Spartanburg, South Carolina
|City of license||Anderson|
|Branding||My 40 (general)
News 13 on My 40 (during WLOS-produced newscasts)
|Channels||Digital: 14 (UHF)|
40.3 ZUUS Country
(operated through LMA by Sinclair Broadcast Group)
(Anderson (WFBC-TV) Licensee, Inc.)
|First air date||September 5, 1953|
|Call letters' meaning||MYNetworkTV Anderson|
|Sister station(s)||WLOS, WMYV, WXLV-TV, WLFL, WRDC|
|Former callsigns||WAIM-TV (1953-1983)
|Former channel number(s)||40 (UHF analog, 1953-2009)|
|Former affiliations||CBS (primary, 1953-1956; secondary, 1956-1979)
ABC (secondary, 1953-1956; primary, 1956-1979; satellite of WLOS, 1991-1995)
Independent (1979-1986, 1988-1989, 1995-1999)
The WB (1999-2006), TheCoolTV (2010-2012 - DT2)
|Transmitter power||360 kW|
WMYA-TV is the MyNetworkTV-affiliated television station for Upstate South Carolina and Western North Carolina licensed to Anderson, South Carolina. It broadcasts a high definition digital signal on UHF channel 14 from a transmitter in Fountain Inn, South Carolina. Owned by Cunningham Broadcasting, WMYA is operated through a local marketing agreement (LMA) by the Sinclair Broadcast Group. This makes it sister to ABC affiliate WLOS and the two share studios on Technology Drive in Asheville, North Carolina near I-26/US 74. However, WMYA is effectively owned by Sinclair due to Cunningham's financial structure (see below). Syndicated programming on WMYA-TV includes: Jerry Springer, Family Feud, Paternity Court, and TMZ on TV, among others. It is one of three Sinclair duopolies in North Carolina.
WMYA only provides a Grade B signal to the North Carolina side of the market. To improve it over-the-air coverage, WLOS offers a standard definition simulcast on its second digital subchannel (VHF channel 13.2) from a transmitter on Mount Pisgah. WMYA-TV carries the day-behind delay of Ocean Mysteries with Jeff Corwin from the Litton's Weekend Adventure programming block from ABC which WLOS preempts.
The station signed-on September 5, 1953 as WAIM-TV, airing an analog signal on UHF channel 40. It was the fourth television station in South Carolina and the second outside Columbia. WAIM-TV was owned by Wilton E. Hall, publisher of the Anderson Independent and Daily Mail newspapers (now merged as the Anderson Independent-Mail), along with WAIM/1230 and WCAC-FM 101.1 (now WROQ). The calls stood for Anderson Independent-Mail. It was a CBS station with secondary ABC affiliation.
When WSPA-TV signed-on from Spartanburg in 1956 and took CBS, WAIM-TV became a primary ABC affiliate, even though WLOS had become the market's ABC affiliate of record two years earlier. Until 1976, WAIM-TV still cleared many CBS programs. Hall sold his media interests to Harte-Hanks Communications in 1972. Harte-Hanks planned on upgrading the station and making it a more aggressive competitor in the market. However, it was plagued by a weak signal. Its transmitter was built before Greenville, Spartanburg, and Asheville were collapsed into one vast television market. Channel 40 only provided a strong signal to Anderson and Pickens Counties. Nearby Greenville could only receive a fringe signal. As a result, the station never thrived; only the revenues from its radio sisters kept it afloat. All efforts to boost its signal were defeated due to protests from WLOS. Although WAIM-TV never posed a serious threat to WLOS in the ratings, from the 1960s onward WLOS' owner, Wometco Enterprises, pressured ABC to yank its affiliation from channel 40.
For about a year in the mid-1970s, the station would not sign-on until 11 in the morning on weekdays, when ABC's afternoon shows began. It would sign-off twelve hours later when the network's prime time ended. The tiny bit of non-network programming during this time was mainly religious shows and travelogues. The station would eventually resume 7 a.m. sign-on but would sign-off around midnight even in the late-1970s.
