Channel One (Russian: Первый канал, tr. Perviy kanal, IPA: [ˈpʲɛrvɨj kɐˈnaɫ], literally First Channel) is the first television channel to broadcast in the Russian Federation. It has its headquarters in the Technical Center "Ostankino" near the Ostankino Tower, Moscow.
First among Russia's country-wide channels, Channel One has more than 250 million viewers worldwide.
From 1995 to 2002 the channel was known as Public Russian Television (Russian: Общественное Российское Телевидение, tr. Obshchestvennoye Rossiyskoye Televideniye, ORT) or Russian Public Television.
|Launched||1 April 1995|
|Owned by||Federal Agency for State Property Management (38.9%)|
National Media Group (25%)
Roman Abramovich (24%)
Ostankino Technical Center (3.0%)
|Picture format||576i (SDTV) 16:9 (1 Family and 1SD)|
1080i (HDTV) 16:9 (1HD)
|Audience share||15.5% (August 2010, TNS Russia )|
|Broadcast area||Nationwide and Worldwide|
|Formerly called||1956-1991:CT-USSR Program One|
1991: CT-USSR Channel One
1991-1995:Ostankino Television Channel One
1995–2002: Public Russian Television (ORT)
Music One TV
Dom kino Premium
Perviy Kanal Evraziya
|Russian-wide broadcast||VHF Channel R1|
|NTV Plus (Russia)||Channel 118|
|SKY Italia||Channel 577|
|EutelSat Hotbird 13°||1TVRUS Europe|
|DirecTV (USA)||Channel 2140|
|National Cable Networks (Russia)||VHF Channel R2|
|naxoo (Switzerland)||Channel 302|
|Rogers Cable (Canada)||Channel 886|
|Channel One internet broadcast||www|
When the Soviet Union was abolished, the Russian Federation took over most of its structures and institutions. One of the first acts of Boris Yeltsin’s new government was his signing of a presidential decree on 27 December 1991, providing for Russian jurisdiction over the central television system. The ‘All-Union State TV and Radio Company’ (Gosteleradio) was transformed into the 'Russian State TV and Radio Company Ostankino'.
A presidential decree of 30 November 1994 transformed Ostankino into a closed joint-stock company, Russian Public TV (Obshchestvennoe Rossiyskoye Televidenie or ORT). The shares were distributed between state agencies (51%) and private shareholders, including numerous banks (49%). The partial privatization was inspired by the intolerable financial situation of Ostankino owing to huge transmission costs and a bloated payroll (total staff of about 10,000 in early 1995).
Following the 1998 financial collapse, the channel obtained a government loan of $100 million from state-controlled bank Vneshekonombank. Also in 1998, the closed joint stock company was transformed into an open stock company. However, controlling votes on the board of directors remained in the hands of structures linked to then-Kremlin-connected businessman Boris Berezovsky. Thanks to this state of affairs, Berezovsky was able to preserve control over the channel’s cash flows as well as over its editorial line until 2002.
From 1 April 1995 until late 2002, the channel was called ORT (ОРТ—Общественное Российское Телевидение, Obshchestvennoye Rossiyskoye Televideniye; Public Russian Television). It maintained the traditional programs and shows of the First Channel of the Soviet Television (RTO), such as Vremya, KVN, Chto? Gde? Kogda?, V mire zhivotnykh and Travelers' Club; the last two are no longer on the air of this channel.
In autumn of 1999 the channel actively participated in State Duma electoral campaign by criticizing Moscow mayor Yuriy Luzhkov, Yevgeny Primakov and their party Fatherland-All Russia, major opponents of the pro-Putin party Unity. Sergey Dorenko, popularly dubbed as TV-killer, was a close ally of business oligarch and media magnate Boris Berezovsky. From September 1999 to September 2000 he hosted the influential weekly program simply called Sergey Dorenko's Program on Saturdays at 9 pm. This was especially heavy on criticism and mercilessly attacked Putin’s opponents.
In August 2000, however, his program criticized how the Putin government handled the explosion of the Russian submarine Kursk. When Dorenko’s show was in turn suspended on 9 September 2000, ORT director-general Konstantin Ernst insisted that — contrary to Dorenko's allegations — the government had not been involved in the change. Ernst stated that he yanked the show because Dorenko had defied his orders to stop discussing the government's plan to nationalize Boris Berezovsky's 49-percent stake in the network.
