KSBY is the NBC affiliate television station for the Central Coast of California. The station covers San Luis Obispo, Santa Maria and Santa Barbara. The station is currently owned by Cordillera Communications, as a subsidiary of Evening Post Industries. Its studios are located at 1772 Calle Joaquin in San Luis Obispo. KSBY also maintains a Santa Maria studio, located at 2370 Skyway Drive, Suite 102, Santa Maria, California, near the Santa Maria Airport. KSBY also carries programming from The CW on its DT2 channel, originally known to cable viewers as KWCA.
The station went on the air in May 1953, as KVEC-TV. The VEC stood for Valley Electric Company, which also built Sonic Cable, the original cable television system in San Luis Obispo. KVEC-TV was the first broadcasting station in the Central and South Coast, and aired programming from NBC, ABC, CBS, and DuMont, with NBC being its primary affiliation. During its first four years on the air, the station was co-owned with radio station KVEC.
Ownership with KSBW
From 1957 to 1996, the station was a sister station to KSBW channel 8 in Salinas, which is why the station currently has a similar call sign. From 1957 to 1979, KSBY was largely a semi-satellite of KSBW, with the exception of local commercials, its local newscasts, and pre-empting the CBS network programming also carried by KCOY in adjacent Santa Maria. During this period, the KSBY sales office was located at co-owned Sonic Cable, and its local programming originated at the transmitter site. In 1960 ABC programs also carried by KEYT in Santa Barbara were dropped. Finally, in 1969, KSBY became the sole NBC station for both counties when San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara counties were consolidated into a single market and KCOY took the area's CBS affiliation. KSBY and KSBW were owned by Blair Broadcasting, beginning in 1979, until they were sold to Gillett Communications in 1986.
After Gillett restructured into SCI TV in the early 1990s, it sold KSBY and KSBW to EP Communications in 1994. EP, in turn, sold both stations to Smith Broadcasting in 1995. Almost immediately, KSBY was spun off to SJL Broadcasting in 1996, because Smith Broadcasting already owned rival station KEYT, and Federal Communications Commission rules of the time did not permit duopolies. Even today, common ownership of KEYT and KSBY would be a violation of FCC duopoly rules, which forbid one entity to directly own two of the four largest stations in a single media market. In addition, the Santa Maria / Santa Barbara / San Luis Obispo market has only five full-power stations, which are too few to legitimately support a duopoly between full-power stations.
In September 2002, SJL sold KSBY to the second incarnation of New Vision Television, a company partially related to the most recent incarnation of that company that sold all of its stations to the LIN Media in 2012. Evening Post, KSBY's current owners, acquired the station in 2004.
In 2006, the station was featured in an episode of The Surreal Life, in which the cast of the reality-based series were hired as anchors and reporters for the station's 6:30 p.m. newscast. Ryan Bennett, a one time KSBY Sports anchor from 1999-2006 died on May 31, 2006 in Utah in an accident.
The station's digital signal is multiplexed:
|Channel||Video||Aspect||PSIP Short Name||Programming|
|6.1||1080i||16:9||KSBY-HD||Main KSBY programming / NBC|
|6.2||720p||CW-DT||Central Coast CW 5|
KSBY shut down its analog signal, over VHF channel 6, on February 17, 2009, the original target date on which full-power television stations in the United States were to transition from analog to digital broadcasts under a federal mandate (which was later pushed back to June 12, 2009). The station's digital signal remained on its pre-transition UHF channel 15. Through the use of PSIP, digital television receivers display the station's virtual channel as its former VHF analog channel 6.
KSBY also rebroadcasts its signal on translator station K10PV-D (formerly K59CD) in Santa Barbara. K10PV-D currently holds a permit to operate its digital signal on channel 10 and as of early 2010 has intermittently been on-air with two digital subchannels in Santa Barbara. A translator was previously operated in Springville on K11FU, owned by Springville Community TV, but the station's license was cancelled in December 2007. KSBY can be received in parts of Ventura County near the Los Angeles area covered by KNBC-TV and Monterey County south of San Jose of the San Francisco Bay area covered by NBC's KNTV. And sometimes KSBY can be received in southern San Joaquin Valley like in parts of Fresno, Tulare and Kern counties.
Central Coast CW
KSBY-DT2 is The CW affiliate for the Central Coast of California. The station is part of The CW Plus, and is carried on cable systems in San Luis Obispo, Santa Maria and Santa Barbara. It is available solely in standard definition on Central Coast cable systems on channel 5 and digitally over-the-air on KSBY channel 6.2 in high definition. Since May 2010, 10 p.m. newscasts produced by KSBY are carried on KSBY-DT2.
As of May 2011 KSBY carries 24.5 hours of local news per week, with 4.5 hours each weekday and only one hour on weekends. On weekdays, besides carrying a weeknight 10 p.m. newscast over on its second digital subchannel, a two-hour block is carried at 5 a.m., follows by a half-hour block at 5 p.m., one-hour block at 6 p.m., and a 35-minute wrap at 11 p.m. On weekends, KSBY carries half-hour news blocks at 6 and 11 p.m. Despite having new graphics in mid-2010, KSBY does not air newscasts at noon or weekend mornings. On September 26, 2011, began broadcast news in widescreen standard definition. Meanwhile, As of 25 August 2010 KSBW airs its newscasts in high definition .