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August 01

MTV Logo

Videos are no longer the bread-and-butter of MTV. Reality shows, documentaries, and other kinds of programming dominate now.

1981: Video Kills the Radio Star
MTV goes on-air for the first time
The original concept for the cable television network MTV—short for Music Television—was simple: the channel featured non-stop, around-the-clock music videos by big name pop stars like Madonna, Depeche Mode, and Michael Jackson.

Overnight, MTV was a hit sensation among young people and grownups alike. As the channel’s influence grew, it became essential for performers to produce a music video to go along with any new song release. Over time, these videos have gotten more and more elaborate, and are produced like mini-movies, complete with incredible sets, costumes, and plots.
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