Berezovsky claims that in 2001 he was forced by the Putin administration to sell his shares. He first tried to sell them to a third party, but failed. A close friend of Berezovsky, Nikolai Glushkov, was arrested while seriously ill, and Berezovsky gave up the shares and transferred them to Roman Abramovich's Sibneft with the understanding that Glushkov would then be released. This promise was not fulfilled. Soon after Berezovsky's withdrawal, the new ownership changed the channel's name to Pervy Kanal (Channel One). Konstantin Ernst remains as general director. As of 2008, Channel One's minority shares are held by three little-known companies, ORT-KB, Eberlink2002, and Rastrkom-2002. Their parent companies are domiciled in Panama and Seychelles and are managed by Evrofinans Group. The ultimate owner is still believed to be Roman Abramovich, who also controls the Video International advertising agency, the exclusive media seller of Channel One.
Russian television media in the Putin era have been criticised for the pro-government bias. The critics charge that Channel One's news and information programs are frequently used for propaganda purposes. These critics contend that Channel One airs a disproportionate number of stories focusing on positive aspects of official government policy, while largely neglecting certain controversial topics such as war in Chechnya or social problems. In addition, some have argued that the station's news reports often blur the line between factual reporting and editorial commentary, especially when broadcasting stories concerning Russian government policies or goals. For example, during the 2004 Ukrainian presidential elections, many political observers believe the Russian government actively supported the candidacy of then Ukrainian Prime-minister Viktor Yanukovych over that of Viktor Yushchenko. In a 13 October 2004 news story, Channel One reporter Natalya Kondratyuk declared that "the Premier [Yanukovich], as a candidate, is adding to his ratings by working on the economy and by solving current social problems; he does not use slogans; he is not criticizing his opponent; and he is not creating scandals. Yushchenko’s style of campaigning is diametrically opposite."
In another controversial example, on a 23 January 2005 broadcast, in the midst of widespread protests against a new reform of Russia's social benefits system (L'goty), a Channel One anchor opined, "you can understand, and should understand, those who went out on the streets, but you also have to understand that the old system has completely outlived its use." Later, in the same story, a reporter characterized those protesting against the reforms as political opportunists, adding, "criticizing the reform is good PR." A few days later, on 27 January 2005, as the protests continued across Russia, a Channel One reporter noted, "You can understand the elderly [protestors, but] repealing free [bus] fares was the last hope for public transport."
Similarly, on a 12 February 2005 broadcast, a Channel One anchor declared, "The key question of the week has been: how are Presidents [Mikheil] Saakashvili [of Georgia]) and Yushchenko [of Ukraine] different? At first, it seemed the difference was only in their appearance, in all other ways, they were like characters from the film Attack of the Clones for us." Critics of Channel One news argue that hundreds of similar examples exist where station news reporters and anchors insert editorial commentary into news reports, almost always to commend perceived allies of Russia or criticize perceived enemies.
As of 2006, Vladimir Posner, Ekaterina Andreeva, Petr Tolstoy and Mikhail Leontiev are among the most prominent political journalists of the channel. On Sunday, 28 January 2006, the Channel One news and analytical program Sunday Time (Voskresnoye Vremya) hosted by Petr Tolstoy distorted the content of a speech by Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko related to the Russia-Belarus energy dispute to the contrary by editing it and deleting some crucial words.
A 16 January 2016 Channel One news reports on a 13-year-old girl with German and Russian citizenship in Berlin who was allegedly raped by immigrants was denounced by the German police as fake. German foreign minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier has accused the Russian government of using the alleged rape for “political propaganda.”
The morning of 12 January 2008 on the program Health (Russian: «Здоровье») with Elena Malysheva about Guillain–Barré syndrome, in one of the sections a rat was violently killed. Some of the viewers said, first, that this was intolerable in a program whose audience includes children and, secondly, it was contrary to the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation.  In particular, some claim that viewing such violent and cruel scenes poorly affected the health of some children and people.
The main broadcasting center is in Ostankino tower, Moscow. In September 2008 the channel installed new digital audio mixing systems in their new state-of-the-art broadcast complex located in the Ostankino Television Technical Centre in Moscow. The new Channel One news facility opened in March 2008 and features advanced server technology with equipment from the world's leading television equipment manufacturers such as Thomson, EVS, and HP. Spearheading the transition of the renovated news facilities was Okno TV. Channel One began broadcasting a 1080i high-definition signal on 24 December 2012.
Channel One has produced many films, including four of the highest-grossing Russian movies after the Soviet collapse, Night Watch (2004), The Turkish Gambit (2005), Day Watch (2006), and The Irony of Fate 2 (2007). It airs the Russian adaptations of Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?, Survivor, and Star Factory, as well as many homegrown productions.
As of 2006, the Board of Directors of the Channel One consisted of:
Channel One director Konstantin Ernst was present at the press conference.
