|Charleston, South Carolina|
|Branding||My TV Charleston|
|Slogan||My City. My Station.
My TV Charleston.
|Channels||Digital: 36 (UHF)|
36.3 The Country Network
|Owner||Sinclair Broadcast Group
(sale to Howard Stirk Holdings pending; to remain operated by Sinclair thereafter)
(WMMP Licensee, L.P.)
|First air date||November 1992|
|Call letters' meaning||Max Media Properties
|Former callsigns||WCTP (1992-1995)
|Former channel number(s)||Analog:
|Former affiliations||Independent (1992-1995)
The WB (1995-1997)
The Tube, TheCoolTV (on DT2)
|Transmitter power||1,000 kW|
WMMP is the MyNetworkTV-affiliated television station for the Lowcountry area of South Carolina licensed to Charleston. It broadcasts a high definition digital signal on UHF channel 36 from a transmitter in Awendaw. Owned by the Sinclair Broadcast Group, WMMP operates Fox affiliate WTAT-TV (owned by Cunningham Broadcasting) through a local marketing agreement (LMA). The two share studios on Arco Lane in North Charleston (though with a Charleston address). Syndicated programming on this channel includes: The Simpsons, Family Guy, Maury, and The Jerry Springer Show.
WMMP signed-on in November 1992 as WCTP, an independent station, thus filling the void left by WTAT joining Fox six years earlier. It joined The WB as a charter affiliate on January 11, 1995. On November 20, it changed its calls to WBNU. In 1997, Max Media Properties (a company partially related to the present-day Max Media) bought the station, changed its calls to the current WMMP, and switched its affiliation to UPN. The WB was relegated to cable in Charleston for the remainder of its run.
Only a year later, Max Media sold WMMP to Sinclair, giving the station its third owner in as many years. Sinclair already operated WTAT, then owned by Sullivan Broadcasting, through an outsourcing agreement. When Sinclair tried to acquire Sullivan's stations outright in 2001, it could not legally keep both WMMP and WTAT because Charleston has only six full-power stations (too few to legally permit a duopoly).
Although WTAT was longer-established, Sinclair opted to keep WMMP and sold WTAT to Glencairn, Ltd. That company was owned by Edwin Edwards, a former Sinclair executive, and appeared to be a minority-owned company. However, nearly all of Glencairn's stock was controlled by the Smith family founders of Sinclair. In effect, the company now had a duopoly in the Charleston market which was a violation of Federal Communications Commission (FCC) regulations. Glencairn and Sinclair further circumvented the rules by crafting a local marketing agreement with WMMP, with WMMP as senior partner.
In 2001, the FCC fined Sinclair $40,000 for illegally controlling Glencairn. Later that year, it was renamed Cunningham Broadcasting. However, nearly all of Cunningham's stock is still controlled by trusts in the names of the children of the Smith brothers, so for all intents and purposes Sinclair still has a duopoly in Charleston. Glencairn and Cunningham have been accused of serving as a shell corporation which Sinclair has been using for the purpose of circumventing FCC ownership rules. Prior to its 2007 shutdown, WMMP aired The Tube on its second digital subchannel. On February 17, 2009, the station performed a flash-cut and became digital exclusive.
Soon after Fox announced the formation of MyNetworkTV, Sinclair announced that most of its WB and UPN affiliates, including WMMP, would affiliate with that network. Since the launch of MyNetworkTV in 2006, WMMP has aired any Fox programming in the event WTAT preempts the network for weather/emergency updates or local specials.
On July 29, 2013, Allbritton Communications Company announced that it would sell its entire television group, including WCIV, to the Sinclair Broadcast Group. As part of the deal, Sinclair will sell the license assets of WMMP to Howard Stirk Holdings (owned by conservative talk show host Armstrong Williams), but will still operate the station through shared services and joint sales agreements.
The station's digital signal is multiplexed:
|Channel||Video||Aspect||PSIP Short Name||Programming|
|36.1||720p||16:9||WMMP-MY||Main WMMP programming / MyNetworkTV|
|36.3||WMMP-TC||The Country Network|
- Heath, Thomas; Wilgoren, Debbi (July 29, 2013). "Allbritton to sell 7 TV stations, including WJLA, to Sinclair for $985 million". The Washington Post. Retrieved July 29, 2013.
- "Sinclair Buying Allbritton Stations For $985M". TVNewsCheck. July 29, 2013. Retrieved July 29, 2013.