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The Fox Broadcasting Company (FBC), commonly referred to as Fox (often stylized FOX), is an Americanmarker television network owned by Fox Entertainment Group, part of Rupert Murdoch's News Corporation. Launched on October 9, 1986, from 2004 to 2009 Fox was the highest-rated broadcast network in the 18–49 demographic. In the 2007–08 season, Fox became the most popular network in America in household ratings for the first time in its history, replacing CBS. CBS took back the top spot in the 2008-09 season, though Fox remains a solid runner-up.

The Fox Broadcasting Company and its affiliates operate many entertainment channels internationally -- including Argentinamarker, Australia, Brazilmarker, Bulgariamarker, Chilemarker, Germanymarker, Japanmarker, Indiamarker, Italymarker, Mexicomarker, Portugalmarker, South America, Central America, Serbiamarker, South Koreamarker, Spainmarker, and Turkeymarker -- although these do not necessarily air the same programming as the U.S. network. Most viewers in Canadamarker have access to at least one U.S. Fox affiliate, although most of Fox's primetime programming is subject to Canadian simultaneous substitution regulations.

The network is named after sister company 20th Century Fox, and indirectly for producer William Fox, who founded one of the movie studio's predecessors, Fox Film.

History

Twentieth Century-Fox was involved in television production as early as the 1950s. The company produced several syndicated programs during this era. In November 1956, 20th Century-Fox purchased 50% of the NTA Film Network, an early syndicator of films and television programs. The film network was launched as a new "fourth" television network. 20th Century-Fox would also produce original content for the NTA Network. The film network effort would fail after a few years, but Fox continued to dabble in television through its production arm, TCF Television Productions, producing series such as Perry Mason for the Big Three television networks.

1980s: Building a network

Groundwork for a new Fox network was laid in March 1985 by News Corporation's $250-million purchase of 50 percent of TCF Holdings, the parent company of the 20th Century Fox movie studio. In May 1985, News Corporation agreed to pay $1.55 billion to acquire independent television stations in six major U.S. cities from John Kluge's company, Metromedia. These stations were WNEW-TV in New York Citymarker, WTTGmarker in Washington, D.C.marker, KTTVmarker in Los Angelesmarker, KRIV-TVmarker in Houstonmarker, WFLDmarker in Chicagomarker, and KRLD-TV in Dallasmarker. A seventh station, ABC-affiliated WCVB-TVmarker in Bostonmarker, was part of the original transaction but was spun off in a separate, concurrent deal to the Hearst Corporation as part of a right of first refusal related to that station's 1982 sale to Metromedia.

In October 1985, 20th Century Fox announced its intentions to form an independent television system, a fourth television network which would compete with the three major U.S. television networks (ABC, CBS, and NBC). The plans were to use the combination of the Fox studios and the former Metromedia stations to both produce and distribute programming. Organizational plans for the network were held off until the Metromedia acquisitions cleared regulatory hurdles. Then, in December 1985, Rupert Murdoch agreed to pay $325 million to acquire the rest of the studio from his original partner, Marvin Davis. The purchase of the Metromedia stations was approved by the Federal Communications Commission in March 1986; the New York and Dallas outlets were subsequently renamed WNYWmarker and KDAFmarker respectively. These first six stations, then broadcasting to 22 percent of the nation's households, became known as the Fox Television Stations group.

The network's first program was a late-night talk show, The Late Show, which debuted on October 9, 1986 with Joan Rivers as host. After a strong start, the show quickly eroded in the ratings and by early 1987 Rivers had quit and the show was being hosted by a succession of guest hosts.

The network debuted in prime time on April 5, 1987, with the series Married... with Children and The Tracey Ullman Show. It added one new show per week over the next several weeks, with the series 21 Jump Street, Mr. President and Duet completing its Sunday schedule. Beginning on July 11, the network rolled out its inaugural Saturday night schedule with a two-hour movie premiere of Werewolf, and over the next three weeks the series The New Adventures of Beans Baxter, Karen's Song and Down and Out in Beverly Hills were added. Both Karen's Song and Down and Out in Beverly Hills were cancelled by the start of the 1987-88 television season, the network's first fall launch, and were replaced by Second Chance and Women in Prison.

