WUCF-TV

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WUCF-TV
WUCFTV.png
Orlando, Florida
City of licenseOrlando, Florida, United States
BrandingWUCF
SloganCentral Florida's PBS
ChannelsDigital: 23 (UHF)
Virtual: 24 (PSIP)
Subchannels24.1 PBS-HD
24.2 Create
24.3 PBS World
24.4 V-me
AffiliationsPBS (1965-2011, 2012-present)
OwnerUniversity of Central Florida
(University of Central Florida)
First air dateStation:
March 15, 1965
WUCF intellectual unit:
July 1, 2011 (via WBCC)
Call letters' meaningUniversity of
Central
Florida
Sister station(s)WUCF-FM
Former callsignsWMFE-TV (1965–2012)
Former channel number(s)Analog:
24 (VHF, 1965–2009)
Former affiliationsNET (1965–1970)
PBS (1970-2011)
V-me (as a primary affiliate, 2011–2012)
Transmitter power950 kw
Height380.1 m
Facility ID12855
Transmitter coordinates28°36′8″N 81°5′37″W / 28.60222°N 81.09361°W / 28.60222; -81.09361
Websitewww.wucftv.org
 
  (Redirected from WMFE-TV)
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WUCF-TV
WUCFTV.png
Orlando, Florida
City of licenseOrlando, Florida, United States
BrandingWUCF
SloganCentral Florida's PBS
ChannelsDigital: 23 (UHF)
Virtual: 24 (PSIP)
Subchannels24.1 PBS-HD
24.2 Create
24.3 PBS World
24.4 V-me
AffiliationsPBS (1965-2011, 2012-present)
OwnerUniversity of Central Florida
(University of Central Florida)
First air dateStation:
March 15, 1965
WUCF intellectual unit:
July 1, 2011 (via WBCC)
Call letters' meaningUniversity of
Central
Florida
Sister station(s)WUCF-FM
Former callsignsWMFE-TV (1965–2012)
Former channel number(s)Analog:
24 (VHF, 1965–2009)
Former affiliationsNET (1965–1970)
PBS (1970-2011)
V-me (as a primary affiliate, 2011–2012)
Transmitter power950 kw
Height380.1 m
Facility ID12855
Transmitter coordinates28°36′8″N 81°5′37″W / 28.60222°N 81.09361°W / 28.60222; -81.09361
Websitewww.wucftv.org

WUCF-TV is a Public Broadcasting Service television station serving the Central Florida television market. The station, operated by the University of Central Florida, is the region's sole PBS member station, reaching an estimated population of 4.6 million people in its aerial viewing area.[1][2]

Channel 24 had previously been WMFE-TV, the main ETV and PBS outlet for Central Florida from 1965 to 2011, when then-owner Community Communications dropped PBS programming in preparation for a sale. In response, the University of Central Florida (UCF) and Brevard Community College (BCC) partnered to approve the creation of WUCF-TV, a new PBS station to serve the Central Florida market. The station operated on the primary digital channel of BCC's PBS station, WBCC.[3][4] Days after the agreement was reached to replace WMFE, Daytona Beach PBS station WDSC-TV announced that it would cease its affiliation with PBS due to financial hardship, leaving WUCF as the only PBS affiliate in Central Florida.[5] In 2012, PBS programming returned to WMFE, as the station's ownership announced that it would sell all of the station's assets, except the studio facilities, to UCF for $3.3 million.[6] In September 2012, WMFE was relaunched as WUCF following approval from the Federal Communications Commission (FCC).[7][8]

WUCF-TV is co-owned with WUCF-FM, Central Florida's secondary National Public Radio station, by the University of Central Florida.[3]

History[edit]

WMFE-TV (1965–2012)[edit]

In 1963, the public school systems of Orange, Volusia, Lake, Osceola, Seminole, Brevard and Flagler counties formed Florida Central East Coast Educational Television with the goal of winning the license for channel 24. In the meantime, WDBO-TV (now WKMG-TV) and WLOF-TV (now WFTV) donated air time for educational Spanish-language and Florida history programs produced by the group.

WMFE-TV finally went on the air on March 15, 1965 from the campus of Mid-Florida Tech. After only two years of operation, Orange County Public Schools became the sole operator of the station. In the early 1970s, the school district sold the station to Community Communications, a non-profit organization that would continue to operate the station for nearly four decades. In 1978, WMFE moved to the Union Park neighborhood east of Orlando, on the corner of SR 50 and O'Berry Hoover Road at the studios previously used by defunct independent station WSWB-TV.[9][10]

In Fall 2010, Community Communications indicated it was suffering financial hardships that had led to furloughs.[11][12] On April 1, 2011, WMFE announced that it would sell the station due to these financial difficulties and "critical uncertainties in federal and state funding".[13] After WMFE-TV disaffiliated from PBS, V-me became the station's primary programming.[14] After a year of unsuccessfully attempting to completing the sale of WMFE to Daystar Television Network, WMFE ended the plan sale, saying "the current deal we had in place was being drawn out longer than we anticipated" and that "The market conditions have changed in a favorable way to be able to pursue other options for WMFE."[15]

WUCF-TV (2011–present)[edit]

When news spread of the sale of WMFE in 2011, a campaign was undertaken by local residents and students at UCF to try and keep an active PBS station in the Orlando market.[16][17] On May 26, 2011, the UCF Board of Trustees approved a partnership with BCC to create WUCF-TV, the new primary PBS station for Central Florida. The new station leased the primary digital channel of WBCC, the PBS outlet owned by Brevard Community College, and operated from WBCC's facilities. However, BCC retained its license and the WBCC call letters.[3] On June 2, PBS approved the creation of WUCF and announced that it would become Central Florida's primary PBS channel.[18] The new station became the Orlando market's only PBS station, as WDSC-TV in Daytona Beach left PBS on July 1, concurrent with WMFE's departure from PBS and the launch of WUCF.[19]

