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The Ownership of the American Mind

Ownership Chart: Television | Free Press




Ownership Chart: Television


The U.S. media landscape is dominated by massive corporations that, through a history of mergers and acquisitions, have concentrated their control over what we see, hear and read. In many cases, these giant companies are vertically integrated, controlling everything from initial production to final distribution. In the interactive charts below we reveal who owns what.

Click here to learn more about our campaign to stop big media and to support local ownership, diverse voices, and truly competitive media markets that serve the public interest.

Select a chart:  The Big Six   Cable   TV   Print   Telecom   Radio  


2009 revenues: $157 billion
General Electric media-related holdings include a minority share in television networks NBC and Telemundo, Universal Pictures, Focus Features, 26 television stations in the United States and cable networks MSNBC, Bravo and the Sci Fi Channel. GE also owns 80 percent of NBC Universal. On January 18, 2011 the Federal Communications Commission approved Comcast’s take-over of a majority share of NBC-Universal from General Electric. However, General Electric still has a 49% ownership stake in NBC-Universal.

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2009 revenues: $36.1 billion
The Walt Disney Company owns the ABC Television Network, cable networks including ESPN, the Disney Channel, SOAPnet, A&E and Lifetime, 277 radio stations, music and book publishing companies, production companies Touchstone, Miramax and Walt Disney Pictures, Pixar Animation Studios, the cellular service Disney Mobile, and theme parks around the world.

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2009 revenues: $30.4 billion
News Corporation’s media holdings include: the Fox Broadcasting Company; television and cable networks such as Fox, Fox Business Channel, National Geographic and FX; print publications including the Wall Street Journal, the New York Post and TVGuide; the magazines Barron’s and SmartMoney; book publisher HarperCollins; film production companies 20th Century Fox, Fox Searchlight Pictures and Blue Sky Studios; numerous websites including MarketWatch.com; and non-media holdings including the National Rugby League.

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2009 revenues: $20.5 billion
Bertelsmann AG is one of the world’s largest media companies, with substantial holdings in Europe and North America, including: book publisher Random House, international radio and television station owner RTL Group, and media firm Gruner+Jahr.

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2009 revenues: $14.7 billion
Cox Enterprises, whose subsidiaries include Cox Cable, Cox Television and Cox Radio, controls 80 radio and 15 television stations, 43 newspapers, and several publishing companies. Cox also offers broadband Internet access and digital phone service; as of 2009, it had 4.1 million broadband customers and 2.7 million voice customers in the United States.

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2009 revenues: $13.6 billion
Viacom holdings include: MTV, Nickelodeon/Nick-at-Nite, VH1, BET, Comedy Central, Paramount Pictures, Paramount Home Entertainment, Atom Entertainment, and music game developer Harmonix. Viacom 18 is a joint venture with the Indian media company Global Broadcast news.

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2009 revenues: $13 billion
CBS Corporation owns the CBS Television Network, CBS Television Distribution Group, the CW (a joint venture with Time Warner), Showtime, book publisher Simon & Schuster, 30 television stations, and CBS Radio, Inc, which has 130 stations. CBS is now the leading supplier of video to Google’s new Video Marketplace.

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2009 revenues: $5.6 billion
Gannett holdings include 23 television stations, a massive portfolio of print publications including USA Today, and numerous other related operations and services.

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2008 revenues: $5 billion
Tribune owns 23 television stations (reaching more than 80 percent of U.S. television households), 17 newspapers, several publishing companies, four magazines, and one radio station, among other holdings.

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2008 revenues: $4.8 billion
Hearst Corporation is one of the nation’s largest diversified communications companies with vast interests in magazines, newspapers, digital media, business media and television.

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2009 revenues: $802 million
The E.W. Scripps Company holdings include 10 television stations and 14 newspapers.

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2009 revenues: $657.6 million
Media General owns 19 television stations and 24 daily newspapers, including the Tampa Tribune, the Richmond Times-Dispatch and the Winston-Salem Journal. Media General also owns 21 daily community newspapers and approximately 275 weekly newspapers and other targeted publications. It owns Blockdot, Inc., an “advergaming” and game development firm.

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2009 revenues: $656.5 million
Sinclair Broadcast Group owns and operates 58 television stations in 35 media markets in the United States. It reaches approximately 22 percent of all U.S. television households.

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2009 revenues: $590 million
Belo owns and operates 20 TV stations, six cable news stations, more than 25 Web sites, and has a broad range of Internet-based products and services.

In 2008, Belo spun off its newspaper business into a publicly traded company called A.H. Belo Corp.

Visit the Belo Corp. homepage »

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