WDJT-TV is a television station located in Milwaukee, Wisconsin broadcasting on digital channel 46 and has a
PSIP that displays WDJT's virtual channel as 58.
The station is
of the CBS
television network. Its transmitter is located within Milwaukee's
Lincoln Park next to WISN (Channel
12)'s tower, with the station's signal covering southeastern
Wisconsin and parts of northeastern Illinois, including Racine, Kenosha, Sheboygan and Waukesha.
WDJT was until the digital transition the only UHF affiliate of CBS
in the state of Wisconsin, but retains the highest PSIP
channel number in the digital age. The station
also gathers news for CBS Radio
Milwaukee due to the lack of any area radio station broadcasting
the network's radio newscasts (WOKY
broadcast the network's hourly newscasts until a September 2008
format change, but does not have a news division).
Aforementioned "Morning News Express"
WDJT signed on the air on November 10, 1988 as an independent station
. Its call letters
were selected in honor of its original owners,
ackson and John
orres. Jackson died before the station took to
the air, and Torres decided to sell controlling interest to Weigel
in order to get more financing. (Weigel became the station's sole
owner shortly after its sign-on.) At that time, its programming
fare consisted of second-hand reruns of sitcoms, first-run
syndicated shows, and a movie library.
station struggled at first, as there was barely enough room for a
third independent in the city alongside WVTV-TV and WCGV.
was also hampered by their weak signal transmitting from the tower
atop of the then Marc Plaza Hotel (a tower originally utilized by
WVTV and currently used by low-power operation WMKE-CA
), which discouraged the local cable
operators from picking up the station for their lineups.
Milwaukee television market was in for a major shakeup in 1994 when
New World Communications
announced that most of its stations, including Milwaukee's WITI, would become Fox affiliates. It approached all four
of Milwaukee's major stations--WTMJ-TV, WISN-TV (who was
affiliated with CBS from 1961 to 1977), WVTV (which ironically was
a CBS O&O in the 1950s) and WCGV.
None of those stations were interested, however. This left CBS to
negotiate with the city's lower-profile independents, WJJA (now
WBME) and WDJT, as well as religious WVCY-TV.
After negotiations with both WJJA and WDJT fell through, CBS made
an abortive attempt to buy WVCY before its ownership group decided
not to sell.
to go before WITI was to join Fox, and faced with having to pipe in
WISC-TV in Madison, WFRV-TV in Green
Bay or WBBM-TV in Chicago for cable
customers, the network finally affiliated with WDJT, even though it
didn't even have a news department. This was similar to
what happened to CBS in Detroit--as was the
case in Milwaukee, CBS was forced to affiliate with a lower-profile
station after being turned down by all of the high-profile stations
in the market.
As WDJT had not expected to go to CBS, a hastily-made logo with the
CBS Eye to the left of WDJT's italic Times New Roman '58' of the
time in red (and later yellow) was the station's logo for the next
year and a half, along with a neutral image campaign using default
CBS graphics while Channel 58 built a news department and looked
for upgraded studio facilities. The switch took place on the
afternoon of December 11, 1994 (the same day that it happened in
Detroit), and the first CBS program to air on Channel 58 was
WDJT's CBS affiliation caused major shuffles among area cable
systems as they worked to quickly add it to their systems; it took
until March 1995 for some Marcus Cable
(the precursor to Charter
) cities to carry WDJT. As a result, many
Milwaukee-area viewers without set-top or housetop antennas missed
several major events, including the PGA Tour, Grammy Awards,
Daytona 500, Big Ten Basketball, and the NCAA Men's and Women's
Basketball Tournaments, all of which were CBS properties.
launched its news operation from new studios on South 60th Street
Allis in early 1996, moving from their original studio
facilities on the top floors of the Marc Plaza, which is now the
Hilton Milwaukee City
Three years later in 1999, the station's current Lincoln Park
transmitter was put into service, giving the station an
over-the-air signal comparable to the city's five other major
commercial stations. Weigel would use this tower to launch two
stations to WDJT (see below).
WDJT gained national attention after it's live news truck broke
through ice on Big Muskego Lake in Muskego, ironically while covering a story on ice
The estimated cost of repair was $250,000. A week
after, the station would air a public service announcement
ice safety which premiered during CBS' Super Bowl XLI
coverage, making light of the
situation by referring to their news department as providing "the
most in-depth coverage in Milwaukee."
