- Viva (TV station)
network_name = VIVA
Germanyalso distributed in Austria, Switzerland, Hungary, Poland, Europe(German and Polish versions)
available = National
key_people = Catherine Mühlemann; Tim Ellis
December 1, 1993
website = [http://www.viva.tv/ www.viva.tv]
VIVA is a private German music
television channellocated in Berlin. It was founded in 1993by a shareholder group led by Time Warnerand headed up initially by Dieter Gornyto compete with MTV, the market leader at the time. Being the first music channel to broadcast in German, VIVA was able to secure a close lead in the ratings for the target audience.
21 March 1995a second channel, VIVA Zwei ("VIVA Two"), was created, concentrating on lesser known and more independently produced music. On 1 January 2002it was renamed VIVA Plus and its concept changed to a channel dedicated purely to pop and mainstream music for a younger generation of viewers. The change was protested as a loss by many fans of the old channel as well as many personalities from the music business, as it destroyed a significant chance for lesser known bands to have their music heard. VIVA Plus shut down on January 14, 2007. It became Comedy Central Deutschland the next day.
Since 1995, VIVA has a pop music award ceremony with the annual Comet.
9/11attacks, VIVA went off the air for several days, broadcasting only a blank scene and a message of condolence.
2003, VIVA openly expressed an anti- Iraq Warview. Later that year, VIVA got bad press after it was discovered that VIVA had given Universal Musican unfair advantage in the placement of their music videos.
Today, the company is divided into the "VIVA Fernsehen GmbH", "VIVA Plus Fernsehen GmbH", "Brainpool TV GmbH", and "VIVA Media Enterprises". Since
2004, the main shareholderis the media company Viacom (98%), which also owns MTV, the main competitorto VIVA, creating a virtual monopolyin German music television. Following the acquisition of VIVA by Viacom, VIVA has been based in Berlin, where MTV Germany is based.
The concept behind VIVA originated in 1992 when the major record labels were frustrated by MTV Germany's decision to program in English to the Germanophone markets and what was perceived as its refusal to play major German-speaking artists.
Tom McGrath, then President of Time Warner International Broadcasting, assembled a group of record labels that included Warner Music, EMI Music, Sony Television along with Frank Otto, APAX partners, and DoRo Productions from Austria (Rudy Dolezal and Hannes Rossacher). With Dieter Gorny brought on board to lead the channel the group applied for cable carriage licenses in the various German Bundesländer, a process that took almost one year. DoRo designed the original programming format which while clearly a music video channel, sought to differentiate itself from MTV not just by having a German speaking voice, but by speaking directly to the differences in pop culture between Germany and the anglophone MTV. Ironically, before launching the channel, the labels offered to fund MTV in a German speaking version, but were rejected by MTV management at the time who espoused a "one world, one language" programming philosophy (at least for Europe since their South American Channels used Spanish and Portuguese).
After MTV introduced a German language version of itself, the competition between the two stations increased. VIVA was widely perceived as the more mainstream oriented channel for younger viewers, while MTV Germany was directed at youths and young adults with some edgier programming. Since the acquisition of VIVA by Viacom, MTV Germany is mostly broadcasting reality TV shows. VIVA has become the music channel with charts shows and similar, mostly directed at a mainstream audience. Viacom has introduced a programming scheme that allows the station to be run by just 40 people, many previous employees were let go.
* [http://www.vivamediaag.com/ website of the VIVA Media AG]
* [http://www.viva.tv/ website of the TV channel VIVA]
* [http://www.welt.de/data/2004/11/26/365655.html report in "Die Welt" about the planned massive reduction of staff in VIVA]
* [http://www.viva-tv.pl/ website of the polish TV channel VIVA]
* (Hungarian) [http://www.vivatv.hu website of the Hungarian TV channel VIVA]
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