Channel One owns some digital-only television channels (under brand Channel One Digital TV-family, Цифровое телесемейство Первого канала):
All or Nothing (Russian: Пан или пропал, translit. Pan ili propal) is a game show which aired on the Russian Channel One. It was one of the Russian versions of the Deal or No Deal show. The host was Nikolai Fomenko and the grand prize is 3,000,000 Russian ruble (about US$98,000). It was premiered on 20 September 2004.Azazel (miniseries)
Azazel (2002) (Russian: Азазель) is a Russian made for TV adaptation of Boris Akunin's introductory 'Erast Fandorin' novel The Winter Queen.Doctor Richter
Doctor Richter is a Russian television medical drama that will be aired on the Russia-1 network from 2017. The series' main character is Dr. Andrei Richter (Alexey Serebryakov), a pain medication-dependent, unconventional, misanthropic medical genius who leads a team of diagnosticians at the 100th Clinic Hospital in Moscow. The series serves as a direct and authorised remake of House for Russian television, after VGTRK purchased the broadcast rights from FOX.Also, in 2010, a Russian TV series titled Doctor Tyrsa, which was loosely modelled on House, was aired on Channel One Russia, but lasted only one season.Fabrika Zvyozd
Fabrika Zvyozd (Russian: Фабрика звёзд, literally Star Factory) is a Russian television talent show that aired on Channel One from 2002 until 2011. It is the Russian version of the Endemol format Operación Triunfo.
The show has had seven seasons, all of them hosted by Yana Churikova. The show's alumni include Timati, Yulia Savicheva, Natalia Podolskaya, Dmitry Koldun, and Elena Temnikova.
In 2011, the show announced that it would be returning with an eighth, "All-Star" season and in 2012 for the ninth season, the format "Star Factory: Russia-Ukraine", with Russian and Ukrainian previous graduates of Factory competed. The programme then went on a hiatus for many years before relaunching the 10th season in 2017 broadcast on Muz-TV.Investigation Held by ZnaToKi
Investigation Held by ZnaToKi, or Investigation Held by Experts (Russian: Следствие ведут ЗнаТоКи, translit. Sledstvie vedut ZnaToKi) was a popular 1971-1989 Soviet detective TV-series with two Russian series (2002 and 2003). Total episodes released - 24.
Main characters - investigator Pavel Znamenski, detective Alexandr Tomin and laboratory analyst Zinaida Kibrit were acting together under a group name ZnaToKi (translated as "Experts").
Song by Mark Minkov based on the lyrics Invisible Battle (Nezrimiy Boi - Our mission is both dangerous and difficult, and most invisible at first glance...) by Anatoly Gorokhov features in almost all series. It became an unofficial hymn of the Soviet Militia.Klim (TV series)
Klim (Russian: Клим) is a Russian psychological crime drama television series starring Konstantin Lavronenko as the title character, Detective Chief Inspector Klim, who works in Saint Petersburg, Russia. The series is a direct remake of the BBC TV series Luther.The show is produced by Sreda for broadcast on Channel One Russia. Shooting began in Moscow on August 2014, and the first episode aired January 2016.Last Hero
Last Hero (Russian: Последний герой Poslednij geroj) is the Russian version of American reality show, Survivor. The first season premiered in 2001, with the final season starting on 2 March 2019.Pesnya goda
Pesnya goda (Russian: Песня года), meaning "Song of the Year" was a Soviet televised music festival that subsequently became a Russian festival. First held in 1971, it became the main event of the year for Soviet singers and musical groups, akin to the American Grammy. During the year, popular songs were selected each month for inclusion in the festival. Each December, a concert was filmed featuring live performances of the finalists chosen from the selected songs, although many performers lip synched their songs to ensure a perfect recording. The concert was aired on television in early January, as part of the New Year's festivities. Up to 2004 Channel One Russia was the official TV broadcaster of the national finals ( former Programme One of Soviet Central Television with a break in 1992), today Russia 1 serves as the official TV partner since 2006.Prozhektorperiskhilton
Prozhektorperiskhilton (Прожекторперисхилтон; Spotlight of Paris Hilton) is a Russian satirical television talk show aired on Channel One. The first episode was aired on 17 May 2008.Four hosts (Ivan Urgant, Garik Martirosyan, Sergei Svetlakov, Alexander Tsekalo) discuss current news and comment on different issues in politics and economics, similar to 7 Tage, 7 Köpfe. The show's name is a reference to the 1980s TV program "Прожектор Перестройки" ("Prozhektor Perestroyki", "Spotlight on Perestroika")—a program that was discussing current events on Soviet television during the times of Perestroika—and American socialite Paris Hilton, who, according to Svetlakov, symbolizes lack of taste. Thus, the name of the show implies that this is a current events program that shouldn't be taken seriously.The four hosts usually discuss interesting news from newspapers, journals and the internet. From time to time they also answer questions from the audience. The show usually ends with the hosts performing a well-known song. In most cases the song is connected to an event (like the birthday of the song's author). The show is half improvised.
The show aired until June 2012, when most hosts have switched to performing as hosts on shows airing on competing channels. However, on 20 February 2017, Channel One announced that the show would be returning (with Tsekalo as executive producer) in 4 March—airing weekly on Saturdays.Russia in the Eurovision Song Contest 2003
Russia participated in the Eurovision Song Contest 2003 in Riga, Latvia. The Russian entry was selected internally by the Russian broadcaster Channel One Russia (C1R). t.A.T.u. represented Russia with the song "Ne ver', ne boisia", which placed 3rd and scored 164 points at the contest.Russia in the Eurovision Song Contest 2019
Russia will participate in the Eurovision Song Contest 2019 with the song "Scream," written by Philip Kirkorov and Dimitris Kontopoulos. The song will be performed by Sergey Lazarev, who was who was internally selected by the Russian broadcaster Channel One Russia to represent the nation at the 2019 contest in Tel Aviv, Israel.Sports broadcasting contracts in Russia
This article refers to sports broadcasting contracts in Russia. For a list of rights in other countries, see Sports television broadcast contracts.Streets of Broken Lights
Streets of Broken Lights (Russian: Улицы разбитых фонарей, translit. Ulitsy razbitykh fonarey) is a Russian detective TV series, which first appeared on television in 1998. It lasted fifteen seasons, and ran for 18 years. The series tells the story of the everyday life of police officers. Each episode has a separate case and the series also shows the daily life of Russian cops. At the moment it is the longest running series in the history of Russian television.Television in Russia
Television is the most popular medium in Russia, with 74% of the population watching national television channels routinely and 59% routinely watching regional channels. There are 3300 television channels in total. 3 channels have a nationwide outreach (over 90% coverage of the Russian territory): Channel One, Russia-1 and NTV.The Dark Side of the Moon (TV series)
The Dark Side of the Moon (Обратная сторона Луны, or Obratnaya storona Luny) is a Russian detective television series, based on the BBC series Life on Mars. Like the original series was adapted from, although with the original script rewritten to better fit the Soviet era, the series combines elements of the genres speculative fiction and police procedural, featuring a present-day police captain from the Moscow City Police (played by Pavel Derevyanko) who wakes up in 1979 as his deceased father in the days of the Soviet Union after being hit by a car while in pursuit of a criminal in 2011. The title is a reference to the Pink Floyd album of the same name, owing to Pink Floyd's underground popularity in 1970s Russia.The show was produced by Sreda for broadcast on Channel One Russia, first airing on November 5th, 2012. It was later renewed for a second season, which aired on December 5th, 2016.The Voice Senior (Russian TV series)
The Voice Senior (Russian: Голос. 60+) is a Russian singing competition television series broadcast on Channel One. Based on the original The Voice Senior, it has aired one season and aims to find currently unsigned singing talent (solo or duets, professional and amateur) contested by aspiring singers, age 60 or over, drawn from public auditions. The winner will be determined by television viewers voting by telephone, SMS text, and The Voice App.
The series employs a panel of four coaches who critique the artists' performances and guide their teams of selected artists through the remainder of the season. They also compete to ensure that their act wins the competition, thus making them the winning coach. The original panel featured Leonid Agutin, Pelageya, Lev Leshchenko, and Valery Meladze.
The winner of the first season is Lidia Muzaleva.
The Voice Senior began airing on September 14, 2018, as an autumn TV season programme. On April 16, 2018, Channel One renewed the series through its first season. The series premiered on September 14, 2018.Ulitsa Sezam
Ulitsa Sezam (Russian: Улица Сезам) is a regional version of the children's television program Sesame Street, for Russia and Bulgaria.Vremya
Vremya (Russian: Вре́мя, lit. "Time") is the main evening newscast in Russia, airing on Channel One Russia (Russian: Первый канал, Pervy kanal) and previously on Programme One of the Central Television of the USSR (CT USSR, Russian: Центральное телевидение СССР, ЦТ СССР). The program has been on the air since January 1, 1968 (there were no broadcasts from August 1991 to December 1994) and was broadcast in color since 1974.Yeralash
Yeralash (Russian: Ералаш, IPA: [jɪrɐˈlaʂ]) is a Russian children's comedy TV show and magazine. Yeralash also runs an actor studio and the "Yeralash Island" camp. The word eralash means "mixed, mishmash" and is taken from the Turkic languages.
1Channels don't broadcast in Russia, 2Channels broadcast in test
Members of the European Broadcasting Union
|Associate members and|
|Penguin Random House|
|Gruner + Jahr|