Nine Network

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Nine Network
Channel Nine logo.png
Launched 16 September 1956
Owned by Nine Entertainment Co.
Picture format PAL (576i) 16:9
Audience share 26.3% Nationally (2011 ratings year came second to the Seven Network, [1])
Slogan "Welcome Home"
Country Australia
Language English
Broadcast area Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide, Perth, Newcastle, Darwin
Affiliates NBN Television (Northern NSW), WIN Television (non-metro coastal except Northern NSW), Imparja Television (inland)
Headquarters Willoughby, New South Wales
Formerly called National Television Network (1956-late 1960s)
Sister channel(s) GO!
GEM
eXtra
eXtra 2
Website ninemsn.com.au
Availability
Terrestrial
TCN Sydney
(DVB-T 64-QAM)
1057 @ 8 (191.5 MHz)[2]
GTV Melbourne
(DVB-T 64-QAM)
1072 @ 8 (191.5 MHz)
QTQ Brisbane/Sunshine Coast
(DVB-T 64-QAM)
1025 @ 8 (191.5 MHz)
NWS Adelaide
(DVB-T 64-QAM)
1105 @ 8 (191.5 MHz)
STW Perth/Mandurah
(DVB-T 64-QAM)
1025 @ 8 (191.5 MHz)
FreeTV metro/inland (virtual) 9
FreeTV non-metro coastal (virtual) 8
Satellite
TCN Sydney
(DVB-S QPSK)
1051 @ 12094 MHz
(Foxtel Optus D3)
GTV Melbourne
(DVB-S QPSK)
1041 @ 12094 MHz
(Foxtel Optus D3)
QTQ Brisbane
(DVB-S QPSK)
1021 @ 12094 MHz
(Foxtel Optus D3)
Foxtel (virtual) 100
Austar (virtual) 9
VAST (virtual) 9 or 8
Cable
Foxtel/Optus (virtual) 100
Austar (virtual) 9

Nine Network (commonly known as Channel Nine or simply Nine) is the flagship Australian commercial free-to-air television network, with headquarters based in Willoughby, a suburb located on the North Shore of Sydney, Australia. The Nine Network is one of five main free-to-air commercial networks in Australia.

The Nine Network is one of the two highest-rating television networks in Australia, along with the Seven Network and ahead of Network Ten, ABC, and SBS.[3] Nine had historically been the highest-rating television network since television's inception in Australia in 1956 for most years up to 2006, although Network Ten had dominated in 1985 and for a number of years in the 1970s. The Nine Network was overtaken in the ratings in 2007 by its rival, the Seven Network, which has dominated until recently. As a result, Nine's slogan "Still the One" was discontinued.[citation needed] Since 2009, the network's slogan has been "Welcome Home". After a few years in slight decline, with a period plagued by mass sackings, programme cancellations, and budget cuts, the Nine Network has experienced a period of stability.

History[edit]

Origins[edit]

TCN-9 launched on 16 September 1956. John Godson introduced the station and Bruce Gyngell presented the first programme, This Is Television (so becoming the first person to appear on Australian television). Later that year, GTV-9 in Melbourne commenced transmissions to broadcast the 1956 Summer Olympics, later forming the National Television Network alongside QTQ-9 in Brisbane in 1959 and NWS-9 in Adelaide, the basis of the current Nine Network, in 1959. Before its formation, TCN-9 was then affiliated with HSV-7 (because they were both Australia's first television stations, having been opened in 1956),[4] and GTV-9's sister affiliate was ATN-7. By the late 1960s, the network had begun unofficially calling itself "the National Nine Network", and became simply the Nine Network in the early 1980s. It was the first Australian television station to regularly screen programmes in colour.

In 1967, the New South Wales Rugby Football League grand final became the first football grand final of any code to be televised live in Australia. The Nine Network paid $5,000 for the broadcasting rights.[5]

In the late 1980s, STW-9 Perth, which opened in 1965, became a Nine Network owned-and-operated station when Bond Media purchased the network. However, in 1989, Bond Media sold the Perth-based station to Sunraysia Television for A$95 million, due to the federal cross-media ownership laws which restricted the level of national reach for media owners.[6]

1977–2006: The golden era[edit]

Nine began using the slogan "Let Us Be The One" (based on The Carpenters song) in 1977 and achieved widespread success, becoming the number-one free-to-air network in Australia and its National Nine News became the most-watched news service. In 1978, Nine switched their slogan to "Still the One" (patterned after the campaign used by ABC in the United States), which lasted until the ratings downfall in January 2006. During the '80s, Nine's ratings peaked and drove the network forward well into the '90s. From 1999 to 2001, the network began losing ground to the Seven network in news and entertainment, but received a boost after the coverage of the 11 September attacks in 2001.[citation needed] Digital terrestrial television was introduced on 1 January 2001.

