|This section needs additional citations for verification. (February 2014)|
|Fargo, North Dakota
|Branding||WDAY 6 Television (general)
WDAY News (newscasts)
|Slogan||Your News Leader|
|Channels||Digital: 21 (UHF)
Virtual: 6 (PSIP)
6.2 The CW
6.3 WDAY'Z Xtra
|Affiliations||ABC (primary since 1983; secondary 1953–1959)|
|Owner||Forum Communications Company|
|First air date||June 1, 1953|
|Call letters' meaning||taken from sister radio station, which was randomly assigned by the FCC |
|Sister station(s)||WDAY-AM, WDAZ-TV, KBMY-TV/KMCY-TV|
|Former channel number(s)||Analog:
6 (VHF, 1953–2009)
|Former affiliations||NBC (1953–1983)|
|Transmitter power||1000 kW|
|Public license information:||Profile
WDAY-TV, channel 6, is the ABC-affiliated television station licensed to Fargo, North Dakota. It broadcasts a high definition digital signal on UHF channel 21 (or virtual channel 6.1 via PSIP) from a 1,000-foot (300 m) tall transmitter tower near Amenia. On cable, the station can be seen on channel 6 in most areas.
Although operated as a separate station in its own right, WDAZ-TV in Grand Forks is actually considered a semi-satellite of WDAY-TV. It clears all network and syndicated programming as provided through its parent but airs separate weekday newscasts, station identifications, and commercial inserts. WDAY-TV serves the southern portion of the Fargo/Grand Forks market while WDAZ serves the northern portion. Through WDAZ, WDAY-TV has significant viewership in southern Manitoba, Canada, including Winnipeg, which has double the population of WDAY-TV/WDAZ's American coverage area. The two stations often share news stories. Master control and some internal operations for WDAZ are based at WDAY's facilities in Fargo. The two stations are counted as a single unit for ratings purposes. DirecTV and Dish Network offer both WDAY and WDAZ.
The station's digital signal is multiplexed:
|Channel||Video||Aspect||PSIP Short Name||Programming|
|6.1||720p||16:9||WDAYABC||Main WDAY-TV programming / ABC|
(Storm Tracker/WDAY Radio/Local Sports)
Fargo CW was a cable-only station with WB affiliation, and branded as "WBFG", a designation going back to its launch as a station transmitting the The WB 100+ distant network schedule to the area over cable exclusively. When The CW launched in September 2006, WBFG switched over to the distant The CW Plus schedule and eventually moved onto WDAY-DT2 and WDAZ-DT2 to provide all viewers CW service in the area.
Fargo CW is offered on Cable One cable channel 8 in the Fargo-Moorhead area. It can be seen on Midcontinent cable channel 14 in Fargo, Moorhead and most other areas. It can be seen on Midcontinent cable channel 7 in the Grand Forks area.
WDAY'Z Xtra is a digital subchannel carried on WDAY 6.3, WDAZ 8.3, KBMY 17.3 in Bismarck, and KMCY 14.3 in Minot. This subchannel airs Doppler weather radar and "Storm Tracker" weather loop with the audio of Fargo's WDAY radio, but also broadcasts area high school sports. It is offered on Midcontinent cable channel 596.
WDAY-TV shut down its analog signal, over VHF channel 6, on June 12, 2009, the official date in which full-power television stations in the United States transitioned from analog to digital broadcasts under federal mandate. The station's digital signal remained on its pre-transition UHF channel 21. Through the use of PSIP, digital television receivers display the station's virtual channel as its former VHF analog channel 6.
WDAY-TV went on the air for the first time in 1953 as the third television station in North Dakota, and the first in the eastern part of the state. It was owned by a group of Fargo investors, the largest of which was Norman Black, owner and publisher of The Forum. Black bought the remaining shares in 1958.
It was originally an NBC affiliate, but shared ABC programming with KXJB-TV until KXGO-TV (channel 11, later KTHI-TV and now KVLY-TV) signed on in 1959. It swapped affiliations with KTHI and became an ABC affiliate in 1983, at the same time former sister station KSFY-TV switched from NBC to ABC.
Unlike rivals KXJB and KVLY, WDAY-TV's analog signal did not cover the northern portion of this vast market very well. It was required to conform its signal to protect CBC Television's Winnipeg station, CBWT, which took to the air on channel 6 a year after WDAY-TV signed on. As a result, it was barely viewable in northern Grand Forks and could not be seen at all in much of the northern part of the market. To solve this problem, it signed on semi-satellite WDAZ-TV in 1967. WDAZ-TV identifies as a station in its own right, producing its own newscasts and airing its own commercials. However, it rebroadcasts most of WDAY-TV's syndicated programming, and the two stations often share news stories. WDAZ serves the northern part of the Fargo-Grand Forks market, while WDAY-TV serves the southern portion. (The coverage problem would become moot with the 2009 digital television transition in the United States and the 2011 transition in Canada, in which WDAY would broadcast its digital signal on channel 21 and CBWT broadcast theirs on channel 27.)
WDAY/WDAZ began operating cable-only WB affiliate "WBFG" in 1998. This was on channel 8, 7 or 14 on most systems in eastern North Dakota and northwestern Minnesota. WDAY/WDAZ replaced "WBFG" with new digital broadcast subchannels WDAY 6.2 and WDAZ 8.2 simulcasting The CW after the new network launched in the fall of 2006. The CW was only available over the air on WDAY until WDAZ switched to digital in 2009. Fargo CW also carries programming from The CW Plus.
WDAY-TV is one of the westernmost stations in the country whose callsign begins with W. Most stations west of the Mississippi begin with K, however WDAY radio received its call letters before the U.S. government moved the K-W boundary in 1923 from the state borders between 102 and 104 degrees West longitude (including the North Dakota-Montana border) to the Mississippi River.
WDAY-TV is one of the few stations in the country that still signs off at night. It goes off the air at 3:43 am and signs on again at 4:27 am to broadcast America This Morning.
Past on-air staff
- RabbitEars TV Query for WDAY
- Congress delays digital TV conversion, The Forum, Fargo ND, February 5, 2009
- "DTV Tentative Channel Designations for the First and the Second Rounds" (PDF). Retrieved 2012-03-24.
- WDAY-TV website
- Fargo CW
- Query the FCC's TV station database for WDAY
- BIAfn's Media Web Database -- Information on WDAY-TV