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KPTM Logo.png
Omaha, Nebraska/Council Bluffs, Iowa
United States
CityOmaha, Nebraska
ChannelsDigital: 26 (UHF)
Virtual: 42
BrandingFox 42 (general)
Fox 42 News (KMPH-TV-produced newscasts)
My 42.2 (on DT2)
SloganOmaha's Only Local Source For News, Weather, and Sports
OwnerSinclair Broadcast Group
(KPTM Licensee, LLC)
broadcast: KXVO
cable: Bally Sports Kansas City, Bally Sports North[1]
First air date
April 6, 1986 (35 years ago) (1986-04-06)
Former channel number(s)
  • Analog:
  • 42 (UHF, 1986–2009)
  • Digital:
  • 43 (UHF, 2002–2019)
Call sign meaning
Pappas Telecasting
of the Midlands
(founding owner)
Technical information
Licensing authority
Facility ID51491
ERP1000 kW
HAAT475 m (1,558 ft)
Transmitter coordinates41°4′15.9″N 96°13′32.3″W / 41.071083°N 96.225639°W / 41.071083; -96.225639
Public license information

KPTM, virtual channel 42 (UHF digital channel 26), is a Fox-affiliated television station licensed to Omaha, Nebraska, United States and also serving Council Bluffs, Iowa. The station is owned by the Sinclair Broadcast Group, which also operates CW affiliate KXVO (channel 15) under a local marketing agreement (LMA) with owner Mitts Telecasting Company. The two stations share studios on Farnam Street in Omaha and transmitter facilities on Pflug Road, south of Gretna and I-80.

On cable, the station is available on Cox Communications channel 10 in both standard and high definition.[2] It can also be seen on CenturyLink Prism channels 42 (SD) and 1042 (HD).


KPTM began broadcasting on April 6, 1986 as the third broadcasting property owned by Pappas Telecasting (after flagship KMPH-TV in Fresno, California and WHNS in Greenville, South Carolina). It was the second independent station in Nebraska, and the first new commercial station to sign on in Omaha in 29 years since KETV (channel 7) signed on in September 1957. At the time, Omaha was one of the few top-100 markets that did not have an independent station of its own.

Shortly after signing on as an independent, it was approached by the founders of the fledgling Fox network to join the new network as a charter affiliate. But doing so meant KPTM would have had to carry Fox's first and initially only offering, The Late Show Starring Joan Rivers opposite The Tonight Show. At the time, The Tonight Show was hosted by Johnny Carson, a native of nearby Corning, Iowa who spent his youth in Norfolk, Nebraska and had begun his career at WOWT (channel 6; then WOW-TV) in the early 1950s. Carson and Rivers had been friends for decades until Rivers gave up her slot as permanent guest host on Carson's show to launch her own. KPTM declined the offer, fearing viewer backlash; as a station staffer put it, "Would you carry Joan Rivers in the market where Johnny Carson got his start in entertainment?" This left Omaha as one of the largest markets without a Fox affiliate.

KPTM eventually joined Fox on August 28, 1988, just in time to carry that year's Emmy Awards telecast. Today, the station is a typical Fox affiliate carrying the network's entire lineup, along with the Xploration Station E/I block.

KPTM has significant viewership in Lincoln and included that city in its station IDs for many years; including for over a year after Lincoln received a full-power Fox affiliate of its own, KFXL-TV. It is the only major Omaha station that includes Council Bluffs, Iowa (the second "major city" in the Omaha metro area) in its IDs on a regular basis. On January 16, 2009, it was announced several Pappas stations (including KPTM and its LMA with KXVO) would be sold to Titan Broadcast Management after the purchased received United States bankruptcy court approval.[3]

Corresponding with the station's 25th anniversary in April 2011, it introduced an updated logo. In August 2012, Time Warner Cable (now Charter Spectrum) stopped carrying KPTM's high definition signal in Lincoln and surrounding markets. It remains available on Charter's systems in the Omaha market.[4] As of 2019, KPTM is still carried in standard definition on channel 9 on Spectrum's Lincoln-area systems.

Titan TV Broadcast Group announced the sale of most of its stations, including KPTM, to the Sinclair Broadcast Group on June 3, 2013; the purchase includes the local marketing agreement with KXVO,[5] which will remain under Mitts Telecasting LLC ownership after the sale. Sinclair announced the closing of the sale on October 3.[6]

Digital television

Digital channels

The station's digital signal is multiplexed:

Channel Video Aspect PSIP Short Name Programming[7]
42.1 720p 16:9 FOX42 Main KPTM programming / Fox
42.2 480i MyTV MyNetworkTV & Dabl
42.3 Comet Comet TV

On September 5, 2006, KPTM launched a new second digital subchannel carrying MyNetworkTV programming during primetime (currently weeknights 7 to 9) and America One programming for the remainder of the broadcast schedule. In 2009, America One programming on the subchannel was replaced with This TV. KPTM-DT2 primarily identifies as "My 42.2", although it is also branded as "This Omaha" reflecting its secondary affiliation. Its logo is similar to the one the main KPTM channel used for most of its first decade on the air. The channel was rebroadcast on Class A station KKAZ-CA. That aired an analog signal on UHF channel 24 from a transmitter in downtown Omaha until April 2010 when it was shut down due to financial concerns. KKAZ-CA's license was surrendered to the Federal Communications Commission on August 5, 2010, and its call sign was deleted from the FCC's database.

On May 6, 2010, it was announced KPTM that would add a new third digital subchannel carrying Estrella TV. KPTM-DT3 began broadcasting May 11 and relays programming from that network's owned-and-operated station KETD in Castle Rock, Colorado, aside from local ID screens.

