U.S. Television Network Affiliate Switches of 1994 - Repercussions

Repercussions

Overnight, the landscape of local television in many areas changed as viewers were confronted with new network affiliations on their familiar stations. In some cases, the transition was straightforward, as in Kansas City, St. Louis, Austin, Cleveland and the Piedmont Triad the old Fox affiliates (all UHF stations) simply took up the previous affiliation of the new Fox affiliate. KSHB-TV replaced WDAF-TV as Kansas City's NBC affiliate, while KDNL-TV and WXLV-TV affiliated with ABC in St. Louis and the Piedmont Triad respectively. KBVO (now KEYE-TV) in Austin and WOIO in Cleveland affiliated with CBS.

The largest affiliation swap occurred in Birmingham, a market that expanded to include three other central Alabama cities, Tuscaloosa, Gadsden, and Anniston as a result. Six different stations changed affiliations due to WBRC moving from ABC to Fox. WCFT-TV and WJSU-TV, the respective CBS affiliates for Tuscaloosa and Anniston, merged and became the combined ABC affiliate for Birmingham and central Alabama. (In addition, because reception of both stations were poor in center city, the owner of the two stations purchased low-power WBMA-LP and also made it an ABC station, in fact being the main station of the cluster). WNAL, the former Fox affiliate for Gadsden, became the CBS affiliate for northeast Alabama before eventually becoming the Pax (now Ion) network affiliate for Birmingham as WPXH-TV, thus making WIAT the only CBS affiliate in the area again. WTTO and WDBB, the Fox affiliates for Birmingham and Tuscaloosa, became independent stations before eventually affiliating with The WB Television Network.

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