CBS (corporate name CBS Broadcasting, Inc.) is an American commercial broadcast television network, which started as a radio network and continues to operate a radio network and a portfolio of television and radio stations in large and mid-sized markets.
The name is derived from the initials of the network's former name, Columbia Broadcasting System. The network is sometimes referred to as the "Eye Network", in reference to the shape of the company's logo.
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The network has its origins in United Independent Broadcasters Inc., a collection of 16 radio stations that was bought by William S. Paley in 1928 and renamed the Columbia Broadcasting System.
Under Paley's guidance, CBS would first become one of the largest radio networks in the United States and then one of the big three American broadcast television networks.
In 1974, CBS dropped its full name and became known simply as CBS, Inc. The Westinghouse Electric Corporation acquired the network in 1995 and eventually adopted the name of the company it had bought to become CBS Corporation.
In 2000, CBS came under the control of Viacom, which began as a spin-off of CBS in 1971. In late 2005, Viacom split itself and reestablished CBS Corporation with the CBS television network at its core.
CBS Corporation is controlled by Sumner Redstone through National Amusements, its parent.
CBS's businesses include CBS Television Network, The CW (a joint venture between CBS Corporation and Warner Bros. Entertainment), Showtime Networks, CBS Sports Network, TVGN (a joint venture between CBS Corporation and Lionsgate), Smithsonian Networks, Simon & Schuster, CBS Television Stations, CBS Radio, CBS Outdoor, CBS Television Studios, CBS Global Distribution Group (CBS Studios International and CBS Television Distribution), CBS Interactive, CBS Consumer Products, CBS Home Entertainment, CBS Films and CBS EcoMedia.