2006–2008: Nine loses to Seven[edit]

Nine stayed strong throughout 2004, but was hit hard when Seven introduced a new line-up in 2005, though Nine finished ahead of Seven that year. Meanwhile, National Nine News was overtaken by Seven News, while Today was beaten by Seven's Sunrise. In 2006, Nine continued on its downward trend, losing most news weeks to Seven News and just winning the year thanks to its coverage of the Commonwealth Games in Melbourne. To try to revitalise the network in its 50th anniversary, Nine adopted a new, but critically received, logo that removed the nine dots, which had been part of the network's identity since 1970. In May 2007, Nine partially reintroduced the Nine dots, which resulted in the square logo changing into a three-dimensional (3D) cube that rotates, with the dots visible on every second side of the cube.

After a period of declining ratings, David Gyngell returned to the job of chief executive officer in October 2007, succeeding Eddie McGuire.

In 2007, despite several hits, Seven won the whole year by a significant margin. The Seven Network had won 38 weeks, whereas the Nine Network only won two.

2008–present: The relaunch[edit]

In 2008, as part of a major relaunch, the network dropped the blue box, and reinstated its nine dots in its logo, with a 3D look. After losing viewers to Seven News, Nine relaunched its news service as Nine News, which managed to win more weeks over Seven in the first half of 2008. Nine also launched a break-out hit, Underbelly, which attracted over 2.5 million viewers in its first season. Nine tried to attract younger demographics, so while Seven went on to win the ratings year in total people, Nine was rated the number one network in the key 18–49 and 25–54 demographics.

In 2009, Nine started relatively strongly due to the top-rating Australian drama Underbelly: A Tale of Two Cities and the Twenty20 Cricket series, but could not hold its audience after Network Ten's Masterchef became a hit. Nine became inconsistent with scheduling and removal of programmes. Nine also launched a number of reality shows, including Ladette to Lady, Wipeout Australia, HomeMADE, Australia's Perfect Couple, and The Apprentice Australia, in the hope of achieving the same success other networks had with the genre. All the new formats underperformed in the ratings and did not help the network establish any stable local content. Nine also expanded its news strand with the reintroduction of a late night bulletin (for its owned-and-operated stations), an extended morning bulletin and weekend editions of Today. Despite this, the flagship 18:00 state bulletins continued to fall in the ratings.

In August 2009, Nine launched its own digital multi-channel called GO! on Channel 99, primarily aimed at a younger demographic. The shares from GO! contributed to Nine's weekly shares and allowed it to enjoy several weeks of weekly ratings wins. In September, the network took on a new slogan, "Welcome Home", and revamped its graphic package. With the resurgence of Nine News, growth of Today, stabilisation of 60 Minutes and a new programme line-up consisting of Hey Hey It's Saturday, Underbelly and Sea Patrol, Nine enjoyed more ratings success.

In 2010, Nine obtained the rights to exclusive coverage of the Sydney New Year's Eve fireworks. GO! won the year in digital shares only. On 26 September 2010, Nine launched their third digital channel GEM (an acronym of General Entertainment and Movies) on Channel 90. In 2011, the Nine Network announced a new "Home of Comedy" line-up with comedy shows such as Two and a Half Men, The Big Bang Theory, and other American sitcoms, along with the launch of a live comedy show Ben Elton Live From Planet Earth, which was cancelled after only three episodes due to low ratings. Nine also brought back This Is Your Life with Eddie McGuire as host, although the series was cancelled after airing four episodes. The Nine Network had success in the ratings in the second half of 2011 with The Block, Underbelly: Razor, and The Celebrity Apprentice Australia. The highly anticipated return of a revamped ninth season of Two and a Half Men proved a huge success for the network, generating 2.3 million viewers and dominating the week as top program.[7] The return of new episodes of the popular sitcom The Big Bang Theory was also a huge success for the network, scoring high figures consistently week after week and dominating the evening as top program. The Nine Network was in second place in the ratings again in 2011 on 19.6%, behind the Seven Network (23.1%) and ahead of the Network Ten (15.9%), ABC (12.2%) and SBS (4.6%).[8]

