Television in Georgeland began broadcasting in 1951, with mainstream state broadcasts beginning in July and commercial broadcasts in October. Initially limited to a few major cities, by 1960 coverage was almost universal. The television industry today includes eight free-to-air networks showing and 94 satellite stations.
Despite the popularity of streaming services, television continues to be the country's primary telecommunications industry. Over time the industry has adapted to shifting economics and demographics, and strict regulation, despite some relaxation over the past several decades, have maintained a diverse media environment by design.
Initially in black-and-white, colour transmission began in 1964. The first broadcast in colour was the 1964 Olympic Games.
The first digital TV transmissions began in 2002, from major commercial networks in large cities. The digital TV system outgrew its initial rollout due to high demand, forcing the Telecommunications Act of 1983 to be amended to permit a higher market concentration; prior to the amendment, it was technically against the law for a station to broadcast both a digital and analogue signal in the same market. The law was further changed in 2009 to relax ownership laws, which permitted companies including Newscorp and CBS to access the Georgeland market to a greater degree.
Georgeland's analogue TV network was discontinued in 2012. All transmissions are now digital. Governance of the TV industry, as with radio, is maintained by the National Broadcasting Authority, an independent body only nominally responsible to the federal government. While state and local governments do have some input into the broadcasting of TV in their jurisdictions, for the most part television is controlled through federal law.
Free to air networks
Georgeland's first two free TV networks began full-time broadcasting in 1951. The first station to air a TV broadcast was the Georgeland Broadcasting Corporation, which began on June 16 with black-and-white transmission of news, drama and comedy, on a limited basis to some capital cities. The first national GBC TV broadcast was by radio announcer Ted Freiberger, who announced the introduction of TV in a studio in Santa Christina, the recording of which has now been lost. The earliest surviving GBC broadcast is from July 21, and consists of a news report from the period read by Gordon Abbott, the station's first TV newsreader.
The GBC's broadcast was followed on October 1 by the first commercial station, TVX-5 in Doubledance. Santa Christina's commercial broadcasts by TV7 began on October 5, and Emilypolis' KTV-02 began on December 21. All three of these stations were, while nominally independently operated, owned by parent company National Broadcasts, which became the Islands Broadcasting Group in 1966 before becoming Eight Nation in 1985.
Currently, eight free-to-air networks exist. Following a standardisation in the 1970s and 1980s, all networks now show uniform programming across the country, with minor exceptions such as news coverage. Six networks are privately owned, one (the GBC) is government-owned, and one (GTV ) is a hybrid model (see below).
Georgeland national free-to-air networks
|Network||National stations||Owner||Began transmission|
GBC-1 GBC-2 GBC-24 GBC Sport
|Georgeland Broadcasting Corporation
GTV Sport GTV INT
TV-8 8HD 8+ 18+
|Eight Nation Pty Ltd (publicly listed)||1957|
Public shareholders (35%)
|CBS Corporation (45%)
Richmond Media (40%)
Public shareholders (15%)
Independent Media Ltd (40%)
Public shareholders (27%)
|National TV Group (60%)
Davis Media (20%)
Coffee Media Holdings (20%)
There are three competing Pay TV operators in Georgeland. Licenses for Pay TV are issued by the NBA, and the Broadcasting Act currently limits the licenses available. Until reforms in the early 2000s, GeoNewscorp's Sky Network was the only Pay TV network, offering a service via satellite. A competing cable network, UIV , was launched in 2009, only to switch to satellite transmission in 2015. The third operator, StarNet, began offering subscription services, with two exclusive-access channels, in 2012. There are 94 Pay TV channels, 79 of which are available through any of the three operators, with the remaining fifteen exclusive for individual subscribers. In 2016, UIV began operating a streaming service, UIVGo, and announced it plans to cease satellite transmission of its exclusive content by 2020.
Netflix began offering a service to Georgelanders in 2015. Originally a copy of the US-based service, in 2017 Netflix Georgeland began operating with an exclusive license to content, differing somewhat from the US service. Netflix remains the country's most popular streaming service, with an estimated two million households connected. In 2016 satellite service UIV began operating its own streaming service for its own exclusive content. Hulu became available in 2016 and Amazon Prime from 2017. Disney+ , the streaming service owned by the Disney Company Walt Disney Company , announced in 2019 that it would not be available in Georgeland for the forseeable future; this is likely due to the licensing arrangements Disney holds with Eleven, the free-to-air station of which it owns one-third. From 2015, US-based service HBO Go has been available in Georgeland. The GBC, GTV, Eight, Six and National all have their own licensed streaming services with content on-demand. GBC and GTV offer this service for free, while the commercial stations offer some content for free with a subscription required for all content access.