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Posted at 11:05 AM ET, 01/ 6/2011

Smithsonian Channel now available on Comcast in Washington

By Lisa de Moraes

(This post has been updated.)

Three years after the launch of a cable channel all about the Washington-based Smithsonian institution, Comcast is finally making the channel available to its customers in the Washington area.

"Mystery of the Hope Diamond" airs on Smithsonian Channel. (Chip Clark/Smithsonian Institution)

Smithsonian Channel, part of a joint venture between Showtime Networks and Smithsonian Institution, will now be available to Comcast Digital customers in our market on Channel 194. A rep says the channel had previously only been available via satellite in the region, on DirecTV, Verizon and a small number on AT&T.

The channel had a controversial launch in 2007 when Showtime obtained semi-exclusive rights to produce films centering around the institution. Members of Congress were concerned that only viewers who paid more for access to satellite television would be able to see the programs.

The channel, in addition to documentaries like "Mystery of the Hope Diamond," also airs other art, science and pop culture-themed programming, including "The Da Vinci Detective" and "21st Century Elephant."

Comcast and Smithsonian Networks said that Comcast and the channel will continue to roll out the to customers in the Washington market throughout 2011.

By Lisa de Moraes  | January 6, 2011; 11:05 AM ET
Categories:  TV News  
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"The channel had previously only been available via satellite in the region."

That's not true; it has been available on Verizon Fios.

Posted by: subwayguy | January 6, 2011 1:39 PM | Report abuse

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