Soul of the South Television
|Type||Regional Broadcast Network|
First air date
|May 27, 2013|
|Availability||Over the air|
|Motto||This is Home|
|Headquarters||Little Rock, Arkansas|
|Parent||SSN Media Group, LP|
Soul of the South Television (sometimes referred to as SSN TV) is an African-American-focused regional broadcast network owned by SSN Media Group, LP. It primarily broadcasts in the Southern United States and secondarily in other high African-American populated cities in the north.
SSN TV uses the C.A.S.H. (Central Automated Satellite Hub) system, and a computer server “cloud-based system” originally constructed by the defunct Equity Broadcasting to send its feed to its affiliated stations. It sought affiliations from full power television stations, Class A TV, low power TV stations, digital subchannels and cable outlets.
Soul of the South announced plans to rename the network to Slang TV by the end of the year 2019, but as of January 2020, it has never been changed.
SSN TV was founded in 2011 by Edwin Avent, Carl McCaskill and Larry Morton. It purchased assets from the bankrupted Equity Media Holdings including the studio and production facilities of KKYK-TV and the C.A.S.H. system. It was planning to broadcast five hours of news per day with assistance from Independent News Network with four regional bureaus. It was also seeking to purchase TV stations. Expected original programming was: a hip hop music show; family reunion-featured programming; Drum Majors, concerning music at mostly black colleges; Radioface, an unscripted comedy; and Southern Soul Stories, a documentary series about southern African-American icons and southern events.
By April 2012, SSN TV was working to get additional affiliates to reach 50 markets for a two wave launch.
Originally planned to launch in the first quarter of 2012 and moved to fall 2012, SSN TV instead launched on May 27, 2013, with an announced 30 market launch. However, according to RabbitEars.info, it only has 11 broadcast affiliates covering 14% of the nation.
In April 2015, SSN TV began dropping affiliates due to financial distress and began winding down operations. The network's social media channels had largely gone defunct in late 2015. By this time, it aired infomercials, reruns of D.C. Breakdown, and Independent Network News newscasts during the day.
In 2018, SSN TV was purchased by a group of investors led by Doug McHenry. In that same year, the network gained cable coverage on Comcast and Frontier's cable lineups. In April 2019, McHenry announced SSN TV would rebrand as Slang TV by the end of the year, with a shift to a schedule mainly featuring current-day African-American films. At the same time, HC2 Station Group, Inc. inked an affiliation deal with the refreshed network to bring the network to 29 new markets, covering 44% of the network's demographic.
|City of license||Station call letters||Channel location||FCC Licensee|
|Montgomery, AL||WDSF-LD||19.5||HC2 Station Group, Inc.|
|Chicago, IL||WRJK-LD||22.7||Major Market Broadcasting|
|Baton Rouge, LA||WLFT-CD||30.1||Red Stick Broadcasting|
|Rochester, MN||KWJM-LD||15.2||HC2 Station Group, Inc.|
|City of license||Station call letters||Channel location||FCC Licensee||Replacement|
|Atlanta, GA||WUEO-LD||49.2||HC2 Station Group, Inc.||Cheddar|
|Atlantic City, NJ||WMCN-TV||44.2||WRNN Philly, LLC.||Tuff TV|
|Austin, TX||KVAT-LD||17||Mako Communications||MiCasa Network|
|Baltimore, MD||WQAW-LD||69.4||HC2 Station Group, Inc.||Cheddar|
|Baton Rouge, LA||WLFT-CD||30.4||Touch Family Broadcasting||dark (SSN broadcasting returned to WLFT 30.1 in September 2021)|
|Beaumont, TX||KUMY-LD||22||Minority Broadcasting Company||Mexicanal|
|Canton, OH||WQDI-LD||20.3||HC2 Station Group, Inc.||Cheddar|
