Fusion (TV channel)

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Fusion
Fusion TV Logo 2013.jpg
LaunchedOctober 28, 2013 (2013-10-28)[1]
Owned byDisney-ABC Television Group
(The Walt Disney Company)
Univision Communications
(both owning 50%)
(Fusion Media Network, LLC)
Picture format720p (HDTV)
480i (SDTV)
SloganPop Culture. Satire. News. This is Fusion.
CountryUnited States
LanguageEnglish
Spanish
Broadcast areaUnited States
HeadquartersDoral, Florida
ReplacedABC News Now
Sister channel(s)ABC
ABC Family
ESPN
ESPN2
Univision
Univision Noticias
Galavisión
UniMás
Univision Deportes Network
Univision tlnovelas
Websitewww.fusion.net
Availability
Cable
Cablevision/OptimumChannel 697 (HD)
Channel 156 (SD)
Verizon FiOSChannel 108 (SD only)
Available on other select cable systems(check local listings for channels)
IPTV
AT&T U-verseChannel 1206 (HD)
Channel 206 (SD)
Streaming media
Available from select broadband Internet providersCheck with a provider for details
 
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Fusion
Fusion TV Logo 2013.jpg
LaunchedOctober 28, 2013 (2013-10-28)[1]
Owned byDisney-ABC Television Group
(The Walt Disney Company)
Univision Communications
(both owning 50%)
(Fusion Media Network, LLC)
Picture format720p (HDTV)
480i (SDTV)
SloganPop Culture. Satire. News. This is Fusion.
CountryUnited States
LanguageEnglish
Spanish
Broadcast areaUnited States
HeadquartersDoral, Florida
ReplacedABC News Now
Sister channel(s)ABC
ABC Family
ESPN
ESPN2
Univision
Univision Noticias
Galavisión
UniMás
Univision Deportes Network
Univision tlnovelas
Websitewww.fusion.net
Availability
Cable
Cablevision/OptimumChannel 697 (HD)
Channel 156 (SD)
Verizon FiOSChannel 108 (SD only)
Available on other select cable systems(check local listings for channels)
IPTV
AT&T U-verseChannel 1206 (HD)
Channel 206 (SD)
Streaming media
Available from select broadband Internet providersCheck with a provider for details

Fusion is an American news, pop culture and satire TV and digital network airing on digital cable, satellite, and online and mobile platforms.[2] Launched on October 28, 2013, the channel is a joint venture between the Disney-ABC Television Group subsidiary of The Walt Disney Company and Univision Communications, and relies in part on the resources of their respective news divisions, ABC News and Noticias Univision.[3][4] The network's content features news, lifestyle, pop culture, and entertainment aimed at English-speaking millennials, including those of a Hispanic background (the channel is Univision's first major push into English-language programming).[5] Fusion is based in "NewsPort", a converted studio facility in the Miami suburb of Doral, Florida that it shares with Noticias Univision, with additional studios in Los Angeles and bureaus in Mexico City, New York City, and Washington, D.C.[4][6]

Background[edit]

In December 2010, the newly appointed president of Noticias Univision, Isaac Lee, announced plans to start a 24-hour English language cable news channel aimed at American Hispanics.[7] Univision Communications would later on, in late 2011, enter into discussions with Walt Disney-owned ABC News about a joint venture for a 24-hour American Hispanic-oriented news channel.[8] The discussions bore fruit with the companies' formal announcement of the channel on May 8, 2012, initially projecting a debut during the first half of 2013.[9] (The channel would be given its name, Fusion, in February 2013.)[3] On October 4, 2013, the company announced it had named Isaac Lee as Chief Executive Officer to replace interim CEO Beau Ferrari.[10]

Fusion's formal launch date and its initial programming schedule was announced on August 1, 2013.[4] The channel formally launched on October 28, 2013, buoyed earlier in the day by a simulcast of ABC's Good Morning America and Univision's ¡Despierta América! designed to promote Fusion's launch and programming.[11] After leading off with a 3-minute musical number at 6:57PM (ET) on the 28th,[12] Fusion began regular programming with the debut of America with Jorge Ramos.[13]

Fusion's target audience consists mainly of millenials (roughly the 18-34 age bracket), a group generally regarded as digitally fluent and normally favors social media and internet sources to gain news and base opinions, usually eschewing traditional broadcast and print sources. To that end, Fusion gears its programming less towards the constant coverage of breaking news, instead emphasizing context and analysis on news and issues, along with interviews, documentaries, and long-form reports on current events, lifestyle, and pop culture.[5] Fusion also employs an on-air blending of serious topics and discussions that is, more often than not, laced with irreverence and humor (a "common language" among millenials according to host Alicia Menendez) that aims to reduce the air of pretense and seriousness with which other news outlets treat current topics and issues.[11] The "fusion" of seriousness and lighteartedness has been evident in Fusion's primetime: America with Jorge Ramos, in its first week alone, has taken a more conventional approach, featuring interviews with President Barack Obama and United States Senator Ted Cruz,[14] while Alicia Menendez Tonight has featured more personal and less serious topics, and programs including No, You Shut Up have ventured towards irreverence and even satire.[13]

Fusion was originally conceived to primarily attract a younger audience of an English-speaking Hispanic and Latino American background; about one-fifth of millenials are classified as being of Latino descent[11] and have generally been well-acclimated with English language society in the United States, either as emigrants or as US nationals by birth. After receiving some backlash during development over concerns that too much of a focus was placed on ethnicity, Fusion would broaden its scope during its development, aiming to "engage and champion a young, diverse and inclusive America," regardless of cultural or language background.[6] Isaac Lee, who serves as Fusion's CEO in addition to President of News for Univision, has stated that Hispanic millenials see themselves as part of the broad American culture and that "they want to be part of the same room and part of the same conversation" as non-Hispanics.[5][15]

