KIJK, virtual channel 8 (formerly on sub-channel 7.2), was a independent station licensed to Austin, Texas. It was owned by the Central Texas Christian Broadcasting Association, which it joined after FOX cut affiliation with it in 2011.
The station was initially a sub-channel of nearby KXKI-TV, the primary CBS affiliate of Austin at the time. However, the two stations started to grow apart, and after KXKI lost CBS affiliation to KKIO on July 15, 2002 (which would run KXKI bankrupt in the following years), KIJK announced that it had officially been split from KXKI on August 3, 2002. KIJK was a independent station during the 1997 (when it was founded as a subchannel)-2003 time-frame. However, FOX quickly showed interest in the Austin area almost immediately after KIJK became independent from KXKI, and in 2003, FOX affiliate group FOX Stations of Central Texas began showing a large interest in acquiring the struggling KIJK. On March 19, 2003...FSCT announced the acquisition of KIJK. KIJK was slowly converted into a FOX affiliate, with the conversion completing on July 4, 2003...when KIJK officially adopted the FOX branding. It became one of the few FOX affiliates (due to it's location in Texas' state capital) to receive regional broadcasting, with DIRECTV and Dish broadcasting it alongside the local FOX affiliate as well as the national FOX network in Texas, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Arkansas and Louisiana. DIRECTV Mexico also began broadcasting KIJK's Spanish feed in the Mexican state of Chihuahua, however this became national in 2005 under the name "FOX Mexico". KIJK was reportedly among the most viewed FOX affiliates in the nation, however, nearby KIJJ became a FOX affiliate owned by FSCT on July 19, 2009. This caused KIJK's viewer count to rapidly drop in the Austin area, leading to DIRECTV and DIRECTV Mexico both dropping KIJK (FOX Mexico would become a separate network however). KIJK was slowly being dropped by FOX (and it's subchannels were being dropped by PBS), and FOX officially cut affiliation with KIJK following a news anchor with KIJK having a large anti-FOX rant on July 1, 2011. It was officially dropped on July 4, and all FOX branding was removed by the end of July 2011. The station quickly almost went under, however, agreements with the Central Texas Christian Broadcasting Association began...
Under CTCBA (2011-2019) Edit
After being a completely independent network from July 4 through September 27, 2011...on September 28, 2011, KIJK officially became the flagship station of the Central Texas Christian Broadcasting Association. It officially adopted the Central Texas Christian Broadcasting Group branding on October 1, 2011. However, quickly the entire news team was dropped between October 3 and October 17, 2011, leading to a mass drop in employment. Not only that but KIJK began broadcasting exclusively Christian shows on KIJK and it's subchannel KECC on October 25, 2011. Viewer ratings dropped on KIJK through the final few months of 2011, however they soared when they relaunched KECC as a MyNetworkTV affiliated subchannel on February 19, 2012. Several cable providers such as COX and Verizon Fios dropped KIJK but kept KECC after this move. By March 2013, the channel had received minimum praise and widespread bad press. Not only that but agreements with Dish Network to begin carrying KIJK nationwide failed on May 17, 2013. The station went silent from May 18 to October 25, 2013, while KECC continued operating. Reports showed the KIJK couldn't afford the cost to operate as a flagship station, and therefore, CTCBA planned to drop KIJK from their channel listing, however, after almost going bankrupt, they brought back KIJK. Being met to widespread bad press due to their affiliation with KIJK, KECC sued and split from KIJK. the FCC approved the split on November 17, 2013, with the split to officially occur at 11:59PM on December 31, 2013. KECC officially left the 8.2 subchannel at the stroke of midnight on New Years Day 2014. Meanwhile former parent station of KIJK, KXKI officially went silent at the same time. Viewer counts dropped rapidly after they split from KECC, with KIJK almost being sold by CTCBA to the FCC Spectrum sale in 2015, however, KXKI's new owners sold it instead. KIJK was reportedly dropped for less than 48 hours from CTCBA as it went silent again for all of January 18 and 19, 2016. At this point, DIRECTV (which had been broadcasting KIJK's programming to central Texas), finally dropped KIJK and Central Texas Christian Broadcasting as a whole on March 15, 2016.
Closure (2016-2019) Edit
CTCBA announced that they would be closing KIJK on all cable networks (but not over-the-air) on December 25, 2016. Sure enough, at the stroke of midnight on Christmas Day 2016, the station aired several holy songs and then the United States anthem on Comcast and other cable networks still carrying it, before shutting down it's cable transmitters, leaving it broadcasting over the air. It dropped all remaining non-CTCBA programming on January 1, 2018. At this point, the former owner of KIJK, Greg H. Williams, sued CTCBA, demanding that they return KIJK to it's former FOX affiliation, the lawsuit led to CTCBA filing for Chapter 11 Bankruptcy Protection to protect itself from FOX Stations of Central Texas. the FCC fined CTCBA $15,000 in Fall 2018 for filing Chapter 11 bankruptcy to escape punishment for losing the lawsuit. However, FOX Stations of Central Texas had instead contacting WECC and opened up WKII instead of converting KIJK into a FOX station. Viewer rates had now dropped to less than 500 viewers by the end of 2018, and afterwards, KIJK became a low power station. The FCC yet again fined CTCBA for falsely suing NBC for "stealing their content and television space", shortly later, CTCBA, on the brink of collapsing, filed for Chapter 11 Bankruptcy Protection on January 27, 2019...selling several stations to NBC and FOX, they filed for Chapter 7 Bankruptcy on February 28, 2019...and returned KIJK's license to the FCC on March 5, 2019. Employees at KIJK were informed the next morning that CTCBA had returned their license to the FCC, as they had gone bankrupt and would cease all operations effective at 11:59PM that evening. Therefore, they ordered KIJK to fully stop broadcasting permanently at the same time. At the stroke of midnight on March 7, the station went silent, ending KIJK.