|Launched||September 1, 1988|
|Owned by||Bell Media|
|Picture format||480i (SDTV)
|Formerly called||Le Canal Famille (1988–1996)
Canal Famille (1996-2001)
|Bell TV||Channel 140 (SD)
Channel 1870 (HD)
|Shaw Direct||Channel 770 (SD) Channel 231 (HD)|
|Available on many Canadian cable systems||Check local listings|
|FibreOP||Channel 601 (SD)
Channel 463 (HD)
|Bell Fibe TV||Channel 140 (SD)
Channel 1440 (HD)
|MTS||Channel 411 (SD)|
|Optik TV (Telus)||Channel 423 (SD)
Channel 442 (HD)
|SaskTel||Channel 265 (SD)|
Licensed by the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) in 1987, Le Canal Famille was launched on September 1, 1988 as a replacement to the youth channel TVJQ (Télévision des Jeunes du Québec, otherwise known simply as Télé des Jeunes). Canal Famille was created by Premier Choix TVEC which itself was already owned by Astral at the time.
Le Canal Famille was renamed VRAK.TV on January 2, 2001.
Vrak.TV was separated from its sister channel in 2013 with the acquisition of Astral Media by Bell Media; Bell sold off The Family Channel and its sister networks (including the French version of Disney Junior) to DHX Media.
Vrak.TV was renamed to just Vrak on August 25, 2014.
Since its creation as Le Canal Famille, the channel airs animated series, teenage sitcoms and light dramas. Many of them are French translations of English programs such as Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Charmed, What I Like About You, Degrassi: The Next Generation, Gilmore Girls, One Tree Hill, The O.C., Life with Derek, Smallville, SpongeBob SquarePants, That '70s Show, 90210, Gossip Girl, and many others. The channel also features local Quebec French language productions, such as Il était une fois dans le trouble and Une grenade avec ça?. Other series that the channel popularized were Dans une galaxie près de chez vous and Radio Enfer. VRAK rarely airs feature movies, except on holidays. However, the channel start running movies weekly as of 2010.
Initially, as required by the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC), the channel carried no commercials, except for promotional messages, interstitial programs (such as help segments known as R-Force (pronounced like "Air Force")), and public service announcements. However, since the renewal of its licence in 2006, the channel is able to air product advertisements. VRAK frequently joins forces with various companies (mainly grocery products) to present special promotions related to its programming.
Unlike most other specialty channels, VRAK is only on the air daily from 6 a.m. to midnight. When the station was Le Canal Famille, the station would close down at 7 p.m. (8 p.m. on weekends), sharing time with a scrambled Super Écran channel (also owned by Astral). In 2001, when the channel was revamped as VRAK.TV, its hours were increased to 10 p.m. (Super Écran followed on most systems). VRAK's current close down time, at midnight, went into effect in mid-2005.
On October 30, 2006 Astral Media launched an HD simulcast of Vrak.TV called Vrak.TV HD.
- CBC/Radio-Canada - History - 1980s
- Decision: Premier Choix: TVEC Inc. "Canal Famille" — 871204400, Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission, 1 December 1987
- Broadcasting Decision CRTC 2006-382: VRAK.TV – Licence renewal, Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission, 18 August 2006
- Official website (French)