|Launched||18 March 1962|
|Owned by||WIN Corporation|
|Picture format||576i (SDTV) 16:9
1080i (HDTV) 16:9
|Broadcast area||Regional QLD, Southern NSW & ACT, Regional VIC, Mildura, Tasmania, Eastern SA, Regional WA, Griffith and the Murrumbidgee Irrigation Area (M.I.A)|
Nine Network (Griffith and Eastern SA)
Seven Network (Griffith and Eastern SA)
|Headquarters||Wollongong, New South Wales (head office)
Ingleburn, Sydney (national play-out centre)
|Formerly called||WIN-4 (1962-1980)|
|Sister channel(s)||WIN HD
|Freeview WIN owned (virtual)||8/88|
|Freeview WIN HD (virtual)||80|
|Optus D1||Transponder 3|
|Intelsat 2||Transponder 2|
|HiTRON (Papua New Guinea)||6|
WIN Television is an Australian television network owned by WIN Corporation that is based in Wollongong, New South Wales. WIN commenced transmissions on 18 March 1962 as a single Wollongong-only station, and has since expanded to 24 owned-and-operated stations with transmissions covering a larger geographical area of Australia than any other television network except for Australia Plus which broadcasts to 44 countries.
The network's name, WIN is a reference to its original Wollongong station WIN-4, itself an acronym of Wollongong Illawarra New South Wales. Through its news division, WIN News, WIN Television broadcasts a half-hour news service to twenty regional markets.
Television Wollongong Transmission Limited (TWT), was incorporated on 4 October 1955 by a group of local businessmen. Five years later, it was awarded a licence by the Postmaster-General's Department broadcast to the Illawarra and South Coast regions, over a number of other groups aligned to Sydney-based stations ATN-7 and TCN-9. The new station was to broadcast on the VHF-4 frequency, using the callsign WIN (which stood for Wollongong (and the) Illawarra Network or alternatively Wollongong Illawarra New South Wales, in line with other Australian callsigns). Soon after, a plot of land was purchased at Fort Drummond, approximately two kilometres south of the Wollongong central business district, for the station's television studios.
Prior to the opening night's transmissions, WIN-4 undertook a television conversion program, aimed at encouraging residents to acquire new tuning equipment and converting television sets in the area to receive the station's allocated frequency. A transmitter was to be erected on Knight's Hill, however test transmissions were delayed due to rain.
1960s to the 1970s
WIN-4 commenced transmissions at 5:15 pm. on 18 March 1962. The first night was met with a number of technical issues, most notably the complete loss of audio. TCN-9 and ATN-7 refused to sell programming to the station, leading to an unstable financial situation which, at its peak left the station with only 42 hours' programming.
In April 1963, Media Securities, owned by Rupert Murdoch, acquired a controlling interest in the station (his second television station after NWS-9 Adelaide) and soon appointed a new general manager, Bill Lean. Both TCN-9 and ATN-7 began purchasing several hours of first-run American television programming from WIN-4, following contractual arrangements signed by Murdoch. Throughout this period WIN-4 expanded its repeater transmissions to include Moruya, Batemans Bay, Narooma, Bega and Eden. Local programming and the station's near-monopoly in the area meant that by 1973, viewership had increased to occupy 63 percent of the audience.
Murdoch sold the station in 1979 to the head of Paramount Pictures' international distribution arm, Bruce Gordon, to purchase controlling interests in capital city stations TEN-10 Sydney and ATV-0 (now ATV-10) Melbourne.
1980s to the 1990s
During this period, WIN expanded to include new stations in Victoria, Queensland, and New South Wales. In 1984, WIN became the first regional television station to transmit in stereophonic sound. Close links between WIN Television and the Nine Network, ensured it the Nine Network affiliation for southern New South Wales when aggregation took place in 1989 thus the logo of the station changed to that of its partner network with the matching nine dots and similar ident packages. The changes meant that WIN expanded into the rest of southern New South Wales, launching new stations in Canberra, Orange, Bathurst, Dubbo and Wagga Wagga, amongst others in 1989, and at the same time acquiring new facilities in Orange, Wagga and Canberra. It also provided the network with two additional competitors, The Prime Network and Capital Television.
