations in Seattle (KOMO and KONG), two stations in Atlanta were chosen by the OMVC to be the first four to beta test mobile DTV using the ATSC-M/H system. Ion began transmitting the service on WPXA in early 2009. Gannett is also known to be transmitting mobile LDTV versions of at least some of its four channels (11.1, 36.2, 11.3, 36.1) on WATL. Additionally, Manifest Wireless has an experimental broadcasting license on-air on RF channel 56 in Atlanta (as well as Dallas/Fort Worth and Denver), and appears to be transmitting ATSC-M/H. (There is a strong ATSC signal, but no regular MPEG-2 subchannels on it for an ATSC tuner to decode, except for [as of November 2012] a choppy stream of color bars and test tone.) Manifest is a subsidiary of Frontier Wireless, which like Dish Network is owned by EchoStar.

Notes[edit]

 *¹ Several stations have broadcast translators which retransmit their parent stations to areas with insufficient coverage due to terrain and defects of the ATSC DTV standard mandated by the FCC. WUVG-DT also airs on RF channel 17 in Athens. WSB-TV also airs on RF channel 31 near Athens, using virtual channels 2.5 and 2.6, and is airing on RF 46 near Gainesville (on 2.7 and 2.8), and under construction permit on RF 17 in Newnan. It has also applied for RF channel 14 near Rome. WATC-DT has a permit for RF 36 near Union City.

 *² WGTV TV 8 ended analog on February 17, along with the rest of the GPB TV network. It then re-tuned its DTV transmitter from channel 12 to 8 and re-used its analog channel 8 antenna, which allowed it to go to a higher power. The station is still at a lower power than what would be equal to its analog, so alternative sources for GPB digital are WNGH-TV 33 (18.x) in north/northwest metro and WJSP-TV 23 (28.x) in south/southwest metro.

 *³ In 2009, WGCL-TV 46 applied to end analog on February 17, but continued until June 12 with regular programming, and as an "analog nightlight" until June 26. WATC TV 57 ended analog on February 17. WHSG-TV 63 ended analog on April 16.

LPTV stations[edit]

Several LPTV stations cover smaller parts of the metro area:

Surprisingly, LPTV channels 4, 47.1, 47.2, 47.3, and 53.1 are also carried on Comcast digital cable (on 249, 18 [1018 HD], 389, 390, and 263 for former Wometco systems), even in the most limited basic service tier, even though must-carry does not apply to LPTV stations. Charter carres 4, 32.10, 47.1, and 47.2 on 210, 85/224, 102, and 24. Even more unusually, channel 4 is also carried on DirecTV.

Cable-only stations[edit]

Radio[edit]

There are also numerous local radio stations serving every genre of music, sports, and talk radio. The nationally syndicated Neal Boortz and Clark Howard shows are broadcast from Atlanta radio station WSB AM 750. Atlanta is also where Sean Hannity and Ryan Seacrest got their starts—Hannity filling Boortz's seat at WGST AM 640, and Seacrest as a radio personality at WSTR FM 94.1. Other notable radio personalities have included Leslie Fram and Elvis Duran (both now in New York), Rhubarb Jones, and voice talent George Lowe. Familiar Atlanta Braves announcers have included Skip Caray, Larry Munson, Don Sutton, and Pete van Wieren.

Cox Enterprises, which owns the Atlanta Journal-Constitution and WSB-TV/FM/AM, is headquartered in Atlanta. Cumulus Media engages in the acquisition, operation, and development of commercial radio stations in mid-size radio markets in the United States and is also headquartered in Atlanta. As of the end of 2005, it owned and operated 307 radio stations in 61 mid-sized U.S. media markets and a multimarket network of five radio stations in the English-speaking Caribbean.[6]

Stations in grey are considered "rimshots", normally reaching only part of the metro area clearly.

AM stations[edit]

In addition, several other smaller stations serve the suburbs.

FM stations[edit]

 

WUBL FM 94.9 and WSB-FM 98.5 are the primary entry points to the state of Georgia Emergency Alert System, taking emergency messages from the governor of Georgia, GEMA, or U.S. president, and relaying them to all other stations across the state.

WSB-FM and WFSH-FM carry a Christmas music format from just before Thanksgiving until Christmas Day. Since 2011, WVFJ-FM also does so. In adjacent areas, WIPK 104.5 Dalton and WSRM 94.5 Coosa, do the same in northwest Georgia.

Internet[edit]

Four local college radio stations operate on Internet radio and other means of distribution:

Newspapers[edit]

The major daily paper in Atlanta is The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Several alternative weekly publications are also distributed, including Creative Loafing, The Sunday Paper and the Atlanta Nation. A monthly newsprint publication Stomp and Stammer features local music news, indie rock record reviews, and cultural commentary.

As of November 2010, the following newspapers are published in Atlanta:


Suburban newspapers include:

In its history, Atlanta has had many other daily and weekly newspapers starting with its first weekly, The Luminary (1846) and its first daily, the Daily Intelligencer (1849).

Online-only newspapers[edit]

Magazines[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Arbitron Radio Market Rankings - Fall 2011". Arbitron.com. 2009-10-14. Retrieved 2012-01-20. 
  2. ^ "About Cox". Cox Communications, Inc. Retrieved 2007-08-22. 
  3. ^ "Nielsen Reports 1.3% increase in U.S. Television Households for the 2007-2008 Season." Nielsen Media Research. (September 22, 2007) Retrieved on April 29, 2008.
  4. ^ "Entertainment and performing arts". AtlantaMaps.net. 2008. Retrieved 2008-05-06. 
  5. ^ [1][dead link]
  6. ^ CMLS:Profile for Cumulus Media Inc. Yahoo! Finance
  7. ^ "Circulation falls at AJC, other big papers", '"Atlanta Journal-Constitution, October 26, 2009
  8. ^ Association of Alternative News Media
  9. ^ Moore, L. Hugh, The Georgia Review, Volume XIX, Number 2, Summer 1965, p. 176

External links[edit]