NOTICE: SHUTTING DOWN 4 JAN 2015

On January 4, 2015, I will be shutting down the server that hosts The TV IV website. It has been a very long time since I've been able to put any decent amount of time into the site, and ad revenue is plummeting. I think it is time to shut it down or hand it off to someone who can keep it going properly. If you are interested in taking over the site's code and data, contact administrators at tviv.org. --CygnusTMtalk


NBCSN

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Versus
Founded July 15, 1995
President Gavin Harvey
Company NBCUniversal
Notable Series Survivor (syndication)
Buckmasters
The Tour de France (Sporting Event)
Former Names Outdoor Life Network (1995-2005)
OLN (2005-2006)
Versus (2006-2012)

NBCSN or NBC Sports Network (formerly known as the Outdoor Life Network, OLN, and Versus) is a cable television channel owned by NBCUniversal.

Contents

History

Outdoor Life Network

In 2004, Outdoor Life Network capitalized on this popularity during the Tour, showing virtually nothing but Tour-related coverage for over three weeks, including their live coverage, hosted by Phil Liggett, Paul Sherwen, Al Trautwig, and Bob Roll, as well as reality programming such as The Lance Chronicles, a show focusing on Armstrong's training for the Tour, and The Roadside Tour, following the Cutters, a particularly devoted group of Armstrong fans. This coverage was grouped under the title "The Cyclism," which was meant to refer to Armstrong's effort to win a record sixth Tour de France. OLN marketed this with the line, "Someday, someone may ask you, 'Where were you during the Cyclism?'" A year later, Le Tour on the network was promoted as "Cyclism II" as Armstrong went for his seventh consecutive — and final — maillot jaune, which he won.

OLN

In July 2005, OLN revamped its image, focusing on more extreme outdoor sporting events. As noted by an OLN press release, its programming is "designed to be real, bold and awe-inspiring and supports our mission to bring to life the thrills, challenges and competition in the outdoors that our audience craves." In conjunction with the revamp, OLN's logo and website (in the USA) were completely redesigned as well. As part of the revamp, OLN acquired the rights from NBC Universal of the X Games-type Gravity Games as well as the rebroadcast rights to the CBS reality series Survivor, and began airing the series from the beginning of Season One on 24 July.

On August 17, 2005, ESPN rejected to match OLN's three-year, $200 million offer for the NHL's U.S. cable TV rights. [1] There is also an 8-game, Thursday-Saturday package for the National Football League still on the table, Versus may bid for those rights, too; bidding on that begins next month. In addition, there were also reports that they could take the Wednesday night and Sunday night cable telecast rights to Major League Baseball games away from ESPN, but ESPN managed to work out a new deal.

Although Armstrong's riding makes the Tour de France uniquely valuable programming, Versus does not restrict its cycling coverage to that event. They also provide American coverage of the Giro d'Italia, Vuelta a España, and other popular road cycling races in the United States and Europe.

Versus

Following the name change to Versus, the programming became an unusual mix of extreme sports, more sedate fare like hunting, and, most notably, coverage of professional cycling and ice hockey. Gaining the American rights to show live coverage of the Tour de France—rights which are particularly valuable right now due to the popularity of Lance Armstrong, and also acquired the cable rights for National Hockey League games.

Versus has also secured coverage for the 2007 America's Cup, which was also a staple on ESPN and ESPN2 for years. It began to show qualifying regattas in late 2005, the Louis Vuitton Cup for challengers in 2007, and the America's Cup match between the Louis Vuitton winner and current champions, Alinghi of Switzerland in Valencia, Spain.

Outdoor Life Network Canada, owned by Rogers Communications, remained an outdoors-focused specialty service as per its CRTC licence. Among its differences with the American service:

NBCSN

As Comcast, the original owner of Versus, acquired a majority stake in NBC Universal in 2011, Versus eventually changed its name to NBC Sports Network, eventually shortened to NBCSN, and became a general sports network.

Past logos