WPBF

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WPBF
Wpbf 2010.png

Wpbf dt2 2009.png
Tequesta/West Palm Beach, Florida
United States
Branding WPBF 25 (general)
WPBF 25 News (newscasts)
Slogan Live. Local. Late Breaking.
Channels Digital: 16 (UHF)
Virtual: 25 (PSIP)
Subchannels 25.1 ABC
25.2 Estrella TV
Affiliations ABC
Owner Hearst Television
(WPBF-TV Company)
First air date January 1, 1989; 25 years ago (1989-01-01)
Call letters' meaning West Palm Beach, Florida
Former channel number(s) Analog:
25 (UHF, 1989-2009)
Former affiliations AccuWeather (DT2)
Transmitter power 1,000 kW
Height 454 m
Facility ID 51988
Transmitter coordinates 27°7′17″N 80°23′42″W / 27.12139°N 80.39500°W / 27.12139; -80.39500
Licensing authority FCC
Public license information: Profile
CDBS
Website wpbf.com

WPBF is the ABC-affiliated television station for the Gold and Treasure Coasts of South Florida. Licensed to Tequesta, it broadcasts a high definition digital signal on UHF channel 16 from a transmitter in Palm City southwest of I-95. Owned by Hearst Television, the station has studios on RCA Boulevard in the Monet section of Palm Beach Gardens. Syndicated programming on WPBF includes: Wheel of Fortune, Jeopardy!, Inside Edition, among others.

History[edit]

Former logo used from 2000 until September 2009.

WPBF first went on-the-air January 1, 1989, owned by Alan Potamkin and the John H. Phipps Company.[1][2] The original plans called for the station to be an Independent. However in mid-1988, CBS (which was due to lose its longtime Miami affiliate WTVJ to NBC) bought Fox affiliate WCIX (now WFOR-TV). That station only provided a Grade B ("rimshot") signal to Fort Lauderdale and Broward County because its transmitter was farther south than the other Miami stations.

CBS persuaded the longtime ABC affiliate in West Palm Beach, WPEC, to switch to CBS in order to get a city-grade signal in Fort Lauderdale. In Fall 1988, ABC made the decision to affiliate with WPBF rather than with former CBS affiliate WTVX, owing to the success of Phipps and Potamkin's other station, WCTV.[3] These changes occurred on the day of WPBF's sign-on. The station had bought a large inventory of classic sitcoms and cartoons but now had no time to air them. It sold this programming to WTVX a couple of months after signing-on when that station shut down its news department.

In 1993, WPBF was sold to Paxson Communications which at the time owned several FM radio stations as well as a few ABC and CBS affiliates. In 1997, Paxson sold their radio stations and network affiliates (including WPBF) in order to finance the acquisition of stations for PAX (now ION Television) with this channel going to the Hearst Corporation.[4] As soon as the transaction was finalized, Hearst handed over control of WPBF to its majority-owned subsidiary, Hearst Television (formerly Hearst-Argyle Television). All Hearst ABC affiliates including WPBF preempted Saving Private Ryan in 2004. The station was one of three ABC affiliates in the state of Florida that preempted the movie.

Digital television[edit]

Digital channels[edit]

The station's digital channel is multiplexed:

Channel Video Aspect PSIP Short Name Programming[5]
25.1 720p 16:9 WPBF-HD Main WPBF programming / ABC
25.2 480i 4:3 WPBF-SD Estrella TV

On WPBF-DT2, Comcast digital channels 208 and 616 is the Spanish network Estrella TV.[6] Previously, WPBF-DT2 was part of The Local AccuWeather Channel and known locally as "Weather First TV". There was also a live video stream of that channel on its website.

Analog-to-digital conversion[edit]

WPBF discontinued regular programming on its analog signal, over UHF channel 25, at 11:59 p.m. 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 16.[7][8] Through the use of PSIP, digital television receivers display the station's virtual channel as its former UHF analog channel 25.

News operation[edit]

Former news open seen weekdays at noon.

Initially, WPBF had a small news department. After being purchased by Paxson Communications, the station added additional newscasts to its schedule. For a long time they struggled with ratings in their own market. This can be attributed to WPLG's very strong over-the-air signal in Palm Beach County and its availability on Comcast throughout the area. In recent months however, WPBF has been making great strides in the ratings and, in the May sweeps period, came in second place for the early weeknight time slots.

NBC affiliate WPTV regularly beats WPBF and WPEC in Nielsen ratings as the most watched in West Palm Beach and South Florida. Following the May 2009 sweeps period, WPTV retained its title as the most-watched television station in the state of Florida based on sign-on to sign-off household ratings in metered markets.

On July 12, 2006, it started airing a half-hour newscast called Weather First at 4 on weekdays becoming the first station in West Palm Beach to do so. While the main intention of the new broadcast was to cover West Palm Beach area weather, news updates and headlines were added after a short time. This production is streamed live on their website. On July 17, 2006, WPBF added thirty minutes to its weekday morning show which began airing at 5:30. It became a full two-hour broadcast on January 28, 2008. The station debuted a new traffic reporting system featuring data from Traffic.com on February 14 that included a new traffic segment, "Beat the Traffic", seen on weekdays.

