TBS (originally an abbreviation for Turner Broadcasting System) is an American basic cable channel that is owned by AT&T's WarnerMedia. It carries a variety of programming, with a focus on comedy, along with some sports events, including Major League Baseball and the NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament. As of September 2018, TBS was received by approximately 90.391 million households that subscribe to a pay television service throughout the United States.
TBS was originally established on December 17, 1976 as the national feed of Turner's Atlanta, Georgia, independent television station, WTCG. The decision to begin offering WTCG via satellite transmission to cable and satellite subscribers throughout the United States expanded the small station into the first nationally distributed "superstation". With the assignment of WTBS as the broadcast station's call letters in 1979, the national feed became known as SuperStation WTBS, and later SuperStation TBS, TBS Superstation, or simply TBS. The channel broadcast a variety of programming during this era, including films, syndicated series, and sports (including Atlanta Braves baseball, basketball games involving the Atlanta Hawks and other NBA teams, and professional wrestling including Georgia Championship Wrestling, and later World Championship Wrestling).
WTBS maintained a nearly identical program schedule as the national feed, aside from FCC-mandated public affairs and educational programming that only aired on the local signal. By the early 2000s, TBS had begun to focus more intensively on comedic programming, including sitcoms and other series. On October 1, 2007, TBS was converted by Turner into a conventional basic cable network, at which time it began to be carried within the Atlanta market on area cable providers alongside its existing local carriage on satellite providers DirecTV and Dish Network. The former parent station in Atlanta was concurrently relaunched as WPCH (branded as "Peachtree TV", which Turner sold to the Meredith Corporation in 2017) and reformatted as a traditional independent station with a separate schedule exclusively catering to the Atlanta market.
Professional wrestling aired on TBS from 1971-2001 under several different companies including Jim Barnett-owned Georgia Championship Wrestling (1971–1984), future rival Vince McMahon owned World Wrestling Federation (1984–1985), Bill Watts' Mid-South Wrestling, and Jim Crockett, Jr.'s Jim Crockett Promotions (1985–1988), which eventually became Turner owned World Championship Wrestling (1988–2001).
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