What does the “MS” in MSNBC stand for?


LAST UPDATED: March 25, 2020 by Ryan McCain

MSNBC and its website, MSNBC.com were founded in 1996 in a partnership between Microsoft (MS) and NBChence the network’s name, MSNBC. Microsoft initially invested about $500 million in 1996 for in the joint venture, with a goal of helping NBC expand its reach.

Although they had the same name, MSNBC and MSNBC.com had separate corporate structures and operations. MSNBC.com was operated out of Microsoft’s headquarters in Redmond, Washington, while MSNBC operated out of NBC’s headquarters in New York City.

NBC News transistion from MSNBC image
This was the transition message used.

Microsoft divested its stakes in the MSNBC channel in 2005 and in MSNBC.com in July 2012 when Comcast bought Microsoft’s share in the online news site for a reported $300 million.

Internet traffic going to MSNBC.com was temporarily redirected to NBCNews.com during the 2012-2013 transition. Eventually, the general news site was rebranded as NBCNews.com and a new MSNBC.com was created as the online home to the left-leaning cable news channel.

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  1. ABC used to be part of NBC (known as the NBC Blue Network) until the FCC forced NBC to split up in 1943.
  2. The familiar three-note NBC chime was the first audio trademark accepted by the U.S. Patent Office.
  3. Sometimes a fourth chime has been used during extraordinary circumstances, such as during World War II.
  4. NBC was founded in 1926, but the peacock logo wasn’t used until 1979.
  5. NBC is the oldest major broadcasting company in America.

  1. CNN.com – Microsoft and NBC end 16-year MSNBC partnership
  2. Wikipedia.org – MSNBC
  3. Ppcorn.com – NBC: 10 Fascinating Facts About The National Broadcasting Company



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