|Branding||Fox 51 (general)
Fox 51 News (news)
|Slogan||It's First, It's Fast|
|Channels||Digital: 31 (UHF)
Virtual: 51 (PSIP)
|Subchannels||51.1 Fox in HD
51.2 MyNetworkTV in SD
|Translators||KFXL-LD 29 Lufkin|
|Owner||White Knight Broadcasting
(Warwick Communications, Inc.)
|Operator||Nexstar Broadcasting Group|
|First air date||September 9, 1984|
|Call letters' meaning||KFXK: FoX
KFXL: FoX Low Powered or FoX Lufkin
|Sister station(s)||KETK-TV, KTPN-LD|
|Former callsigns||KLMG-TV (1984–1991)|
|Former channel number(s)||Analog:
51 (UHF, 1984–2009)
|Transmitter power||1,000 kW|
|Public license information:||Profile
KFXK-TV, virtual channel 51 (UHF digital channel 31), is a Fox-affiliated television station serving Tyler, Texas, United States that is licensed to Longview. The station is owned by White Knight Broadcasting, and is a sister station to MyNetworkTV affiliate KTPN-LD (channel 48); the Nexstar Broadcasting Group, which owns NBC affiliate KETK-TV (channel 56), operates KFXK under a local marketing agreement. All three stations share studio facilities located on Richmond Road (near Texas Loop 323) in Tyler; KFXK maintains transmitter facilities located near FM 125 in rural northwestern Rusk County (northwest of New London).
Syndicated programs broadcast by KFXK-TV include How I Met Your Mother, The Office, Steve Harvey, Divorce Court, Modern Family, The Big Bang Theory and Two and a Half Men. On cable, the station is available on Suddenlink channel 12 and Longview Cable Television channel 8. There is a high definition feed offered on Suddenlink digital channel 705 and Longview Cable Television digital channel 235.
Although KFXK operates a full-power signal, the broadcasting radius does not reach much of the southern part of the market. Therefore, the station's signal is relayed on low-power translator station KFXL-LD (channel 29) in Lufkin.
The station first signed on the air on September 9, 1984 as KLMG-TV; the station originally operated as a CBS affiliate, making it the first full-time affiliate of the network in the Tyler-Longview market since KTVE (channel 32) – the first television station to sign on in the market – shut down in 1955; that station was hampered by low viewership as only a small percentage of East Texas area television sets were capable of receiving UHF stations since set manufacturers were not required to equip televisions with UHF tuners until the Federal Communications Commission passed the All-Channel Receiver Act in 1961, with UHF tuners not being included on all newer sets until 1964. Until channel 51 signed on, CBS programming was relegated to joint primary status on KLTV (channel 7), which also juggled programming with NBC and ABC (the latter of which is now that station's sole affiliation) for many years.
KLMG-TV made national news as its founding owner, Clara McLaughlin, was the first African American woman ever to own a television station in the United States. McLaughlin bought a vacant school building located near Interstate 20 in Longview and had it renovated into a studio facility for the station. KLMG was intended to be part of a network of stations serving East Texas that would be known as the "East Texas Television Network." To this end, McLaughlin also held construction permits for KLNL on channel 19 in Nacogdoches, KLPH-TV on channel 42 in Paris, and KLDS on channel 20 in Denison. However, this plan did not come to fruition and none of the other stations ever signed on the air. KLMG wound up filing for bankruptcy just a few years later, and shut down its news department.
In April 1991, the station changed its call letters to KFXK; it also became the market's Fox affiliate; prior to the switch, viewers in the Tyler-Longview market were only able to receive Fox programming via either the network's Dallas owned-and-operated station KDAF (now a CW affiliate) or Shreveport affiliate KMSS-TV. Conversely, the switch left the market without a CBS affiliate for the next thirteen years; Max Media would later purchase KLSB (channel 19), a satellite of NBC affiliate KETK-TV (channel 56), and converted it into CBS affiliate KYTX (KETK later signed on a low-power station on UHF channel 53, which assumed the KLSB call letters (which were later changed to KETK-LP) to serve as its repeater until it shut down in 2012). By 1998, KFXK had signed on KFXL as a translator serving the Lufkin-Nacogdoches area. In January 2013, KFXL-LD migrated its operations to KETK and KFXK's studio facility in Tyler.
On April 24, 2013, the Communications Corporation of America announced the sale of its television stations, including KETK-TV, to the Nexstar Broadcasting Group. KFXK and KTPN was planned be sold to Nexstar partner company Mission Broadcasting; in the case of KFXK, that station is being sold to Mission to comply with FCC duopoly rules. But on August 5, 2014, Mission withdrew its application to acquire KFXK. Nexstar will continue to operate KFXK and KLPN under a shared services agreement with sister station KETK. The sale was completed on January 1, 2015.
|Channel||Video||Aspect||PSIP Short Name||Programming|
|51.1||720p||16:9||KFXK-DT||Main KFXK-TV programming / Fox|
|51.2||480i||4:3||KLPN-TV||Simulcast of KTPN-LD|
|51.3||480i||4:3||Escape||Escape (TV network)|
|51.4||480i||4:3||Laff||Laff (TV network)|
KFXK launched a full-power digital signal on UHF channel 31 on July 30, 2006, the station began testing high definition broadcasts of Fox programming on October 20, 2006, with Fox programs broadcasting in that format full-time five days later on October 25. On February 1, 2008, Longview Cable Television added KFXK's HD feed and KLPN-LP on digital cable channels 250 and 252.
KFXK-TV shut down its analog signal, over UHF channel 51, 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 31, using PSIP to display the station's virtual channel as its former UHF analog channel 51.
KETK-TV produces 12½ hours of locally produced newscasts each week (with 2½ hours on weekdays) for Fox-affiliated sister station KFXK-TV. As a CBS affiliate, the station made two attempts at producing local newscasts; both were subsequently canceled. In 1998, KETK-TV began producing a weeknight 9:00 p.m. newscast for KFXK under a news share agreement; the program was the first primetime newscast in the Tyler-Longview market. The newscast initially received strong ratings, garnering a 3 share in only a month and a half of its debut, however, ratings fell subsequently after its original anchors left the station. The newscast was plagued with logistical problems, when Fox Sports programming scheduled during primetime hours resulted in the delay of the newscast, causing KFXK to air the program on a tape delay to allow KETK to produce its own 10:00 p.m. newscast on schedule. This occasionally led to the same meteorologist being seen on both stations simultaneously, causing some viewer confusion and giving away the fact that the KFXK newscast was not always live every night. This, coupled with the declining ratings, eventually caused station management to cancel the newscast.
KETK restored a primetime newscast on KFXK on January 28, 2008, with the debut of a half-hour 9:00 p.m. newscast (titled Fox News East Texas), which airs only on Monday through Friday evenings. On April 23, 2010, KETK became the second television station in the Tyler-Longview market (after KYTX) to begin broadcasting its local newscasts in high definition; the KFXK newscasts were included in the upgrade. KETK reportedly planned on producing a two-hour weekday morning newscast for channel 51 (to be titled Good Day East Texas), which would have debuted at the same time; a morning newscast did not debut on the station until September 2011, when the station launched a two-hour weekday newscast from 7:00 to 9:00 a.m. (titled Fox 51 Today).
- Application Info, CDBS Public Access, Federal Communications Commission, Retrieved 6 December 2014.
- Consummation Notice, CDBS Public Access, Federal Communications Commission, Retrieved 6 January 2015.
- RabbitEars TV Query for KFXK
- "DTV Tentative Channel Designations for the First and Second Rounds" (PDF). Retrieved 2012-03-24.