WLOS finally persuaded ABC to yank its programming from WAIM-TV in the winter of 1979, leaving channel 40 as the first full-time general-entertainment independent station in South Carolina. The Upstate already had an independent station in WGGS-TV, but that station emphasized religious programming and had a rather conservative policy regarding secular programming. As an independent, initially the station signed on early afternoons and had a mix of cartoons, a couple low budget barter shows, and some religious programs. Later in 1979, Harte-Hanks sold the station to Frank Outlaw, who changed the station's calls to WAXA. The station began signing on at 7 AM every day and added low budget syndicated shows such as very old sitcoms, westerns, and older movies to the lineup.
In Fall 1979, WAXA signed on from a more powerful transmitter that more than doubled its coverage area. The transmitter was located in Fountain Inn, south of Greenville, which was close enough to Anderson to meet Federal Communication Commission (FCC) requirements that a station's transmitter be no further than fifteen miles from its city of license. However, the station was still more or less unviewable over-the-air on the North Carolina side of the market, and did not get much penetration there until cable arrived in the Western Carolinas in the early 1980s. The schedule was filled mostly with cartoons, barter sitcoms, low budget syndicated talk shows, wildlife shows, low budget and public domain movies, as well as other shows the competition passed on that cost no money to air. It also aired programs from NBC and CBS that WYFF and WSPA turned down. One of the NBC programs shown on the station was the game show Super Password, which WYFF preempted for its entire run. As barter cartoons became more available, WAXA aired about three hours of them in mornings and afternoons.
The station prospered until WHNS signed-on in 1984 as the first general entertainment station that decently covered the entire market. Although WHNS had a stronger signal and richer ownership (Pappas Telecasting), WAXA beat out WHNS to become the area's charter Fox affiliate at the network's launch on October 9, 1986. As a condition of winning the Fox affiliation, Outlaw promised to boost the station's transmission power to a full five million watts, which would have provided decent coverage of the entire market.
The Greenville/Spartanburg/Asheville market was not big enough at the time to support what were essentially two independent stations. Fox would not offer a full week's worth of programming until 1993, so WAXA was still programmed essentially as an independent. Nonetheless, Outlaw had big plans for the station in the late-1980s well beyond boosting its signal strength. However, he died suddenly in 1988. His widow did not have the enthusiasm her husband did for running WAXA. The station quickly suffered financial and management problems. It filed Chapter 11 bankruptcy in Fall 1988 and lost the Fox affiliation to WHNS. WAXA never recovered from the loss of network programming and went dark on August 31, 1989.
River City Broadcasting, owner of WLOS, bought the dormant WAXA license and returned the station to the air in 1991 as a full-time satellite of WLOS. This created a strong combined signal with about 60% overlap. River City merged with the Sinclair Broadcast Group in 1995. That fall, Sinclair sold WAXA to Glencairn, Ltd. a new group headed by former Sinclair executive Edwin Edwards. In September of 1995, Glencairn dropped the simulcast with WLOS and changed channel 40's calls to WFBC-TV (previously held from 1953 until 1983 by what is now WYFF). The station reverted to a typical general-entertainment independent format running cartoons, off network sitcoms, movies, off network dramas, and some first run talk and reality shows. However, Glencairn's stock was almost entirely controlled by the Smith family (founders and owners of Sinclair). In effect, Sinclair still owned both stations, even though FCC rules did not permit duopolies at the time. Glencairn and Sinclair further circumvented the rules by moving WFBC's operations to WLOS' facilities in Asheville under a local marketing agreement (LMA) with WLOS as the senior partner.
WFBC became a WB affiliate on September 6, 1998 and changed its call letters to WBSC in 2000 to reflect its status as the only full-time WB affiliate serving a South Carolina-based market. It began broadcasting 24 hours a day, 7 days a week sometime in 2004 having previously signed-off late Sunday night/early Monday morning. When Sinclair attempted to merge with Glencairn in 2001 after Sinclair was fined $40,000 for illegally controlling Glencairn, the FCC refused to allow Sinclair to buy WBSC and five other Glencairn stations. The FCC had already allowed Media General (owner of WSPA) to buy LMA partner WASV-TV (now WYCW) outright earlier in the year, and a Sinclair purchase of WBSC would have left the market with only seven unique station owners. FCC rules require a market to be left with eight unique station owners after a duopoly is formed. Glencairn changed its name to Cunningham Broadcasting, but its stock is still almost entirely owned by the Smith family. As a result, Sinclair still effectively has a duopoly in the market. There is considerable evidence that Cunningham is simply a shell corporation used by Sinclair to evade FCC rules. The WLOS/WBSC arrangement led to the formation of Sinclair Media Watch, an Asheville-based grassroots organization, to file an informal objection to license renewals of WBSC and WLOS in 2004.
