Back in April, with the help of the fine folks at the Post-Gazette, we explained the TV spectrum auction and how it would affect television viewing locally. Most of the stations would remain on the air but would adopt new broadcast channels and viewers would find little or no interruption in service. Over the air viewers would have to rescan their television sets, but the stations would retain their “virtual channel” or that of their analog days.

The one channel that will be leaving us next week, is WEPA-TV broadcasting on digital channel 16. WEPA used to be known as WBGN and was the flagship station for the Bruno Goodworth Network until a few years ago when OTA Broadcasting purchased the group of stations. WBGN has always been considered a low power station on analog channel 59, and required a series of repeater stations around the market. Many of them will be leaving the air as well. Other than WEPA Pittsburgh, OTA loses WEMW Charleroi, WNNB Beaver, WPCP New Castle and WVTX Bridgeport (Wheeling area).

Other notes

We also note that Sarah Arbogast his left her traffic reporters position at KDKA-TV to take on the role of part-time communications director at Serra Catholic High School in McKeesport. Taking her place is Celina Pompeani, the younger daughter of the longtime sports director of the station Bob Pompeani. Although they are not on the air at the same time of day, the family connection may remind some people of the years of “Patti and Daddy” when pioneer broadcaster Bill Burns and his daughter anchored the news together.

(PG)

1 thought on “WEPA leaves air October 25

  1. In hindsight it\’s clear that OTA purchased those stations with the specific intent of occupying the bandwidth until they could be sold in the auction. Reportedly they reaped $74 million from this sale. If I may get on my soapbox for a moment to me it seems ridiculous that the airwaves, which according to the Communications Act of 1934 belong to the American people (I\’ll pause for a moment to give you time to laugh….) can be turned over to a private concern to be sold for profit. It would be like allowing OTA to lease part of Yellowstone National Park and then sell the mineral rights. If the decision was made that these frequencies were better used for wireless services, then the government should have just reclaimed them, told the TV stations to shut-down, and put the auction proceeds into the national treasure. The country is, after all, $20 trillion in debt.

    No matter how they juggle and shuffle things, the radio spectrum is like real estate….they aren\’t making any more of it. And eventually we will run out of tricks to provide more space for wireless carriers.

    Personally I am really going to miss Movies!, which shows films you just don\’t see anywhere else these days.

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