2008 NFL season
The station asked CBS Sports
them to carry as many New York Jets
games as were available for the 2008 season, since that team
acquired former Packer quarterback Brett
on August 7, 2008, and expected high viewer interest from
Milwaukee viewers for Jets games. Since CBS holds the rights to the
majority of Jets games are carried on that network. Station general
manager Jim Hall asserted that the Jets were the station's "adopted
High Definition Programming
On August 29, 2008, WDJT became the first commercial Milwaukee
television station to produce a local program in High Definition
assistance of Milwaukee
or other stations in the Hearst Television
chain, as WISN has done
in the past. The one hour program was called 105 Years In
, a program which was produced in conjunction
with the Harley-Davidson
Anniversary celebration that weekend.
Currently the station does not air syndicated programming in high
definition, although Jeopardy!
and Wheel of
produce their shows in the format.
is owned by Chicago, Illinois's Weigel Broadcasting. The company also owns
full-power WBME (Channel 49)
and two LPTV stations, Spanish-language Telemundo affiliate WYTU (Channel 63)
and independent WMLW-CA (Channel 41), in the
WDJT's digital signal on channel 46 is multiplexed into the
following subchannel lineup.
- Additionally, a fourth and fifth digital subchannel have been
added in the past for multi-casting of games during the early
rounds of the NCAA Men's
Basketball Tournament in mid-March. In 2008 however, only one
additional game was aired using WDJT-DT, over 58.3, which will also
be in the case in 2009 as This TV is used as a multicast channel
58.4 & 58.5 were returned to the PSIP channel map in May 2009
to map them permanently into channel
on digital converter boxes and television sets for the
possibility of future use.
WDJT had carried a digital
called MeTV Milwaukee
features a lineup of classic sitcoms and dramas resembling that of
sister station WWME-CA
(Channel 23) in
Chicago. The station launched on March 1, 2008 on WDJT-DT3 until
October 30, 2008. In mid-April 2008, Weigel acquired Racine-licensed home
shopping station WJJA (Channel
49), and immediately began to move MeTV to that station, changing
the station's calls to WBME.
The simulcast was maintained
until a new digital transmitter for WBME on the Weigel tower was
turned on in mid-October.
On November 1, Weigel launched the digital subchannel network
in Milwaukee on WDJT-DT3 in
cooperation with MGM Television
which provides the network with many of the programs from their
archives. The introduction "man on the street" promotions for the
network were recorded throughout Milwaukee, and This TV's imaging
voice is that of Robb Edwards, formerly of WTMJ Radio and WOKY, and the
public address announcer at Miller Park.
Thus in technicality WDJT can be considered
a This TV O&O.
Brookfield-based Shorewest Realtors is
one of the largest real estate agencies
in southeastern Wisconsin, and as an offshoot of earlier
locally-produced cable shopping channels which often featured their
listings along with those of other agencies, created Shorewest TV
in October 2005 as digital cable and
video on demand became commonplace
and allowed Shorewest the ability to buy their own channel slot on
Time Warner Cable .
In the form of the cable channel, basic pictorial tours of local
homes and real estate classified by region or house types were
presented using information compiled on a database used by both the
channel and Shorewest's website , with narration given by agents
encouraging viewers to call for more information on the property
presented, along with limited advertising for partner contractors
and programs from local homebuilders and mortgage providers. The
VOD version of Shorewest TV was discontinued with the launch of
58.4 in order to encourage viewership of the terrestrial
On October 13, 2009, Shorewest and Weigel Broadcasting launched
Shorewest TV over digital channel 58.4 under a time-lease
arrangement in order to increase their Shorewest TV's audience to
all possible households in southeastern Wisconsin . Charter Communications
, which already
carried the video-on-demand version of the service, also thusly
added the subchannel to their systems. As is the current case with
many digital subchannels (including This TV and others in the
Milwaukee area), the channel is not carried over Dish Network or
The format of Shorewest TV has remained the same over-the-air,
although to address license concerns regular breaks featuring
are taken (which are intermixed with promos for
Weigel's Milwaukee stations), while Shorewest TV carries the
-compliant program Green Screen Adventures
was produced by WCIU, seven days a week at 7am.
After the analog television shutdown and digital conversion took
place on June 12, 2009, WDJT continued digital broadcasts on its
current pre-transition channel number, 46. However, through the use
digital television receivers displays WDJT's virtual channel
On June 12, 2009, the station shut down its analog transmission
over full-power channel 58 at 11:59pm exactly, as required by law.
the station has decided to convert their low power signal on
WYTU-LP (Channel 63) at 9am on the same day to carry WDJT's
programming schedule; WYTU-LP's Telemundo
schedule continued to transmit digitally over their own digital
channel 17 and WBME 49.4 .