On June 21, 2012, Community Communications - the owners of WMFE - announced that it planned to sell all of WMFE-TV's assets, except the studio facilities, to UCF, allowing channel 24 to resume its status as Central Florida's PBS outlet.[20] In August 2012, the FCC approved the sale of WMFE's license to UCF. UCF formally took control of channel 24 on September 26 and changed its call letters to WUCF-TV. The purchase of WMFE's license by UCF dissolved WUCF's partnership with BCC, and in November 2012, UCF completed the move of the WUCF-TV call letters and intellectual unit to the stronger channel 24.[8]

Programming[edit]

WUCF-TV currently airs PBS programming, such as PBS NewsHour and Nova, and has plans to add local content and university-related programs.[4] The station will also air seven hours of PBS Kids daily.[21] However, as of recently, the station currently airs a full twelve hours of PBS Kids just as WUCF's predecessor, WMFE-TV, had done.[citation needed]

Digital channels[edit]

WUCF's digital channel is multiplexed, airing PBS-HD programming. V-me was part of the multiplex since WMFE's involvement of channel 24.

ChannelVideoAspectProgramming
24.11080i16:9Main WUCF-TV programming / PBS
24.2480i4:3Create
24.3PBS World
24.4V-me

Previously, other digital subchannels offered by WMFE included WMFE Encore!, which featured second runs of popular PBS programs from 6AM to 7PM and local government programs 7PM to Midnight; and WMFE ED, which was available 6AM to 7PM, featuring educational programs for schools from the Florida Knowledge Network on weekdays, and PBS Kids programs on weekends. These subchannels ceased on July 1, 2011 after WMFE's contract with PBS expired due to its pending sale to Daystar, which at that point WMFE-TV carried V-me on all three subchannels, with the 24.1 signal remaining in HD despite V-me only being operated in standard definition. Under WMFE's control, the station's transmitter was off the air from 12 Midnight to 7AM, with Bright House carrying PBS programming via satellite during this time in WMFE's cable slot.

At WBCC, WUCF-TV also offered UCF-TV, which featured original content, such as university sporting events, as well as partnership programs.[22][citation needed] This was discontinued following WUCF's move to channel 24 in November 2012.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Combined populations of Orange, Osceola, Seminole, Lake, Brevard, Marion, Sumter, Flagler, Volusia, Putnam, Polk, Highlands, Okeechobee and Indian River counties according to the 2010 United States Census.
  2. ^ "WUCF Q&A". WUCF. Retrieved June 30, 2011. 
  3. ^ a b c "PBS to play on WUCF in Orlando". Orlando Sentinel. 2011-05-26. Retrieved 2011-05-26. 
  4. ^ a b "UCF board approves WUCF TV station". Orlando Business Journal. 2011-05-26. Retrieved 2011-05-26. 
  5. ^ Bodeker, Hal (June 17, 2011). "PBS: Daytona Beach station will stop PBS lineup July 1". The Orlando Sentinel. Retrieved June 20, 2011. 
  6. ^ "WMFE Plans to Sell TV License to UCF". WMFE Plans to Sell TV License to UCF. June 21, 2011. Retrieved June 23, 2012. 
  7. ^ "Orlando TV history: WMFE TV becomes WUCF TV". Orlando Sentinel. September 26, 2012. Retrieved September 27, 2012. 
  8. ^ a b Boedecker, Hal (15 August 2012). "FCC grants UCF the license for Channel 24". Orlando Sentinel. 
  9. ^ [1][dead link]
  10. ^ WMFE (1970-01-01). "wmfe orlando - Google Maps". Maps.google.com. Retrieved 2012-06-07. 
  11. ^ "WMFE avoids layoffs, asks employees to go on two-week furloughs". Orlando Sentinel. 2010-10-05. Retrieved 2011-05-26. 
  12. ^ "WMFE fund-raising: Radio is terrific, but television is off". Orlando Sentinel. 2010-09-21. Retrieved 2011-05-26. 
  13. ^ "WMFE sale: Dallas religious broadcaster is the buyer". Orlando Sentinel. 2011-04-02. Retrieved 2011-05-26. 
  14. ^ Boedeker, Hal (June 27, 2011). "What happens to programming at former PBS stations WMFE, WDSC?". Orlando Sentinel. Retrieved June 30, 2011. 
  15. ^ Orlando Sentinel Newspaper (Retrieved April 28, 2012)
  16. ^ "Two UCF students fight WMFE's sale of Channel 24". Orlando Sentinel. 2011-05-10. Retrieved 2011-05-26. 
  17. ^ "Board to vote on future of PBS". Central Florida Future. 2011-05-25. Retrieved 2011-05-26. 
  18. ^ "WUCF-TV will be Central Florida's PBS station". Orlando Sentinel. 2011-06-02. Retrieved 2011-06-02. 
  19. ^ Bodeker, Hal (June 17, 2011). "PBS: Daytona Beach station will stop PBS lineup July 1". The Orlando Sentinel. Retrieved June 20, 2011. 
  20. ^ Boedecker, Hal (21 June 2012w). "WMFE to sell Channel 24 license, equipment to UCF". Orlando Sentinel. Retrieved 21 June 2012. 
  21. ^ "WUCF TV Officially Named PBS' New Central Florida Home". University of Central Florida. 2011-06-02. Retrieved 2011-06-02. 
  22. ^ "UCF-TV: Who We Are". UCF-TV. Retrieved 2011-06-02. 

External links[edit]