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Oprah Winfrey is the 'OW' in 'OWN'

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   Oprah Winfrey is an unparalleled media mogul. More importantly, she is a sincere and gracious lady who not only deserves all the success she has, she really enjoys it. That's pretty important when you put so much effort into creating a media empire.
   I enjoyed the chance to talk with Oprah less than a week after she launched OWN, the new Oprah Winfrey Network. At the winter press tour for the Television Critics Association at the Langham Huntington Hotel in Pasadena, she was telling everyone how proud she is to be the 'OW' in 'OWN.' It has exceeded her expectations already, with ratings and advertising. And there are remarkable reports that the network will turn a profit its first year. That would be a miracle in broadcasting these days. But if anyone can do it, Oprah can.
   OWN is a joint venture between Winfrey's Harpo, Inc. and Discovery Communications. It is a multi-platform media company designed to entertain, inform, and inspire people to live their best lives. OWN debuted on January 1, 2011, in approximately 85 million homes. The venture also includes the award-winning digital platform Oprah.com. 
   The secret to OWN's success is in the programing that Oprah wants to present. The new cable channel is packed with lifestyle, educational, and inspiring shows. A total of 22 original series have been announced. It is a mix of original programs, strips, specials, original documentaries, and acquired movies. 
   "The whole network is about encouraging people to live with an open heart. It's about opening yourself to all that is possible," she says.
   What isn't possible is a vacation for Oprah in the near future. Oprah told me that she was under the illusion that she could have a network, and build it, and travel the world, and check in every now and then. She jokes that she now knows the reality of having a network with her name on it, and the time it takes to do it right. That's okay, Oprah says she's enjoying the "absolutely extraordinary journey. I can sit in this place with my name on a network."
   Oprah has a right to be proud and enjoy her success.

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Guest Wednesday, 01 July 2015