[[caption-width-right:300:For a new kind of family.]]

Cable channel owned by [[Creator/{{Disney}} The Walt Disney Company]]. It started in 1977 as CBN Satellite Network, then CBN Cable Network ("CBN" standing for "Christian Broadcasting Network"), owned by controversial Right-Wing pastor Pat Robertson. In 1988, the channel was renamed to CBN Family Channel; two years later it was spun off and the name was changed to The Family Channel, as the channel had begun to make too much money for non-profit CBN to keep it around. Through all the CBN/Family Channel years, though, outside of the hours devoted to ''Series/The700Club'' and its surrounding programming it was probably known more for being the place your grandfather got his fix of [[TheWestern Westerns]] with ''Series/{{Gunsmoke}}'', ''Series/TheBigValley'', and ''Series/{{Bonanza}}''. In the early 1990s, the network started original programming such as ''Big Brother Jake'' (think ''Series/CharlesInCharge'', minus the hijinks of teenage hormones), and the television version of ''VideoGame/ManiacMansion'', which owing to where it aired was severely [[{{Bowdlerise}} Bowdlerised]]. Soon, though, most of the network's original efforts devolved to the usual NoBudget family {{Game Show}}s found on cable at that time, including the second iteration of ''Series/ShopTilYouDrop''.

The Family Channel, which was by this point co-owned with the library of MTM Enterprises, was bought by {{Fox}} in 1997, and renamed as the ''Fox Family Channel'' (or often just ''Fox Family'') the next year, and became primarily a hub for programming from Fox Kids and Saban, and programming imported or co-produced with Creator/{{Teletoon}}. The early look of the network, with the "twister" logo, was modelled after Canada's Creator/{{YTV}}, including an equivalent to YTV's ''The Zone'', known as ''The Basement''; other blocks included ''Captain Kangaroo's Treasure House'' (named after and featuring Saban's ''Series/CaptainKangaroo'' revival) and ''Toon-A Casserole'', which was a medley of cartoons. The channel, along with FoxKids, was sold to Disney in 2001 because not only did Fox have no idea what to do with a network devoted to families but the network struggled in ratings- they needed to sell it to avoid further money drainage. This was thanks to infighting between Fox and Saban over who ran the net, mediocre reaction to their new programming, a mass exodus of older viewers who loved the Westerns they used to show, and the restrictions of their contract for the purchase of the network. An attempt to create two spin-off channels with sex-segregated children's programming, the [[XtremeKoolLetterz Boyz & Girlz Channels]], also failed because of a lack of interest and viewers questioning excluding one gender from an entire channel (though it could be said that these days, the DisneyChannel and Creator/DisneyXD have the near-same concept).

That same year, the channel's name settled on the current one, the FoxKids block met its end the next year, and its programming moved to ABC Family (and ToonDisney) as "Jetix" (the name was introduced in 2004; previous to that the programming had aired on ABCF under the name of "ABC Family Action Block"). The early ABC years were spent converting the network to a place to re-air ABC programs, which was botched by the network realizing that only programs from their internal studio could get a second ABC Family run, with other outside producers heavily objecting to the arrangement. By 2005, it had seemed to become a place for cheap reality programming and non-stop reruns of ''TheBachelor''.

Disney planned to revamp the channel into a young-adult-aimed channel named "XYZ," but these plans were scrapped[[note]]It was said that a contractual stipulation from network founder Pat Robertson was keeping the "Family" name on the network, but these rumors were soon denied by ABC Family representatives[[/note]]. The network also has to give up a full day of programming in late January so Robertson can air his annual CBN {{Telethon}}, but these days the only thing that's lost is the usual Sunday movie marathon.

The channel eventually [[LoopholeAbuse abused a loophole]] and changed their slogan to "A new kind of family", pretty much saying that they may have to keep "Family" in their network's name for now, but [[NetworkDecay that hasn't stopped them from turning it into a not-so-family-friendly channel]], featuring original series with sexual content and other edgy material you wouldn't normally associate with a network with "Family" in the name.

