|Branding||WISH-TV 8 (general)
24 Hour News 8 (newscasts)
|Slogan||We're Indiana's Own (general)
Your 24 Hour News Source (newscasts)
|Channels||Digital: 9 (VHF)
Virtual: 8 (PSIP)
8.2 local weather
8.3 weather radar
|Translators||17 (VHF) Indianapolis|
|Owner||LIN TV Corporation
(Indiana Broadcasting, LLC)
|First air date||July 1, 1954|
|Call letters' meaning||pronounced as wish
(as in making a wish)
|Sister station(s)||WNDY-TV, WANE-TV, WLFI-TV, WTHI-TV|
|Former channel number(s)||Analog:
8 (VHF, 1954-2009)
|Former affiliations||ABC (primary, 1954-1956)
DuMont (secondary, 1954-1955)
NBC (secondary, 1954-1956)
|Transmitter power||22.8 kW|
WISH-TV, virtual channel 8, is the CBS-affiliated television station for Central Indiana licensed to Indianapolis. Owned by the LIN TV Corporation, WISH-TV is part of a duopoly with MyNetworkTV affiliate WNDY-TV (channel 23) and the two share studios on North Meridian Street at the north end of Indianapolis' Television Row. It broadcasts a high definition digital signal on VHF channel 9 from a transmitter in the Augusta section of the city.
WISH-TV can be considered the flagship of LIN TV's Midwestern operations as it houses hub facilities containing master control and some internal operations for WISH as well as WNDY-TV and WIIH-CD in Indianapolis, WANE-TV in Fort Wayne, WLFI-TV in Lafayette, WTHI-TV and WTHI-DT2 in Terre Haute, WOOD-TV, WOTV, and WXSP-CD in Grand Rapids, Michigan, WDTN and WBDT in Dayton, Ohio, WKBN-TV, WYTV and WYFX-LD in Youngstown, Ohio, and WLUK-TV and WCWF in Green Bay, Wisconsin, in addition to traffic, accounting services, and some programming for stations in all LIN Media markets. For years, WISH-TV was the flagship station for all of LIN TV until LIN TV moved its headquarters to Rhode Island.
On cable, the station is carried on Bright House Networks channel 3 in standard definition and digital channel 708 in high definition, and Xfinity channel 7 in standard definition and digital channel 233 in high definition.
Digital television 
The station's digital signal is multiplexed:
|Channel||Video||Aspect||PSIP Short Name||Programming|
|8.1||1080p||16:9||WISH-HD||Main WISH-TV programming / CBS|
|8.2||480i||4:3||LWS||Local Weather Station (LWS)|
|8.3||Radar||Forecast 8 VIPIR HD|
The station signed-on July 1, 1954 at 6 p.m. as the third channel in Indianapolis. WISH-TV was originally owned by C. Bruce McConnell along with WISH-AM 1310 (now WTLC). It was a primary ABC station with secondary DuMont affiliation. The channel also carried several CBS and NBC shows turned down by WFBM-TV (now WRTV) and WTTV respectively. In 1956, McConnell sold the station to the Indiana Broadcasting Company that also owned WANE-TV in Fort Wayne. The new owners persuaded CBS to move its affiliation from WFBM. The same year, WISH-TV lost ABC and it was left without an affiliate until WLWI (now WTHR) signed-on the next year.
Indiana Broadcasting became the Corinthian Broadcasting Corporation in 1957 with WISH-TV as the flagship station. Corinthian merged with Dun & Bradstreet in 1971. Dun sold its entire broadcasting unit to Belo in February 1984. However, the merger left Belo two stations over the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) ownership limits of the time. As a result, the company sold WISH-TV and WANE to LIN Broadcasting (the predecessor of LIN TV) one month later. LIN TV was headquartered in Indianapolis for many years making WISH-TV its flagship but has since moved to Providence, Rhode Island with WPRI-TV becoming the company's flagship. In 2005, then UPN affiliate WNDY was acquired from CBS/Viacom by LIN TV. On May 18, 2007, the company announced that it was exploring strategic alternatives that could have resulted in its sale.
