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cityprod1,852 posts since 3 Oct 2005
Westcountry Spotlight
Stations can brand however they damn please so long as they run FCC identification by flashing their callsign and channel number in tiny print for five seconds every hour. The branding is a completely different issue.


As true as that is, it would look completely weird, if they don't at least reference their call sign within their branding on a regular basis outside of the hourly requirement. I say that because it's happened before. When On TV created a subscription service over local channels, the only branding they used outside of the local identification, was On TV, and the local identification looked out of place, compared to everything else they did branding wise.

You need to incorporate the call sign into the branding so that the required local identification doesn't clash with the rest of the branding.
DE88508 posts since 8 Jan 2017
UTV Newsline
Yes, because Fox KTVU 2 (or whatever bleeding order it’s in) just rolls off the tongue.

American stations are required by FCC regulations to have the call letters mentioned in some way, shape or form, which would follow the " W " (east coast stations, barring a few exceptions) and the " K " (west coast stations) That would include the aforementioned "KTVU Fox 2" example you noted. Some stations do have what is considered to be "legacy" call letters - - as in call letters that have rarely changed since their introduction and are known more by their letters and are synonymous with their home markets rather than just the networks they carry. Some examples of "legacy" call letters include WTVJ Miami, WPIX New York, KTLA Los Angeles, WABC New York, WBBM Chicago, WGN Chicago, WJZ Baltimore and WGBH Boston among others.


Would I be right in thinking that all remaining three-letter call signs are considered "legacy" call signs?

Since 1930, three-letter call signs have only been assigned to stations (including FM and TV) that are historically related to an AM station that was originally issued that call sign.

So not only the aforementioned WGN and WJZ, and WBZ in Boston, but also the ones that aren't quite as widely known, like KOB in Albuquerque, New Mexico and KHQ in Spokane, Washington.
"Channel 5! The channel that brings you England goals!" -- Jonathan Pearce, 31 May 1997
Mouseboy332,291 posts since 10 Feb 2014
Yes, because Fox KTVU 2 (or whatever bleeding order it’s in) just rolls off the tongue.

American stations are required by FCC regulations to have the call letters mentioned in some way, shape or form, which would follow the " W " (east coast stations, barring a few exceptions) and the " K " (west coast stations) That would include the aforementioned "KTVU Fox 2" example you noted. Some stations do have what is considered to be "legacy" call letters - - as in call letters that have rarely changed since their introduction and are known more by their letters and are synonymous with their home markets rather than just the networks they carry. Some examples of "legacy" call letters include WTVJ Miami, WPIX New York, KTLA Los Angeles, WABC New York, WBBM Chicago, WGN Chicago, WJZ Baltimore and WGBH Boston among others.


Would I be right in thinking that all remaining three-letter call signs are considered "legacy" call signs?

Since 1930, three-letter call signs have only been assigned to stations (including FM and TV) that are historically related to an AM station that was originally issued that call sign.

So not only the aforementioned WGN and WJZ, and WBZ in Boston, but also the ones that aren't quite as widely known, like KOB in Albuquerque, New Mexico and KHQ in Spokane, Washington.

Some other widely know 3 letter Call sign stations

WLS - CHICAGO ( W orlds L argest S tore) ABC O&O.
KGO - SAN FRAN - ABC O&O
KNX - All News Radio LA - one of oldest stations on air since 1921
WSB - ATLANTA ( W elcome S outh B rother) ABC affiliate
I said what I said!
Charles545 posts since 11 Nov 2009
BBC World
Stations can brand however they damn please so long as they run FCC identification by flashing their callsign and channel number in tiny print for five seconds every hour. The branding is a completely different issue.


As true as that is, it would look completely weird, if they don't at least reference their call sign within their branding on a regular basis outside of the hourly requirement. I say that because it's happened before. When On TV created a subscription service over local channels, the only branding they used outside of the local identification, was On TV, and the local identification looked out of place, compared to everything else they did branding wise.

