Why Do American Broadcasting Radio Stations Use the Call Letters K and W and What Do They Mean?

During the 1920s, while radio was in its infancy, the FCC assigned the letter K to all stations west of the Mississippi and the letter W to all those east of the river.

Exceptions were made for stations with established call signs, like KDKA in Pittsburgh, and those affiliated with a network.

The other three letters are the broadcaster’s choice.

About Karen Hill

Karen Hill is a freelance writer, editor, and columnist. Born in New York, her work has appeared in the Examiner, Yahoo News, Buzzfeed, among others.

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