Fox CT (WTIC) is a Fox affilitate local TV channel from Hartford, Connecticut. The channel first aired in 1984. It offers news, weather and traffic updates on the Internet.
WTIC-TV, virtual channel 61 (UHF digital channel 34), is a Fox-affiliated television station licensed to Hartford, Connecticut, United States and serving the Hartford–New Haven, Connecticut television market. The station is owned by Tegna Inc., as part of a duopoly with Waterbury-licensed CW affiliate WCCT-TV (channel 20). The two stations share studios on Broad Street in downtown Hartford and transmitter facilities on Rattlesnake Mountain in Farmington, Connecticut. On cable, WTIC-TV is carried primarily on channel 6 throughout the market.
WTIC-TV presently broadcasts 56½ hours of locally produced newscasts each week (with 9½ hours each weekday and 4½ hours each on Saturdays and Sundays); in regards to the number of hours devoted to news programming, it is the highest local newscast output of any television station in the state of Connecticut.
The station broadcasts the Xfinity Sports Desk at 10:45 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday nights. WTIC also produces a weekly public affairs show, The Real Story, which airs Sunday mornings at 10:00 a.m. Along with obtaining world and national news footage from Fox News, WTIC also receives news footage from CNN Newsource and the Associated Press.
News department history
In 1989, WTIC launched its news department with the debut of a nightly half-hour 10:00 p.m. newscast, which was the second in the market after a short-lived attempt on WHCT-TV (channel 18, now Univision affiliate WUVN) in 1969; original WTIC news anchor Pat Sheehan had previously served as the anchor for WHCT’s program. The 10:00 p.m. newscast was joined in June 1995 by an in-depth news program at 10:30 p.m. similar in style to the original format of Nightline called Tonight in Connecticut; after two months of low ratings, Tonight in Connecticut was dropped in August 1995 in favor of a half-hour extension of the existing 10:00 p.m. newscast. In 1998, when WTIC replaced WVIT as WTXX’s LMA partner, the WVIT-produced 10:00 p.m. broadcast was replaced with a simulcast of the first half-hour of channel 61’s primetime newscast. On April 24, 2006, WTXX began to simulcast the entire hour of the program. That station did not have a separate news open for the nightly broadcasts; whenever Fox programming or sports delayed the news on WTIC, it was still aired on WTXX but under the name of News at Ten. There was also a News at Ten logo bug in the bottom right-hand corner of the screen in place of the Fox 61 News bug. WTXX discontinued its simulcast of the 10:00 p.m. newscast in June 2010, shortly before changing its callsign to WCCT-TV; that station continues to show the newscast when it is preempted on WTIC.
The station launched a weekday morning newscast on March 3, 2008. The 7:00 a.m. hour competes with WCTX’s morning show (which is produced by sister station WTNH), and airs for one hour. On August 4, 2009, the weekday morning newscast was expanded to 4½ hours and began airing from 4:30 a.m. – 9:00 a.m. During the 8:00 a.m. hour, the format of the program includes several interview segments focusing on entertainment, lifestyle and health. This hour is simulcast on WCCT; the station’s simulcasts of portions of the morning newscast have been intermittent throughout the newscast’s existence. Since launching the morning broadcast, WTIC-TV has entered into a weather department partnership with WTIC radio (1080 AM). The weather center now features meteorologists from the radio and television stations. Weather reports can also be heard on WTIC, WTIC-FM (96.5 FM), WRCH (100.5 FM), WZMX (93.7 FM), and WZBG (97.3 FM).
On September 8, 2008, WTIC debuted a weeknight 11:00 p.m. newscast. On September 21, the station launched a weekday midday newscast at 11:00 a.m. A weeknight 6:00 p.m. newscast was planned, but did not debut on that date. On August 23, 2010, WTIC launched an hour-long late afternoon newscast at 4:00 p.m. on weekdays.
In July 2009, news reporter Shelly Sindland filed both state and federal complaints alleging age and sex discrimination in the station’s newsroom. Media websites also raised questions about the way the case was covered by the Hartford Courant, which operates under the same management as WTIC.
On December 12, 2009, WTIC, WCCT (then WTXX) and the Hartford Courant moved into their new combined newsroom facilities in Downtown Hartford, and WTIC rebranded from “Fox 61” to “Fox CT” (a transition that was completed in July 2010). In addition, WTIC became the second station in the market to begin broadcasting its local newscasts in high definition, with WCCT’s newscasts also making the transition. On January 22, 2011, WTIC launched weekend morning newscasts, airing for two hours from 7:00 a.m. – 9:00 a.m.; it is the third Tribune-owned station with a weekend morning newscast (now-independent station and Tribune flagship WGN-TV in Chicago and Fox affiliate WXIN in Indianapolis debuted weekend morning newscasts before WTIC, CW affiliate KTLA in Los Angeles launched a weekend morning newscast a few months later in April 2011). On September 26, 2011, WTIC expanded its weekday morning newscast to 5½ hours from 4:30 a.m. -10:00 a.m.; with the expansion, the 11:00 a.m. newscast was dropped from the schedule. On January 28, 2013, WTIC launched an hour-long 5:00 p.m. newscast.On September 9, 2013, WTIC expanded its weekday morning newscast to six hours with the addition of a half-hour, now starting at 4:00 a.m. At some point afterwards, the weekend morning news was also expanded, this time by an hour and it now airs from 6:00 a.m. -9:00 a.m.