CBS, NBC Switch Stations In Raleigh

Courtesy of CBS/NBC

In an odd turn of events, CBS and NBC have swapped, more or less, affiliates in Raleigh, NC, with CBS leaving its longtime home,  WRAL, and moving to WNCN, and NBC dropping the latter in favor of a roost with the former.

WNCN is owned by Media General Inc., while WRAL is owned by the independent Capitol Broadcasting. The switch will take effect February 29.

One of the factors spurring the switch was a disputes between CBS and WRAL over how much money, typically known as reverse compensation, the station should pay the network, according to a person familiar with the situation. The issue has played a part in other CBS dealings with affiliates. In 2014, CBS switched from LIN Media’s WISH in Indianapolis to Tribune’s WTTV over similar reasons.

NBC feels it’s getting beachfront property in a top market, said Ted Harbert, chairman of NBC Broadcasting, in an interview Friday evening. WRAL, he said, delivers top ratings in one if the nation’s 25 largest markets, and has helped “CBS This Morning” defeat NBC’s “Today” in the ratings in the area.

“It is without doubt one of the most powerful and highly rated affiliates in the nation,” said Harbert. The executive said NBC had no dealings with WRAL until after the station’s talks with CBS had come to a close.

“If they come to you,” he said, “you take that meeting.”

The move – which is not a transaction between CBS and NBC – illustrates the continued importance of TV stations in the modern media-industry landscape.  The stations are thought to have strong ties to local markets and able to enjoy revenues from distribution via cable and broadband.

The trend is playing out elsewhere in the country. NBC said last week it would launch its own station in the Boston area at the start of 2017, and terminate its longstanding relationship with independent WHDH TV, controlled by Sunbeam Television.

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  1. Michel says:

    It does not answer the question of what channel it is

  2. Glen @ APL says:

    I wonder what the advantages of switching affiliate are other than money?

  3. 12th Man says:

    Here in Seattle, CBS would move from KIRO to KSTW in 1995 only for it to go back to KIRO in 1997. KSTW nowadays has the CW Network.

  4. NBC Fan says:

    Back in 2002, NBC dropped KRON in favor of KNTV in the S.F. Bay Area.BTW, NBC owns KNTV.

  5. I grew up watching the Today Show. The giggling gaggle of moronity that is the current incarnation of Today cannot hold a candle to CBS morning news with Charlie Rose, Gayle King and Nora O’Donnell. Not even considering the complete lack of other programming on NBC — I cannot imagine what made made WRAL jump to NBC.

  6. PW says:

    Sorry, Mr. Harbert, chairman of NBC Broadcasting. WRAL may have helped CBS This Morning outrank Today, but it cannot bring back viewers to the unfortunate swamp that Today has become. I was a Today viewer since even before Jane Pauley, but left when it stopped showing news and became more of an entertainment show. Then it expanded to 4 hours. OMG. CBS This Morning actually shows me the news, and that’s what I want to see.
    I will continue to watch WRAL for local news, and I will give Lester Holt a chance, but CBS gives me what I want, and what the nation needs. Mr. Harbert, if you want to increase your ratings, you should improve your programming.

  7. Mark says:

    Oh, well. It was nice while it lasted WRAL. Have you thought about broadcasting local/national news 24/7? No? It’s too much to watch NBC national news or drama, etc. Already have the ol’ cable box to bring in WNCN/CBS when the tube cranks up.

  8. Eric says:

    With the CBS-NBC switch taking place some 12 days from now… WRAL will be moving 4PM newscast from WRAZ over to WRAL. WNCN is ditching 11AM and 7PM newscasts, in favor of Noon and 5PM newscasts, moving My Carolina Today program to 9AM, and keeping Y&R at 4PM.

    It’ll be interesting to see if WNCN will roll out new graphics and music the day it switches to CBS… possibly to the Scripps-esque graphics (seen on WSPA-WYCW, WATE, and WJTV) and “CBS Local” (by Stephen Arnold) replacing “Canvas” (also by Arnold). For WRAL-WRAZ, I’d assume little to no changes to their graphics, music, and set.

  9. Rachel says:

    *great shows (CBS has a plethora of great shows)

  10. Rachel says:

    Yes, WRAL has a good track record as a station and news in general, but CBS has a plethora of great CBS. NBC has only a paltry few quality shows (The Voice, Biggest Loser, Blacklist, and sometimes Jimmy Fallon are about all they have truly worth watching), so neither NBC nor WRAL should expect the same results CBS culled.

  11. Ollivette Vassey says:

    After NBC and CBS switch stations, will CBS continue to broadcast the same shows, soap, in the same time slots, same days as CBS WRAL does now, need to know for DVR programming? And if not, where would I be able to get this information, programming line-up?

  12. James Conrad says:

    Where will CbS be located on TV? What channel is CBS moving to. I want to continue watching Good Morning America, NCIS, etc. My carrier is CentryLink Prism.

  13. LindaBeam says:

    WRAL constantly sets the bar for outstanding production: think Broadway vs. Community theater. Their anchors have been with them for years and are valuable extensions of our home town family. WRAL’s indepth documentaries has their finger on the pulse of local and state problems. I’ve been a fan for 20 years and will gladly follow them to NBC.

  14. Robert Weaver says:

    i agree with Margie, will miss the morning news but I watch CBS too. Goodbye WRAL.

  15. Margie Reinitz says:

    I will miss you wral, but I watch CBS, so bye now

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