Eventually, the network also got actual original programming too, mainly targeting young women. The end result is something akin to being the Creator/AdultSwim to Creator/DisneyChannel... or the channel itself being "Teen Disney", the channel's answer to Creator/TeenNick (Minus the old Disney shows in it).

In March 2012, the network gained a Canadian sister network in ABC Spark, which replaced Dusk, a horror film network. ABC Spark is bound by none of Robertson's requirements, and outside of some programs already claimed by other channels (like ''PrettyLittleLiars'', which is one of [=MuchMusic's=] stalwart shows), carries most of ABC Family's original shows, and even rerun shows.

2015 is notable for bringing in two revolutionary events. Their original show ''Series/TheFosters'' gained some extra buzz for boasting what has been said to be [[http://www.gaystarnews.com/article/abc-familys-fosters-features-what-may-be-youngest-same-sex-kiss-tv-history030315 the youngest same sex kiss]] in television history. A few months later it started airing its' first RealityShow, ''Series/BecomingUs'', about a teen couple dealing with both their fathers [[{{Transsexual}} transitioning]].

That same year, on October 6th, ABC Family management confirmed that the network would be renamed once again, to [[http://www.ew.com/article/2015/10/06/abc-family-changing-name-freeform "Freeform"]]. The new name is an attempt to re-position the channel towards millen--. er, [[InsistentTerminology "becomers"]], and rid itself of any lingering presumption of wholesomeness implied by the use of the word "Family"; the new programming strategy led to the network being targeted regularly by moral guardians and viewers who felt there was severe brand dissonance.

This move also debunked a prior rumor that a contractual obligation from network founder Pat Robertson was the reason the "Family" name was kept on the channel. (Sources, such as James B. Stewart's ''Disney War'', merely said that the name "Family" was written into previous contracts with cable companies.) However, the network will still be required to air ''The 700 Club'' twice a day. The new branding launched on January 12, 2016 to co-incide with the premiere of ''Series/{{Shadowhunters}}''.

!!Original shows airing or about to air on this channel:
* ''Series/BabyDaddy''
* ''Series/BecomingUs''
* ''Series/ChasingLife''
* ''Famous In Love''
* ''Series/TheFosters''
* ''Series/FreakOut''
* ''Hearts & Clubs''
* ''Series/JobOrNoJob''
* ''Kevin From Work''
* ''Series/MelissaAndJoey''
* ''Monica the Medium''
* ''Next Step Reality: NYC''
* ''The Perfectionists''
* ''Series/PrettyLittleLiars''
* ''Recovery Road''
* ''Series/{{Shadowhunters}}''
* ''Startup U''
* ''Stay''
* ''Series/{{Stitchers}}''
* ''Series/SwitchedAtBirth''
* ''Series/YoungAndHungry''