The network had already decided to cancel The Late Show, and had a replacement series called The Wilton North Report in development, when the show began a ratings resurgence with its final guest host, comedian Arsenio Hall. Wilton North stiffed within just a few weeks, however, and the network was unable to reach a deal with Hall to return when it hurriedly revived The Late Show in early 1988. The show went back to guest hosts again, eventually selecting Ross Shafer as its permanent host, and was permanently cancelled by October 1988, while Hall signed a deal with Paramount Television to develop his own syndicated late night talk show, The Arsenio Hall Show.

The network added its third night of programming in the 1989 television season. It gradually added nights of programming over the next few years, airing on all seven nights for the first time in the 1993 television season. The 1989 season also featured a midseason replacement series, The Simpsons; ranked at a three-way tie for 28th place in the Nielsen ratings, it became the first Fox series to break the Top 30.

Unlike the three larger networks, which aired prime time programming from 8 to 11 p.m. Mondays to Saturdays and 7 to 11 p.m. Sundays, Fox has traditionally avoided programming the 10 p.m. hour, leaving that hour to affiliates to program locally. The network did schedule programming in the 10 p.m. hour on Sunday nights between 1989 and 1992, but never added 10 p.m. programming on any other night.

Except for KDAF (which was sold to Renaissance Broadcasting in 1995 and became a WB affiliate at the same time), all the original stations are still part of the Fox network today. Clarke Ingram, who maintains a memorial website to the failed DuMont Television Network, has suggested that Fox is a revival of DuMont, since Metromedia was a successor to the DuMont corporation and the Metromedia television stations formed the nucleus of the Fox network. WNYW (originally known as WABD) and WTTG were two of the three original owned-and-operated stations of the DuMont network.

Fox is a full member of the North American Broadcasters Association and the National Association of Broadcasters.

1990s: Rise into mainstream success

Despite a few successful shows, the network did not have a significant market share until the mid-1990s, when News Corp. bought more TV station groups. The first was New World Communications, which had signed an affiliation deal with Fox in 1994. Later, in 2001, Fox bought several stations owned by Chris-Craft Industries and its subsidiaries BHC Communications and United Television (most of these were UPN affiliates, although onemarker later became a Fox O&O). This made Fox one of the largest owners of television stations in the United States. Although Fox was growing rapidly as a network and had established itself as a presence, it was still not considered a major competitor to the big three broadcast networks (ABC, CBS, and NBC).

This all changed when Fox lured the National Football League away from CBS in 1993. They signed a huge contract to broadcast the NFC, which included luring Pat Summerall, John Madden, Dick Stockton, Matt Millen, James Brown, and Terry Bradshaw (as well as many behind-the-scenes production personnel) from CBS Sports as well. At first, many were skeptical of this whole move, but the first year was a rousing success, and Fox was officially on the map for good.

The early and mid-1990s saw the launch of several soap-opera dramas aimed at younger audiences that became quick hits: Beverly Hills, 90210, Melrose Place, New York Undercover and Party of Five. September 1993 saw the heavy promotion and debut of a short-lived Western with science-fiction elements, The Adventures of Brisco County, Jr. However, it was the Friday night show that debuted immediately following it, The X-Files, which would find long-lasting success, and would be Fox's first series to crack Nielsen's year-end Top 25.

The sketch-comedy series In Living Color created many memorable characters (and launched the careers of future movie superstars Jim Carrey, Damon Wayans, Keenen Ivory Wayans, Jamie Foxx, and "Fly Girl" dancer Jennifer Lopez).

MADtv, another sketch-comedy series that debuted in 1995, became a solid competitor to NBC's Saturday Night Live for over a decade and the most successful show on Saturday nights.

Fox would expand to seven nights of programming a week by 1993, which included scheduling the breakout hit The Simpsons opposite NBC's The Cosby Show as one of Fox's initial Thursday night offerings in the fall of 1990 (along with future hit Beverly Hills, 90210) after only a half-season of success on Sunday nights. The show thrived in its new timeslot, helping to launch Martin, another Fox hit in 1992; The Simpsons returned to Sunday nights in the fall of 1994, and has been there since.

