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DirecTV Drops UNC-EX in Triad, Norfolk, Wilmington & Florence/Myrtle Beach Markets.

At midnight July 1, 2018, DirecTV ceased carriage of UNC-TV (WUND-TV Edenton/Columbia) in the Norfolk, VA, market.


Additionally, DirecTV ceased carriage of the Explorer Channel in Norfolk, and in the Triad (Winston-Salem, Greensboro, High Point), Wilmington and the Florence/Myrtle Beach, SC, markets. This will also specifically affect the Edenton, Columbia and Jacksonville markets.

DirecTV will now only make the Explorer Channel available for customers in the Charlotte, Raleigh/Durham/Chapel Hill, Greenville/Spartanburg/Asheville and Greenville/Washington/New Bern markets. See those channel numbers here.

Why Is this Happening?

UNC-TV Public Media North Carolina wants our programs to serve as many people as possible.

This is DirecTV’s decision—not UNC-TV’s. After nearly 17 years, DirecTV elected not to renew its existing carriage agreement with UNC-TV, resulting in DirecTV’s decision to drop UNC-TV PBS & More in the Norfolk, VA, market and the Explorer Channel in Norfolk, and in the Triad (Winston-Salem, Greensboro, High Point), Wilmington, and the Florence/Myrtle Beach, SC, markets.

As a non-commercial broadcaster, UNC-TV Public Media North Carolina is prohibited from receiving money from DirecTV to retransmit our channels (unlike commercial broadcasters), so this was not a factor in DirecTV’s decision.

DirecTV will carry only the absolute minimum channels that it is legally required to offer; making our DirecTV carriage similar to Dish Network’s, regarding services available.

For North Carolina DirecTV customers, the changes do not affect the UNC-TV PBS & More channel—just UNC-TV Public Media North Carolina’s Explorer Channel in the designated markets.

How Can I Access the Explorer Channel & UNC-TV?

We value your viewership and apologize for any inconvenience this change may cause. We want you to be able to access and enjoy shows across all four of our channels. While we are working with DirecTV to resolve these issues, one possible solution to receive our Explorer Channel service is to purchase an antenna. While not a recommendation, members of our organization have used the ClearStream 2MAX satisfactorily; other antennas may work well to provide access to the Explorer Channel UNC-EX .

Please note that in the markets that still receive the Explorer Channel, those channel numbers for UNC-EX have changed. The Explorer Channel is now found at the following channels:


MarketUNC-EX Channel NumberUNC-TV Channel Number
CharlotteChannel 17Channel 58
RaleighChannel 36Channel 4
Greenville/Spartanburg/AshevilleChannel 27Channel 33
Greenville/New Bern/WashingtonChannel 19Channel 25

We have received some viewer reports that DirecTV’s on-screen program guide is not yet showing the correct channel information for the Explorer Channel (UNC-EX), but if you select that channel and see the Explorer Channel logo in the lower right corner of the screen, that is the Explorer Channel.

You can also watch our shows anytime on video.unctv.org or on the PBS app.

Further questions/comments can be directed to DirecTV at 1-800-531-5000.
UNC-TV Public Statement on DIRECTV Carriage of WUND-TV in Norfolk Market:

On July 1, 2018, DirecTV ceased carriage of Television Station WUND-TV, Edenton, NC, on its satellite video distribution system covering the Norfolk/Portsmouth/Newport News, VA, market. This affects Camden, Chowan, Currituck, Dare, Gates, Hertford, Pasquotank and Perquimans counties in North Carolina and Accomack, Chesapeake City, Franklin City, Gloucester, Hampton City, Isle of Wight, James City, Mathews, Newport News City, Norfolk City, Northampton, Poquoson City, Portsmouth City, Southampton, Suffolk City, Virginia Beach City, Williamsburg City and York counties in Virginia.

WUND-TV is a PBS-affiliated station operated by the University of North Carolina as part of the UNC-TV Public Media North Carolina family of stations and has been carried by DirecTV in the Norfolk market under various agreements since 2006.

We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause to viewers. UNC-TV Public Media North Carolina is working with DirecTV to restore carriage of WUND-TV as quickly as possible, although the precise timetable for the restoration of carriage is currently unknown.

If you have questions, please contact: viewer@unctv.org or 1-888-292-7070. Thank you.