26 Facts About TV Guide


TV Guide is an American digital media company that provides television program listings information as well as entertainment and television-related news.

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Prototype of what would become TV Guide Magazine was developed by Lee Wagner, who was the circulation director of MacFadden Publications in New York City in the 1930s – and later, by the time of the predecessor publication's creation, for Cowles Media Company – distributing magazines focusing on movie celebrities.

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In 1948, Wagner printed New York City area listings magazine The TeleVision TV Guide, which was first released on local newsstands on June 14 of that year.

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Each of the cities that had their own local TV listings magazine folded into TV Guide were among the initial cities where the magazine conducted its national launch.

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Under Triangle, TV Guide continued to grow not only in circulation, but in recognition as the authority on television programming with articles – the majority of which typically appear in the color section – from both staff and contributing writers.

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TV Guide modified all icons incorporated into the local listings section in May 1969, changing the font for the TV-shaped bullets identifying local stations from Futura to the standard Helvetica and using similarly TV-shaped bullets marked with the abbreviation "C" to denote color programs.

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In 1983, depending on the edition, a new feature was added, the "Pay-TV Movie TV Guide", initially preceded the listings before being moved to the pages immediately following the Friday listings in January 1989, resulting in the national section – which had been cordoned into two sections, both preceding and following the local section – being consolidated into the first half of the pages comprising each issue.

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On March 7, 1996, TV Guide launched the iGuide, originally developed by the News Corporation-MCI joint venture Delphi Internet Service Corp.

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That year, United Video acquired TVSM Inc in a $75 million all-cash acquisition; as a result, TV Guide merged with Total TV, and began printing a version of the magazine in the latter magazine's full-size format (while retaining the original digest size version) effective with the July 11, 1998, issue.

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The sheer amount and diversity of cable television programming made it hard for TV Guide to provide listings of the extensive array of programming that came directly over the cable system.

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That month, TV Guide debuted a 16-page insert into editions in 22 markets with large Hispanic populations titled TV Guide en Espanol, which provided programming information from national Spanish language networks as well as special sections with reviews of the week's notable programs.

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Conversely, sister cable network TV Guide Channel was relegated from the log listings to the grids in most editions.

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From its inception until 2003, TV Guide had offered listings for the entire week, 24 hours a day.

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These changes became permanent in all TV Guide editions beginning with the September 13, 2003, "Fall Preview" issue.

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The "Premium Channels Movie TV Guide" was restructured as "The Big Movie TV Guide", with film listings being expanded to include those airing on all broadcast networks and cable channels featured in each edition, as well as movies that were available on pay-per-view (page references to the films included in this section were incorporated into the prime time grids and log listings).

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On July 26, 2005, Gemstar-TV Guide announced that TV Guide would abandon its longtime digest size format and begin printing as a larger full-size national magazine that would offer more stories and fewer program listings.

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The new version of TV Guide went on sale on October 17, 2005, and featured Extreme Makeover: Home Edition host Ty Pennington on the cover.

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In September 2006, TV Guide launched a redesigned website, with expanded original editorial and user-generated content not included in the print magazine.

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On December 22, 2006, TV Guide introduced the magazine's first ever two-week edition.

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On May 18, 2005, TV Guide Talk, a weekly podcast that was available to download for free, was launched.

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TV Guide Talk podcasts were released every Friday afternoon and averaged an hour in length.

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TV Guide Crosswords was a spin-off publication, first published in the late 1980s, based on the crossword puzzle feature in the penultimate page of each issue.

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TV Guide's Parents' Guide to Children's Entertainment was a quarterly spin-off publication which was first released on newsstands on May 27, 1993.

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ReMIND, like TV Guide Magazine, is published by NTVB Media, and its issues contain themed features, puzzles, and trivia quizzes.

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TV Guide Interactive is the former name of an interactive electronic program guide software system incorporated into digital set-top boxes provided by cable providers.

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Separate IPG system, TV Guide On Screen, was a brand name for Guide Plus+, a build of software featured in products such as televisions, DVD and digital video recorders, and other digital television devices providing on-screen program listings.

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