Channel 4

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Channel 4

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Channel 4 is a public-service television and radio broadcaster in the United Kingdom, centred around a television channel of the same name which began transmissions on 2 November 1982. Although entirely commercially self-funded, it is ultimately publicly owned. Originally a subsidiary of the Independent Broadcasting Authority (IBA), the station is now owned and operated by the Channel Four Television Corporation, a public body established in 1990 for this purpose and which came into operation in 1993, following the abolition of the IBA.

The station was established to provide a fourth television service to the UK that would break the duopoly of the BBC's two established television services and the single commercial broadcasting network, ITV, then the only services in the UK. Though having seen new competition through the subsequent availability and growth of cable, satellite and digital terrestrial services, Channel 4 still enjoys almost universal coverage in the UK, coverage in some neighbouring countries and a significant audience share.

Channel 4 was established with, and continues to hold, a remit of public service obligations which it must fulfil. The remit changes periodically, as dictated by various broadcasting and communications acts, and is regulated by the various authorities Channel 4 has been answerable to; originally the IBA, then the ITC and now Ofcom.

The remit also involves an obligation to provide Schools Programming,and a substantial amount of programming produced outside of Greater London.


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