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Brand ABC 33/40
City of License Tuscaloosa, Alabama (WCFT)
Anniston, Alabama(WJSU)
Birmingham, Alabama (WBMA-LD)
Market Birmingham, Alabama
Channel WCFT: 33 digital
WJSU: 9 digital
40 virtual
WBMA-LD: 40 digital
58 virtual and analog
Formerly: WCFT: analog 33 (1969-2009)
WJSU: analog 40 (1965-2009)
WBMA: digital 11 (2009-10)
Network Affiliation Current: ABC
Formerly: WJSU--Independent (1965-70); CBS (1970–96)
WCFT--CBS (1969-96); NBC (secondary, 1969-70)
Founded 1996
Company Allbritton Communications (Sale to Sinclair pending)
Current Popular Non-Network Shows The Bonnie Hunt Show
Oprah Winfrey
Wheel of Fortune

ABC 33/40 is the callsign for a cluster of ABC stations in the Birmingham, Alabama market. 33 is for WCFT/digital channel 33 (virtual 33) in Tuscaloosa, and 40 is for WJSU/digital channel 9 (virtual 40) in Anniston. They both serve as reception satellites for WBMA/digital channel 40 (virtual 58), a low-power station in Birmingham. All three have subcarriers carrying local weather radar (9.2, 33.2 and 40.2), and Heartland, which was formerly The Nashville Network (9.3, 33.3, 40.3). WBMA's analog signal remains on as it is a low-power station and not obligated to shut off its analog.

Prior to 1996, WCFT signed on in 1965 as an independent and ran NBC shows bumped by Birmingham NBC affiliate WAPI/channel 13 (now WVTM). At that time, Tuscaloosa was a separate market (rank #170) from Birmingham. They switched to CBS in 1970. WJSU started in 1969 as a CBS affiliate (call WHMA) for eastern Alabama and carried NBC shows on secondary affiliation for a year. Anniston was ranked #192 as a TV market then.

In 1995, the Fox network was wrapping up its henhouse raid of VHF TV stations started in 1994. The network bought then-ABC affiliate WBRC, but the station's contract with ABC didn't expire until September of 1996. Allbritton Communications bought W58CK, a low-powered Birmingham station and beamed it as the new ABC outlet. For the station to reach western and eastern parts of north Alabama, an agreement was reached to make WCFT and WJSU satellites of W58CK, which had its call later changed to WBMA. It had first broadcast on digital channel 11 but was moved to digital 40 to prevent interference from PBS outlet WBIQ (channel 10). The Tuscaloosa and Anniston markets were absorbed into the Birmingham market, allowing the Nielsen rating service a wider area to survey.

Digital programming

Virtual Physical Name Programming
33.1 33.1 WCFT-DT Main WCFT (ABC)
33.2 33.2 WCFT-DT2 Weather
33.3 33.3 WCFT-DT3 Heartland
40.1 9.1 WJSU-DT Main WJSU (ABC)
40.2 9.2 WJSU-DT2 Weather
40.3 9.3 WJSU-DT3 Heartland
58.1 40.1 WBMA-LD Main WBMA (ABC)
58.2 40.2 WBMA-LD2 Weather
58.3 40.3 WBMA-LD3 Heartland

Current Prime-Time Schedule

Day 6:00 6:30 7:00 7:30 8:00 8:30 9:00 9:30 10:00
Monday ABC 33/40 6 PM News Wheel Of Fortune The Bachelor Castle ABC 33/40 10 PM News
Tuesday ABC 33/40 6 PM News Wheel Of Fortune Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. The Goldbergs Trophy Wife Killer Women ABC 33/40 10 PM News
Wednesday ABC 33/40 6 PM News Wheel Of Fortune The Middle Suburgatory Modern Family Super Fun Night Nashville ABC 33/40 10 PM News
Thursday ABC 33/40 6 PM News Wheel Of Fortune The Taste Shark Tank (repeats) ABC 33/40 10 PM News
Friday ABC 33/40 6 PM News Wheel Of Fortune Last Man Standing The Neighbors Shark Tank 20/20 ABC 33/40 10 PM News
Saturday ABC 33/40 6 PM News Wheel Of Fortune Movie 20/20 (repeats) ABC 33/40 10 PM News
Sunday America's Funniest Home Videos The Bachelor Revenge Betrayal ABC 33/40 10 PM News

External Links

Official website for ABC33/40