!!Past Shows:
* ''2nd Honeymoon'' (as CBN Cable Network)
* ''Baby Races'' (as The Family Channel)
* ''Big Brother Jake'' (as The Family Channel)
* ''Boggle: The Interactive Game'' (as The Family Channel)
* ''Series/{{Bunheads}}''
* ''Dancing Fools''
* ''Edgemont''
* ''Falcon Beach''
* ''Family Challenge'' (as The Family Channel) [[note]]notable for being the last show hosted by former ''Series/FamilyFeud'' host Ray Combs prior to his 1996 suicide[[/note]]
* ''Great Pretenders'' (as Fox Family) [[note]]similar to the below-mentioned ''Amateur Hour'' except that this one was basically a lipsync contest; hosted by the band Wild Orchid, consisting of Stefanie Ridel and ''Series/KidsIncorporated'' alumni Stacy Ferguson (better known today as simply Fergie, of Music/TheBlackEyedPeas fame) and Renee Sands[[/note]]
* ''Series/{{Greek}}''
* ''Series/HigherGround'' (as Fox Family)
* ''The Home And Family Show'' (as The Family Channel)[[note]]Hosted by Christina Ferrare and Chuck Woolery (who was replaced by Michael Burger after a while). In 2012 it was UnCancelled on the Hallmark Channel and is currently hosted by Ferrare (who replaced Paige Davis) with Mark Steines.[[/note]]
* ''Literature/{{Huge}}''
* ''It Takes Two'' (as The Family Channel) [[note]]1997 revival of the 1969-70 Creator/{{NBC}} game show, [[NamesTheSame not the]] [[Film/ItTakesTwo Mary Kate and Ashley Olsen movie of the same name]][[/note]]
* ''Series/JaneByDesign''
* ''Jumble: The Interactive Game'' (as The Family Channel)
* ''Series/KyleXY''
* ''WesternAnimation/TheLegendOfPrinceValiant'' (as The Family Channel)
* ''Series/TheLyingGame''
* ''Series/MakeItOrBreakIt''
* ''VideoGame/ManiacMansion'' (as The Family Channel)
* ''Masters of the Maze'' (as The Family Channel)
* ''Maximum Drive'' (as The Family Channel)
* ''Series/TheMiddleman''
* ''The New Original Amateur Hour'' (as The Family Channel)[[note]]this Willard Scott-hosted TalentShow, filmed at [[Ride/UniversalStudios Universal Orlando]], is the most recent incarnation of ''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Original_Amateur_Hour The Original Amateur Hour]]'', a radio staple which started during TheGreatDepression[[/note]]
* ''Series/TheNineLivesOfChloeKing''
* ''Ohh Nooo! Mr. Bill Presents'' (as Fox Family)
* ''Franchise/PowerRangers''
** ''Series/PowerRangersDinoThunder''
** ''Series/PowerRangersSPD'' [[note]]First 21 episodes only. [[ChannelHop Episodes 22-38 were aired on]] Creator/{{Jetix}}[[/note]]
* ''Series/{{Ravenswood}}''
* ''Ruby And The Rockits''
* ''Series/TheSecretLifeOfTheAmericanTeenager''
* ''[[Series/ShopTilYouDrop The New Shop 'Til You Drop]]'' (as The Family Channel)[[note]]previously ran on Lifetime from 1991-94, then on PAX from 2000-05[[/note]]
* ''Series/ShoppingSpree'' (as The Family Channel)
* ''Shuffle: The Interactive Game'' (as The Family Channel)
* ''Small Talk'' (as The Family Channel)
* ''So Little Time'' (as Fox Family)
* ''Series/StateOfGrace'' (as Fox Family)
* ''[[WesternAnimation/ThomasTheTankEngine Storytime with Thomas]]'' (as Fox Family) [[note]]this version of Thomas took on a ThreeShorts format, with ''Thomas and Friends'' as the A segment and ''WesternAnimation/TheMagicAdventuresOfMumfie'' as the B segment, along with musical interludes[[/note]]