An attempt to make a larger effort to program Saturday nights by moving Married...with Children, Martin and two other long-forgotten new sitcoms to the night at the beginning of the 1996-97 season backfired with the public as it resulted in a short cancellation of America's Most Wanted that was criticized by law enforcement and public officials, and roundly rejected by the viewing public, which brought swift cancellation to the newer series, and Married... and Martin quickly returned to their previous nights. Two months later a revised schedule featuring a new and encore episode of COPS, and the revived America's Most Wanted: America Fights Back was launched, and this schedule has been American broadcast television's most unchanging night for fourteen seasons.

Notable shows that debuted in the late 1990s include the quirky dramedy Ally McBeal and traditional sitcom That '70s Show, Fox's second-longest-running live-action sitcom behind Married... with Children.

Building around its flagship The Simpsons, Fox has been relatively successful with animated shows. King of the Hill began in 1997; Family Guy and Futurama began in 1999 and were canceled in 2002 and 2003, respectively. However, the network commissioned new episodes of Family Guy that began in 2005 due to strong DVD sales and highly rated cable reruns on Adult Swim of Cartoon Network -- and Comedy Central commissioned a new season of Futurama to begin in 2010. Less successful efforts included The Critic, which starred Jon Lovitz from Saturday Night Live (originally airing on ABC then moved to Fox before being canceled), and The PJs, (which was later broadcast on The WB).

In the 90s, Fox launched its set of cable channels -- FX, Fox News Channel, FXM (currently Fox Movie Channel), a controlling interest in the Fox Sports Net regional sports networks, Speed Channel, Fox Sports World (currently Fox Soccer Channel), and Fox Sports en Espanol.

2000s: The Idol effect

Fox arguably hit a few bumps in its programming during 1999 and the early 2000s. Many staple shows of the 1990s had ended or were on the decline. During this time, Fox put much of its efforts into producing reality fare with subjects often seen as extravagant, shocking, and/or distasteful. These included shows such as Who Wants to Marry a Multi-Millionaire?, Temptation Island, and Married by America. The most successful of these shows was Joe Millionaire, whose season-one finale was watched by over 40 million people. Its second season was a ratings disappointment, however. During this time, Fox also featured weekly shows such as World's Wildest Police Videos and When Animals Attack!.

Between 2000 and 2009, Fox added the cable channels Fox College Sports, Fuel TV, Fox Reality Channel and Fox Business Network -- while FXM became Fox Movie Channel and Fox Sports World changed to Fox Soccer Channel.

After shedding most of these shows, Fox regained a ratings foothold with acclaimed dramas such as 24, The O.C., House and Bones, and comedies such as The Bernie Mac Show and Malcolm in the Middle. By 2005, Fox's most popular show by far was the talent search American Idol, peaking at up to 37 million viewers on certain episodes and being the nation's highest-rated program in the 2004–05 season. House, airing after Idol on Tuesday nights and having had a successful run of summer repeats in 2005, positioned itself as a top-ten hit in the 2005–06 season.

Fox hit a milestone in February 2005 by scoring its first-ever sweeps victory among all viewers. This was largely due to the broadcast of Super Bowl XXXIX, but also on the strength of American Idol, 24, House, and The O.C. By the end of the 2004–05 television season, Fox ranked No. 1 for the first time in its history among the 18–49 demographic most appealing to advertisers. Another milestone came on May 21, 2008, Fox took the #1 general households rating crown for the first time, based on the strength of Super Bowl XLII and American Idol.

It was estimated in 2003 that Fox was viewable by 96.18% of all U.S. households, reaching a total of 102,565,710 houses in the United States. Fox has 180 VHF and UHF owned-and-operated or affiliate stations in the United States and U.S. possessions.

Analog broadcasting on Fox largely ended on June 12, 2009 as part of the transition to digital television.

As a newer broadcast network, Fox still has a number of low-power television affiliates, covering markets like Youngstown, Ohiomarker (WYFXmarker) and Santa Barbara, Californiamarker (KKFXmarker), broadcasting in analog format. In some cases, including both of these markets, these stations are repeated by digital television subchannels owned by the analog station's parent company.

Programming

Fox currently programs 19.5 hours of programming per week. It provides 15 hours of prime time programming to owned-and-operated and affiliated stations: 8-10 p.m. Monday to Saturday (all times ET/PT) and 7–10 p.m. on Sundays. One and a half hours of late night programming is offered on Saturdays from 11:00 p.m. to 12:30 a.m. Weekend daytime programming consists of the infomercial block Weekend Marketplace (Saturdays from 10:00 a.m. to noon) and the hour-long political news program Fox News Sunday (time slot may vary).