On September 15, 2008, it was announced that LIN TV and Time Warner Cable were at an impasse in retransmission consent deals. Bright House Networks, a major cable provider for Indianapolis, negotiates retransmission consent through Time Warner Cable. LIN TV was requesting compensation for carriage much like cable networks. The deal with Bright House expired October 2. By 12:35 in the morning on October 3, LIN TV stations were replaced by substitute programs. Twenty six days later, LIN TV and Time Warner Cable reached an agreement and LIN TV service was restored.
WISH-TV signed-off its analog signal on June 12, 2009, and continued to broadcast on pre-transition digital channel 9. Most receivers display WISH-TV's virtual channel as 8 through the use of PSIP.
On January 29, 2010, it filed an application to the FCC for a digital fill-in translator on UHF channel 17 which was granted a construction permit on June 16. The translator, sharing the transmitter with the main signal, will serve parts of Indianapolis that lost signal strength due to the digital conversion in 2009. The channel 17 allotment was previously occupied by an analog signal of Class A sister station WIIH-CA.
On January 13, 2011, WISH-TV commenced operations on its fill-in translator on channel 17. As of February 2011, WISH-TV is operating both channels 9 and 17 from their transmitting facilities at in the Augusta section of Indianapolis. WISH-TV is operating channel 17 as a fill-in translator with a power of 15 kW at 190.5 meters & operating their full power operations on channel 9 with a power of 22.8 kW. Through PSIP technology, both operating frequencies are re-mapped and displayed as virtual channel 8, which would cause some digital tuners to have two versions of virtual channels 8.1, 8.2 and 8.3, while tuning sequentially.
Syndicated programming on the station includes: Entertainment Tonight, Inside Edition, Anderson, and Rachael Ray. WISH-TV clears the entire CBS schedule except for the Saturday edition of CBS This Morning and weekend editions of the CBS Evening News. WNDY airs the shows acting as a secondary CBS affiliate. That channel will also take on network programming whenever WISH-TV cannot do so. This could happen due to severe weather or local special; it has happened on two occasions when WNDY aired the 2009 and 2010 US Open and again in 2011, while WISH-TV opted to air its regularly scheduled programming.
News operation 
Mike Ahern was the station's main weeknight news anchor as well as the de facto face of its newsroom for more than thirty years (longer than anyone in Indianapolis television history). He joined the station as a reporter in 1967 and became WISH-TV top anchorman in 1974. Ahern retired from the anchor chair on December 1, 2004. His longtime co-anchor, Debby Knox, joined him in 1980 and is still featured on-the-air today. Stan Wood served as the station's main weatherman for much of the 1960s through 1991 while Patty Spitler was an afternoon news anchor and entertainment reporter from 1982 until 2004. News Director Lee Giles, who left the station in 2004, was one of the longest-tenured in local broadcasting.
Since 1991, all of WISH-TV's news music themes have used components of the song Back Home Again in Indiana. The first theme to do so was specially composed for the channel by Stephen Arnold Music. The current theme is a version of 615 Music's "In-Sink" music package. On March 16, 1996, WTHR entered into a news share agreement with WNDY resulting in a nightly prime time newscast known as Eyewitness News at 10 on UPN Indiana. However, the partnership ended when WNDY was purchased by LIN TV. WISH-TV assumed production responsibility of the prime time broadcasts starting February 28, 2005. The show is now called 24 Hour News 8 at 10 on My INDY TV. On April 25, 2007, it debuted a new state of the art FX Group set and Giant Octopus graphics package.
