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When the Soviet Union was abolished, the Russian Federation took over most of its structures and institutions. The partial privatization was inspired by the intolerable financial situation of Ostankino owing to huge transmission costs and a bloated payroll total staff of about 10,000 in early 1995. However, controlling votes on the board of directors remained in the hands of structures linked to then-Kremlin-connected businessman Boris Berezovsky.
Political coverage[ edit ] In autumn of 1999 the channel actively participated in State Duma electoral campaign by criticizing Moscow mayor Yuriy Luzhkov , Yevgeny Primakov and their party Fatherland-All Russia , major opponents of the pro- Putin party Unity. Sergey Dorenko , popularly dubbed as TV-killer, was a close ally of business oligarch and media magnate Boris Berezovsky. He first tried to sell them to a third party, but failed. This promise was not fulfilled.
Konstantin Ernst remains as general director. Their parent companies are domiciled in Panama and Seychelles and are managed by Evrofinans Group. The ultimate owner is still believed to be Roman Abramovich , who also controls the Video International advertising agency, the exclusive media seller of Channel One. Russian television media in the Putin era have been criticised for the pro-government bias.
These critics contend that Channel One airs a disproportionate number of stories focusing on positive aspects of official government policy, while largely neglecting certain controversial topics such as war in Chechnya or social problems. For example, during the 2004 Ukrainian presidential elections , many political observers believe the Russian government actively supported the candidacy of then Ukrainian Prime-minister Viktor Yanukovych over that of Viktor Yushchenko.
In a 13 October 2004 news story, Channel One reporter Natalya Kondratyuk declared that "the Premier [Yanukovich], as a candidate, is adding to his ratings by working on the economy and by solving current social problems; he does not use slogans; he is not criticizing his opponent; and he is not creating scandals. At first, it seemed the difference was only in their appearance, in all other ways, they were like characters from the film Attack of the Clones for us.
As of 2006, Vladimir Posner , Ekaterina Andreeva , Petr Tolstoy and Mikhail Leontiev are among the most prominent political journalists of the channel. On Sunday, 28 January 2006, the Channel One news and analytical program Sunday Time Voskresnoye Vremya hosted by Petr Tolstoy distorted the content of a speech by Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko related to the Russia-Belarus energy dispute to the contrary by editing it and deleting some crucial words.
Some of the viewers said, first, that this was intolerable in a program whose audience includes children and, secondly, it was contrary to the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation. On September 2008 the channel installed new digital audio mixing systems in their new state-of-the-art broadcast complex located in the Ostankino Television Technical Centre in Moscow.
Spearheading the transition of the renovated news facilities was Okno TV. Please update this article to reflect recent events or newly available information. May 2016 2005[ edit ] According to the inspection  conducted by the Audit Chamber of Russia and initiated by MP Alexander Lebedev , in 2005 the channel had the following shareholders structure and board of directors: