Independent news channel Rain TV makes comeback

Independent news channel Rain TV makes comeback
(Image: TV Rain / Facebook)

17 June 2014
Text Nadia Beard

Beleaguered independent news outlet Rain TV is making a comeback to Russian screens, with the channel now available to subscribers of satellite operators throughout Europe and European Russia.

Writing on his personal Facebook page, Rain TV news presenter Tikhon Dzyadko said: “Good news. Rain TV is now available to subscribers of satellite operators throughout Europe and the European part of Russia. Rain signal is available from today on the satellite Astra A4. This means that if you are a subscriber of NTV-Plus, for example, or Tricolour, you just need to slightly reconfigure your equipment and you can once again watch Rain TV.”

Rain TV has been on the verge of closure since the start of the year, following a controversial poll conducted by the channel. The poll, which asked whether the Soviet Union should have surrendered Leningrad during the Second World War, resulted in a public backlash and the channel was dropped by a raft of major cable providers within days.

Attempts by Rain TV CEO Natalia Sindeeva to crowdfund the channel were largely unsuccessful and this was followed by a refusal from the landlord of their premises to renew the lease for their offices in central Moscow.

Despite dramatic upheavals in the Russian media landscape over the past year with many predicting the end of independent journalism in the country, a number of new projects have been announced in recent months. Last week, media mogul Alexander Vinokurov announced he would be uniting Rain TV, internet portal Slon and magazine Bolshoi Gorod into a single media holding in order to launch an IPO on Moscow’s stock exchange.

This week, blogger Anton Nossik announced plans to create a new media outlet with former employees of news website Lenta.ru, who resigned in March in protest to the unexpected removal of the website’s editor-in-chief Galina Timchenko.