|Charlotte, NC||WHEH-LD||41.2||HC2 Station Group, Inc.||Lx|
|Columbus, OH||WCSN-LD||32.7||Columbus Television, LLC.||Youtoo America|
|Dallas, TX||KPFW-LD||18.1||HC2 Station Group, Inc.||Infomercials|
|Dayton, OH||WRCX-LP||40.1||Ross Communications Ltd.||AMG TV & Jewelry Television|
|Detroit, MI||WUDL-LD||19.5||HC2 Station Group, Inc.||QVC2|
|Dover, DE||WMDE||36.1||Western Pacific Broadcast LLC.||Infomercials|
|WHNE-LD||14.1||Tait Broadcasting||Station ID slate, later LATV|
|Fort Walton, FL||WPAN||40.1||Franklin & Hoynacki Communications, LLC.||Vibrant TV Network|
|Hartford, CT||WRNT-LD||32.2||HC2 Station Group, Inc.||getTV|
|Houston, TX||KEHO-LD||32.3||HC2 Station Group, Inc.||3ABN|
|Indianapolis, IN||WSDI-LD||30.5||HC2 Station Group, Inc.||Sonlife|
|Jackson, TN||WYJJ-LD||27.1||DTV America Corporation||Antenna TV|
(MyNetworkTV still secondary)
|Jacksonville, FL||WTLV-TV||12.2||Multimedia Holdings Company
|Kansas City, MO||KCMN-LD||42.7||DTV America Corporation||3ABN|
|Lafayette||KXKW KLWB||32.1/50.3||Wilderness Communications/Delta Media Corporation||32.1 ThisTV (Note: This TV was moved to 32.2 when Soul of the South Launched on KXKW but was put back in its original place when SSN was dropped in 2014. 32.2 KXKW is currently Antenna TV.)|
|Little Rock, AR||KKYK-CD||30.1||KYMA, LLC||Telemundo|
|Live Oak, Fl||WFXU||57.1||Budd Broadcasting||Retro TV|
|Los Angeles, CA||KHIZ-LD||39.6||HC2 Station Group, Inc.||Silent|
|KATA-CD||50.1||Mako Communications||Shop LC|
|Milwaukee, WI||WMKE-CD||21.1||KM LPTV of Milwaukee, LLC.||Rev'n|
|Milwaukee, WI||WTSJ-LD||38.4||HC2 Station Group, Inc.||Independent|
|Missouri City, TX
|Nashville, TN||WJDE-CD||31.2||Word Broadcasting Network||The Country Network|
|Nashville, TN||WKUW-LD||40.3||HC2 Station Group, Inc.||Independent|
|New York, NY||WDVB-CD||23.2||LocusPoint WDVB Licensee, LLC.||American Sports Network|
|Orlando, FL||WZXZ-CD||36.1||L4 Media Group, LLC.||Infomercials|
|Philadelphia, PA||WZPA-LD||33.1||Mako Communications||Silent|
|Raleigh/Durham, NC||WIRP-LD||27.6||HC2 Station Group, Inc.||Infomercials|
|Sacramento, CA||KFMS-LD||47.1||HC2 Station Group, Inc.||3ABN|
|Santa Isabel, PR||W18DQ-D||18.1||TV Red de Puerto Rico, Inc.||Antenna TV|
|St. Louis, MO||WODK-LD||45.1||HC2 Station Group, Inc.||Infomercials|
|Vicksburg, MS||WLOO||35.2||Tougaloo College||Heroes & Icons|
|Washington, D.C.||WWTD-LD||49.1||DC Broadcasting, Inc.||MBC|
(West Palm Beach)
|West Monroe, LA||KMCT-TV||39.4||First Assembly of God of West Monroe||Silent|
|WMGM-TV||40.1||LocusPoint Networks||Sonlife Broadcasting Network|
SSN Funding, LP
|Soul of the South|
|Founded||Little Rock, Arkansas (2011)|
Number of locations
|Divisions||Southern Soul Broadcasting|
Soul of the South Television
|Subsidiaries||SSN Networks, Inc.|
SSN Funding, LP, also known as SSN Media Group, SOS Media Holdings, and doing business as Soul of the South, is a limited partnership that owns SSN Networks, Southern Soul Broadcasting and Soul of the South Television, as well as formerly owning Media Gateway (Gateway Media Technologies after its founding, then SSN Gateway Media Technologies upon its acquisition by Soul of the South; gained its current name upon sale by Soul of the South). The institutional investors include Arkansas Development Finance Authority, Arkansas Economic Development Commission, and Arkansas Capital Corporation.
SSN Funding purchased the former Equity Plaza building from One Bank & Trust in December 2013 for the Soul of the South businesses. In May 2014, the building ownership moved from SSN Funding to Rock City Media LLC. Rock City Media was "a funding vehicle to support Soul of the South’s tax-credit financial package". By April 2006, the FBI started looking into the flow of government money into the Soul of the South venture.
