Roots of Cable • Cable companies deliver pictures by wires, often hung on utility poles. • They have taken millions of viewers that deliver programming over the air. • Cable and over-air broadcasters are now rivals, but have not always been so.
Roots of Cable • In the early 1950’s, networks and local affiliates only reached major cities. • Small towns began putting antennas on nearby hilltops to get television signals from the nearest city. • These local cable television systems ran a cable into town stretched wires from telephone poles to deliver pictures to houses from the hilltop antennas.
HBO • In 1975, Gerald Levin took over HBO. They began offering movies and special events (such as boxing) to local cable systems for subscribers willing to pay an extra fee.
Ted Turner • Owner of TBS – He put his channel on satellite and many cable systems wanted to sign-up for the channel. • In 1980, Turner put together CNN, a 24-hour news service
Growth of Cable • At first, viewership was low of HBO, as it only reached 265,000 homes. • New networks began springing up, such as CNN Headline News, TNT, and ESPN
Cable Advertising • Leading Cable Networks in Advertising: ESPN - $1 billion MTV - $507 million TNN - $308 million
Television Entertainment Early Programming • In the early days, with video-tape yet to be invented, almost everything was broadcast live • In 1951, “I Love Lucy” was important and a hit because it was not transmitted live, multiple cameras filmed several takes and they chose the best one.