On September 8, 2008, this channel became the second in Indiana and Indianapolis to air local newscasts in high definition with the WNDY shows being included in the upgrade. On January 5, 2009 at 7 a.m., WNDY added an hour-long extension of WISH-TV's weekday morning show 24 Hour News 8 Daybreak. It is currently the last remaining Big Four network affiliates in the Indianapolis market that still airs its weekday morning newscast at 5 a.m. (WTHR and WXIN moved the start time of their morning newscasts to 4:30 a.m. in 2005 and 2009, respectively, with WRTV also doing so the sometime in 2010.) WISH-TV has the distinction of being one of the last remaining broadcast channels in the United States currently utilizing the 24 Hour News Source format which it began using in 1990. As of February 2010, the only other stations still using the format are sister station WOOD-TV in Grand Rapids, Michigan, ABC affiliate KCRG-TV in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, and NBC affiliate KFDX-TV in Wichita Falls, Texas.
From the mid-1980s until 2002 according to Nielson ratings, WISH-TV was the highest rated station in Indianapolis when NBC affiliate WTHR took over the position. This was due largely because most of its news team has been at the station for over twenty years. At one time, WISH-TV boasted that "more people in Central Indiana get their local news from 24 Hour News 8 than from any other source" at the close of many newscasts and in promos. Currently, it is a distant runner-up behind WTHR in most time-slots except during the weeknight early shows, when it runs neck and neck with WTHR. However, due to the recent strength of CBS' prime time lineup (and being the lead-in for Indianapolis native David Letterman), WISH has recently regained the lead weeknights at 11.
On September 5, 2012 during the 5 o' Clock Show a redesigned set and graphics were introduced. Also new theme music and logo were introduced. The logo had previously been used in 2008.
News/station presentation 
Newscast titles 
- Your Esso Reporter (1954-1960)
- The Big News (1960-1972)
- Channel 8 News (1972-1980)
- News 8 (1976-1980)
- 8 On the Scene News (1980-1984)
- News 8 (1984–1990)
- 24-Hour News 8 (1990–present, sometimes News 8)
Station slogans 
- "Indiana's Own" (1984–present; general slogan)
- "We Are the Team" (1984–1994; used in image campaign by Michael Randall, paired with the "Indiana's Own" campaign)
- "Indiana's Only 24-Hour Television News Service" (1990)
- "Indiana's Only 24-Hour News Service" (1990–1991)
- "Central Indiana's Only 24-Hour News Service" (1991–1997)
- "News 8 Gets You Closer" (1997–1999)
- "Your 24-Hour News Station]" (1997–2006)
- "Your 24-Hour News Source" (2006–present)
- David Barras - weekdays at noon and weeknights at 5:30 p.m.; also reporter
- Eric Halvorson - weeknights at 5:00, 6:00 and 11:00 p.m.
- Karen Hensel - weeknights at 10:00 p.m. (WNDY); also investigative reporter
- Debby Knox - weeknights at 5:00, 6:00 and 11:00 p.m.
- Lauren Lowrey - weekday mornings (5:00-7:00 on WISH and 7:00-8:00 a.m. on WNDY) and weekdays at noon
- Daniel Miller - weekends at 6:00, 10:00 (WNDY) and 11:00 p.m.
- Scott Sander - weekday mornings (5:00-7:00 on WISH and 7:00-8:00 a.m. on WNDY)
- Erin Murphy - weekend mornings (6:00-9:00 a.m.)
- Walter Allen - weekend mornings (6:00-9:00 a.m.)
- Lori Wilson - weeknights at 5:00 p.m.; also reporter (Starting in June)
Forecast 8 StormTrackers (all have the AMS Seal of Approval)
- Steve Bray - chief meteorologist; weeknights at 5:30 p.m.; also science and technology reporter and news director
- Robb Ellis - meteorologist; weeknights at 5:00, 6:00, 10:00 (WNDY) and 11:00 p.m.
- Randy Ollis - meteorologist; weekday mornings (5:00-7:00 on WISH and 7:00-8:00 a.m. on WNDY) and weekdays at noon
- Ken Brewer - meteorologist; weekend mornings (6:00-9:00 a.m.)