On 24 November 2011, the Nine Network announced the line-up for 2012, with a focus on reality programs, including an Australian version of The Voice, the return of Big Brother, Excess Baggage, and The Celebrity Apprentice Australia.[9] The Nine Network also aired coverage of the 2012 Summer Olympics in London. A new morning show, "Mornings", replaced the departure of Kerri-Anne Kennerley's self-titled show, after nine years on air.[9] The program is hosted by Sonia Kruger and David Campbell.

On 26 March 2012, the Nine Network launched eXtra, a new channel aimed at delivering home shopping, brand funded, religious, community, educational and multi-cultural programming content created by advertisers. The channel was created to try to lower Nine's ballooning debt, also the addition of a fourth channel to their DVB-T transports in metropolitan areas has lowered the encoded quality of their other channels given Australian broadcasters are already pushing the limits with the use of H.262 video for one HD and two SD channels in a single 7-MHz allocation. The new channel is not carried by their regional partner WIN.

It was reported on 31 May 2012 that the Australian telecommunications company Telstra and WIN Television Network CEO, Bruce Gordon, are considering making a takeover bid for Nine Entertainment.[10][11] The network currently is trying to fight off administration as it deals with a debt exceeding A$3.3 billion.

It was reported on 3 June 2013 that the Nine Network would immediately purchase Adelaide affiliate NWS-9 from the WIN Corporation as part of a deal to secure international cricket television rights.[12] On 3 July 2013, it was reported that Nine would exercise an option to also buy STW-9 from WIN Corporation.[13]

Programming[edit]

The Nine Network broadcasts a range of programming from Australian and overseas sources. Nine's current Australian programming line-up includes: Mornings, Australia's Funniest Home Videos, Big Brother, The AFL Footy Show, The NRL Footy Show, Getaway, Footy Classified, RBT, the Underbelly series, The Block, The Farmer Wants a Wife, 60 Minutes, Millionaire Hot Seat and The Voice Australia.

Children's programming includes: Hi-5, Kids' WB Australia, Kitchen Whiz, Pyramid, Magical Tales, and all children's programming is now currently airing on GO! due to Australian parliament in 2012.

Most American programming that airs on Nine and its regional affiliates is sourced from Nine's studio-output deals with Warner Bros. Television and Lionsgate Television. The network's flagship programme is the popular sitcom The Big Bang Theory. Other American programming on Nine include Two and a Half Men, Anger Management, Dallas, The Mentalist, the CSI franchise, The Ellen DeGeneres Show, and Extra. Nine also aired the American talk show The View during the weekday afternoon time slot until late 2013.

In an attempt to attract advertisers, as wide industry consensus feels most advertisers are more interested in programmes for younger audiences, new programming is expected to now be targeted towards the younger generation. Tom Fisher is expected to host a new children's show on the channel in 2013.[14]

Reruns of Two and a Half Men are shown out of sequence with episodes from several different seasons often airing in the same night. This has resulted in much public scrutiny against the Network, with nine out of ten weekly episodes being repeats, the highest ratio of any network.[15]

Feature films broadcast on the Nine Network are sourced from its studio-output deals, including Regency Enterprises, Castle Rock, Lions Gate, New Line Cinema, and Warner Bros. It also broadcasts Australian and international titles distributed via Village Roadshow, Village Roadshow Pictures.

The network formerly broadcast catalogue movie and television titles from Paramount Pictures produced from the 1990s prior to 2010, Sony Pictures produced in 2008 prior to 2012,[16] and Dreamworks from 1998 to 2006. Network Ten and Foxtel share broadcast rights to Paramount Pictures, with rights for Sony Pictures being fully broadcast by the Seven Network from 2013 onwards, and the entire Dreamworks catalogue now broadcast on Network Ten.

News and current affairs[edit]

Further information: Nine News

The Nine Network's news service is Nine News (previously National Nine News). For decades, it was the top-rating news service nationally, but in recent years, the Seven Network's Seven News has overtaken the service.

Nine produces several news bulletins and programmes, including Today, Weekend Today, Nine Early Morning News, Nine Morning News, Nine News Now, Nine Afternoon News, Nine News: First at Five, and local nightly editions of Nine News.