In 1990 WIN purchased Queensland station Star TV, with stations in Rockhampton (RTQ) and the Darling Downs (DDQ and SDQ), shortly before regional Queensland was to be aggregated. The new station was set to become a Network Ten affiliate, however WIN's links with the Nine Network caused the Nine affiliation to move from QTV, which itself became affiliated to Ten, all within days before statewide broadcasts commenced.
ENT Limited, a Launceston-based company that owned a number of television and radio stations in regional Victoria and Tasmania, was bought in 1994. Vic Television and TasTV were, as a result, incorporated into the WIN network and subsequently renamed WIN Television, complete with the nine dots logo of the Nine Network. The network further expanded to Griffith in 1998, when WIN purchased MTN-9 Griffith and its supplementary station AMN-31 from its local owners. Although station had previously been part of the Prime Television network, MTN already had links with WIN and took its feed from the network's Wollongong base.
WIN became regional Western Australia's second commercial television network on 26 March 1999 after winning rights in 1997. Prior to the launch of the new station, GWN held a commercial monopoly on the market. GWN became an affiliate of the Seven Network, while WIN took a combination of Nine Network and Network Ten programming. Despite the Nine Network's traditional ratings dominance throughout most of the country, GWN has remained the market's most-watched station. The second ratings survey of 2006 placed WIN Television with a 34.7% commercial audience share in prime time, compared to the Golden West Network with 65.3%, thus being no.2 among regional viewers.
In the same year, WIN purchased two stations in South Australia, SES8 in Mount Gambier and RTS-5a in the Riverland region. They became known as WIN South Australia and until recently featured news bulletins presented from studios at both stations (bulletins are now presented from the set of studios in Mount Gambier). In 2002 supplementary licences were granted under Section 38A of the Broadcasting Services Act, allowing the network to launch additional channels, using the callsigns MGS in Mount Gambier and LRS in the Riverland, and known as WIN Ten, thus converting it into the sole Nine affiliate for regional viewers in SA. This was the case until the affiliation moved to the Seven Network due to advertising problems with Nine's then owners in 2007.
WIN Television began to introduce digital television soon after it became available to metropolitan areas in January 2001. Under Section 38A of the Broadcasting Services Act, the network has been able to introduce, in partnership with other stations, additional digital-only Network Ten affiliates. These have included Tasmanian Digital Television, launched in late 2003 in partnership with Southern Cross Broadcasting, and Mildura Digital Television in January 2006, with Prime Television Limited.
On 30 May 2007, Southern Cross Broadcasting announced its sale of NWS to the WIN Corporation for A$105 million. Similarly, STW Perth, owned by Sunraysia Television and affiliated to the Nine Network, was purchased on 8 June 2007, when the station was sold to WIN Television's parent company, WIN Corporation, for A$163.1 million.
Despite the station's ownership of Nine Perth, WIN in Western Australia broadcast Ten News Perth, produced for and shown on rival station Ten Perth up until 27 August 2007. Preceding this in June 2007, the network announced their intention to show National Nine News on WIN WA, due to the rise of yet another joint venture station, Ten West. This was its 3rd digital only Ten affiliate with both WIN and GWN taking charge.
A conflict between WIN and its long-time metropolitan counterpart the Nine Network arose in mid-2007. PBL Media, Nine's parent company, requested up to 40% of the network's advertising revenue in return for program supply. WIN's owner, WIN Corporation rejected this offer, expecting to pay only 29% (a 3% decrease from the previous contract and in line with many of the network's competitors, such as Prime Television and Southern Cross Ten). The network's owner, Bruce Gordon, subsequently threatened to sever the network's affiliation after negotiations stagnated, stating that his previous position at the Paramount Pictures Corporation meant he could program the network independently. On 16 August 2007 WIN Television dropped key Nine Network programs from its daytime television schedule, including Mornings with Kerri-Anne and National Nine News: Morning Edition. The end result was that WIN SA began to change affiliation from Nine to the Seven Network and the change was announced on 4 September 2007, for the network's eastern South Australian stations in Mount Gambier and the Riverland. The new program schedule is a mixture of Seven and WIN programming and commenced broadcasting on 1 October 2007. Two years later, WIN officially relaunched its Nine Network service with the new channel, now known as WIN SA, carrying NWS from Adelaide and all Nine News programs but with local advertisements inserted to serve regional viewers.
On 9 August 2009 WIN began transmission of the new digital channel GO! on channel 88 in Southern NSW, Regional Victoria, Tasmania and Regional Queensland. It soon reached Midura in 2010 and regional SA in 2011.