On January 24, 2006, The WB and UPN announced that the networks would end broadcasting and merge. The new combined network would be called The CW. The letters would represent the first initial of corporate parents CBS (the parent company of UPN) and the Warner Bros. unit of Time Warner. On February 22, News Corporation announced that it would start up another new network called MyNetworkTV. This new service, which would be a sister network to Fox, would be operated by Fox Television Stations and its syndication division Twentieth Television. MyNetworkTV was created in order to give UPN and WB stations, not mentioned as becoming CW affiliates, another option besides becoming Independent. It was also created to compete against The CW.
On March 2, it was announced that WBSC would become the MyNetworkTV affiliate for the market. Nearly four weeks later on March 28, it was confirmed that WASV would join The CW. On June 19, WBSC changed its call letters to WMYA-TV to reflect its upcoming affiliation. Despite the DTV Delay Act national transition extension to June 12, 2009, the station ceased regular analog programming on analog channel 40 at midnight on February 18. For two weeks after that, it broadcast a "nightlight" service in the form of a continuously repeating short program about installing digital television converter boxes, alternating between English and Spanish versions, before finally shutting down its analog signal completely. On January 21, 2010, WMYA went off-the-air due to transmitter issues. The over-the-air signal was not restored until January 24.
|Channel||Video||Aspect||PSIP Short Name||Programming|
|40.1||720p||16:9||WMYA-MN||Main WMYA programming / MyNetworkTV|
WMYA carries ZUUS Country like many of Sinclair's stations. WMYA previously carried a standard-definition simulcast of sister station WLOS on its second digital subchannel. In 2010, the WLOS simulcast was replaced with TheCoolTV. On August 31, 2012, TheCoolTV was removed from all Sinclair stations.
Out-of-market cable carriage
In recent years, WMYA has been carried on cable in multiple areas outside of the Greenville media market. That includes cable systems within the Aiken and Columbia markets in South Carolina, and the Atlanta market in Georgia.
On September 17, 2008, WLOS and WMYA began offering local news in high definition becoming the second pair of stations in the area to upgrade after WSPA and WYCW. WLOS produces two weekday newscasts for WMYA which includes one half-hour show weeknights at 6:30 and one hour-long show weeknights at 10 (known as News 13 on My 40). The earlier program airs against the big three network evening news while the prime time broadcast competes with shows on WYCW and WHNS which is a trend. In addition to its main studios, WLOS operates news bureaus in Greenville, South Carolina (on Verdae Boulevard) and in Waynesville, North Carolina (on South Main Street/US 23).
- Tammy Watford - weeknights at 6:30 p.m.
- Frank Fraboni - weeknights at 6:30 p.m.
- Darcel Grimes - weeknights at 10:00 p.m.
- Russ Bowen - weeknights at 10:00 p.m.; also reporter
- Jason Boyer (AMS Seal of Approval) - Chief Meteorologist seen weeknights at 6:30 and 10:00 p.m.
- Stan Pamfilis - Sports Director seen weeknights at 6:30 and 10:00 p.m.
- Ingrid Allstaedt - Rutherford, Polk and McDowell Counties
- Sherrill Barber - Henderson and Transylvania Counties
- Holly Headrick - "Fugitive Files" segment producer
- Tricia Kelly - "Your Next Move" segment producer
- Marla Cilley - "Flight Plan" segment producer
- John Le - "Absolute Le" segment producer
- Rex Hodge - Waynesville Bureau
- Katie Killen - Rutherford County
- Karen Wynne - environmental
- Frank Kracher - weeknights at 6:30 and 10:00 p.m.
- Jared Fialko - sports
- Mario Boone
- My40.tv (Official Website)