On October 31, 2015, Comet launched on KPTM-DT3, replacing Estrella.

Analog-to-digital conversion

KPTM shut down its analog signal, over UHF channel 42, on June 12, 2009, as part of the federally mandated transition from analog to digital television.[8] The station's digital signal remained on its pre-transition UHF channel 43,[9] using PSIP to display KPTM's virtual channel as 42 on digital television receivers.


Syndicated programs currently seen on KPTM include Live with Kelly and Ryan, Wendy Williams, Divorce Court, Judge Judy, 2 Broke Girls, and The People's Court among others.

News operation

KPTM presently broadcasts six hours of locally-targeted newscasts each week (with an hour each on Sunday through Fridays). After Fox requested its affiliates to air local newscasts in the early 1990s, KPTM established a news department and began airing a half-hour prime time broadcast at 9 p.m. on June 14, 1990. Within a year, The Nine O'Clock Nightly News was expanded to one hour. From the start, the station put a greater emphasis on national coverage over local content; it also presented more packaged news reports.

With sister station KXVO's original identity and tagline of "All Entertainment, All the Time" in 1995, local news programming did not seem like a natural fit to its schedule. In the late 1990s and early 2000s, KXVO did air 60-second updates seen during the 6 p.m. hour that promoted stories for the upcoming night's broadcast on KPTM. In 2001, KXVO made plans to air a 5:30 p.m. newscast on weeknights utilizing on-air talent and production assistance from KPTM. After the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001 and the resulting economic downturn, these plans were put on hold and eventually abandoned. In the immediate aftermath of the terrorist attacks, KXVO provided continuous coverage from CNN Headline News.

On January 28, 2006, KPTM began producing The KXVO 15 10 O'Clock News, a weeknight 10 p.m. newscast for KXVO. In April of the same year, former MTV personality and reality show host Brian McFayden was hired to anchor the program, though he left the show to explore other options in his career amid rumors that he was becoming more and more difficult to work with. In any case, McFayden's hiring was unable to save the newscast's ratings, which had been low from the start. In late-August 2006, comedian and Second City Training Center alumnus Matt Geiler was named the new anchor of the broadcast. By this time, the show had become some sort of sketch comedy program with news content being handled by KPTM staff. Throughout its run, The KXVO 15 10 O'Clock News never registered a single ratings point and was cancelled in 2007.

On September 17, 2007, KPTM launched an hour-long weekday afternoon newscast at 4 p.m., which made the station one of the few Fox affiliates to offer a newscast in that timeslot; with the debut of the newscast came the introduction of a new news set.[10] The program competed with WOWT's own half-hour 4 p.m. newscast; within a year, KPTM's 4 p.m. newscast was scaled back to a half-hour, and was cancelled completely by the spring of 2009.

On July 6, 2010, station management announced it would shut down KPTM's news department and outsource production of the 9 p.m. newscast to the Independent News Network starting September 6.[11] The newscasts' in-studio content (news anchors, sports anchors, meteorologists and related personnel) are provided from INN's centralized facilities in Davenport, Iowa, with KPTM retaining a team of Omaha-based reporters to provide local content. As part of the agreement with INN, KPTM's newscasts would be produced in high-definition (the previous in-house newscasts, except for the "Heartland Proud" segment, were not broadcast in HD). Because INN does not produce newscasts on Saturdays, the 9 p.m. newscast was cut back to six days a week (Sunday through Friday). The INN-produced weeknight newscasts were repeated Tuesday through Saturday mornings at 5 a.m. on KPTM-DT2.

By July 2013, after the announcement that KPTM would be acquired by Sinclair, the station announced it would discontinue its agreement with INN and return production of the 9 p.m. in-house, with station management citing viewers' dislike of the outsourced production model. At the outset, the "On the Street" setup would be retained, but the newscasts would be produced with the assistance of KPTM's Fresno sister station KMPH-TV. Although KPTM's announcement did not make clear if or when its newscasts would be Omaha-based, its emphasis that "the anchors, producers, editors, as well as the newsroom managers [will] have a depth of understanding for the local community" suggests an Omaha-based newscast in the future.[12]


  1. ^ Miller, Mark K. (August 23, 2019). "Sinclair Closes $10.6B Disney RSN Purchase". TVNewsCheck. NewsCheckMedia. Retrieved August 23, 2019.
  2. ^ Cox Channel Lineup - Omaha
  3. ^ "New World Gets Pappas TVs for $260M". TVnewsday. January 16, 2008. Retrieved January 18, 2008.
  4. ^ Korbelik, Jeff. "Jeff Korbelik: Time Warner drops KPTM's high-def channel".
  5. ^ "Sinclair Buys 6 Titan Television Stations". TVNewsCheck. June 3, 2013. Retrieved June 4, 2013.
  6. ^ "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2013-10-04. Retrieved 2013-10-03.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  7. ^ RabbitEars TV Query for KPTM
  8. ^ List of Digital Full-Power Stations Archived 2013-08-29 at the Wayback Machine
  9. ^ Digital delay muddles broadcasters' plans[permanent dead link], Brian Redemske, Omaha World-Herald, February 6, 2009.
  10. ^[permanent dead link]
  11. ^ Source: Archived 2012-09-05 at from 7/8/2010
  12. ^ "Fox 42 News at Nine Revamps," from the Nebraska Broadcasters Association website, 7/2013

External links

This page was last edited on 11 May 2021, at 14:24
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