WMYD Detroit is set to start airing The CW on November 13, as the independent station takes on the affiliation after WADL dropped it October 29. WADL had served WMYD, part of a Scripps-owned duopoly with WXYZ, with a cease and desist letter November 7.
WMYD, known as TV20, and WADL, part of Adell Broadcasting, are next-door neighbors along West 10 Mile Road north of Detroit.
Mike Murri, WXYZ-WMYD VP and general manager, told B+C they are “moving forward today as announced earlier” as regards the CW affiliation.
Adell Broadcasting chief Kevin Adell told B+C he did not have an affiliation agreement with The CW, but agreed to air the network as an “accommodation” as he awaited the FCC’s signoff on the $75 million sale of WADL to Mission Broadcasting.
The cease and desist letter from Adell Broadcasting’s law firm, Bodman Attorneys & Counselors, states in part: “By agreeing to carry The CW not on market terms, you are interfering with and impacting WADL’s business relationships and expectancy with Mission. Agreeing to carry The CW implies an improper purpose and constitutes tortious interference under well-established Michigan law.”
On November 8, Bodman served up another letter to WMYD, reminding the station, and Scripps, to “preserve all documents (paper and electronically stored information) and other evidence that are, or may be, relevant to the dispute between you and WADL regarding The CW Network.”
Adell said the legal battle with WMYD will continue, with him seeking $75 million. “A case will be filed before year end,” he told B+C on November 13.
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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.