Oprah Winfrey Network (Canadian TV channel)

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Oprah Winfrey Network
OWN 2011 logo.svg
Launched September 1, 1999 (1999-09-01)
Owned by Corus Entertainment
Picture format 1080i (HDTV)
480i (SDTV)
Slogan Live Your Best Life
Country Canada
Language English
Broadcast area Nationwide
Headquarters Toronto, Ontario
Formerly called Canadian Learning Television (1999–2008)
Viva (2008–2011)
Website ownca.oprah.com
Availability
Satellite
Bell TV Channel 526 (SD)
Channel 1711 (HD)
Shaw Direct Channel 507 (SD)
Cable
Available on most Canadian cable systems Consult your local cable provider for channel availability
IPTV
FibreOP Channel 285 (SD)
Channel 428 (HD)
Bell Fibe TV Channel 526 (SD)
Channel 1526 (HD)
MTS Channel 114 (SD)
Channel 456 (HD)
Optik TV Channel 202 (SD)
Channel 651 (HD)
SaskTel Channel 52 (SD)

Oprah Winfrey Network (OWN) is a Canadian English language Category A cable and satellite specialty channel that is owned by Corus Entertainment. OWN is a specialty television service targeted to women, offering a blend of lifestyle, information and entertainment programming. It is the only Canadian channel that maintains a brand licensing deal with Discovery Communications that is not currently owned by Bell Media or its subsidiary CTV Specialty Television Inc.

History[edit]

As Canadian Learning Television[edit]

In September 1996, Learning and Skills Television of Alberta Ltd. (LSTA) (controlled by CHUM Limited through a 60% interest in the company) was granted a television broadcasting licence by the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) called Canadian Learning Television.[1] The channel was licensed to provide "formal and informal educational programs on a wide range of topics."[1]

Canadian Learning Television logo used from 1999 to 2003.
Canadian Learning Television logo used from 2003 to 2008.

The channel launched on September 1, 1999 as Canadian Learning Television,[2] with a mix of educational and informational television programs. CHUM would later gain 100% ownership of the channel when it completed its purchase of the remaining interest in LSTA on February 15, 2005.[3] The company would later be renamed Access Media Group.

In 2003, Canadian Learning Television adopted a new logo and on-air presentation. With this change, the channel began using the brand "CLT" in most media, instead of using its full name, although Canadian Learning Television remained the official name of the channel.

In July 2006, Bell Globemedia (later CTVglobemedia) announced that it would purchase CHUM for an estimated CAD$1.7 billion, included in the sale was CLT.[4] The sale was approved by the CRTC on June 8, 2007,[5] and the transaction was completed on June 22, 2007.

In less than a year after taking ownership of Canadian Learning Television, on March 7, 2008, CTVglobemedia announced it would sell the channel to Corus Entertainment for approximately $73 million CAD.[6] The deal was approved by the CRTC on August 22, 2008.[7] The transaction was then finalized on September 1, 2008.

Refocusing as a lifestyle channel[edit]

In October 2008, Corus announced it would relaunch CLT as Viva, a female-focused entertainment and lifestyle channel targeting the baby boomer demographic. The rebrand took effect on November 3, 2008.[8]

Viva logo used from 2008 to 2011.
Oprah Winfrey Network logo used in 2011.

On September 29, 2010, Corus announced it had finalized an agreement to launch a Canadian version of the Oprah Winfrey Network in Canada in 2011.[9] Although Corus had said the new channel would involve rebranding an existing channel owned by the company, it had not announced which channel it would be, nor did Corus announce a specific launch date. However, in November 2010, Corus announced that Viva would be rebranded as OWN on March 1, 2011,[10] two months after the Discovery Health channel in the United States was relaunched as the Oprah Winfrey Network on January 1. During that time, select OWN programming was broadcast on Viva and on another Corus-owned female-targeted channel, W Network.

In December 2012, the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission held a hearing investigating OWN's non-compliance with its mandate to air formal education programming – a holdover of its establishment as Canadian Learning Television. Although Corus stated that it was planning changes to the network's programming to comply with the requirements (including the introduction of four new weekly educational programs to its lineup), the CRTC has warned that it may revoke the channel's license or require Corus to apply for a new category B license to operate the channel under.[11][12]

On March 15, 2013, the CRTC further issued a "mandatory order", the last step before license revocation.[13] The order asked for the reduction of programming about "life enhancement," and for more programming addressing the building of job and credit-building skills, along with violations of programming, including airing films, which the network is not allowed to do, and that what did air had only a short professor introduction without any tie-in to the film. The CRTC increased monitoring requirements for the network and asked Corus for a new programming plan to be introduced no later than April 5.[14]

OWN HD[edit]

Own canada hd.PNG

OWN HD is a high definition simulcast feed of the Oprah Winfrey Network, which broadcasts in the 1080i resolution format; the feed launched on March 1, 2011, in coincidence with the main channel's relaunch as the Oprah Winfrey Network.

Programming[edit]

When the channel was launched as CLT, it aired a mix of formal and informal educational and informational programming in the style of newsmagazines, talk shows, documentaries, and more. Over time, the channel introduced more entertainment-based programs such as films and television dramas. The channel maintained a similar scheduling format as Access (now CTV Two Alberta), a television service in Alberta which aired a mix of entertainment and educational programming, both of which were under the same ownership of CHUM and later CTVglobemedia before CLT was sold to Corus Entertainment.

As Viva, the channel aired a mix of entertainment and loosely-based educational programming to satisfy its CRTC licence requirements, and to that end, many programs continued to be tied to some sort of ongoing course at a Canadian post-secondary institution as it did under CLT. However, with the changeover to Viva, most of the programs had begun with a short introduction from an instructor at the applicable institution.

Under the OWN moniker, the channel continues to target female audiences with programming ranging from lifestyle, information, and entertainment programming.

Current programming[edit]

References[edit]

External links[edit]