- TVA (TV network)
network_name = TVA
network_type = Broadcast
Quebec, parts of Ontario, New Brunswickand northern U.S. via antenna, nationally via cable
owner = Groupe TVA (
launch_date = 1963 (formally organized 1971)
slogan = C'est vrai ("It's real")
website = [http://tva.canoe.ca/ TVA]
TVA is a
Canadian French languageprivately owned television network.
TVA is based in
Quebecand has affiliates only in Quebec, although the affiliates in Rivière-du-Loupand Carleton-sur-Mer have rebroadcast transmitters in New Brunswick. Also, the affiliate in Gatineauis part of the Ottawatelevision market. Since 1998, it has been available on cable across Canada. It is widely considered to be the French counterpart of CTV. In fact, its logo is similar to CTV's, although the two networks have never been jointly owned. TVA is presently owned by Groupe TVA Inc. (tsx|TVA), a publicly-traded subsidiary of Quebecor Media.
TVA is short for Téléviseurs associés or Télédiffuseurs associés, depending on the source (both can be roughly translated to "Associated Telecasters"). The name reflects TVA's roots as a
cooperativenetwork owned by its affiliates. However, only the initials are used on-air.
TVA traces its roots to 1963, when
CJPM-TVin Chicoutimi(now part of Saguenay), a station only a few months old and in need of revenue, began sharing programs with the biggest privately owned francophone station in Canada, CFTM-TVin Montreal. They were joined by CFCM-TVin Quebec Cityin 1964 after CFCM lost its SRC affiliation. While the three stations shared programs for many years, it was not until 1971 that the informal link became a proper network, TVA, with CFTM as the flagship station. The network began the first private French-language network news service in Canada in 1972. Between 1973 and 1983, seven more stations joined the network.
When the network was formally organized in 1971, its affiliates ran it as a cooperative, much like CTV operated for many years. In 1982, the cooperative became a corporation with the station owners as shareholders.
For many years, TVA's programming was very similar to what Global offers today in that it did not have what could be called a main schedule aside from news. For instance, Pathonic Communications, which owned the TVA affiliates in Quebec City,
Sherbrooke, Trois-Rivières, Rimouskiand Rivière-du-Loup; offered programming that was radically different from that offered on CFTM. The differences were enough that Sherbrooke's CHLT-TV, whose over-the-air signal reaches Montreal, was carried on Montreal cable systems. However, CFTM dominated the network, contributing as much of 90% of the network's programming. That was not surprising as Montreal has always been the centre of French-language broadcasting in Canada.
In 1989 Télé-Metropole, which owned CFTM and CJPM, bought out Pathonic and changed its name to Groupe TVA Inc., a subsidiary of cable company
Vidéotron. The other station owners sold the outstanding shares of the network in 1992. Nine years later, Quebecor became owner of TVA.
TVA also owns
Le Canal Nouvelles(LCN), Canada's only private French-language headline news channel. When TVA completes its broadcast day, the TVA stations simulcast LCN until TVA's next broadcast day begins. As well, the company owns a magazine publishing division unit, a film production and distribution house, and a number of other Internet and cable properties, many of which are often used to cross-promote TVA series and events.
In 1998, the
Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commissionmade it compulsory for all cable systems in Canada to carry a TVA station, in order to give Canada's francophone minority communities a second French-language programming choice. The station offered is usually the network's flagship, CFTM. Some cable companies in Ontarioand New Brunswickcarried the affiliates from Gatineau, Rouyn-Norandaor Rivière-du-Loup long before TVA carriage became mandatory, and these companies have mostly continued to carry their existing affiliates rather than switching to CFTM.
CFTM also provides a time-shifted feed for
British Columbiacable companies. However, this feed is little more than a machine that records CFTM's programming and then rebroadcasts it three hours later to viewers in British Columbia.
In 2004, TVA, in partnership with fellow Quebecor subsidiary
Sun Mediaacquired CKXT-TVin Toronto, once known as Toronto One and now known as "Sun TV." The company's first English-language television station, it will continue to be run as an independent station, not as a TVA affiliate, but it is in the process of a major programming shift. In early 2005, TVA confirmed to " The Globe and Mail" that it would continue to look for other expansion opportunities in English Canada, although as of 2008 no further takeover announcements have been made by the company.
Although TVA is a full-fledged network, its network feed is basically a retransmission of CFTM, with
opt outs by local affiliates for local news, commercials and locally-produced programming. While this allows TVA to air more network programming than any other Canadian network (the basis for its longtime slogan, "Le sens de la télé" or "The Meaning of Television"), it also means that CFTM usually can't interrupt its programming for news or weather bulletins in Montreal without interrupting the entire network.
For many years, TVA has been more popular than
Télévision de Radio-Canada, the French-language counterpart of CBC Television. All but 10 of the 50 most popular television shows in Quebec come from TVA.In 2007, TVA launched an HD simulcast of flagship station, CFTM called "TVA HD".
TVA also operates a number of cable specialty channels, including ARGENT,
Canal Évasion, Les idées de ma maison, Mystère, LCN, Prise 2and Shopping TVA. It is also a part owner of Canal Indigo, mentvand Mystery TV.
*Current: "C'est vrai" ("It's real")
*Past: "Le sens de la télé" ("The meaning of television"):"Le Réseau d'Ici" ("The network from Here")
Owned and operated
List of Quebec television channels
List of Quebec television series
Television of Quebec
Culture of Quebec
Media in Canada
List of Canadian television channels
* [http://tva.canoe.ca/ TVA] fr
* [http://www.broadcasting-history.ca/networks/networks_TVA_Television.html TVA history at Canadian Communications Foundation]
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