The news service also produces A Current Affair and 60 Minutes. During weekday overnights and Sunday mornings, Nine rebroadcasts American television network ABC's news and current affairs programme Good Morning America.

From 2008, major expansion saw Today broadcast on Saturdays and Sundays, too, the weekday version running from 05:30 until 09:00 weekdays, the launch of the Nine Early News, the axing of the Sunday program, National Nine News becoming Nine News after poor ratings, losing to Seven News, Nine Late News was launched then renamed as Nightline and the 11 am bulletin be renamed as Nine Morning News, running from 11:00 until 12:00 weekdays.

Meanwhile, several additions have been made to Nine News teams around the country, as well as the acquisition of more reporters by A Current Affair and also state-based Today reporters (plus a Weekend Today weather presenter).

Nine has posted journalists overseas to cover major European stories following the closure of its European bureau in late 2008, with the last European correspondent, James Talia, being redesignated to his former role as a senior Melbourne Nine News journalist. Reporters including Simon Bouda, Allison Langdon, Chloe Bugelly, Tim Arvier, and Brett McLeod have all been on projects for Nine News bulletins in Greece, the UK, France, South Africa, Thailand, and the Czech Republic.

Today has since overtaken Sunrise on numerous occasions, whilst Nine News, especially on Sundays, has done so, too. Both Today and Nine News beat their Seven counterparts regularly in the east coast broadcasts. Local Current Affair bulletins in Perth and Adelaide have been scrapped by WIN stations there for not performing as well as expected.

Sport[edit]

Further information: Nine's Wide World of Sports

Channel Nine broadcasts all sporting events under the Wide World of Sports brand. The flagship sports of the brand are cricket, National Rugby League (NRL), and formerly Australian rules football, until Nine lost the rights in 2006, and Super League while it existed. NRL games are broadcast in prime time on WIN in New South Wales and Queensland on Friday nights, however prime time NRL is shown at the normal times on WIN's other channel Gem in Victoria, South Australia, Western Australia, and Tasmania.

Nine's other popular recurring sporting events include the State of Origin series, British Open, US Golf Open, US Tennis Open, Wimbledon, the French Open, KFC Twenty20, Commonwealth Bank Series Cricket, and Test cricket and formerly the Australian Swimming Championships until Nine lost the rights in 2009. As well as this, the Nine Network, in joint partnership with subscription television provider Foxtel, has broadcast rights for the 2010 Winter Olympics and the 2012 Summer Olympics.[17] C9 Wide World of sports begins in 2014

Nine also broadcast the 2010 Youth Olympics in Singapore on its digital channel Go!.

On 26 May 2010, Nine became the first free-to-air television channel in Australia to broadcast in 3D. The broadcast was the 2010 State of Origin series.

Availability[edit]

The Nine Network is simulcast in analogue and standard-definition digital. Nine's core programming is fibre-fed out of GTV Melbourne to its sister stations and affiliates, with TCN Sydney providing national news, current affairs programming, and Good Morning America with the EIA-608 captions converted on-the-fly by a Microsoft Windows product. The current affairs programing was originally done at GTV before moving to TCN in 2012. The receiving stations and affiliates then insert their own localised news and advertising which is then broadcast in metropolitan areas via Nine Network owned-and-operated stations, including TCN Sydney, GTV Melbourne, QTQ Brisbane, NWS Adelaide, STW Perth and NTD Darwin. Nine Network programming is also carried into regional Australia by affiliate networks WIN Television, NBN Television, and Imparja Television. Nine is also broadcast via satellite and cable on Foxtel and on Austar Digital on the cable pay TV service in Darwin.

in 2013, the Nine Network switched their captioning provider from Red Bee Media to Ai-Media.[18][19]

Logos[edit]

The Nine Network logo, which consists of a numeral 9 beside nine dots arranged in a 3x3 grid, is one of the most popular logos in Australia.[20]

In 1998, the dots were changed to spheres. The spheres returned to dots as a new on-air identity package was created by Velvet mediendesign in 2001.[21]

In 2006, the network and its affiliates relaunched their logos to coincide with Nine's 50th anniversary.[20] The logo uses a 2D blue cube with the "9" inside it, which saw the removal of the nine dots. The graphics package used during that time was designed by Bruce Dunlop Associates.[20]

Later in 2007, the cube became a solid 3D box, and on May 2007 partially relaunched the nine dots, which are visible in every second surface of the box.[22]

As a part of a major relaunch, Nine Network completely reinstated the nine-dots logo on 14 January 2008. The dots are represented by translucent 3D discs during that year. The music used throughout the network's idents and promotions was "Smile" by The Supernaturals.