* ''Thursday Night UsefulNotes/{{Baseball}}'' (as Fox Family) [[note]]2000-2002; moved from Fox Sports Net and shared with Creator/{{FX}} (using FSN announcers), then moved to ESPN after Disney buyout; Division Series coverage[[/note]]
* ''TenThingsIHateAboutYou''
* ''[[Series/ThatsMyDog That's My Dog!]]'' (as The Family Channel)
* ''Trivial Pursuit'' (as The Family Channel) [[note]]aired as an hour-long pair of half-hour shows: ''The Interactive Game'', where 12 (later nine) players were whittled down to three; and the "classic game" (simply called ''Trivial Pursuit''), played by the aforementioned three finalists)[[/note]]
* ''Series/{{Twisted}}''
* ''[[Series/WaitTilYouHaveKids Wait 'til You Have Kids!!]]'' (as The Family Channel)
* ''Wild Animal Games'' (as The Family Channel)
* ''Series/{{Wildfire}}''
* ''Zorro'' (as The Family Channel)
!!Syndicated shows:
* ''Series/The700Club''...but only because [[TheArtifact ABC Family is contractually required to air it]], and it clearly isn't happy about having to do so; it [[ScrewedByTheNetwork buries the show at 11 PM]] [[note]](which has an upside, since putting ''700'' in competition to local newscasts gives the ''CBN News'' segments potential credibility as a competing news provider)[[/note]] and puts a disclaimer in front of it to warn people.
** If you're watching the channel at any time ''The 700 Club'' is airing, you would have no idea you're watching ABC Family as the network removes all branding from the channel during that hour. You might as well call this time "CBN on ABC Family", like Nick's Creator/NickAtNite. CBN {{telethon}}s also air on the channel.
*** It's also the only show they frequently run commercials before, after the preceding show has ended fully and run closing credits. They ''really'' seem to want their normal demographic to change over and watch something else.
*** Sundays are usually filled with televangelists like Joel Osteen, Creflo Dollar, Joyce Meyer and others, but these don't receive as severe a warning as ''The 700 Club'' because they're normal paid programs.
* ''Series/TheAdventuresOfShirleyHolmes'' (as Fox Family)
* ''Series/AmericasFunniestHomeVideos''
* ''WesternAnimaton/AngelaAnaconda'' (as Fox Family; series only)
* ''Series/{{Batman}}'' (as CBN Cable)
* ''Series/{{Bewitched}}'' (ran from The Family Channel era up to 1998, during the Fox Family era)
* ''Series/BigWolfOnCampus'' (as Fox Family; from Canada)
* ''WesternAnimation/BobbysWorld'' (as Fox Family)
* ''Series/BoyMeetsWorld''
* ''WesternAnimation/{{Braceface}}'' (from Canada)[[note]]later did a ChannelHop to Creator/DisneyChannel[[/note]]
* ''Series/BreakTheBank1985'' (as CBN Cable; Farago episodes only)
* ''Series/BuffyTheVampireSlayer''
* ''The All New Series/CaptainKangaroo'' (as Fox Family)
* ''Series/DawsonsCreek''
* ''Franchise/{{Digimon}}'' (as Fox Family)
* ''WesternAnimation/DonkeyKongCountry'' (as Fox Family)
* ''Series/DoogieHowserMD'' (as The Family Channel)
* ''WesternAnimation/EekTheCat'' (as Fox Family)
* ''Series/EightSimpleRules''

