THE OBENSON REPORT

Covering Cinema From All Across The African Diaspora

TV - The Africa Channel?

tv


I'm just hearing about this for the first time. Although, it may have shown up on my radar previously, but I failed to follow up.


It's called The Africa Channel, a cable TV station just like any other, with programming created by and about Africans - mostly Africans in Africa - made for Africans outside of Africa.

Apparently, this is a station that's been available for American, UK and Caribbean subscribers for about a year or two, which is news to me, because, despite living in a cosmopolitan city like New York, and being a cable TV subscriber, I haven't seen, or heard anything about The Africa Channel. Obviously, that doesn't mean it does not exist in these parts... I'm just not aware. My cable TV provider, Cablevision, does not carry the station.


It's still relatively new, although they claim to have 12 million subscribers in the USA, UK and Caribbean, which is a tidy number.

According to the network's website, their programming covers the gamut - news and info, lifestyle & travel, sports, talk, music, soap operas, dramatic series, films, and even some so-called reality TV.

In an interview with AllAfrica.com, we learn the following interesting facts from the founders of the channel:

- It was created in 2003.
- Their target audiences: the type of people who watch the Discovery and National Geographic channels, African-Americans and Africans resident in the USA.
- "We're not here to compete with BET. We're the African in African-American."
- "Our strategy which we've already started is to develop African production capacity. 95% of what we show is African-produced and directed."
- Congolese NBA player Dikembe Mutumbo is a shareholder.

I'd love to set my eyes on all that The Africa Channel apparently has to offer. Anyone heard of this? Anyone actually receiving the channel via their cable TV subscriber? And if you have had the opportunity to actually watch a few programs, please share your thoughts. I'm definitely curious.

Check out their website HERE, where you can find out if the channel is available in your city and with what cable provider. I entered several NYC zip codes, as instructed, and they all came up empty, even though I read a report from 2007 stating that they had entered an agreement with Time Warner Cable in NYC. Maybe it faltered? Maybe their website needs to be updated? I don't know...

And you can read the full interview with AllAfrica.com HERE.
tv

4 comments:

  1. The Wendilicious Wonder said...
     

    Um... this channel has been around since 2006, at least! That's when I first saw it - I was in Atlanta and I think it was just being launched in the US or something.

    Anyway, I can get it via my new digital TV provider but whenever I've surfed through it's been safari-like fare... programmes about lions and tigers and such, oh my!

    I might investigate further and report back.

  2. SolShine7 said...
     

    I've never heard of it before but it would be cool to check out.

  3. Anonymous said...
     

    I have Time Warner Cable. The Africa Channel is channel 87 for me. I like the channel and all that it has to offer. I'll be watching it more often

  4. Anonymous said...
     

    I live in upstate NY and just subscribed to the Africa channel [time Warner 87], it's great! There's also an African American channel called TVone[90]...terrible. AC presents Africa in its' best light which is a change from the media's portrayal of a poor, war-torn continent. The face of Africa is a model search show that provides an alternative to the American media's glorification of European beauty. Call Cablevision and request they add it to their listings.

Post a Comment