On July 2009, the dots were 2D again as part of a brand refresh. Later on September 2009, the dots were changed to spheres yet again when the network's current slogan "Welcome Home" was launched. It also began to reuse the iconic "Still The One" theme tune in its idents.[20]

In April 2012, Nine Network's identity changed, applying the logo in different colours such as red, green, purple, and more. It is also reminiscent of the 2002 ident package.[23]

See also[edit]

Further reading[edit]

  • Stone, Gerald (2000). Compulsive Viewing: the inside story of Packer's Nine Network. Ringwood, Victoria: Viking. ISBN 0-670-88690-4. 
  • Stone, Gerald (2007). Who Killed Channel Nine?: The death of Kerry Packer's mighty dream machine. Sydney Australia: Pan Macmillan. ISBN 978-1-4050-3815-7. 
  • Australia, AdNews (2012). Analysts to Nine lenders: 'Take the deal'. Yaffa Publishing. 

References[edit]

  1. ^ Seven dominates 2011 ratings TV Tonight, 28 November 2011
  2. ^ http://www.freetv.com.au/media/Engineering/Australian_Digital_Terrestrial_Television_Broadcasting_Service_Information_Register_-_Issue_4_-_January_2011.pdf
  3. ^ Enker, Debi (13 December 2007). "The stars of 2007". The Age Online (Fairfax Digital). 
  4. ^ Hey You! Classic Australian Television, 2008
  5. ^ Masters, Roy (4 October 2009). "Messenger can watch a better league broadcast in the US than south of the border". Brisbane Times (Fairfax Digital). Retrieved 10 May 2009. 
  6. ^ Webb, Richard (20 April 1989). "Sunraysia settles STW-9 purchase". Australian Financial Review. 
  7. ^ 2.3m for Two and a Half Men TV Tonight, 21 September 2011
  8. ^ Free To Air TV Ratings For The Year 2011 Throng, 26 November 2011
  9. ^ a b Nine's Home of Excitement in 2012. The Voice, Excess Baggage, Big Brother, more Underbelly, Celebrity Apprentice and The Block Throng, 24 November 2011
  10. ^ Telstra eyes troubled Nine television network The Australian, 31 May 2012 (subscription required)
  11. ^ Bruce Gordon explores possible Nine bid Business Spectator, 13 June 2012
  12. ^ Knox, David. "Nine signs news cricket deal, buys Adelaide affiliate". http://www.tvtonight.com.au/2013/06/nine-signs-news-cricket-deal-buys-adelaide-affiliate.html. 
  13. ^ AAP. "Nine to buy WIN Perth TV station". http://www.businessspectator.com.au/news/2013/7/3/media-and-digital/nine-buy-win-perth-tv-station.html. 
  14. ^ Knox, David (1 June 2007). "Nine acquisitions target younger viewers". TV Tonight. Archived from the original on 3 November 2007. Retrieved 14 October 2007. 
  15. ^ Vickery, Colin (21 October 2009). "Two and a Half Men, The Simpsons the top repeated TV shows". Herald Sun. Archived from the original on 21 October 2009. Retrieved 24 September 2010. 
  16. ^ Nine has quit Sony deal TV Tonight, 20 July 2012
  17. ^ "Nine, Foxtel to broadcast Olympics". Herald Sun. 13 October 2007. Retrieved 13 October 2007. [dead link]
  18. ^ "Read it and weep". Media Watch. Australian Broadcasting Corporation. 7 March 2011. Retrieved 4 January 2014. "One company now provides captioning for Channels 7, 9, 10 and SBS. It's called Red Bee Media" 
  19. ^ "Ai-Media wins Nine captioning contract". Media Access Australia. 30 August 2013. Retrieved 4 January 2014. 
  20. ^ a b c d Desktop Magazine – Nine Network
  21. ^ Velvet mediendesign – Nine Network Rebrand 2001
  22. ^ "Mission incredible". The Age (Fairfax Digital). 29 November 2007. Retrieved 29 November 2007. 
  23. ^ ZSPACE – Nine Network 2012

External links[edit]