Discovery Channel
Discovery Channel is an American satellite
In the context of spaceflight, a satellite is an object which has been placed into orbit by human endeavour. Such objects are sometimes called artificial satellites to distinguish them from natural satellites such as the Moon....

 and cable
A cable is two or more wires running side by side and bonded, twisted or braided together to form a single assembly. In mechanics cables, otherwise known as wire ropes, are used for lifting, hauling and towing or conveying force through tension. In electrical engineering cables are used to carry...

 specialty channel
Specialty channel
A specialty channel can be a commercial broadcasting or non-commercial television channel which consists of television programming focused on a single genre, subject or targeted television market at a specific demographic....

 (also delivered via IPTV
Internet Protocol television is a system through which television services are delivered using the Internet protocol suite over a packet-switched network such as the Internet, instead of being delivered through traditional terrestrial, satellite signal, and cable television formats.IPTV services...

, terrestrial television
Terrestrial television
Terrestrial television is a mode of television broadcasting which does not involve satellite transmission or cables — typically using radio waves through transmitting and receiving antennas or television antenna aerials...

 and internet television
Internet television
Internet television is the digital distribution of television content via the Internet...

 in other parts of the world), founded by John Hendricks
John Hendricks
John Hendricks is the founder and chairman of Discovery Communications, a broadcasting and film production company which owns the Discovery Channel, TLC and Animal Planet cable tv networks, among other ventures.-Early life:...

 and distributed by Discovery Communications
Discovery Communications
Discovery Communications, Inc. is an American global media and entertainment company. The company started as a single channel in 1985, The Discovery Channel. Today, DCI has global operations offering 28 network entertainment brands on more than 100 channels in more than 180 countries in 39...

. It is a publicly traded company run by CEO David Zaslav. It provides documentary
Documentary film
Documentary films constitute a broad category of nonfictional motion pictures intended to document some aspect of reality, primarily for the purposes of instruction or maintaining a historical record...

 television program
Television program
A television program , also called television show, is a segment of content which is intended to be broadcast on television. It may be a one-time production or part of a periodically recurring series...

ming focused primarily on popular science, technology, and history. In the U.S., the programming for the main Discovery network is primarily focused on reality television
Reality television
Reality television is a genre of television programming that presents purportedly unscripted dramatic or humorous situations, documents actual events, and usually features ordinary people instead of professional actors, sometimes in a contest or other situation where a prize is awarded...

 themes, such as speculative investigation (with shows such as MythBusters
MythBusters is a science entertainment TV program created and produced by Beyond Television Productions for the Discovery Channel. The series is screened by numerous international broadcasters, including Discovery Channel Australia, Discovery Channel Latin America, Discovery Channel Canada, Quest...

, Unsolved History
Unsolved History
Unsolved History is an American documentary television series that aired from 2002 to 2005. The program was produced by MorningStar Entertainment, Termite Art Productions, and others for the Discovery Channel. The series lasted over three seasons and had a total of 47 episodes, in which a team of...

, and Best Evidence
Best Evidence
Best Evidence is a 2007-present documentary television series on the Discovery Channel and Discovery Times channel.-Episodes:# "TWA Flight 800"# "Bigfoot"# "Chemical Contrails": Jet-aircraft vapor trails may be toxic.# "The Roswell Incident"...

), automobiles, and occupations (Dirty Jobs
Dirty Jobs
Dirty Jobs is a program on the Discovery Channel, produced by Pilgrim Films & Television, in which host Mike Rowe is shown performing difficult, strange, disgusting, or messy occupational duties alongside the typical employees. The show premiered with two pilot episodes in November 2003...

and Deadliest Catch
Deadliest Catch
Deadliest Catch is a documentary/reality television series produced by Original Productions for the Discovery Channel. It portrays the real life events aboard fishing vessels in the Bering Sea during the Alaskan king crab and C. opilio crab fishing seasons.The Aleutian Islands port of Dutch Harbor,...

); it also features documentaries specifically aimed at families and younger audiences.
A popular annual feature is Shark Week
Shark Week
The Discovery Channel's Shark Week, which first aired on July 27, 1987, is a week-long series of feature television programs dedicated to sharks. Shark Week is held annually, normally running in July or August. Shark Week was developed to help the average person have a greater respect for sharks....

On June 17, 1985, Discovery Channel was launched with $5 million in start-up capital from the BBC
The British Broadcasting Corporation is a British public service broadcaster. Its headquarters is at Broadcasting House in the City of Westminster, London. It is the largest broadcaster in the world, with about 23,000 staff...

, the American investment firm Allen & Company
Allen & Company
Allen & Company is a boutique investment bank based at 711 Fifth Avenue, New York City.-History:Founded in 1922 by Charles Robert Allen, Jr., he was soon joined by his brother, Herbert A. Allen, Sr...

, Venture America and several other investors.