Sports programming is also provided, usually on weekends (albeit not every weekend year-round), and most commonly between 12-4 or 12-8 p.m. on Sundays (during football season, slightly less during NASCAR season) and 3:30–7 p.m. on Saturday afternoons (during baseball season).

Prime time

Returning comedies are in salmon; new comedies are in pink; returning dramas are in green; new dramas are in blue; returning reality shows are in yellow; new reality shows are in gold; returning game shows are in orange; new game shows are in beige; sports programming is in purple.

All times are Eastern and Pacific (subtract one hour for Central and Mountain time).

Fox 7:00 p.m. 7:30 p.m. 8:00 p.m. 8:30 p.m. 9:00 p.m. 9:30 p.m.
Sunday Brothers Various Programming The Simpsons The Cleveland Show Family Guy American Dad!
Monday Local Programming House Lie To Me
Tuesday So You Think You Can Dance
Wednesday So You Think You Can Dance Glee
Thursday Bones Fringe
Friday Dollhouse (12/4) Dollhouse (12/4)
Saturday COPS COPS America's Most Wanted: America Fights Back




Winter 2010

Fox 7:00 p.m. 7:30 p.m. 8:00 p.m. 8:30 p.m. 9:00 p.m. 9:30 p.m.
Sunday 'Til Death 'Til Death The Simpsons The Cleveland Show
Sons of Tucson
Family Guy American Dad!
The Cleveland Show
Monday Local Programming House 24
Tuesday American Idol Our Little Genius
Glee (4/13)
Wednesday American Idol Human Target
Thursday Bones Fringe
Past Life
Friday House (R) Kitchen Nightmares
Saturday COPS COPS America's Most Wanted: America Fights Back


News

Unlike the Big Three, Fox does not air national morning or evening news programs. However, the network's parent company owns the Fox News Channel, which was launched in 1996 and is now available through virtually all cable and satellite providers in the United States. Despite the common ownership, Fox News is largely autonomous from the Fox network, although FNC does produce some news coverage carried by the broadcast network, usually separate from the coverage aired on the cable channel, as Fox Report and Studio B anchor Shepard Smith anchors most primetime news presentations on the Fox network, especially during political news events (which are anchored by Bret Baier on the Fox News Channel).

Specifically, the Fox network airs coverage of the State of the Union address, presidential debates, national election coverage, as well as live breaking news bulletins from time to time branded as "Fox News Alerts". (Carriage of such special coverage may vary from station to station, and is often limited to events occurring within the network's usual primetime block. For example, unlike the Big Three, the Fox network does not generally provide coverage of major political convention speeches, which usually occur during the 10:00 p.m. ET hour when many affiliates air local news.)

The public affairs show Fox News Sunday also airs on the Fox network on Sunday mornings and is later repeated on FNC. Finally, the Fox News Edge service provides national and international news reports for local Fox affiliates to use in their own newscasts.

In prime time, Fox first tried its hand at a news show in 1988 with an hour-long weekly newsmagazine called The Reporters, which was produced by the same team behind the FTSG-distributed syndicated tabloid program A Current Affair. After two years with low ratings, this program was cancelled. Fox News Break news capsules segments produced and compiled by WNYW and KTTV reporters also aired during network primetime from the network's launch in 1987 until about 1994.

After FNC launched in 1996, the network tried again in 1998 with Fox Files, hosted by Fox News anchors Catherine Crier and Jon Scott, as well as a team of correspondents. It lasted a little over a year before being cancelled. During the sweeps of the 2002–03 TV season, Fox tried another attempt with The Pulse, hosted by Fox News Channel's Shepard Smith.

