Why New Television Networks Are Born

By Fred Hift, | The Christian Science Monitor, November 5, 1993 | Go to article overview
Save to active project

Why New Television Networks Are Born

Fred Hift,, The Christian Science Monitor

MORE for business considerations than for the urgency of public demand, two more national television networks are on the horizon. On Nov. 3, the huge Time Warner combine announced plans for a sixth network next fall. Paramount Communications, currently at the heart of a $10-billion takeover battle, unveiled plans for a fifth network last week.

The addition of two networks comes at a time when the four established ones - ABC, CBS, NBC, and Fox Broadcasting - are slowly regaining strength after a slump in viewership.

The two new networks face problems from the start. Their operational base must be independent affiliates. In the case of Paramount, which is partnered with Chris-Craft Industries, this involves four Paramount-owned stations plus half-a-dozen independents operated by Chris-Craft.

Time Warner has chosen the Tribune Company of Chicago as its network partner. Tribune owns seven key independents, including WPIX in New York and KTLA in Los Angeles. (Its WGN station in Chicago may not participate in the new network.)

Ironically, and very likely a signpost for the future development of TV, Time Warner will have to depend on cable to stitch together a sixth network. Time Warner is the second-biggest cable operator in the United States.

While Time Warner and Tribune have the basic stations for a network, they will need cable to establish a viable operation, since most independent stations in the US are already affiliated with one network or another.

Fox Broadcasting, which set up the fourth network in 1987 in the face of much industry skepticism, signed up many of the key independent stations as affiliates. The network has been doing very well, pitching its programs largely to a younger audience.

PROGRAM producers welcome the new networks. "We couldn't be happier," says Frank Agrama, an independent Hollywood producer. "More outlets for us means more business. What worries me is how the major advertisers are going to split their dollars.

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
Loading One moment ...
Project items
Cite this article

Cited article

Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited article

Why New Television Networks Are Born


Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

While we understand printed pages are helpful to our users, this limitation is necessary to help protect our publishers' copyrighted material and prevent its unlawful distribution. We are sorry for any inconvenience.
Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.

Are you sure you want to delete this highlight?