This is to provide some kind of
'lifeline' service to those who had not yet made the
Because of its relatively new status in the market, the station had
the lowest rated newscast in Milwaukee for years. Only in 2008 and
2009 did it begin to increase from its lead in and start finishing
In September 2009, WDJT's 10 p.m. newscast got its first single
night finish in first place in station history with a 7.0 HH
according to Nielsen. For October 2009 the 10 p.m. newscast
averaged a 6.5/11 share according to Neilsen. That is ahead of Fox
affiliate WITI, which finished with a 4.9/9 and very close to
WISN's 7.3/12 and WTMJ's 7.8/13.In November 2009, the 10 p.m. news
got its first single night first place finish in sweeps with a 8.1
according to Neilsen followed by 7.4 for channel 12, 6.1 for
channel 4 and 4.9 for channel 6.
In November 2009 sweeps period WDJT was the only station to show
audience growth with a 1.4 rating point climb to finish a solid 3rd
place ahead of WITI according to Nielsen and the Milwaukee Journal
The station uses the Ten at
format for its late newscast, emphasizing the top
stories and weather in the first 10 minutes of the program. WDJT
has won regional Emmy
awards, along with honors
from the Associated Press
newscast presentation. In the May 2008 sweeps period both WITI and
WDJT were separated by only a few thousand homes for the third
place slot at 10 pm.
In January 2009, viewers began to take note of the straightforward
approach of the anchor team of Piaskoski and McCormack. Both of the
anchors are known to go out and report and edit their own stories
and for the first time the station began surpassing it's lead-in,
and on several occasions was first in the market for the first ten
minutes of the newscast. But, because it offers the seven day
forecast in the first ten minutes, there was drop off in the so
called "b" block which lowered the overall ratings average.
Its local content has increased threefold lead by the arrival of
McCormack, recruited from the number 4 market, to lead by example
and show talking heads out in the field. McCormack is noted for
handling the sarcastic Piaskoski and getting him to break a smile.
It is the beginning of their personal identity in the market,
solidified by the "Just Ten Minutes" campaign that involves viewers
in spots touting the newscast.
during the 2007 World Series
produced a 9pm newscast for sister station WMLW-CA, in an attempt to attract non-Baseball
viewers who would normally watch news on WITI-TV (but due to pre-emptions weren't able to during the
The station then introduced a 9pm newscast
permanently on WMLW beginning on January 1, 2008. WDJT also produces
both a 10-minute Spanish language
newscast for co-owned Telemundo affiliate
WYTU-LP; several of WDJT's reporters are bilingual. The station also puts together and
anchors 11-minute newscast for sister station WBND-LP in South Bend, Indiana called "News at 11:00" featuring video shot locally
in South Bend and then edited and written by anchor McCormack and
Producer Adam Wilhelm who are based in Milwaukee but
have been known to frequently call sources in Indiana to verify
information. McCormack is arguably the only main anchor in the
country seen in two different markets at the same time; South Bend
at 11 p.m. est and Milwaukee at 10 p.m. cst The First Alert
team also provides weather forecasts for adult
contemporary radio station WLDB
brands as B-93
Current On-Air Talent
- Shari Dunn - weekday mornings "Morning News"
- Veronica Griffin - Saturdays at 5, Sundays at 5:30 and weekends
- Michele McCormack - weeknights at 5 and 10PM, 9 p.m. on WMLW,
11 p.m. WBND South Bend, another Weigel property
- Paul Piaskoski - weeknights at 5 and 10PM, 9 p.m. on WMLW, "Eye
to Eye" Sunday Public Affairs show
- Mike Strehlow - weekend anchor, prime fill in weekday
- Keith Meka -weekday mornings "Morning News"
First Alert Weather
- Ashleigh Barry - general assignment reporter
- Stephanie Brown - general assignment reporter
- Eric Rucker - general assignment reporter
- Kelli Watson - general assignment reporter
- Mark McGinnis - Chief Meteorologist; weeknights at 5 and
- Chris McGinnis - Meteorologist; weekday mornings "Morning
- Mike Tamas - Meteorologist; Saturdays at 5, Sundays at 5:30 and
weekends at 10PM
- Evan Fitzgerald - Sports Anchor
- Kevin Holder- Sports Anchor
- CBS 58 News (1996-present)
- Ten at 10 (10 p.m.
- More Stories. More Information. More
- Your Stories. Your Station. (2001-2004)
- First. Fast. When Seconds Count.
- Just Ten Minutes (10PM newscast; 2009-present)
- JS Online: Favre lands Jets on CBS
- JS Online: Shopping channel gets new owner, Me-TV
format of nostalgic shows
- JS Online: Me-TV for a wider audience
- JS Online: Rebooting may help when mystery bugs
bedevil Time Warner channels
- CDBS Print
- http://www.jsonline.com/story/index.aspx?id=678164 "Channel 58
to fill 9 p.m. news gap; Cuban's season over on 'Dancing'"