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WLIW logo 2011.svg
Garden City - New York City
United States
City Garden City, New York
Branding WLIW 21
Slogan New York Public Television
Channels Digital: 21 (UHF)
Virtual: 21 (PSIP)
Owner WNET.org
First air date January 14, 1969; 48 years ago (1969-01-14)
Call letters' meaning Long Island West
Sister station(s) WNET, NJTV
Former channel number(s)
  • Analog:
  • 21 (UHF, 1969–2009)
  • Digital:
  • 22 (UHF, 1999–2009)
Former affiliations
  • NET (1969–1970)
  • NBC (2001; temporarily fed from WNBC in wake of Sept. 11 attacks)
Transmitter power 89.9 kW
Height 111 m
Facility ID 38336
Transmitter coordinates 40°47′20.4″N 73°27′7.1″W / 40.789000°N 73.451972°W / 40.789000; -73.451972Coordinates: 40°47′20.4″N 73°27′7.1″W / 40.789000°N 73.451972°W / 40.789000; -73.451972
Licensing authority FCC
Public license information: Profile
Website WLIW.org

WLIW, channel 21, is a non-commercial educational public television station licensed to Garden City, New York, USA which serves as a secondary Public Broadcasting Service (PBS) station for the New York City television market. WLIW is owned by the New York City-based WNET.org (formerly the Educational Broadcasting Corporation), and is a sister station to both New York City's primary PBS member station, Newark, New Jersey-licensed WNET (channel 13), and the regional NJTV network. WLIW is the third-most watched public television station in the United States.[1]

WLIW's main studios and transmitter are located in Plainview on Long Island, while its operations are housed at WNET's studios in Lincoln Center.


WLIW's transmitter tower, adjacent to its studios in Plainview, New York, June 2010.

The station first signed on the air on January 14, 1969, and was originally operated by the Long Island Educational Television Council. In February 2003, the Long Island Educational Television Council merged with the Educational Broadcasting Corporation (the present-day WNET.org), combining WLIW's operations with those of WNET. The Long Island Educational Television Council was retained as WLIW's governing board and fundraising arm.

WLIW logo, used from 2005 to 2009.

WLIW promotes itself as a more locally oriented station than WNET, as evidenced by its on-air moniker of "New York Public Television." However, it is a major producer of national PBS and American Public Television programming in its own right. Among its more prominent shows are the innovative Visions series and many music specials featuring noted American performers like Frank Sinatra, Billy Joel, Neil Sedaka, Ricky Nelson and international stars like Helmut Lotti and Sarah Brightman. Regular hosts of these specials produced for PBS include Laura Savini, Terrel Cass, Mark Simone, David Rubinson and Lisa Jandovitz.

Its former identity which debuted in 2005, its color palette and on-air graphics, were designed and conceived by Trollback + Company. It was the station's first corporate branding initiative since its launch in 1969. In 2009, WLIW unified its branding with its sister WNET, adopting a similar logo, but in a blue color scheme rather than WNET's red, but keeping the "WLIW 21" brand name; it did, however, carry over the dotted "i" from the WNET logo. It rolled out a new logo in 2012, removing the dotted "i."


Public television programming presented by WLIW include Live from the Artists Den, Front and Center and Consuelo Mack WealthTrack.

Digital television[edit]

Digital channels[edit]

The station's digital channel is multiplexed:

Channel Video Aspect PSIP Short Name Programming[2]
21.1 1080i 16:9 WLIW-DT Main WLIW programming / PBS
21.2 480i CREATE Create
21.3 WORLD World

Analog-to-digital conversion[edit]

WLIW discontinued regular programming on its analog signal, over UHF channel 21, on June 12, 2009, as part of the federally mandated transition from analog to digital television.[3] The station's digital signal relocated from its pre-transition UHF channel 22 to channel 21.


External links[edit]