WRLM, virtual channel and UHF digital channel 47, is a TCT owned-and-operated television station serving Cleveland and Akron, Ohio, United States that is licensed to Canton. The station is owned by Tri-State Christian Television. WRLM maintains offices located on Front Street in Cuyahoga Falls, and its transmitter is located in Brimfield (near Interstate 76).
The station first signed on the air on April 23, 1982 as WOAC, broadcasting on UHF channel 67; it was founded by businessman Morton Kent. Initially, the station operated as an independent station, serving mainly the Canton area. It originally maintained a programming format featuring syndicated reruns, movies, and local news updates. The station was later sold to Whitehead Media, which entered into a local marketing agreement with Paxson Communications (now Ion Media Networks). Paxson dropped WOAC's entertainment programming in late 1995, and the station adopted an infomercial format provided by Paxson's Infomail TV Network (or inTV) service (a predecessor to today's Ion Television). Shortly afterwards, Paxson purchased WAKC-TV (channel 23, now WVPX-TV) from ValueVision, and as a result, both stations broadcast inTV programming from December 31, 1996, when WAKC's affiliation contract with ABC expired, until 1998, when WOAC was sold to the Shop at Home Network, which replaced inTV with its own home shopping programming.
It is thought that Paxson sold WOAC because WAKC-TV had a stronger signal that better covered all of Northeast Ohio; WOAC's signal at the time was essentially limited to Canton and Stark County. However, WOAC's antenna was subsequently moved to the Brimfield site, and the power was boosted to five million watts – the maximum allowed for analog UHF broadcasting. This allowed the station to have a much stronger signal that rivaled that of other local stations. In early 2006, WOAC began operating its digital signal on UHF channel 47, with a power of one million watts – the highest transmitting power allowable for a digital television signal, and provides an equivalent coverage area to the analog signal.
On May 16, 2006, the E.W. Scripps Company (incidentally, the longtime owner of Cleveland's ABC affiliate WEWS-TV, channel 5) announced that Shop at Home would be suspending operations, effective June 22, 2006. However, Jewelry Television took over the Shop at Home network operations around the time of the planned closure, and WOAC and other Shop at Home affiliates then ran a combination of programming from the two networks.
On September 26, 2006, Scripps announced that it was selling its Shop at Home stations, including WOAC, to Multicultural Television of New York City for $170 million. The sale of WOAC and its sister stations in San Francisco and Raleigh closed on December 20, 2006. Shortly after Multicultural closed on the deal, all home shopping programming ceased in favor of running infomercials and locally produced programming (such as Dining With Steve, which profiled restaurants in the station's area of service, and The Art of Living, which interviewed influential people in the same area).
After Multicultural ran into financial problems and defaulted on its loans, the station was placed into a trust; the station was then sold to Tri-State Christian Television, a chain of Christian television stations. On June 25, 2009, the station's call letters were changed to WRLM, and the station began broadcasting TCT's religious programming. The station's call letters are named after Radiant Life Ministries (the licensee name under which TCT owns WRLM); however, they are not related to KRLB-LD in Richland, Washington, whose group of stations are operated by a similarly named "Radiant Light Broadcasting".
The station's digital channel is multiplexed:
|Channel||Video||Aspect||PSIP Short Name||Programming|
|47.2||1080i||16:9||WRLM-HD||TCT Family (variety programming in HD including TCT programs, public domain entertainment shows and TCT Kids)|
|47.3||480i||4:3||WRLMSD2||TCT Kids (SD)|
WRLM (as WOAC) shut down its analog signal, over UHF channel 67, on February 17, 2009, the original date in which full-power television stations in the United States transitioned from analog to digital broadcasts under federal mandate. The station's digital signal remained on its pre-transition UHF channel 47. Through the use of PSIP, digital television receivers display the station's virtual channel as its former analog UHF channel 67, which was among the high band UHF channels (52-69) that were removed from broadcasting use as a result of the transition. The PSIP channel was later remapped to the station's physical digital channel, 47.1 on June 25, 2009 (one of the few television stations to remap its virtual channel to one differing from its former analog allocation prior to the digital conversion).