Expansion of local news continued with the launch of a weekend morning newscast on March 8. On August 18, 2008, WPBF began broadcasting a broadcast at noon during the week which is also streamed live on its website. On September 14, 2009, the station debuted a new logo, set, and graphics package while expanding the 4 p.m. newscast to an hour. WPBF dropped weeknight newscasts in the 5 p.m. hour to make room for Dr. Phil which had moved to the station from WPTV; that change has since been reverted, as of September 12, 2011, The Dr. Oz Show replaced the 4 p.m. newscast.

Until October 4, 2010, WPBF was the only channel in the West Palm Beach market that did not offer newscasts in high definition or even 16:9 enhanced definition widescreen. However, WPBF was operating HD-ready studios and field cameras for its broadcasts. The shows were displayed in pillarboxed 4:3 standard definition while showing the station's logo and "HD" in the left and right thirds of the screen. On October 4 starting with the weeknight 4 p.m. newscast, WPBF started broadcasting local news in high definition. Upon the upgrade, it began using an updated music package and slightly revised HD graphics previously used by sister station WESH in Orlando. In December 2012 WPBF upgraded their graphics package to the new Hearst Television graphics along with new music and talent opens. However like another sister station, KSBW in Salinas, California, HD is not mentioned in the news openings. WPBF will also continue to display HD in the left and right thirds of the screen when video footage is shown in 4:3 standard definition. The station does not currently operate a sports department which is unusual for a big three network channel.

Newscast titles[edit]

  • NewsCenter 25 (1989–1995)
  • PBF News (1995–1999)
  • WPBF Eyewitness News 25 (1999–2004)
  • WPBF News 25 (2004–2009)
  • WPBF 25 News (2009–present)

Station slogans[edit]

  • "The Area's Most Honored News Team" (1989–1999)
  • "If It's WPBF-TV, It Must Be ABC" (1992–1993; localized version of ABC ad campaign)
  • "Your Local News Source" (1999–2004)
  • "Where You Come First" (2004–2006)
  • "Weather First" (2006–2009)
  • "The Fastest Growing Local News Station" (2009–2011)
  • "Live. Local. Late Breaking." (2012-present)

Newscast Schedule[edit]

Weekdays
  • WPBF 25 News Mornings - 4:30-7:00 a.m.
  • WPBF 25 News at Noon - 12:00-12:30 p.m.
  • WPBF 25 News at 5:00 - 5:00-5:30 p.m.
  • WPBF 25 News at 5:30 - 5:30-6:00 p.m.
  • WPBF 25 News at 6:00 - 6:00-6:30 p.m.
  • WPBF 25 News at 11:00 - 11:00-11:35 p.m.
Saturdays
  • WPBF 25 News Mornings - 5:00-7:00 a.m.
  • WPBF 25 News Mornings - 8:00-9:00 a.m.
  • WPBF 25 News at 6:30 - 6:30-7:00 p.m.
  • WPBF 25 News at 11:00 - 11:00-11:35 p.m.
Sundays
  • WPBF 25 News Mornings - 5:00-7:00 a.m.
  • WPBF 25 News Mornings - 8:00-9:00 a.m.
  • WPBF 25 News at 6:30 - 6:30-7:00 p.m.
  • WPBF 25 News at 11:00 - 11:00 p.m.-12:00 a.m.

News team[edit]

Anchors

  • Tiffany Kenney - weeknights at 5:00, 5:30, 6:00 and 11:00 p.m.
  • Todd McDermott - weeknights at 5:00, 5:30, 6:00 and 11:00 p.m.
  • Paul LaGrone - weekday mornings (5:00-7:00 a.m.) and weekdays at noon
  • Stephanie Berzinski - weekday mornings (4:30-5:00 a.m.); also weekday traffic reporter
  • Erin Guy - weekends at 6:30 and 11:00 p.m.; also weeknight reporter
  • Felicia Rodriguez - weekday mornings (5:00-7:00 a.m.) and weekdays at noon
  • Chris Emma - weekend mornings (5:00-7:00 and 8:00-9:00 a.m.)

WPBF 25 First Alert Weather

  • Mike Lyons (NWA Seal of Approval) - severe weather expert; weeknights at 5:00, 5:30, 6:00 and 11:00 p.m.
  • Cris Martinez (AMS Certified Broadcast Meteorologist Seal of Approval) - meteorologist, weekdays at 5:00 and 5:30 p.m.
  • Sandra Shaw - meteorologist; weekday mornings (4:30-7:00 a.m.) and weekdays at noon
  • Taylor Grenda - meteorologist; weekends

Reporters

  • Aixa Diaz - weekday morning Washington Bureau reporter (4:30-7:00 a.m.)
  • Erin Guy - general assignment reporter
  • Nikole Killion - Washington Bureau reporter
  • Sally Kidd - Washington Bureau reporter
  • Terri Parker - investigative reporter
  • Angela Rozier - general assignment reporter
  • Ted White - general assignment reporter
  • Ari Hait - general assignment reporter
  • Chris McGrath - general assignment reporter
  • Randy Gyllenhaal - general assignment reporter

References[edit]

External links[edit]