Launch of New Moon's NBC Affiliates Delayed

Viewers in the small markets of Dothan, Ala., and Jonesboro, Ark., among others, continue to wait for their NBC programming. New Moon Communications had planned to launch NBC affiliates on WDON Dothan, KJNE Jonesboro, WZMC Jackson (Tenn.) and KUMK Ottumwa (Iowa) for the fall, but it hasn't happened yet, and owner Darnell Washington did not offer a date for the debut.

"We've got target dates for those, but we don't want to expose those dates just yet," he says.

The markets are No. 169, 176, 181 and 199.

In early October, Washington told B&C that "equipment issues" were holding up the launch.

An NBC spokesperson took the delay in stride, acknowledging that New Moon is in the process of getting the affiliated stations up and running.

New Moon agreed to acquire the low power stations from the Minority Media and Telecommunications Council in June. All are former TBN (Trinity Broadcasting Network) affiliates.

At the time, the plans for the stations included "immediate transition to digital, NBC programming along with new syndicated offerings, local news broadcasts and aggressive local marketing campaigns," said New Moon in a statement.

Washington, a sales veteran who worked at stations owned by Pulitzer and Sinclair, among others, said some more pressing matters are holding up the debuts. "We have some other things in the works," he said, but would not specify.

Michael Malone, senior content producer at B+C/Multichannel News, covers network programming, including entertainment, news and sports on broadcast, cable and streaming; and local broadcast television. He hosts the podcasts Busted Pilot, about what’s new in television, and Series Business, a chat with the creator of a new program, and writes the column “The Watchman.” He joined B+C in 2005. His journalism has also appeared in The New York Times, The Philadelphia Inquirer, Playboy and New York magazine.