Twenty years ago today a brand new cable news channel -- FOX News Channel -- was announced in a press conference held by Rupert Murdoch and Roger Ailes.
“I would just like to say how delighted I am that we have now reached this moment, and we can firmly announce the starting of a FOX News Channel and a much greater effort on the buildup of Fox News in every area,” Murdoch told the assembled media in 1996.
The current Executive Chairman of News Corp and 21st Century Fox said FOX News Channel would launch later that year.
“As you know, FOX has had a phenomenal grown in the last few years… We’ve had tremendous success in entertainment programming, in children’s programming, in sports programming, and now we have to move—as I’ve said time and again—to making ourselves the best in news programming,” he said.
FOX News Chairman and CEO Ailes then spoke to the press.
“I’m very pleased to join this organization… It really is exciting to join what I think is the most dynamic television company in the world today,” Ailes said.
During the press conference, Murdoch made some predictions about the cable news market.
“We now see a fairly defined audience in numbers for CNN,” Murdoch noted. “I think you will find as more news channels—and particularly our news channel—appear the audience will increase greatly.”
FOX News Channel is a 24-hour all-encompassing news service dedicated to delivering breaking news as well as political and business news. A top five cable network, FOX News Channel has been the most watched news channel in the country for more than thirteen years and according to Public Policy Polling, is the most trusted television news source in the country.
Owned by 21st Century Fox, FOX News Channel is available in more than 90 million homes and dominates the cable news landscape, routinely notching the top ten programs in the genre.