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TV Globo

The history of TV Globo goes back to 1957 when Juscelino Kubitschek, the Brazilian president at the time, gave a television franchise to the media tycoon Robert Marinho. Marinho was the owner of a media empire that encompassed a daily newspaper, a publishing company, and a radio station. In 1962 he activated the first TV channel in association with Time-Life.

The US group Time-Life had strategic interests in exploring the Latin American communication market, and had previously offered a partnership with the group "Diários e Emissoras Associados" (TV Tupi), which they declined (Herz, 1987). The agreement between Globo and Time-Life was only possible through thedirect intervention of President Castelo Branco, since it was against the Brazilian constitution to have foreign participation in the form of ownership, partnership, management and/or intellectual orientation of a television franchise (Mattelart & Matterlart, 1990). Channel 4 began operating in Rio in 1965. The following year, Globo entered the market in São Paulo buying TV Paulista. The military government had a clear idea of what they wanted to accomplish with this partnership. They had a political and economic plan for national integration and they knew that telecommunications were vital to the implementation of their strategy. The dictatorial government wanted to foster the development of a national identity that was compatible with their repressive agenda (Ortiz, 1985).

In 1975, the Ministry of Culture and Education (MEC) published "Política Nacional de Cultura” (National Culture Policy), which summarized the guidelines and policies for the creation and management of cultural productions in Brazil. The document justified the need to utilize mass communication media as a mechanism to disseminate culture, assuring that the communications outlets would utilize high cultural standards. The reinforcement came in the form of censorship, and the guidelines spelled out the prohibitions that in their view would affect the productions. The new policies prohibit showing any one with physical, mental, or moral deformities. It was also forbidden to present or mention anything that would exploit the popular belief in superstitions, healers, fake physicians, or any other form of fraud (Muniz, 1977).

To accommodate the demands of the modernizing society and those of the state, Globo introduced in the 6 PM and 10 PM time slot telenovelas that fulfilled the requirements of the government. They knew that there needed to be a focus on national and educational themes. The 6 PM slot was reserved for themes that were more educational and geared towards a younger audience, while well-known writers created a more sophisticated telenovela for the 10 PM time slot (Ortiz et al., 1991).

Globo bought Time-Life shares in 1969 and by this time, it had already built a system for centralized production and distribution. At this same year, Globo launched "Jornal Nacional", which was the first news program transmitted on a national scale (Mattelart & Matterlart, 1990). There is a consensus among researchers that Globo mushroomed to the top due to special favors and incentives received throughout the years of the dictatorial regime, in exchange for collaboration in diffusing governmental ideologies. The daily newscast had the double duty of delivering the news and also be the official voice of the military regime (Lima, 1988; Mattos, 1982; Queiroz, 1992; Straubhaar, 1989).
In the 1970s, state-owned corporations sponsored most advertisement, with the biggest slice going to Rede Globo because of their audience leadership (Ortiz et al., 1991). Brazil was the fourth country in advertising dollars spent in 1976, only topped by the US, the UK and Japan. The military regime also granted 67 new television licenses in the country, anexceptionally high number in comparison to 22 licenses granted during 1955-1964 (Mattos, 1982).

Following their goal of national integration, the dictatorial regime invested in microwave and satellite telecommunications infrastructure, which contributed to the formation of national television networks (Straubhaar, 1991).

The competition between TV Globo and TV Tupi reached its peak in the 1970's. TV Tupi, as we know, was part of the conglomerate "Diários e Emissoras Associados" owned by Assis Chateaubriand. Chateaubriand's group also owned more than thirty daily newspapers, eighteen TV stations, and thirty radio stations. This empire also owned its own news agency, advertising agency, and many public relations agencies. They also published "O Cruzeiro", the largest selling magazine in Latin America until 1987 (Tunstall, 1977). The two networks became embroiled in a dispute to attract and affiliate local stations. Globo ended up winning and selling the image of a national vehicle to the advertisers. During the period of 1975-1980, TV Tupi lost three of its stations to Globo. The decisive component in this dispute was the corporate style of the two enterprises. Globo had a centralized organization, while Tupi had organizational difficulties, reflective of systemic problems that afflicted the "Diários Associados". Consequently, Tupi had problems recycling its equipment, enhancing the technical aspect of the productions, as well as establishing high quality standard programs. It culminated with its bankruptcy, the result of internal disputes and poor management. TV Tupi crumbled in the beginning of the 1980's when the government closed it down, citing irregular practices. TV Globo, on the contrary, consolidated its leadership through the development of a program line up that included news programs and telenovelas, making the most of what modern technology had to offer (Straubhaar, 1989). At this time, Globo had between 50 to 70 percent of the audience, and was competing with the three other networks: Rede Bandeirantes, Sistema Brasileiro de Televisão (SBT), and Rede Manchete (Mattelart & Mattelart, 1990).



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