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In 1983, Glenn D. Daniels launched CMT, a television channel targeting fans of Country Music. Opryland USA bought the network in 1991, adding it to its roster alongside the similar TNN. By 1993, CMT went international, with a European branch. Viacom bought the two networks in 1997, with TNN eventually transformed into Spike TV.
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In the beginning, CMT's programming consisting mainly of country music videos and related programming. Much like MTV, albeit to a lesser degree, the network has also changed its focus in the years since. While many of the initial non-music programs were logical choices (reruns of Hee Haw and The Dukes of Hazzard, plus a country-themed revival of The Singing Bee), the network's programming would move further and further away from its country roots over the years ( Extreme Makeover: Home Edition, Are You Smarter Than a 5th Grader?, Married... with Children, etc.).

Nonetheless, CMT continues to show videos often enough note  that they maintain a fan-voted video countdown show and their own country music awards show. CMT also maintains a sister channel, CMT Music (Originally known as VH1 Country), which is primarily dedicated to country music videos. Rival network Great American Country is also more video-focused.

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