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Viacom pulls plug on original VIVA channel



Months after killing off the UK version of the channel, Viacom is finally axing the original VIVA channel.

VIVA Germany, which back in the analogue satellite days, was the first major competitor to MTV in Europe, will be closing at the end of the year. In the era of techno music, it gained fans of the genre in the UK, before UK channels moved to a different satellite with the advent of digital TV.

In 2004, the channel was sold to MTV owner Viacom, and subsequently the VIVA brand was rolled out to the UK, where it replaced TMF UK.

Earlier this year, the UK version was axed, with the broadcaster only officially acknowledging the closure in a press release several days after it had closed. In the years ahead of its closure, Freeview coverage had been reduced and its output scaled back to music videos only.

Over in Germany, VIVA has been reduced to a timesharing service, handing over to Comedy Central at 2pm local time (1pm UK).  It was announced on Wednesday that from January 2019, Comedy Central will go full time in Germany, Switzerland and Austria, filling Comedy Central's slot.

The move follows the relaunch of MTV as a free-to-air channel in German-speaking countries, which has a music-orientated schedule during the hours it runs parallel to VIVA.

Whether Viva Forever by the Spice Girls becomes the last track to be played on VIVA Germany remains to be seen - the song was chosen to end the VIVA UK service. In the meantime, the channel is to feature highlights from 25 years of broadcasting ahead of its closure.






  • VIVA is available on free-to-air satellite across Europe via the Astra 1, 19.2°E satellite cluster between 0300-1300 UK time. Frequency 11973, Vertical Polarisation, Symbol Rate 27500, FEC 3/4




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