Orange County Newschannel
|Orange County Newschannel|
|Launched||September 1, 1990|
|Closed||September 7, 2001|
|Owned by||Freedom Communications (1990-1996)
Century Communications (1996-1999)
|Picture format||4:3 standard definition|
|Broadcast area||Orange County, California|
The Orange County Newschannel (often branded as OC Newschannel and OCN) was a regional cable news network pioneering a rolling news format, serving Orange County, California south of the Metropolitan Los Angeles area. The channel also pioneered the producer - presenter work format where the reporters self produced television news items using the then emerging light weight cameras and video digitising ingestion systems based on Apple Computers and Oracle database software. Needless to say this change to the work place drew the ire of unions, who experienced the digital revolution of news rooms first hand.
Technically a network because it was carried by multiple cable operators then in business in Orange County, OCN, launched in 1990 by Freedom Communications, was among the earliest regional 24-hour cable news cable television channels (the first being the Cablevision-owned News 12 Networks, which all launched in December 1986). As early as 1992, OCN began producing news for KTLA (which would eventually attempt to rival the cable channel in its home county). Freedom sold OCN to New Canaan, Connecticut-based Century Communications, which at the time operated other cable entities in California, most notably in Beverly Hills and Los Angeles, in 1996.
The network was purchased by Adelphia Cable in 1999 (eventually the name was changed slightly to Orange County News Channel) and struggled with decreasing profits and ad revenue until finally closing in 2002. Throughout its life, OCN had a largely captive audience, as the only other sources for news in Orange County were KTLA and KOCE-TV.
OCN's website continued to operate as an internet-only news portal for Orange County, offering daily news to subscribers. Several members of the news staff that had worked at OCN eventually found a new home at KOCE-TV's news desk.
The network was a founding member of the Association of Regional News Channels. The station is not related to the currently-operating (and similarly named and formatted) OC channel (a digital subchannel of KOCE-TV).