- Pamela Gardner - meteorologist; weekends at 6:00, 10:00 (WNDY) and 11:00 p.m.
- Anthony Calhoun - sports director; weeknights at 6:00, 10:00 (WNDY) and 11:00 p.m., also host of Sports Locker, Countdown to Kickoff, The Bill Polian Show and Huddle Up Indy
- Chris Widlic - sports anchor; weekends at 6:00, 10:00 (WNDY) and 11:00 p.m.
- Amanda Maynard - sports reporter; weekends at 6:00, 10:00 (WNDY) and 11:00 p.m.
- Derek Daly - car racing expert
- Drew Blair - general assignment reporter
- Adrienne Broaddus - general assignment reporter
- Jessica Hayes - general assignment reporter/fill-in anchor
- Ruthanne Gordon - live desk reporter
- Julian Grace - multi-platform journalist
- Danielle Mitchell - "Face of My INDY TV"
- Jay Hermacinski - general assignment reporter
- Troy Kehoe - weekday morning reporter (5:00-7:00 on WISH and 7:00-8:00 a.m. on WNDY)
- Keith McCutchen - "Chopper 8" pilot reporter
- Julie Patterson - weekday morning traffic reporter (5:00-7:00 on WISH and 7:00-8:00 a.m. on WNDY)
- Teresa Mackin - multiplatform journalist
- Jacqueline Policastro - multi-platform journalist
- Jim Shella - political reporter and Indiana Week in Review host
- Dick Wolfsie - weekend mornings (6:00-9:00 a.m.); heard on WFYI-FM 90.1 and WNDY-FM 91.3
- Tracy Forner - host
- Andi Hauser - host
Notable former on-air staff 
- Mike Ahern - anchor/reporter (1967-2004; now at sister station WNDY-TV)
- Chet Coppock - sportscaster (1970s; now at WMVP-AM in Chicago)
- Ed Harding - sports director (1981-1988; now at WCVB-TV in Boston)
- Nicole Manske - sports reporter (2004-2006; now at ESPN)
- Mark Patrick - sports director (1990-1999)
- Jane Pauley - weekend anchor (1972-1975)
- Joe Pickett - Host of the "Channel 8 Money Movie" (died 4-20-13)
- Rolland Smith - anchor (1967-1969)
- Sage Steele - sports reporter (1997-1998; now at ESPN)
- John Stehr - anchor (now at WTHR in Indianapolis)
- Anne Marie Tiernon - anchor/reporter (1991-2000; now at WTHR in Indianapolis)
- Vince Welch - sports anchor (1990-1995; now at ESPN
- Eggerton, John (2009-08-07). "LIN TV Develops Blackberry App For Mobile TV Service". Broadcasting & Cable. Retrieved 2009-08-11.
- CDBS Print
- WISH-TV News Open November 1986
- WISH-TV News 8 at 6PM Open (1999)
- WISH-TV Indiana's Own Campaign
- WISHTV-Six O'Clock News Open
- WISH-TV Your 24 Hour News Source
- "About Mike Ahern". 16 May 2011. Retrieved 12 March 2013.
- "About Chet Coppock". Retrieved 12 March 2013.
- "Ed Harding bio". WCVB-TV. Retrieved 12 March 2013.
- "Nicole Briscoe bip". ESPN. Retrieved 12 March 2013.
- "Mark Patrick Joins Hammer & Nigel". Retrieved 12 March 2013.
- "Jane Pauley Biography". Retrieved 12 March 2013.
- "About Rolland G. Smith". Retrieved 12 March 2013.
- "Steele Sage bio". ESPN. Retrieved 12 March 2013.
- "John Stehr bio". Retrieved 12 March 2013.
- "Anne Marie Tiernon bio". WTHR. Retrieved 12 March 2013.
- "Vince Welch bio". ESPN. Retrieved 12 March 2013.