Many Fox stations have a local morning newscast that airs on average three to four hours, including an extra two hours from 7 to 9 a.m. as a local alternative to nationwide morning programming. Fox, however, did air a nationally based morning show called Fox After Breakfast (which was formerly Breakfast Time on Fox's FX cable channel) between 1996 and 1998, which aired on all affiliates from 9 to 10 a.m. as opposed to the other major networks airing theirs from 7 to 9 a.m. Fox tried its hand again in 2001, at a morning show called Good Day Live, inspired by KTTVmarker's Good Day L.A.—this time in syndication mode. The show did not fare well in ratings and was canceled in 2005. On January 22, 2007, Fox premiered The Morning Show with Mike and Juliet for its O&O stations, hosted by Mike Jerrick and Juliet Huddy of the Fox News Channel's DaySide program. The show was lighter and more oriented towards entertainment, though the show's focus often changed when major news stories occurred. In February 2007, the show was syndicated to many ABC, NBC, and CBS affiliates where a MyNetworkTV or Fox station did not carry it; it was cancelled in June 2009.

Sports

When the network launched, Fox management, having seen the critical role that sports programming (soccer programming in particular) had played in the growth of the British satellite service British Sky Broadcasting, believed that sports, and specifically professional football, would be the engine that would make Fox a major network the quickest. In 1987, after ABC initially hedged on renewing its contract to carry Monday Night Football, Fox made an offer to the NFL for the same amount ABC had been paying, about $13 million per game at the time. However, the NFL, in part because Fox had not yet established itself as a major network, renewed its contract with ABC.

Six years later, when the football contract was up for renewal, Fox made a $1.58 billion bid for 4 years of rights to the NFC. The NFL selected the Fox bid, stripping CBS of football for the first time since 1955. The event placed Fox on a par with the "big three" broadcast networks and ushered in an era of growth for the NFL. Fox's acquisition of the NFL rights also quickly led toward Fox reaching a deal with New World Communications to change the affiliation of 10 of their stations to Fox. The rights gave Fox many new viewers and a platform for advertising its other shows.

With a sports division now established with the arrival of the NFL, Fox acquired over-air broadcast rights to the National Hockey League (1994–99), Major League Baseball (since 1996), and NASCAR auto racing (since 2001). Since 2007, Fox has aired the Bowl Championship Series college football games, except for the Rose Bowlmarker, which remains on ABC. The package also includes the new BCS Championship Game, except once every four years, when the game is played at the Rose Bowl.

Children's programming

Fox began airing children's programming in 1990 when it launched the Fox Kids Network. Its children's programming featured many cartoons and some live-action series (particularly fantasy action programs) including Power Rangers (currently airing on various Disney-owned networks: ABC, Toon Disney, and Jetix channels around the world), Bobby's World, X-Men, The Tick, Eerie, Indiana and Goosebumps. When The WB added the Kids' WB programming block in 1995, Warner Bros. Animation-produced Tiny Toon Adventures, Animaniacs and later Batman: The Animated Series, (all of which originated either on Fox Kids or in syndication) moved to Kids' WB with new productions and original shows included.

Fox would abandon Fox Kids after selling the children's division and the former Fox Family Channel (now ABC Family) to The Walt Disney Company in 2002 and then sell the four hours of Saturday morning time to 4Kids Entertainment.

4Kids Entertainment ended its TV block at the end of 2008 due to a payment and distribution dispute with Fox that has since been settled, with a last airing on December 27, 2008.. Fox did not lease the block to another provider, owing that the competition from cable networks and E/I regulations for broadcast stations have made putting on a competitive children's block virtually impossible. Two hours of the Saturday block have been given back to their affiliates for Saturday morning newscasts or affiliate purchased E/I programming on January 3, 2009, while the latter two hours became a network-managed infomercial block called Weekend Marketplace . However, This Week in Baseball, an E/I show produced by Major League Baseball, was retained for the 2009 season. It airs a half-hour before the start of the weekly game telecast.

Fox HD

Fox began broadcasting in HDTV in 720p on September 12, 2004 with a series of NFL football games. The network has no digital on-screen graphic logo in the bottom right-hand corner of the screen on the HD feed, except for a ten-second promotional sweep of a Fox HD, presented by DirecTV acknowledgement (although the SD feed does); instead a trigger in Fox's program delivery system at each station displays the affiliate station's logo bug in the 16:9 right-hand corner of the screen, which disappears during commercial breaks (during local pre-emptions of Fox programming the logo does remain on display even though the station is not airing the programming). However, network or affiliate bugs are not displayed during Fox Sports programming.

During some high-profile or live programming such as American Idol and So You Think You Can Dance however, Fox does display their network logo in the 4:3 safe area and forgoes the affiliate's logo, mainly for promotional consideration due to fair use of clips from each series by other media outlets (et al., news programming and clip programs such as those seen on E! and TV Guide Network).

