|City of license||Tallahassee|
|Branding||ABC 27 HD (general)
WTXL ABC 27 Dedicated To You (newscasts)
|Slogan||Dedicated To You|
|Channels||Digital: 27 (UHF)
Virtual: 27 (PSIP)
27.2 Bounce TV
27.3 24-hour local weather
(WTXL-TV License, LLC)
|First air date||September 16, 1976|
|Sister station(s)||WAAY-TV, WWSB|
|Former callsigns||WECA-TV (1976-1984)|
|Former channel number(s)||Analog:
27 (UHF, 1976-2009)
|Transmitter power||1,000 kW|
WTXL-TV is the ABC-affiliated television station for Tallahassee, Florida and Southwestern Georgia. It broadcasts a high definition digital signal on UHF channel 27 from a transmitter near Fincher, in unincorporated northwestern Jefferson County, Florida, along the Georgia state line. Owned by Calkins Media, WTXL has studios on Commerce Boulevard in Midway, Florida. WTXL ABC 27 can be seen on Comcast Tallahassee Channel 7 and HD Channel 431.
WTXL-TV debuted on September 16, 1976 as WECA-TV owned by local businessman Evans Craig Allen. In the early years, its slogan was "We Can Do It!" which was a play on the call letters. The station was the second commercial station to sign on in the area. Prior to channel 27's arrival, CBS affiliate WCTV had been the sole commercial outlet in the area, and carried ABC in off-hours. Tallahassee had a very long wait for a second station, even though it had been big enough to support at least two stations by the late 1950s and three by the 1960s. However, the Tallahassee market is a very large market geographically, stretching across most of the central Florida Panhandle and much of southwestern Georgia. The only other VHF station in the market is PBS member WFSU-TV. UHF stations do not carry well across large areas, making potential station owners skittish about applying for the available UHF channels in the area. By the 1970s, however, cable had gained enough penetration to make a UHF station viable.
By its fourth year of broadcasting, WECA used the slogan "Up & Coming". Its original studios were on Thomasville Road (U.S. 319/SR 61) in Tallahassee and aired an analog signal on UHF channel 27 from a transmitter northeast of the facilities. In 1984, Allen sold the station to Tallahassee 27 Limited Partnership, led by former Senator Joseph Tydings and former Representative Louis Frey, Jr. The call letters were changed to the current WTXL-TV. The station's history page claims the new owners took over in 1985, but according to Federal Communications Commission (FCC) files, the call letters were changed in 1984.
In 1998, WTXL began to manage and promote a cable-only affiliate of The WB. Known as "WBXT" and originally on-air as "WB 28", it was part of The WB 100+ service. Except for the same call letters being used in a fictional manner, the channel had no relation to Class A MTV2 affiliate WBXT-CA that broadcasts over-the-air. On April 1, 2005, UPN affiliates WFXU/WTLF switched to The WB. UPN promptly signed with WCTV which launched a new second digital subchannel to carry the network. As a result, the "WBXT" operation was shut down.
In 2001, Media Ventures Management (then owner of WTXL) entered into an outsourcing agreement with the Sinclair Broadcast Group who owns NBC affiliate WTWC-TV. Sinclair began to operate this station that merged virtually all of its operations from the original studios to WTWC's facilities on Deer Lake South on March 17, 2002. The arrangement was the first of its kind in the United States. The Southern Broadcast Corporation (now Calkins Media) acquired WTXL's license on November 30, 2005 while the arrangement continued. On February 20, 2006, the partnership between the two stations was dissolved when the Southern Broadcast Corporation gave notice to terminate the agreement with Sinclair. As a result, WTXL moved out of the WTWC building.
After leaving WTWC's facilities, WTXL rented studio space from WFSU-TV on the campus of Florida State University. On June 20, 2006, this station broke ground on new studios in a commercial park in nearby Midway. WTXL fully moved into the new facility in August 2007. Until January 1, 2011, it served as the default ABC affiliate for Albany, Georgia as that area did not have an affiliate of its own. On that date, WALB added ABC to its second digital subchannel.
The station's digital signal is multiplexed:
|Channel||Video||Aspect||PSIP Short Name||Programming|
|27.1||720p||16:9||WTXL-HD||Main WTXL-TV programming / ABC|
|27.3||ABC 27 Weather NOW (24-hour local weather)|
The station's broadcasts have been digital-only since February 17, 2009.
WTXL has traditilonally been a distant runner up in the ratings to longtime dominant WCTV. WTWC has never been a contender in the market because its two attempts to air local newscasts were both unsuccessful. The second news department operated by that station was ultimately shuttered due to poor viewership and budget cuts. As a result of the outsourcing agreement between WTXL and WTWC, this outlet produced some limited newscast programming on the latter. Specifically, the station's on-air team provided the NBC affiliate with weekday morning local news and weather cut-ins seen at 7:27 and 8:26 during Today. There were also news and weather briefs aired weeknights at 5:58 and 6:28. In addition, there was severe weather coverage presented when conditions warranted.
On January 15, 2000 through a news share arrangement, WTXL began producing a weeknight prime time broadcast for "WBXT" called WB 28 News at 10. Airing for thirty minutes, the show was seen exclusively on Comcast systems and billed as the market's only local show seen in the 10 p.m. time slot. Since the WB station periodically changed channels locations on area cable systems, the name was changed to reflect this. It was later called WB 11 News at 10 and then WB 6 News at 10. The "WBXT" newscast produced by WTXL was eventually canceled in September 2003.
In August 2007 after assuming operations independent of WTWC, WTXL debuted a new set from brand new state-of-the-art studios built on Commerce Boulevard featuring the same design scheme as sister station WAAY-TV. At the same time, this outlet became the first television station in the market to upgrade local newscasts to high definition level. Corresponding with the launch of Bounce TV on WTXL-DT2, the market's only weeknight local newscast in early prime time was added to the subchannel's schedule. The show, known as Bounce TV News at 7, could be seen for thirty minutes featuring a separate graphics package and music theme. The broadcast was dropped after its October 25, 2013 airing.Template:Citaton needed
- "1980 WTXL logo and slogan (bottom of page)". mcsittel.com.
- Collins, Lois M. (2014-11-28). "Tallahassee News | ABC 27 WTXL: Dedicated to you!". Wtxl.tv. Retrieved 2014-12-02.
- Romano, Allison (March 29, 2005). "Pegasus wins OK for Tallahassee TV pair". Broadcasting & Cable. Retrieved July 24, 2010.
- "Sinclair Press release regarding WTWC/WTXL outsourcing agreement" (PDF). sbgi.net (Press release). 1 October 2001.
- http://www.craini2i.com/em/archive.mv?count=3&story=em421356243792469710[dead link]
- "Tallahassee Democrat | Tallahassee news, sports, entertainment and classifieds. Serving Tallahassee, Florida | Tallahassee.com". Tdo.com. Retrieved 2014-12-02.
- "Wakulla: Did you hear? | Tallahassee Democrat". tallahassee.com. 2006-06-28. Retrieved 2014-12-02.
- http://www.craini2i.com/em/archive.mv?count=3&story=em170175569997799672[dead link]