About WXMI FOX17On March 18, 1982, the station went on the air as an independent station with the call letters WWMA. "We're West Michigan Alternative," according to the call letters. Heritage Broadcasting Company was the station's initial owner. On August 15, 1983, almost a year after coming on, new stockholders purchased control of the station and changed the call letters to the present WXMI. The "XMI" was claimed to represent for "EXtreme Michigan" at the time. WXMI secured an affiliation agreement with Fox in 1987 and became the market's Fox affiliate on April 9, 1987, when Fox extended its programming offerings to include primetime programming. Odyssey Television Partners, a New York-based business run by Robert Dudley, bought the station's shares in 1989.
WXMI was bought by Indianapolis-based Emmis Communications nine years later, and the station, along with sister station KTZZ in Seattle, Washington, was transferred to Tribune Broadcasting in 1998 in exchange for FM station WQCD in New York City. Following a dispute between Fox and the block's lessee, 4Kids Entertainment, cartoons were dropped from WXMI's schedule in 2008; the Saturday morning time period is now split between the weekend edition of WXMI's morning newscast and children's programming (either syndicated or from Fox's Xploration Station block), fulfilling the Federal Communications Commission (FCCE/I )'s guidelines.