Fox is the only commercial television network (broadcast, cable or satellite) to air programs in widescreen on its digital feed that are not available in HD; programs produced in this format were identified as being presented in "Fox High Resolution Widescreen" from 2001 to 2006, but these enhanced definition programs are currently not advertised by any name. Prior to the launch of its HD feed in 2004, some sitcoms and drama series were presented in this format, but now reality, talk, and game shows (American Idol being the lone exception, as it is presented in High Definition) are only presented in the enhanced definition widescreen mode. The children's sports show This Week in Baseball began being shown in widescreen in 2009, while Sunday political talk program Fox News Sunday converted to the format when Fox News Channel launched their new HD facilities in November 2008. MADtv was produced to air only in 4:3 until September 2008, likely due to a mix of stations airing the show at differing times than the mandated 11pm timeslot and unable to offer it on the live air in 16:9, and the show's producers not making the switch to the format.

Fox is unique among US broadcasters in distributing its network HD feed over satellite to affiliates as an MPEG transport stream intended to be delivered bit-for-bit to viewers' television sets. During network time, local commercials are inserted using a transport stream splicer . The affiliates of most other networks decode compressed satellite network video feeds and then re-encode them for final over-the-air emission.

Slogans, logos and more

Station standardization

During the early 1990s, Fox began having stations branded as "Fox", then the channel number, with the call signs nearby. For instance, WNYWmarker in New York City,WTTGmarker in Washington, D.C., and WAGAmarker in Atlanta, Georgia, are referred to as Fox 5. By the mid-to-late 1990s, the call letters were minimized to be just barely readable to FCC requirements. This marked the start of the trend for other networks to apply such naming schemes, especially at CBS, which uses the CBS Mandate on most of its owned-and-operated stations ("O&O").

Starting in 2006, more standardization of the O&Os began to take place both on the air and online. All the O&Os began adopting an on-air look more closely aligned with the Fox News Channel. This included changing the logos to the same red, white and blue rotating box logo. Since News Corporation's acquisition of MySpace, some Fox O&Os launched websites that look the same and have similar addresses, such as MyFoxDC.com.

Network slogans

Year Slogan
1987 Don't Let Fox Weekend Pass You By
1988 This is the Year
1990 It's on Fox
1992 You're Watching Fox
1993 Fox: You're Watching It
1994 It Could Only Happen on Fox
1994 The Spirit of Fox/We're Gonna Keep it on Fox
1995 Cool Like Us
1996 Non-Stop Fox
1996 Fox 10 Years
1997 Just One Fox
2002 FOX NOW
2007 Fox 20 Years
2007 Fox On
2008 SO FOX


Logos

Over the years, the Fox Broadcasting Company has used a few logos, most of which have the familiar trademark searchlights on either side of "FOX".

In 1986, the year of its inaugurating television service, Fox got its first official logo, which was based on 20th Century Fox's longtime logo with the noted difference being that the only wording in the logo was the "FOX" in capital letters. It also contained the signature Fox searchlights and the double-pane platform under the "FOX" typing (Fox Movie Channel currently uses a logo also modeled after the 20th Century Fox logo).

In 1993, the original logo was revised (however keeping the original logo intact with the new logo until 1994), with the "FOX" wordmark revised, and the angle changed so that the whole logo faces the viewer head-on. The following year, the logo was again revised, dropping the searchlights, but keeping the panes.

The 1993 logo returned in 1996, without the panes underneath the network name, but leaving the searchlights and Fox wordmark. The current version of the logo was introduced in 1999 when the 20th Century Fox searchlights were removed completely and only the network name was visible. Despite this, the searchlight theme remains an integral part of News Corporation's Fox branding efforts, still seen in the Fox News Channel logo, and in the new universal station logo utilized by the FTSG stations, those former Fox stations sold to Local TV LLC, and several of Tribune Broadcasting's Fox stations, in addition to being used by some other Fox affiliates not related to FTSG, Local TV and Tribune. The older 1996-1999 Fox logo with searchlights is still used by many of the network's affiliates in their logos, also being an alternate logo from 2000 onwards, plus also being part of an alternate version of the Fox Sports logo. The searchlights were still seen in FX's logo until a rebranding effort in 2008.

