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Broadcast/Cable TV History - 1980

1980-00-00 Preview (PAY) was launched.

1980-00-00 Private Screenings (PAY) was launched.

1980-00-00 Escapade (PAY) was launched.

1980-01-01 The Movie Channel became a 24-hour standalone service. To make the time expansion possible, it discontinued its time-lease agreement with Nickelodeon and moved to another transponder channel.

1980-01-25 BET (Black Entertainment Network) was launched part-time on the UA-Columbia feed.

1980-04-09 the UA-Columbia feed was converted into USA Network and gradually became a consumer end cable network. The new network was formed by UA-Columbia Cablevision and Madison Square Garden Corp., which ran the regional Madison Square Garden Network. C-SPAN continued to share satellite transponder space with USA Network for the time being. C-SPAN was not part of the USA Network channel per se; BET, however, was part of the USA Network programming schedule until BET spun itself off onto its own channel later.

1980-04-22 The Getty Oil Company and four film companies announced they were going to create a competing pay service, Premiere, that would have limited the availability of the partners' feature films to other pay TV networks such as HBO, Showtime, The Movie Channel, Cinemax and others. At the end of the year, a Federal judge blocked the creation.

1980-06-00 National Christian Network was launced.

1980-06-00 The Women's Channel (part of SPN Network).

1980-06-01 CNN (Cable News Network) was launched on satellite by Ted Turner's company The Turner Broadcasting System (TBS). It was the first live all-news cable channel.

1980-08-01 Cinemax (PAY) was launched as a companion channel to HBO. Unlike most of the cable and pay channels already on the air at the time of its launch (CNN launched two months before as a 24-hour network), Cinemax broadcasted a 24-hour day schedule since its launch.

1980-09-01 ESPN began broadcasting 24 hours a day.

1980-11-00 Appalachian Community Service Network was renamed The Learning Channel.

1980-12-01 Bravo (PAY) was launched. It was the first fine arts and film network. The first month of programming included original productions of symphony, ballet and opera; the first of such events was produced expressly for cable television.

1980-12-31 a Federal court judge blocked The Getty Oil Company and four film companies from creating a competing pay service, Premiere, in an antitrust case ruling. Premiere would have limited the availability of the partners' feature films to other pay TV networks such as HBO, Showtime, The Movie Channel, Cinemax and others.

1980-12-32 (date unknown but existed in 1981) NASA Select was launched soon after The Learning Channel was launched.

1980-12-32 HBO's Take 2 channel (PAY) aimed at families may have gone dark at the end of the year after a short existence.

Cable History Highlights For This Year Range

In 1980, Showtime and The Movie Channel, two premium channel services, announce a merger. Each channel continued to be programmed with separate formats.

In 1980, Cablevision Systems Corporation forms Rainbow Programming [now Rainbow Media] to fulfill the growing need for diversified cable programming.

In 1980, The FCC repeals rules which limit a cable system’s ability to import distant signals and the rules which require program exclusivity on local cable systems.

Source: The Cable Center website: Cable History Timeline: http://www.cablecenter.org/resources/exhibits/cable-history-timeline.html

Lineups as of the end of the year

San Diego/Tijuana TV

6, 8, 10, 12, 15, 39, CCN, CVC, ITV, KCOX

Los Anglees TV

2, 4, 5, 7, 9, 11, 13, 22, 28, 34, 40, 52, 58, ONTV, SelecTV, Z Channel

Other Area TV

3 (Santa Barbara), 6 (San Luis Obispo), 12 (Santa Maria), 18 (San Bernadino), 24 (San Bernadino), 30 (San Bernadino), 36 (Palm Springs), 42 (Palm Springs), 50 (Orange County),

Satellite TV (for the consumer end of the cable system)

AETN, Bravo, CBN, Cinemax, Cinemerica, CNN, Cornerstone Television, C-SPAN, Escapade, ESPN, Galavision, HBO, HTN, Learning Channel, Movie Channel, NASA Select, National Christian Network, Nickelodeon, PTL, Preview, Private Screenings, Showtime, SPN, Sports Channel America, TBN, USA Network, WGN, WOR, WTBS
Broadcast/Cable TV History Main Page Cable TV History Books 1940-59 1960-69 1970-72 1973-74 1975 1976 1977 1978 1979 1980 1981 1982 1983 1984 1985 1986 1987 1988 1989 1990 1991 1992 1993 1994 1995 1996 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017-beyond Early Satellite Channels Satellite Lineup, May 1980 Satellite Lineup, 1981 Satellite Lineup, 1984
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