Southern Soul Broadcasting
Southern Soul Broadcasting is the station operating unit operating stations in Chicago, Philadelphia, Tallahassee, Montgomery, Jackson, MS, Raleigh, NC, and its Little Rock full power flagship station.
In February 2015, KM LPTV, which operates stations in Chicago and Milwaukee, filed a lawsuit claiming breach of contract and not making required payments.
Media Gateway (formerly Gateway Media Technologies, then SSN Gateway Media Technologies) is a TV outsourcing company owned by Matthew Davidge. The company provides TV control panel and newscasts.
Media Gateway had 60 television stations, three TV networks and two radio network as clients as of June 2017. Two out of the three TV networks are Youtoo America (formerly America One) and Soul of the South Network.
Jeffrey Lyle was chief technology officer for Soul of the South and co-owner of SSN Media Gateway, LLC with Dr. Sev Hrywnak of Chicago, an entrepreneurial podiatrist; Edwin Avent and two Little Rock businessman long-associated with the property, Larry Morton and Greg Fess. By June 2015, SSN Gateway Media Technologies had acquired Independent News Network. At that time, INN had hired Anne Imanuel, the wife of Mike Preston, the new director of the Arkansas Economic Development Commission, as an anchor. The commission had a past due loan from the Soul of the South company group.
With financial difficulties, SSN Funding partners' ownership interest in SSN Gateway Media Technologies was purchased by Matthew Davidge, owner of client station WRDE, as of February 6, 2016. He also purchased from Rock City Media the former Equity Plaza, where SSN Gateway Media Technologies was based, to continue operation there, while taking over the mortgage. Media Gateway had 12 television stations, three TV networks and a radio network as clients as of June 2016. By June 2017, Gateway increased the number of TV station clients from 12 to 60 and added another radio network.
- "New Network Targeting African Americans to Launch Next Year". Hollywood Reporter. 2011-10-31. Retrieved 2019-07-09.
- "Soul of the South Boosts Carriage over 34%". 24 April 2019.
- Paige Albiniak (2012-04-28). "For TV, black is the new green". Variety. Retrieved 2019-07-09.
- "South Florida Times". Sfltimes.com. Retrieved 2019-07-09.
- [dead link]
- Stations for Network - Soul of the South. RabbitEars.info. Accessed on October 4, 2013.
- "FXFL To Be Carried on ESPN3" (Press release). New York: FXFL. PR Newswire. October 1, 2014. Archived from the original on October 21, 2014. Retrieved October 20, 2014 – via NBC Right Now.
- Beherc, Sean (April 6, 2015). "Soul of the South Mulls 'Winding Down'". Arkansas Business. Retrieved June 20, 2015.
- Mark Miller. "Soul Of The South Boosts Carriage Over 34%". TV News Check. Retrieved 2019-07-09.
- "Soul of the South Network Set to Launch Memorial Day Weekend After Securing Nearly $10 Million Investor Infusion" (Press release). SNN Funding, LP. Marketwired. April 18, 2013. Retrieved July 7, 2016.
- Waldon, George (June 27, 2016). "Media Gateway Emerges From Soul of the South". Arkansas Business. Retrieved July 3, 2016.
- "FBI Peers Into Soul of the South Finances". Little Rock Sun Times. 2016-05-03. Retrieved 2016-07-08.
- Beherc, Sean (February 18, 2015). "Soul of the South Sued for Alleged Breach of Contract". Arkansas Business. Retrieved March 3, 2015.
- Massey, Kyle (June 26, 2017). "Coming to You Live from 1 Shackleford Drive". Arkansas Business. Retrieved July 3, 2017.
- "Matthew Davidge Buys Television and Media Facility at 1 Shackleford Drive, West Little Rock: Media Gateway to Expand, New TV Show "Frixxer" Will Be Based There" (Press release). LITTLE ROCK, Ark.: Media Gateway. PRNewswire. Retrieved 2016-07-06.
- "Soul of the South Network Targeting African-Americans Launches May 27". Hollywood Reporter. 2013-04-18. Retrieved 2016-07-08.
- "AEDC Director's Wife Hired as Anchor for SSN Media". Arkansas Business. Arkansas Business Publishing Group. July 27, 2015. Archived from the original on July 4, 2016. Retrieved July 5, 2016.