Radio and television

   When Dutch radio started in 1919 shortly after World War I, each political and religious pillar wished to have its own corporation. Until the 1960s (apart from World War II), radio—and after the 1950s also television—broadcasting time was divided between the orthodox Protestant Nederlandse Christelijke Radio Vereniging (NCRV, Dutch Christian Radio Society, founded in 1924), the Roman Catholic Katholieke Radio Omroep (KRO, Catholic Radio Corporation, 1925), the socialist Vereniging voor Arbeiders Radio Amateurs (VARA, Corporation for Workers Radio Amateurs, 1925), the Vrijzinnig Protestantsche Radio Omroep (VPRO, Freethinking Protestant Radio Corporation, 1926; now secularized), and the liberal Algemene Vereniging Radio Omroep (AVRO, General Society Radio Broadcasting Corporation, 1923–1928). Their broadcasting time was proportioned to the evolving numbers of members. Only general-interest programs such as news and sports were made by a coordination organization (since 1969 called the Nederlandse Omroep Stichting [NOS] or Dutch Broadcast ing Foundation). The “depillarization” of the 1960s allowed several new broad casting corporations to enter the public system, which increased to three television and five radio channels. The biggest are the unaffil iated Televisie en Radio Omroep Stichting (TROS, Television and Radio Broadcasting Foundation, 1966) and the orthodox Protes tant—more so than the NCRV—Evangelische Omroep (EO, Evan gelical Broadcasting Corporation, 1971). The legal successor of the pop music “pirate” broadcaster Radio Veronica, the Veronica Om roep Organisatie (VOO, Veronica Broadcasting Organization), formed in 1975, left the public system again in 1995 and started commercial programming.
   With the introduction of cable facilities and dish antennas at the end of the 1980s, the Dutch governmentcould no longer stop com mercial radio and television, at least not from abroad. Therefore, the commercial company RTL (now several channels) started broadcasting Dutch programs out of Luxembourg in 1989. Media tycoons Joop van den Ende (1942– ; also a theater producer) and John de Mol (1955– ) exploited the new possibilities. They com bined their activities in the television production company Endemol in 1994, which has become a subsidiary of Spanish Telefonica and operates worldwide now. In 2005, De Mol started his television channel Talpa (the Latin word for mol or mole). RTL’s rival the Scandinavian Broadcasting System (SBS, currently another Lux embourg company, but previously a Scandinavian enterprise) is also represented in the Netherlands with some Dutch channels, the first going on the air in 1995. Furthermore, many regional and local radio and television organizations, public as well as commer cial, have broadened the system.

Historical Dictionary of the Netherlands. . 2012.

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