You need to incorporate the call sign into the branding so that the required local identification doesn't clash with the rest of the branding.


I think it's entirely possible to not use the callsign in any element of the branding. That's what the majority of the network-owned stations do ("CBS4" etc. etc.)

Independent stations and stations that are affiliated with the lesser networks like the CW might need to rely more on the callsign as a branding element, but every station is different.

I had to look up what On TV is. Interesting story, though I'm not sure how much bearing a pay network from the 80s has on lessons for TV branding today.
TorontoCommons30 posts since 16 May 2014
Also Canadian and Mexican stations are assigned CALL SIGNS.
The famous Toronto station Citytv calls letters are CITY.


Canadian stations, especially those on television, rarely promote their call signs. They largely prefer the ubiquitous network name + city name formula instead.
Journalist vs. the Forces of Quality
Markymark5,717 posts since 13 Dec 2004
Meridian (North) South Today

American stations are required by FCC regulations to have the call letters mentioned in some way, shape or form, which would follow the " W " (east coast stations, barring a few exceptions) and the " K " (west coast stations) .


I think the dividing line between Kxxx and Wxxx is the Mississippi river ?

BBC Radio started in the 1920s with snappy (ha) three character call signs too of course

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Timeline_of_the_BBC
Rkolsen2,177 posts since 20 Jan 2014
BBC World

American stations are required by FCC regulations to have the call letters mentioned in some way, shape or form, which would follow the " W " (east coast stations, barring a few exceptions) and the " K " (west coast stations) .


I think the dividing line between Kxxx and Wxxx is the Mississippi river ?

BBC Radio started in the 1920s with snappy (ha) three character call signs too of course

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Timeline_of_the_BBC


Yes. Some were grandfathered in and others were moved from its original location several states away to a new site. I’m thinking it was allowed because of an incentive by the government to get VHF or UHF stations in certain stations where there may be know commercial broadcaster. I’m thinking this came about because Delaware and New Jersey have little to none full power commercial stations broadcasting.
cityprod1,852 posts since 3 Oct 2005
Westcountry Spotlight
Stations can brand however they damn please so long as they run FCC identification by flashing their callsign and channel number in tiny print for five seconds every hour. The branding is a completely different issue.


As true as that is, it would look completely weird, if they don't at least reference their call sign within their branding on a regular basis outside of the hourly requirement. I say that because it's happened before. When On TV created a subscription service over local channels, the only branding they used outside of the local identification, was On TV, and the local identification looked out of place, compared to everything else they did branding wise.

You need to incorporate the call sign into the branding so that the required local identification doesn't clash with the rest of the branding.


I think it's entirely possible to not use the callsign in any element of the branding. That's what the majority of the network-owned stations do ("CBS4" etc. etc.)


Except that's not quite the case, because they still have to do the legal ID at the top of every hour, so whilst the main part of the branding might not include the call sign, you still have to find a way to incorporate it into the branding for the legal ID.

Of course this is all complicated by the fact there may be one brand used for all non-news output, and the news output might be branded differently. WNBC uses NBC4 for their non-news output, and News 4 New York for their news output. Previously they've used NewsChannel4, which almost feels like a channel branding.

Quote:
I had to look up what On TV is. Interesting story, though I'm not sure how much bearing a pay network from the 80s has on lessons for TV branding today.


There are lessons to be learned from every era. Just because something was 30 years ago or more, doesn't mean that it has no relevancy or bearing to today. You just have to look at the era it happened in, and adjust accordingly.

In many ways to me, it feels somewhat ironic that today's branding mostly feels weak and unmemorable, compared to the analogue satellite era, or the four channel era, or even going as far back as when BBC and ITV were the only two channels out there, and many of those brandings were very memorable. Come 20 years time, we might be looking back at this time and thinking how bad and weak the branding was. A time when branding was arguably less important than it is now, is often remembered for having better and strionger branding, than today's channels. It seems counter intuitive.
Rkolsen2,177 posts since 20 Jan 2014
BBC World

As true as that is, it would look completely weird, if they don't at least reference their call sign within their branding on a regular basis outside of the hourly requirement. I say that because it's happened before. When On TV created a subscription service over local channels, the only branding they used outside of the local identification, was On TV, and the local identification looked out of place, compared to everything else they did branding wise.