Fusion operates out of a former warehouse in Doral, Florida (billed by staffers as the "Newsport")[16] that is shared with Noticias Univision. Additionally some resources are also shared with ABC News and Noticias Univision[17] (the above-mentioned interview of President Obama, conducted by ABC News' Jim Avila, was one such example of that reliance).[5] However, the network operates separately from ABC's and Univision's news entities, employing its own on-air talent, correspondents, management, production staff and board of directors.[18] Univision handles programming duties for Fusion, while Disney-ABC Television Group provides advertising sales and cable and satellite distribution for the channel.[4] ABC News president Ben Sherwood noted that while the channel will eventually feature all original programming, repurposed content from ABC News and Univision content airs on the channel during late night timeslots, along with paid programming.[19]

Programming[edit]

The initial schedule on Fusion includes programs intended for a younger audience than most cable news shows attract, many of which feature the lively, irreverent approach the network intends to make its hallmark. Fusion's programming includes the following:[1][20]

Key Personnel[edit]

Executive Leadership[edit]

Board of Directors[edit]

Carriage and content distribution[edit]

By the time Disney-ABC and Univision announced the channel's name — Fusion — on February 11, 2013, the channel already signed agreements with major video providers including Verizon, Cablevision, Charter Communications, Cox Communications, AT&T U-verse and Google Fiber. The channel is primarily positioned on providers' digital basic tiers,[3][4] and premiered to a reach of approximately 20 million homes, one-fifth of the total US households with pay subscription services.[5] Fusion is currently seeking carriage on additional systems, with deals pending or not yet reached with notable providers including Comcast, Time Warner Cable, DirecTV, and Dish Network.[21] Fusion's goal, according to Board of Directors member and ABC News president Ben Sherwood, is to reach 60 million homes within 5 years of its debut.[14] Fusion replaced ABC News Now on most cable systems; that network was sunset on October 28, 2013, before Fusion's debut.

In addition to its on-air presence, Fusion posts nearly all of its content online through its Fusion.net website. The network also plans to have a mobile app for use in smartphones and tablet computers up and running in 2014.[21]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b James, Meg (August 1, 2013). "ABC-Univision cable network, Fusion, to launch Oct. 28". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved August 2, 2013. 
  2. ^ About Fusion - FusionLive
  3. ^ a b c Kim, Susanna (February 11, 2013). "ABC and Univision Announce New Cable Network 'Fusion' Will Launch Later in 2013". ABC News. Retrieved May 14, 2013. 
  4. ^ a b c d e Villafane, Veronica (March 5, 2013). "Fusion Gears Up For Late Summer Launch". TV News Check. Retrieved May 14, 2013. 
  5. ^ a b c d e "Univision-ABC channel Fusion launching in a bid for young Latinos," from Los Angeles Times, 10/28/2013
  6. ^ a b "Fusion's Debut Shows Serious, Fun Sides," from TVNewsCheck, 10/29/2013
  7. ^ "Univision president says he’ll start 24-hr news channel". Media Moves. December 17, 2010. Retrieved August 3, 2013. 
  8. ^ Szalai, Georg (February 7, 2012). "ABC News, Univision Discussing English-Language News Network". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved May 14, 2013. 
  9. ^ James, Meg; Chmielewski, Dawn (May 7, 2012). "ABC News, Univision to launch English-language news network". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved May 14, 2013. 
  10. ^ Isaac Lee Named CEO of Fusion
  11. ^ a b c d "Fusion Wants Young Latinos To Turn On Their TVs," from NPR's Weekend Edition, 10/26/2013
  12. ^ "Sign-on video premiering Fusion, from Fusion.net, accessed 10/29/2013
  13. ^ a b "With Fusion’s debut, a bid for laughs and then a serious turn," from Miami Herald, 10/28/2013
  14. ^ a b c "New U.S. TV network fuses news, satire for young Hispanics," from Retuers, 10/27/2013
  15. ^ "Univision And ABC News Launch New TV Channel ‘Fusion,’" interview with Isaac Lee from Here & Now (WBUR/NPR), aired 10/28/2013
  16. ^ "ABC and Univision's love child bursts to life," from Associated Press, 10/19/2013
  17. ^ James, Meg (May 19, 2011). "Univision plans three new cable TV channels". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved May 14, 2013. 
  18. ^ a b c d e Fusion names board of directors, reveals more details
  19. ^ Guthrie, Marisa (May 7, 2012). "ABC News, Univision Joint Venture Not Looking to Compete With CNN, MSNBC, Fox News". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved May 14, 2013. 
  20. ^ Stelter, Brian (August 1, 2013). "Fusion Announces Premiere Date and Prime-Time Schedule". New York Times. Retrieved August 16, 2013. 
  21. ^ a b c "Meet Fusion, The ABC-Univision Frankenbaby That Wants Millennials To Laugh And Get Their News On," from BuzzFeed, 10/27/2013
  22. ^ Open Source with Leon Krauze page on Fusion.net
  23. ^ Fusion Mini-Docs webpage on Fusion.net
  24. ^ Industry Veteran Kimball to Lead Fusion Programming
  25. ^ Fusion Names Mark Lima VP of News

External links[edit]