Differences between Fox and the "Big Three" networks

Fox only airs two hours of network programming during the prime time hours (three hours on Sundays), compared to the three hours (four on Sundays) by the other major networks (except for The CW). This allows for many of its stations to air local news during the 10 p.m. (eastern) time slot. Fox's original reason for the reduced number of prime time hours was to avoid fulfilling the FCC's requirements at the time to be considered a network and to be free of resulting regulations, though FCC rules have been relaxed since then.

Fox also does not air soap operas or any other network daytime programming (game shows, talk shows) despite being a major network. Because of this, affiliates have more time for syndicated programming. (Fox produces two syndicated daytime courtroom shows, Divorce Court and Judge Alex.)

Local news

At least half of Fox's 180 O&O and affiliated stations air local news in the 10-11 p.m. (9-10 p.m. CT/MT) timeslot. The newscast schedules on Fox stations vary more from station to station than ABC, CBS and NBC's affiliates. Some Fox stations have a newscast schedule similar to the Big Three's affiliates along with the added late evening newscast at 10 p.m. and a late afternoon newscast extended by a half-hour competing with the national evening newscasts, while others only have a 10 p.m. newscast.

Miami's WSVNmarker has the most local news of any Fox station with roughly 54 hours per week, followed by Tampa's WTVTmarker with roughly 52.5 hours per week. Only a few Fox stations that air an 11 p.m. (or 10 p.m.) newscast along with a 10 p.m. (or 9 p.m.) newscast. WTVTmarker in Tampa, KDFWmarker in Dallas/Fort Worth, WAGAmarker in Atlanta, WOFLmarker in Orlando, WJBKmarker in Detroit, KMSPmarker in Minneapolis-St. Paul, KSAZmarker in Phoenix, WTTGmarker Washington, D.C., and WFXTmarker in Boston are the only Fox-owned stations to have a 11p.m./10 p.m. newscast in the Eastern Time Zone, Central and Mountain Time Zones with only WFXTmarker, WTTGmarker, and KSAZmarker airing it every night. WDAF-TVmarker in Kansas City, WITImarker in Milwaukee, WBRCmarker in Birmingham, KOKHmarker in Oklahoma City, WTIC-TVmarker in Hartford, WZTVmarker in Nashville, KTVImarker in St. Louis and WSVNmarker in Miami are some of the few non-O&Os airing a 10pm (or 9 p.m.) and a 11pm (or 10 p.m.) newscast.

Stations that don't air local news air syndicated programming, usually off-network sitcoms in that timeslot. Some small market Fox affiliates outsource their newscasts to a Big Three station in the market (either situation may change in the future as more Fox stations start their own news divisions), although markets as large as Pittsburghmarker also do this where Fox affiliate WPGH-TVmarker airs a 10PM news from NBC affiliate WPXImarker after WPGH shut down its news division in 2006. In some smaller markets with duopolies, the Fox affiliate usually airs a 10 p.m. newscast from a sister station, such as Youngstown, Ohiomarker where CBS affiliate WKBN-TVmarker airs a 10 p.m. newscast on its sister station, Fox affiliate WYFXmarker. Upstart Fox local news divisions do not run a full slate of newscasts (i.e., morning, midday, early and late evening newscasts plus news on weekend evenings and possibly weekend mornings), instead starting with a 10 p.m. newscast then gradually adding other newscasts. Between September 14 and September 21, 2009, six Fox affiliates owned by Tribune Company added an early evening and/or midday newscast; Fox has pushed its affiliates to carry more newscasts (especially ones in midday and early evening timeslots) for several years, prior to the formation of Fox News Channel.

The largest market with a Fox affiliate that airs no news whatsoever is Buffalo, New Yorkmarker, where WUTVmarker has long opted for sitcom reruns instead; that station is within range of the Torontomarker area and targets Southern Ontario heavily with their programs and advertising instead of launching a news operation in an area with heavy news coverage already from other stations in Buffalo, Hamiltonmarker and Toronto. Its sister station, MyNetworkTV affiliate WNYO-TVmarker, does air local news at 10PM that is produced by NBC affilaite WGRZmarker, however.

Criticism

News

Although the Fox network itself does not carry any national, regularly scheduled news programming other than Fox News Sunday, both this program and the network's breaking-news coverage are produced by the Fox News Channel, which has been the subject of controversy from time to time.