You need to incorporate the call sign into the branding so that the required local identification doesn't clash with the rest of the branding.


I think it's entirely possible to not use the callsign in any element of the branding. That's what the majority of the network-owned stations do ("CBS4" etc. etc.)


Except that's not quite the case, because they still have to do the legal ID at the top of every hour, so whilst the main part of the branding might not include the call sign, you still have to find a way to incorporate it into the branding for the legal ID.

Of course this is all complicated by the fact there may be one brand used for all non-news output, and the news output might be branded differently. WNBC uses NBC4 for their non-news output, and News 4 New York for their news output. Previously they've used NewsChannel4, which almost feels like a channel branding.

Quote:
I had to look up what On TV is. Interesting story, though I'm not sure how much bearing a pay network from the 80s has on lessons for TV branding today.


There are lessons to be learned from every era. Just because something was 30 years ago or more, doesn't mean that it has no relevancy or bearing to today. You just have to look at the era it happened in, and adjust accordingly.

In many ways to me, it feels somewhat ironic that today's branding mostly feels weak and unmemorable, compared to the analogue satellite era, or the four channel era, or even going as far back as when BBC and ITV were the only two channels out there, and many of those brandings were very memorable. Come 20 years time, we might be looking back at this time and thinking how bad and weak the branding was. A time when branding was arguably less important than it is now, is often remembered for having better and strionger branding, than today's channels. It seems counter intuitive.

The station identification can be really simple such as the automated TOTH bugs with text about 15 pixels high. Most stations also put their call sign and the city of license in small text in promos and news opens.
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Mouseboy33 gave kudos
Mouseboy332,291 posts since 10 Feb 2014
One of lynchpins of local news coverage is the consumer unit and some stations typically have a consumer report use the power of television to hold to account local or national businesses for bad customer service..etc. Larger affiliates have huge investigative teams consisting of teams of 5-6 or more reporters, not including producers behind the scenes that handle government issues and consumer issues. Many large stations have launched entire call centers to handle these issues. NBC O&O - WMAQ 5 Chicago coupled with the TELEMUNDO O&O WSNS 44 has co-branded and worked together and combined their resources for the last few years especially since TELEMUNDO moved into the NBC Tower and they share a newsroom. The tie ups and resource sharing are fairly typical for NBC and its spanish-owned network TELEMUNDO since the NBC take over of TELEMUNDO.
Here is a new promo for their combined INVESTIGATIVE CONSUMER UNIT.


I said what I said!
Rkolsen2,177 posts since 20 Jan 2014
BBC World
One of lynchpins of local news coverage is the consumer unit and some stations typically have a consumer report use the power of television to hold to account local or national businesses for bad customer service..etc. Larger affiliates have huge investigative teams consisting of teams of 5-6 or more reporters, not including producers behind the scenes that handle government issues and consumer issues. Many large stations have launched entire call centers to handle these issues. NBC O&O - WMAQ 5 Chicago coupled with the TELEMUNDO O&O WSNS 44 has co-branded and worked together and combined their resources for the last few years especially since TELEMUNDO moved into the NBC Tower and they share a newsroom. The tie ups and resource sharing are fairly typical for NBC and its spanish-owned network TELEMUNDO since the NBC take over of TELEMUNDO.
Here is a new promo for their combined INVESTIGATIVE CONSUMER UNIT.




One thing they don’t necessarily tell you is that when you call that number your not speaking locally but rather a call center in Fort Worth at KXAS (where the promo call center was filmed). The call center does fix most issuses that callers call about and probably the “juicy” issues/stories get sent to the local stations.