WKMJ-TV Source: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/WKMJ-TV

OwnerKentucky Authority for Educational Television
First air date
August 31, 1970 (51 years ago) (1970-08-31)
Former call signs
WKMJ (1970–1983)
Former channel number(s)
  • Analog:
  • 68 (UHF, 1970–2009)

38 (UHF, 2009-2019)
  • Analog/DT1:
  • NET (September–October 1970)
  • PBS (via KET, October 1970–July 1997)
  • Dark (July–August 1997)
  • DT3:
  • KET ED (2009)
    Dark (2009–2013)
Call sign meaning
W Kentucky Media and Journalism
Technical information
Licensing authority
Facility ID34195
[not verified in body]
  • 218 m (715 ft)
  • 251.2 m (824 ft) (CP)
[not verified in body]
Transmitter coordinates38°22′1″N 85°49′54″W / 38.36694°N 85.83167°W / 38.36694; -85.83167
Translator(s)WKPC-DT 15.2 (17.2 UHF) Louisville
Public license information

WKMJ-TV, virtual channel 68 (UHF digital channel 34), is a Public Broadcasting Service (PBS) member television station licensed to Louisville, Kentucky, United States. It is the flagship station for KET2, the second television service of Kentucky Educational Television (KET), which is owned by the Kentucky Authority for Educational Television.

The station's master control and internal operations are located at KET's main studios at the O. Leonard Press Telecommunications Center in Lexington.[not verified in body] WKMJ's transmitter, like those of several other Louisville stations including main KET transmitter WKPC-TV, is located at the Kentuckiana Tower Farm at Floyds Knobs, in Floyd County, Indiana.[not verified in body] WKMJ and WKPC are the only KET-owned stations whose transmitters are outside Kentucky's borders.[not verified in body]


When Kentucky Educational Television began broadcasting in 1968, it was built to provide the widest statewide coverage with the fewest transmitters possible.[1] Network officials expected that the transmitters at Elizabethtown (WKZT-TV) and Owenton (WKON-TV) would provide sufficient service in the Louisville area. Reception, however, was poorer than expected, prompting KET in March 1969 to announce plans to file for channel 68 and strike a deal with WAVE-TV for a new tower, which would also house a stronger WKPC-TV.[1] Tests began August 17, 1970,[2] and full service began two weeks later.[3] Channel 68 originally went off the air when the rest of KET was airing the same programming as WKPC-TV.[2] Duplication remained low, and at the end of 1982, an agreement was reached for WKPC-TV to be the primary PBS outlet in Louisville.[4]

However, after this arrangement, duplication returned. In 1995, after WKPC-TV experienced a series of financial reversals caused by for-profit ventures intended to bolster station income,[5] talks began to merge the two stations, with channel 15—with its stronger signal—becoming the primary KET station.[6] An agreement was reached in December 1996,[7] by which KET acquired certain technical assets, including the land to the Floyds Knobs tower it still shared with WKPC-TV, and the license.[8]

On July 1, 1997, KET's main programming moved to WKPC-TV. WKMJ-TV simultaneously suspended operations for a transmitter overhaul;[9] it returned a month later at increased power, carrying a new service called KET2, which initially featured additional children's programs, adult education programming and local productions.[10] Outside of Louisville, KET2 was seen on cable systems statewide.[8]

In 2009, WKMJ-DT2 began broadcasting the Kentucky Channel, simulcasting the DT3 subchannel of all other KET stations.[citation needed] Also in 2009, KET ED became available on WKMJ-DT3, on a 24-hour-a-day basis until September 2009, when WKMJ-DT3 went silent for four years.[citation needed] In 2013, WKMJ-DT3 began broadcasting the World network by American Public Television (APT).[citation needed] As the only KET station broadcasting that service, Louisville was the only major market in Kentucky to receive that channel.[citation needed] In late 2020, the KET2 subchannel was upgraded to 720p HD, with KETKY on 68.2 upgraded to widescreen standard definition. This upgrade also took place on the DT2 and DT3 feeds of all other KET satellites.


As the second service of KET, WKMJ-TV broadcasts the national PBS schedule from the PBS Satellite Service along with additional syndicated programs from American Public Television (including how-to programs, documentaries, and imported comedy and drama series), Kentucky-focused public affairs programs, and some local programming focusing on the Louisville area. As of 2021, WKMJ-TV does not air children’s programming broadcast by PBS or through independent distributors; this is despite that FCC Children’s Television Act regulations (which require television stations to air a minimum of three hours of educational children’s programming per week) apply to WKMJ, as it transmits the KET2 schedule locally. (While KET2 is simulcast on the DT2 subchannel of KET’s other stations, exemptions to Children’s Television Act enforcement—as implemented in January 2020—only apply to services transmitted exclusively through subchannels.)[11]


The KET2 service became available over-the-air statewide via the digital television signals of all KET stations broadcasting the statewide feed in the early 2000s, through a second digital subchannel. The 15 principal KET satellites and 3 accompanying digital low-powered translators provide KET2 on their respective DT2 subchannels.[12]

