MSNBC is celebrating its 16th birthday today. The cable network launched July 15, 1996 as a joint venture of NBC News and Microsoft. Interestingly, the celebration comes on the same day that Microsoft and NBC News have dissolved their co-ownership of msnbc.com. NBC News gets full control and has already rebranded the site NBCNews.com. Microsoft’s stake in the cable channel was dissolved in 2005.
Check out this clip from the first day on air — technical glitches and all. Host Jodi Applegate, who now anchors the 10pm news on WPIX in New York, talks presidential politics (Clinton v. Dole) with her “friends” (an early programming technique). In this segment, Applegate chats with Laura Ingraham, who would later host a show on MSNBC called “Watch It!,” and is now with Fox News, and Lawrence O’Donnell, who now hosts “The Last Word” weeknights on MSNBC.