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Thread: UNID Channel 3

  1. #11
    Join Date
    May 2014


    A couple of things...that was a live capture of a congressional session, so it might not be a given that they're on the air with it next week, and I want to correct some things about Canal A.

    The #2 network in Colombia began national operations in the early 1970s as Cadena 2 (Network 2), complementing the initial network "Network 1" (today's Canal Uno). For the 20th century and into the 21st, Colombian television primarily ran on an unusual and unique model known as the mixed system. In this model, Inravisión, the Colombian state broadcaster, performed all technical functions, while commercial production companies bid for timeslots and produced/selected a number of hours each week to air on the two networks. (These companies had their own idents...which means Colombia could be said to have been TV continuity heaven in a way. So many 80s slides and 90s bad 3D animations!)

    With the 1991 bidding series, which took effect in January 1992, the system was given some definition. Two groups of 12 broadcasters were created, given more latitude, and encouraged to compete against each other. Not wanting to be merely number two, the Cadena 2 broadcasters opted to call themselves Canal A (with that awesomely 90s lion logo). Both broadcaster groups had 12-year contracts, which allowed for larger and longer-term investments in things like news studios and programming.

    It was in 1995/96 that the storm clouds began to gather for the mixed system. The primary catalyst was the Colombian Constitution of 1991, which essentially forced the government to open an auction for two new national commercial networks. Another decision was political —*the end of the 12-year contracts after six years and the decision to rebid everything out, which seemed tailor made to get some pesky newscasts off the air.

    When Caracol and RCN won the auction in 1997 and came to air in 1998 (Producciones Punch, the dean of the programadoras or production companies, lost out), a triple whammy effect soon began.

    1. Caracol and RCN were commercial broadcasters with popular programs. Their loss from the mixed system and their striking it out alone caused ratings drops.
    2. Caracol and RCN had ties to economic groups that were major advertisers, particularly RCN which was part of the Organización Ardila Lulle. (This conglomerate owns companies in the beverage and agricultural industries, among others.) This caused advertising revenue to fall.
    3. Colombia entered into its first recession since the 1930s as a result of the Asian financial crisis.

    Within two years, Caracol and RCN had 70% of the audience, far outpacing growth predictions. Not even a snazzy new lion logo with a flaming mane could save them.

    It was a situation that began to show signs of mass failure in 2000. Among the departures of that year were Cenpro, whose recent productions had included Perro Amor (which was later adapted by Telemundo); Producciones JES, another of the old-line greats; 24 Horas, the country's most senior newscast which had aired since 1972; and PUNCH. The programadoras began to seek bankruptcy production and wither away. Ironically, this really took form during the presidency of Andrés Pastrana, who founded Datos y Mensajes (a newscast producer).

    In 2003, RTI was left alone on Canal A after further collapses. They were moved to Canal Uno. That left Canal A with no program source other than Audiovisuales, a state-run company that had become the program filler when everyone else dropped. Inravisión and Audiovisuales were liquidated the next year due to massive pension liabilities, creating today's RTVC, and Canal/Señal Institucional was launched in its place.

    This year, most of the remaining broadcasters in the mixed system banded together and picked up operation of Canal Uno as one company, Plural Comunicaciones, S.A.

    Also, Canal A didn't have a slogan until the 1999 relaunch, when they introduced the tagline "Es Televisión". Yes, their slogan was "It's Television". I don't know who thought that one up.
    Este programa es público, ajeno a cualquier partido político. Queda prohibido el uso para fines distintos a los establecidos en el programa.

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  2. #12
    Join Date
    Jan 2015
    Akron Ohio


    This mystery is solved without a doubt. I tuned into the online stream for Canal Institucional exactly one week later to view the program, and it was an exact match of what I captured last week. It's definitely 5JA-8340 from Pamplona (2,394 miles).

    Click image for larger version. 

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  3. #13
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Pembroke Pines, FL, USA


    Nice going Andrew.

    I am wondering if this is the exact same station I saw around 1993 that was Canal A (with that logo shown on P 1) & PUNCH logo. They were showing a SS dubbed "Bobby's World" cartoon (the one created, I assume, by Howie Mandel).

    I believe that my reception is still here on WTFDA somewhere.

    If not the same station, Andrew caught one that I never did; and I've had ch 3 open loooong before the DTV change!

    Edit: Raymie said 1995, here:


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