|Slogan||Escucha con nosotros la vida
Listen to life with us
|First air date||14 November 1924|
|Format||News, politics, sport|
|Former callsigns||EAJ-1, EAJ-5, EAJ-7, EAJ-9, and others|
La Cadena SER (the SER Network) is Spain's premier radio network in terms of both seniority (it was created in 1926) and audience share (it had a regular listenership in 2015 of 4,766,000). The acronym SER stands for Sociedad Española de Radiodifusión (Spanish Broadcasting Company).
Cadena SER's programmes – which encompass news, sport, talk, entertainment and culture – can be received throughout Spain. The network's main studios are located on the Gran Vía in Madrid; in addition, studios across the country contribute local and regional news and information, with local programming in each location amounting to between two and three and a half hours daily.
Cadena SER is owned by Unión Radio, the majority shareholder in which is currently the PRISA group, a major player in the Spanish media market which also controls, for example, such music radio stations as M80 Radio and Los 40 Principales and a number of newspapers (including the influential national daily El País), as well as the digital TV station Digital+.
At 18.30 on Friday 14 November 1924 station EAJ-1 Radio Barcelona, the first Spanish radio station to receive an official licence from the government of General Miguel Primo de Rivera, began regular broadcasting. Seven months later, on 17 June 1925, Unión Radio – a company which had the backing of the leading manufacturers of electrical and broadcasting equipment in Spain, Germany, and the United States – opened station EAJ-7 Radio Madrid, and when, on 10 November 1926, this same company also took over the ownership of Radio Barcelona the foundations were in place for the formation of Spain's first national radio network. By 1927 Unión Radio was operating not only Radio Madrid and Radio Barcelona but also EAJ-5 Radio Sevilla, EAJ-9 Radio Bilbao, and EAJ-22 Radio Salamanca, enabling all of these stations to broadcast simultaneous, i.e. networked, programming for most of their time on air, with Radio Madrid as the chief production centre.
Following the demise of the monarchy headed by Alfonso XIII, and throughout the period of the Second Spanish Republic (1931–39) which followed it, Unión Radio continued to be Spain's only nationwide radio network, and created Spain's first national radio news programme La Palabra ("The Word"), broadcast several times daily. However, from 1939 until 1977, under the dictatorship of General Francisco Franco and the initial part of the transition to democracy, the network was forbidden from carrying any national news programming other than the compulsory twice-daily relays of the official news bulletins prepared by the government-controlled Radio Nacional de España.
From 25 September 1940, when ownership of Unión Radio was transferred to the newly constituted Sociedad Española de Radiodifusión (Spanish Broadcasting Company), the network renamed itself Cadena SER. In 1975 25% of the shares in the network were compulsorily acquired by the Spanish state, and in 1984 most of the remaining shares were purchased by the PRISA media conglomerate. The nationalized shares were subsequently sold back to the private sector (in effect, to PRISA) under the premiership of Felipe González in 1992.
The network played a significant role in the period of transition to democracy following the death of Franco and in the years leading up to and immediately following the adoption of the Spanish Constitution of 1978, notably in its coverage of the attempted coup of 23 February 1981. Cadena SER also played a vital journalistic role in its reporting of the events and circumstances of the 2004 Madrid train bombings.
Cadena SER, along with other media in the PRISA group, is considered to be close to Spain's centre-left political party, the Spanish Socialist Workers' Party (PSOE). For example, PRISA was fined[when?] for broadcasting socialist campaign ads on election day. Because of this, there have been many disputes with the other main privately owned radio network in Spain, the right-wing Cadena COPE, which is owned by the Catholic Church.
Cadena SER is also the leader in radio sports coverage. The network covers every match in La Liga, in the UEFA Champions League games whenever a Spanish team is playing, and matches involving the Spanish national football team. Cadena SER's main sports programmes are Carrusel Deportivo and El Larguero.
- Hoy por hoy (with Pepa Bueno & Gemma Nierga): news and current affairs programme, on the air since 22 September 1986. It is broadcast Mondays to Fridays between 6.00 and 12.20, it is one of Spain's most listened-to programmes, with a daily audience of 2,965,000 in 2012.
- Hora 14 (with José Antonio Marcos): news programme, on air from 14.00 to 15.10, with local opt-outs.
- La Ventana (with Carles Francino): weekly political programme. 832,000 listeners in 2012.
- Hora 25 (with Angels Barceló): daily programme of news and topical debate, on air from 20.00 until midnight; created in 1972. It has several sections, such as Hora 25 economía (economy) or Hora 25 deportes (sports) with Francisco José Delgado.
- Matinal SER (with Esther Bazán).
- Hora 14 Fin de Semana (with Esther Bazán).
- El Larguero (with José Ramón de la Morena): after-midnight sports programme, on air since 1989. 1,142,000 daily listeners in 2012.
- Hablar por hablar (with Macarena Berlín): talk show first created in 1989 for Radio Barcelona. Listenership of 462,000 in 2012.
- SER Historia (with Nacho Ares).
- Punto de fuga (with Pablo Morán).
- SER Consumidor (with Jesús Soria).
- SER Aventureros (with José Antonio Ponseti).
- A vivir que son dos días (with Javier del Pino): news and current affairs programme in the week-end mornings. Listenership of 1,909,000 in 2012.
- Fórmula SER (with David Alonso): motor racing program, with news of Formula 1 & Moto GP.
- El Mundo Today (with Xavi Puig y Juanra Bonet): comedy program.
- La Script (with María Guerra): this programme looks at cinema.
- Carrusel Deportivo (with Manu Carreño & Jose Antonio Ponseti): dating from 1954, this is Spain's longest-running radio programme. Covering the world of sport, it is broadcast on Saturdays (17.00-24.00) and Sundays (15.30-23.30). It has an audience of 1,442,000 on Saturdays and 1,486,000 on Sundays.
- Los toros (with Manuel Molés): reporting on bullfighting.
- Notas de Cine (with Antonio Martínez): this programme looks at music related to cinema.
- Carmelo Garitaonaindía; La radio en España (1923-1939), Siglo Veintuno de España, Madrid, 1988. ISBN 84-7585-109-6
- Lorenzo Díaz; La radio en España, 1923-1977, Alianza Editorial, Madrid, 1997. ISBN 84-206-0834-3