On 26 September 2010 WIN began transmission of the HD digital channel GEM on channel 80 in Southern NSW, Regional Victoria, Tasmania and Regional Queensland.
In Mid-2011, The WIN Network stopped using the Supertext logo, and replaced it with the generic Closed Captioning Logo.
On 21 January 2016 WIN replaced Gold2 on channel 82 with Nine's metropolitan infomercial channel, Extra.
After Nine revived 9HD and launched new lifestyle channel 9Life on 26 November 2015, WIN CEO Andrew Lancaster issued a memo to staff citing that WIN would not be reviving WIN HD or launching 9Life at the same time as Nine, but promised that WIN would do this in future. WIN continued to broadcast the HD feed of 9Gem on channel 80. On 10 February 2016, WIN began broadcasting a "coming soon" test pattern on channels 85 and 86 indicating that they will revive WIN HD and carry 9Life from the Nine Network from 1 March 2016. As a result, their channel listing was reshuffled to match to Nine's metropolitan with 9Gem on channel 82, 9Go! on channel 83, 9Life on channel 84, Extra on channel 85 and Gold on channel 86.
After Nine launched its new online catch-up video on demand and live streaming service 9Now on 27 January 2016, WIN filed a lawsuit against Nine, claiming that live streaming into regional areas breaches their affiliation agreement. Justice Hammerschlag of the NSW Supreme Court dismissed the case on 28 April 2016, citing that "live streaming is not broadcasting within the meaning of the PSA (program supply agreement), and that Nine is under no express or implied obligation not to do it."
Following WIN's defeat in the 9Now lawsuit, Nine announced it had signed a new $500 million affiliation deal with Network Ten affiliate Southern Cross Austereo, switching its primary Nine affiliation to stations currently affiliated with Ten in Southern NSW, ACT, and regional areas in Victoria and Queensland on 1 July 2016. With that announcement, WIN was effectively stripped of its 27-year partnership with Nine. In response, WIN entered affiliation talks with Network Ten, in which Gordon held a majority stake, reaching a final agreement on 23 May 2016. Under the new agreement, beginning 1 July 2016, WIN would carry Ten programming into regional Queensland, Southern NSW, Victoria, Tasmania, South Australia, Western Australia and the Australian Capital Territory. Deals to supply Nine programming to South Australia, and Griffith were secured on 29 June 2016, a day later Tasmania were secured as well. A supply deal for Western Australia joint venture West Digital Television was not secured before the 1 July 2016 deadline, but a deal was later finalised on 2 July 2016 with programming resuming that night.
WIN Television carries programming of all three commercial television stations in Australia. It is a sole Network Ten affiliate in all broadcast areas, but also carries Seven Network and the Nine Network affiliated channels in Griffith, New South Wales and eastern South Australia. WIN Television has always produced regional programming, including the flagship local news service WIN News, that supplement programs sourced from affiliates.
Since inception, the network has produced and broadcast notable programs including Sportsview and Sportsworld, a review of international, national and local sporting events. From the first week of transmissions, children's television series The Channel 4 Club was produced, with children's television program Stopwatch beginning in 1979. English-language educational programme You Say the Word began in 1971, catering to non-English-speaking immigrants. Long-running entertainment program Variety Italian Style premiered in 1974, with Malcom Elliott initially hosting the short-lived Tonight Show in 1981 being replaced by John Tingle a year later. To commemorate WIN Television's 21st year of broadcasting, a one-and-half-hour retrospective montage special was produced in 1983. WIN Television also co-produced telemovie Last Chance in 1986 with a Canadian television production company. Spanning close to a decade, children's television series Goodsports was produced by WIN Television from 1991 to 2000.
WIN Television's current Australian programming productions consists of television shows including; Fishing Australia and Alive and Cooking. On 17 May 2007, WIN Television announced a new midday program called Susie, however this was subsequently moved to a morning timeslot. WIN Television also broadcasts a range of exclusive overseas and domestically sourced programming including The Ellen DeGeneres Show and Alive and Cooking.
News & Current Affairs
WIN News is the network's local news service. Eighteen regional bulletins are presented from studios in Wollongong, Tasmania and Maroochydore. Although in most areas it is the only local news bulletin, WIN News may compete in some markets with Prime News, Seven Local News, GWN7 News, or Southern Cross News.
