Me-TV Type Classic television Country United States Availability OTA digital television and LPTV in limited markets Founded 2005 in Chicago
2008 in Milwaukee
Slogan Memorable Entertainment Television Owner Weigel Broadcasting Launch date January 1, 2005 (in Chicago)
March 1, 2008 (in Milwaukee)
December 15, 2010 (Nationally)
Official website http://www.metvnetwork.com
Me-TV ("Memorable Entertainment" Television, and stylized as MeTV) is a television network owned by Weigel Broadcasting and distributed by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer that airs classic television sitcoms, dramas and classic commercials from the 1950s through the 1980s. The network is a sister network to This TV. Like similar networks RTV and Antenna TV, Me-TV is designed to air on the digital subchannels of local stations; however, Me-TV also maintains a small number of affiliates who carry its programming as a primary affiliation on their main channel.
On December 15, 2010, Me-TV launched as a full-fledged network with a standardized schedule, available to any station wishing to affiliate.
Beginnings in Chicago
Me-TV was initially a programming block which aired from 12:00 pm to 3:00 pm on WFBT (now WWME-CA channel 23) in Chicago. Shows included Jack Benny, Sergeant Bilko, Carol Burnett, Maude, and One Day at a Time, though the lineup changed occasionally.
On January 1, 2005, Weigel rechristened Chicago ethnic station as WWME-CA, with Me-TV full-time. The station's former ethnic programming and call letters (WFBT Chicago) moved to channel 48. On March 1, 2008, that station became WMEU-CA and became MeToo, an extension of the original station. The two low-power stations also air locally on WCIU-TV's digital subchannels. Initially, the two stations ran similar schedules, but by 2008, one would air sitcoms while the other aired dramas, and vice-versa.
On September 14, 2009, the two stations carved their own identities, as Me-TV began to run only off network sitcoms (such as The Bernie Mac Show, All in the Family, The Three Stooges and Frasier) and was positioned as the station for comedy while MeToo began running only off network drama shows (such as Perry Mason, Star Trek, Star Trek: The Next Generation and The Twilight Zone) and became known as the choice for drama.
Weigel expanded Me-TV to the DT3 subchannel of their Milwaukee station, WDJT, a CBS affiliate, on March 1, 2008. The Milwaukee version of the station featured much of the same programming, with some different shows and time slots.
On April 21, 2008, Weigel moved the Me-TV programming to its own dedicated full-powered channel, the newly acquired WJJA in Racine, changing the call letters to WBME-TV, and later launched the station's new digital transmitter on the Weigel tower in Milwaukee's Lincoln Park. Me-TV was still carried on channel 58.3 until November 1, 2008, with the launch of This TV on the same channel. The station also airs public affairs programming including Racine & Me, and because of their full power status, E/I programming such as WCIU's Green Screen Adventures and Saved by the Bell.
On November 22, 2010, Weigel announced that they would take the Me-TV concept national and compete fully with RTV and Antenna TV, while complementing successful sister network This TV, which carries library product from Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer and Cookie Jar Entertainment. The national Me-TV network launched on December 15, 2010. As with sister network This TV, MGM is handling the distribution of the network.
As part of the standardization with the new network, Chicago's local version of Me-TV merged with MeToo, airing both comedy and drama programming together as locally-programmed channel MeToo. The national Me-TV airs on WCIU subchannel 26.3 and WWME-CA, while the new MeToo moved to WCIU subchannel 26.4 and WMEU-CA.
WBME in Milwaukee carries the entire national feed of Me-TV on 49.1, though they will add their own locally-programmed MeToo subchannel in early 2011. Weigel-owned WBND-LP in South Bend began carrying the network on its subchannel 57.2 on December 15, 2010.
On January 7, 2011, KCTU-LD in Wichita became the first non-Weigel owned station to carry the Me-TV network. However, that station's affiliation with the network lasted only about one week and ended after KCTU-LD and Me-TV could not come to terms on a contract.
In early 2011, Bahakel Communications became the first non-Weigel station group to sign selected stations to carry Me-TV on their digital subchannels, with the WCCB (Charlotte, North Carolina) and WOLO-TV (Columbia, South Carolina) subchannels beginning transmissions in early March of that year. On April 4, 2011, it was announced that Me-TV had signed with 14 broadcasting companies, most notably Hearst Television, Raycom Media, Cox Television, Media General, and Titan Broadcast Management to begin airing Me-TV; this brings the national Me-TV clearance mark to over 45%.
As of December 2011, Me-TV will have affiliation agreements in 108 television markets.
- ^ TV Goes All-Local On the Storm, But with Limited Visibility of Wider World, Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel, February 7, 2008
- ^ Weigel Broadcasting Taking Me-TV National, Chicago Tribune, November 22, 2010
- ^ a b Updates on Me-TV National Network, Plus Local Me-TV/Me-Too; Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows, Sitcoms Online, December 10, 2010
- ^ Our Exclusive Interview With Me-TV Network's Neal Sabin; Sitcom Stars On Talk Shows, Sitcoms Online, December 17, 2010
- ^ http://www.wciu.com/files/channel_grid.pdf
- ^ http://www.facebook.com/ABC57/posts/152393051474475
- ^ http://www.facebook.com/permalink.php?story_fbid=179094688789169&id=120877922783
- ^ "KCTU TV 43 Facebook Page". January 17, 2011. http://www.facebook.com/pages/KCTU-TV-43/120877922783. Retrieved 5 August 2011. "See post dated 1/17/2011"
- ^ Weigel Broadcasting Co.'s "Me-TV" Exceeds 45% Clearance Mark Finalizing Deals with 14 Domestic Station Groups
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1Carried on a digital subchannel of WCIU. 2Carried on a digital subchannel of WDJT. 3Carried on a digital subchannel of WBME. 4A joint venture of Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer and Weigel.
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