Indecency

Controversy surrounded the network in 2002 and 2003 over obscenities, expressed respectively by Cher and Nicole Richie, aired live on the network's broadcasts of the Billboard Music Awards on its affiliates in the Eastern and Central Time Zones despite the use of five-second audio delays; the indecent material was edited out on broadcasts in the Mountain Time Zone and westward. Both of the obscene instances were condemned by the Parents Television Council and named by them among the worst instances on television from 2001 to 2004. PTC members filed tens of thousands of complaints to the Federal Communications Commission over the broadcasts. The Fox network's subsequent apology was labeled a "sham" by PTC president L. Brent Bozell III, who argued that Fox could have easily used audio delay to edit out the obscene language. As the FCC was investigating the broadcasts, in 2004, Fox announced that it would begin extending live broadcast delays to 5 minutes from its standard 5 or 10 seconds to more easily be able to edit out obscenities uttered over the air. In June 2007, in the case Fox et al. v. Federal Communications Commission, the U.S. Second Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that the FCC could not issue indecency fines against the Fox network because the FCC does not have the authority to fine broadcasters for fleeting expletives, such as in the case of the Billboard Awards. The FCC eventually decided to appeal the Second Circuit Court's finding. The U.S. Supreme Court granted certiorari and oral arguments in FCC v. Fox, et al., began November 4, 2008.

The Parents Television Council has criticized many popular Fox shows for perceived indecent content, such as American Dad!, Arrested Development, The Simpsons, Family Guy, Hell's Kitchen, Married... with Children, Prison Break, and That '70s Show. The Council sometimes has gone even as far as to file complaints with the Federal Communications Commission regarding indecent content within Fox programming, having done so for That '70s Show and Married by America, having successfully been able to make the FCC fine the Fox network nearly $1 million for Married by America. Also, Fox programming has been chosen by the PTC for its weekly "Worst TV Show of the Week" feature more often than programming from any other broadcast network.

See also



References

  1. Fox wins TV season on strong 'Idol' finish
  2. http://tvbythenumbers.com/2009/05/27/fox-sweeps-age-demos-for-2008-9-season-cbs-wins-average-viewership/19457
  3. The DuMont Television Network: Channel Nine
  4. David Cook Wasn't the Only Winner on Wednesday, as 'Idol' Ratings Spike
  5. http://www.moviestaff.com/directory/networks/fox_broadcasting.htm
  6. http://www.nowpublic.com/culture/glee-tv-show-going-hiatus-four-months-fans-not-happy-2525832.html
  7. Official Website : Where To Watch?
  8. http://www.broadcastingcable.com/article/161775-_Morning_Show_With_Mike_and_Juliet_to_End_in_Fall.php?rssid=20101&q=mike+and+juliet
  9. http://app.quotemedia.com/data/newsItem.htm?webmasterId=92403&storyId=14004012&topic=KDE
  10. http://www.variety.com/article/VR1117996360.html?categoryid=14&cs=1
  11. Fox stations to splice HD feed at local level
  12. UCLA TV Violence Monitoring Project: Operating Premises and Stipulations
  13. Parloff, Roger. Bleep Deprivation. Fortune: March 19, 2007.
  14. TV's Worst Clips, 2001-2004. Parents Television Council
  15. Fox mulls 5-minute delay to squash dirty words. Media Life Magazine: January 27, 2004.
  16. [1]
  17. Labaton, Stephen. Court Rebuffs F.C.C. on Fines for Indecency (page 2 of 2). The New York Times: June 5, 2007
  18. [2]
  19. FAMILY GUY - Parents Television Council Family TV Guide Show Page
  20. http://www.parentstv.org/ptc/shows/main.asp?shwid=2332
  21. PTC list of Best and Worst shows of the 1996-97 TV season
  22. Content from the March 24, 2004 episode of "That '70s Show"
  23. Fox "Worst of the Week" articles by Parents Television Council during the middle of 2004: * June 6, 2004: Oliver Beene * June 20, 2004: The Casino * June 27, 2004: The Simple Life 2 * July 4, 2004: Quintuplets * July 11, 2004: Method & Red * August 8, 2004: Quintuplets * August 15, 2004: The Casino


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