WIN has produced independent news reports and bulletins since 1962 for its original Wollongong station. As well as the flagship nightly bulletin, WIN Television has in the past produced current affairs programming including community affairs program Roving Eye, and Sunday Review, a weekly review of international, national and local stories.
WIN also broadcasts All Australian News at 7am and at late nights, featuring highlights from news bulletins from its regional stations.
WIN Television simulcasts sports coverage from Ten Sport, the sports brand of the Network Ten under the WIN Sport brand.
WIN Television in Queensland also produced its own rugby league coverage in 1995, televising games which featured the fledgling North Queensland Cowboys in their maiden season after entering the ARL's Winfield Cup competition.
WIN Television's transmissions are available from both free-to-air terrestrial transmitters in major regional centres, and free-to-view satellite transmissions across regional and remote Western Australia on the Viewer Access Satellite Television service. WIN News bulletins are carried on the VAST service to allow viewers in remote areas of Central and Eastern Australia, and terrestrial reception blackspots to obtain news local to their area.
WIN broadcasts a larger geographical area than any other television network, in the world, through owned-and-operated stations including RTQ Queensland, WIN Southern New South Wales, VTV Victoria, TVT Tasmania, MTN Griffith, STV Mildura, SES Mount Gambier, RTS Riverland, and WOW Western Australia.
Unsuccessful Attempts in Northern New South Wales
WIN Television had two unsuccessful attempts in securing the Northern New South Wales television region.
When regional Australia was subjected to the Hawke Labor government's move to aggregate television stations and align to one of the three metropolitan television networks, Northern NSW was aggregated on 31 December 1991. On that day, NRN became a Network Ten affiliate for the region, due to both entities' links with Northern Star Holdings. WIN tried to bid for NRN at one stage to replicate their successful entry to regional Queensland, wherein WIN bought Star Television and its stations (RTQ and DDQ) a week before aggregation in the region took place on 31 December 1990, effectively stripping supposed charter, QTV, from becoming a Nine affiliate. The purchase forced QTV to affiliate with Network Ten as a result before aggregation. Nothing came of the bid, but should WIN gets its way, it would steal the Nine affiliation with then-independently owned NBN Television for the region.
During April 2007, SP Telemedia announced that it would consider selling NBN Television, and had received at least two bids, one each from WIN Corporation and Nine's parent PBL Media (renamed as Nine Entertainment Company). On 9 May 2007, PBL Media's A$250 million bid became final, winning the sale. However, upon acquiring NBN, PBL did not fold it into the main Nine Network, but continued to operate it as a regional station. The purchase also secured NBN permanent status of supplying Nine's content to the station's entire coverage area, sparing any future affiliation switches. As a result, WIN Television's doors were shut in Northern NSW, the only aggregated region that was spared from the 2016 media shakeup.
WIN Television announced on 10 February 2016 it would launch its own HD simulcast in the coming months. It was later confirmed the HD simulcast would be titled WIN HD and would launch on 1 March 2016. Four WIN regions were excluded from the 1 March launch date. Griffith, Tasmania, and Eastern South Australia did not receive the channel until 2 March 2016 due to technical issues. In addition, the regional WA station didn't receive the channel until 10 March 2016.
The original WIN Television logo was used by the station until 1980, featuring the word WIN TV, derived from the station's call sign. In 1980, the logo was updated with the TV removed, and the WIN placed inside a blue rectange. Coinciding with the network's aggregation in 1989, WIN added nine dots into a new logo designed similarly to the Nine Network, and also began using Nine's on-air promotion, with the WIN logo replacing Nine's. In 1998, the dots were changed to spheres.
Three-dimensions were added to the letters WIN in 2002, coinciding with a revamp of the network's on-air identity, concurrently with Nine Network. On 30 January 2006, the station relaunched its logo along with the major rebranding of the Nine Network. The new logo designed by Bruce Dunlop Associates saw the removal of the nine dots, with a blue rectangle added to behind the letters WIN. Following this in 2008, as a part of the Nine Network relaunch, WIN dropped the rectangle, however, it did not revive the Nine Network's famous 'nine dots' due to affiliation disagreements. Promotions on the WIN website in the lead up to the change of affiliation to Network Ten show a logo similar to Ten with the current WIN font in a blue circle.
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