* ''Series/TheFreshPrinceOfBelAir''
* ''Series/FullHouse''
* ''Series/GilmoreGirls''
* ''Series/GroundedForLife''
* ''Series/HeadOfTheClass'' (as The Family Channel)
* ''Series/TheHoganFamily''
* ''WesternAnimation/TheKidsFromRoom402'' (as Fox Family, from Canada)
* ''Series/LastManStanding''
* ''WesternAnimation/LifeWithLouie'' (as Fox Family)
* ''Love American Style'' (as CBN Family)
* ''WesternAnimation/MagicAdventuresOfMumfie'' (as Fox Family)
* ''Series/TheMiddle''
* ''Series/MyWifeAndKids''
* ''[[Series/TheAddamsFamily The New Addams Family]]'' (as Fox Family, from Canada)
* ''Series/PeeWeesPlayhouse'' (as Fox Family)
* ''Series/PerfectStrangers'' (as The Family Channel)
* ''Series/{{Reba}}''
* ''Music/SClub7'' (as Fox Family)
* ''Series/SabrinaTheTeenageWitch''
* ''Series/ShiningTimeStation'' (as Fox Family)
* ''Series/StepByStep'' (reruns started during the Fox Family era and continued up to 2009)
* ''Anime/{{Superbook}}'' [[note]]the original version ran during the CBN Cable era in 1981; a CG revival showed up in TheNewTens and was the first animated series to show up on the channel in about a decade[[/note]]
* ''Series/That70sShow''
* ''Series/ThreesCompany'' (as The Family Channel)
* ''Series/TicTacDough'' (as CBN Cable)
* ''Series/TwoOfAKind'' (as Fox Family)
* ''Walter Melon'' (as Fox Family)[[note]]''very'' loosely adapted from ''ComicBook/AchilleTalon''[[/note]]
* ''Series/{{Webster}}'' (as CBN Family, reruns ceased in 1995 when they were The Family Channel)
* ''Series/WelcomeBackKotter'' (as The Family Channel)
* ''Series/WhatILikeAboutYou''
* ''Series/WhoseLineIsItAnyway''
* ''Series/{{Xuxa}}'' (as Fox Family, Brazilian)
!!Film Broadcast Rights:
* ''Film/HarryPotter'' series: AdoredByTheNetwork, which will air ''Harry Potter'' marathons for the slightest excuse. Pat Robertson and ''The 700 Club'' are among the MoralGuardians who believe ''Harry Potter'' teaches witchcraft, so this is an instance of {{Irony}}. Prior to the end of the ''Potter'' film series, the ABC Family marathons were notable for airing "sneak peeks", consisting of footage and interview clips relating to whichever installment was about to hit theaters, during commercial breaks. Today, these sneak peeks can be easily found on Website/YouTube. ABC Family typically airs extended cuts of the films with {{Deleted Scene}}s added back in.
* ''Literature/{{Twilight}}'' series: also AdoredByTheNetwork, for the same reasons as ''Harry Potter''.
* ''Film/TheHungerGames''
* ''Film/ThePrincessDiaries''
* ''Disney/{{Aladdin}}''
* ''Film/BatmanBegins'' (as seen in [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iSe6tvfedb0 this]] [[MemeticMutation memetic]] promo)
* ''Disney/BeautyAndTheBeast''
* ''Disney/TheLionKing''
* ''Disney/{{Hercules}}''
* ''Disney/ThePrincessAndTheFrog''
* ''Film/BringItOn''
* ''Film/{{Holes}}''
* ''Film/PrettyWoman''
* ''Film/TheGoonies''
* ''Film/ALeagueOfTheirOwn''
* ''Film/TheSandlot''
* ''Film/ForrestGump''
* ''Theatre/{{Annie}}'' (1982, 1999; the former was acquired during the Family Channel era, when they reran ''Series/TheCarolBurnettShow'', while the latter is a Disney property)
* ''Film/TheParentTrap'' (1998)
* ''Film/FreakyFriday2003''
* ''Film/WillyWonkaAndTheChocolateFactory''
* ''Film/CharlieAndTheChocolateFactory''
* ''Film/RaceToWitchMountain''
* ''Film/ChittyChittyBangBang''
* ''Film/MaryPoppins''
* ''Theatre/TheSoundOfMusic''
* ''Film/PracticalMagic''
* ''Film/MeanGirls''
* ''WhatAGirlWants''
* ''Disney/SnowWhiteAndTheSevenDwarfs''
* The Creator/{{Pixar}} filmography
** ''WesternAnimation/PixarShorts''
** ''Franchise/ToyStory Treats''
** ''Franchise/{{Cars}} Toons''
** ''WesternAnimation/FindingNemo''
* ''Disney/LadyAndTheTramp''
* ''Film/{{Matilda}}''
* ''Film/RememberTheTitans''
* ''Film/TheBlindSide''
* ''Film/TheNotebook''
* ''WesternAnimation/DespicableMe''
* ''Film/{{Titanic 1997}}''
* ''Film/CheaperByTheDozen''
* ''Film/{{Hook}}''
!!Special events
* ''13 Nights of Halloween'': A yearly carry-over from the Fox Family days, playing specials and movies devoted to light horror (and ''Harry Potter'').
* ''25 Days of Christmas'': Another yearly tradition since the Fox Family era. Initially playing all-Christmas programming, Disney subsequently phased out some of said specials and has since devoted a lot of airtime to in-house/Pixar animated films, and since almost all of the ''Harry Potter'' films have at least one Christmas scene, [[LoopholeAbuse ABC Family has a legitimate excuse to air them]].
!!Actors/Actresses that show up on the channel:
* Creator/ShaileneWoodley
* Creator/IndiaEisley
* Creator/FranciaRaisa
* Daren Kagasoff
* Megan Park
* Lucy Hale
* Shay Mitchell
* Josie Loren
* Skyler Samuels
* Katie Leclerc
* Vanessa Marano
''A new kind of family.''