34 Facts About USA Network


USA Network is an American basic cable television channel owned by the NBCUniversal Television and Streaming division of Comcast's NBCUniversal through NBCUniversal Cable Entertainment.

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Since then, USA Network steadily gained popularity through its original programming, a long-established partnership with WWE and, for many years, limited sports programming that increased significantly in 2022 after the shutdown of NBCSN.

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USA Network originally launched on September 22, 1977, as the Madison Square Garden Sports Network.

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USA Network began operating on a 24-hour schedule, programming its new daytime block with the British soap opera Coronation Street, a health-oriented show named Alive and Well, and an afternoon movie.

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One tradition on USA Network was an afternoon lineup of game show reruns mixed in with several original low-budget productions that aired over the years.

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In January 1989, USA Network debuted USA Network Up All Night, a showcase of low-budget feature films that aired as part of its weekend overnight schedule.

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Short news updates, branded as USA Network Updates, were broadcast early on, from 1989 until 2000.

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Via the ANC connection, USA aired the financial news program First Business at 6:30am weekday mornings for a time (the network had previously carried Wall Street Journal-produced financial news updates and a late-night report in the 1980s).

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The ANC-produced updates continued through 2000; USA Network has not carried any news programming since the news updates were removed.

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USA Network was the first basic cable channel to pre-empt the syndicated television market by purchasing a package of 26 films from Disney's Touchstone Pictures library in October 1989.

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On September 24, 1992, USA launched a sister network, the Sci-Fi Channel, focusing on science fiction series and films.

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In September 1993, USA Network adopted a new on-air look centering on the slogan "The Remote Stops Here", with flat graphics suggesting a television camera's in-lens symbols and music consisting of electric guitar and synthesized noises, though the movie presentation openers were retained from the previous design.

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USA Network Studios became the branding for USA Network-produced programming at this point.

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One major shock happened when USA Network lost the broadcasting rights of the WWF to Viacom in June 2000; Raw was moved to TNN in September of that year.

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In 2005, USA Network introduced a new logo and associated marketing campaign, "Characters Welcome".

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On December 7, 2007, it was announced that USA Network would continue broadcasting first-run episodes of Raw through at least 2010.

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USA Network was considered the key piece of the NBC-Comcast merger; Wunderlich Securities analyst Matthew Harrigan projected that USA contributed $9.

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USA Network has been a key NBCUniversal asset accounting for one-third of advertising revenue for NBCUniversal Cable Entertainment Group and $1 billion in annual earnings over the past few years.

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USA Network had quietly discontinued the "Characters Welcome" tagline in the lead-up to the rebranding, whose associated programming shift was led by the premieres of Mr Robot and Colony.

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Amid the growth of streaming services and the decline of traditional cable television, USA Network began to cut back on scripted programming, in favor of reality shows, television events (including scripted miniseries), and live programming—the latter including WWE programs and sporting events.

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USA Network has achieved a viewership foothold with its original programming; this began in the 1990s with initial hits such as Silk Stalkings, Duckman and La Femme Nikita, which were gradually followed in the following two decades by series such as Monk, Psych, Shooter, White Collar, Mr Robot, Suits, Burn Notice and Royal Pains.

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USA Network is the home of WWE's flagship cable program Raw; the series originally aired on the channel from its debut in January 1993 until the series moved to TNN in September 2000, before returning to the channel in October 2005.

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In 2018, USA Network renewed its rights to Raw for five additional years, but lost the rights for SmackDown to Fox beginning October 2019.

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USA Network has a longstanding history with sports, dating back to its existence as the Madison Square Garden Network.

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College Football on USA Network ran from 1980 to 1986, and its telecast of the 1981 Liberty Bowl was the first college bowl game to be exclusively broadcast on cable television.

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The NBA on USA Network aired from 1979 to 1984, the first time that the NBA had a cable television partner.

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Tennis on USA Network aired professional tournaments in the United States from 1984 to 2008, and was the longtime cable home of the US Open before its cable television rights moved to ESPN2 and the Tennis Channel in 2009.

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The PGA Tour on USA Network covered the opening two rounds of the Masters Tournament from 1982 to 2007, Ryder Cup matches from 1989 to 2010, and various other events.

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USA Network aired most games of the World League of American Football in its first two seasons of operation in 1991 and 1992; one innovation introduced for the network's WLAF telecasts was the in-helmet camera.

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USA Network carried games from the International Ice Hockey Federation in 2006 and 2010.

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USA Network participates in NBC Sports' broader effort of carrying all ten Survival Sunday matches across its numerous channels during the final matchday of the Premier League season.

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In 2016, USA Network aired three NASCAR races as overflow during the 2016 Summer Olympics.

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USA Network carried eight games as part of the inaugural season of the revived USFL.

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Regional versions of USA Network previously operated in certain South American countries; in September 2004, most of these services were renamed under the Universal Channel banner to take advantage of the more well-known brand, and to reduce the awkwardness of a channel branded with the initials of another nation.

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