KET2's cable carriage covers roughly 62% of all subscribers in the state. This includes most Charter Spectrum systems, including all of the state's major cities and several rural areas. It is also available on DirecTV and Dish Network satellite television in the Louisville market.[13] KET2 is also available on cable in Louisville's southern Indiana suburbs.[citation needed]

Digital television[edit]


WKMJ-TV began broadcasting its digital television companion signal, WKMJ-DT, in 2003, making it the last KET-affiliated television station to do so.[14]

Analog-to-digital conversion[edit]

On April 16, 2009, WKMJ-TV shut down its analog signal on UHF channel 68 in compliance with the federally-mandated digital television transition. The station's digital signal remained on its pre-transition UHF channel 38. Digital television receivers display the station's virtual channel as 68, its former UHF analog channel.[15][16][17]

Spectrum incentive auction results[edit]

As of July 2017, WKMJ-TV currently holds a construction permit to move its digital signal to UHF channel 34 as part of the network's participation in the 2016–17 FCC Spectrum incentive auction. WKMJ's digital signal is scheduled to be reallocated to its new position in late 2019.[18][19][needs update]

WKMJ digital channels[edit]

WKMJ is the only KET-network station whose subchannels are not configured the same way as the other satellites. The station's signal is multiplexed in this manner:

Channel Video Aspect Short name Programming[20]
68.1 720p 16:9 KET2 Main WKMJ-TV programming / KET2 / PBS
68.2 480i KETKY Kentucky Channel (via WKPC-DT3)
68.3 KETWRLD World

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b Doussard, James (March 30, 1969). "Louisville to Get New Educational Television Station". Courier-Journal. pp. A1, A28. Retrieved January 26, 2021.
  2. ^ a b Doussard, James (August 17, 1970). "Channel 68 Begins Air Tests Today". Courier-Journal. p. B2. Retrieved January 26, 2021.
  3. ^ "WKMJ-TV" (PDF). Broadcasting Yearbook. 1974. p. A-24. Retrieved January 26, 2021.
  4. ^ Dorsey, Tom (December 31, 1982). "Changing their image: Channels 15, 68 agree to end duplicate programs". Courier-Journal. p. C5. Retrieved January 26, 2021.
  5. ^ Voskuhl, John (September 28, 1996). "How Channel 15's grand plans went bust". Courier-Journal. pp. A1, A7. Retrieved January 26, 2021.
  6. ^ Dorsey, Tom (August 25, 1996). "KET, WKPC move toward merger". Courier-Journal. p. A1. Retrieved January 26, 2021.
  7. ^ Dorsey, Tom (December 12, 1996). "KET will run PBS station in Louisville". Courier-Journal. pp. A1, A7. Retrieved January 26, 2021.
  8. ^ a b Fox, Virginia G. (August 2, 1997). "A new day for public TV". Courier-Journal. p. A7. Retrieved January 26, 2021.
  9. ^ Dorsey, Tom (June 11, 1997). "Public-TV station WKPC becomes history July 1". Courier-Journal. p. D1, D2. Retrieved January 26, 2021.
  10. ^ Dorsey, Tom (July 31, 1997). "KET2, too". Courier-Journal. p. C1. Retrieved January 26, 2021.
  11. ^ "KET Channels : KET3". Kentucky Educational Television. Archived from the original on September 28, 2006. Retrieved January 24, 2017.
  12. ^ "query on Kentucky Authority for Educational Television". Rabbitears.info. 2011-08-26. Archived from the original on 2018-02-27. Retrieved 2018-02-26.
  13. ^ "KET Cable and Satellite Company Channel Listings" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2016-06-05. Retrieved 2017-01-17.
  14. ^ "Directory of Radio Stations in the United States and Canada". Broadcasting Yearbook 2003-2004. Washington, DC: Broadcasting Publications, Inc. 2004. p. B-38. [1]
  15. ^ "Calls come after KET, WKYT digital TV transition". Lexington Herald-Leader. April 17, 2009. Archived from the original on May 8, 2014. Retrieved January 17, 2017.
  16. ^ "The Digital Transition: The Malcolm (Mac) Wall Years". KET. Kentucky Educational Television. Archived from the original on 2015-06-25. Retrieved 2017-01-13.
  17. ^ "DTV Tentative Channel Designations for the First and Second Rounds" (PDF). 2012-03-24. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2013-08-29. Retrieved 2017-01-16.
  18. ^ "RabbitEars.Info". RabbitEars.Info. 2011-08-26. Archived from the original on 2018-10-17. Retrieved 2018-02-26.
  19. ^ FCC. "Post Incentive Auction Television Data Files". Data.fcc.gov. Archived from the original on 2018-02-09. Retrieved 2018-02-26.
  20. ^ "Digital TV Market Listing for WKMJ-TV". Rabbitears.info. Archived from the original on 2018-02-27. Retrieved 2018-02-26.

External links[edit]