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View Diary: The Chronicles of Mitt: Oct 5, 2012 (45 comments)

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  •  well, actually that's not entirely accurate. (1+ / 0-)
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    The Geogre

    originally, the idea was for local stations/communities to have the freedom to decide what was relevant to their audiences. In In some states, like Alabama, the public broadcasting stations are too small and their viewing audiences not affluent enough to survive individually on their own and yes, they are all one "station" for the whole state - or rather they all receive the same feed. It's not a conspiracy. And BTW, the programming managers have no requirement to run any of the PBS flagship programming. That is, they don't have to run POV at all if they don't want to. And they have to pay for the privilege of airing it, believe it or not. It's a very different system than broadcast commercial television.

    Now, I think there's some value in allowing local community programming directors to have some discretion about the programming that is relevant within his/her own community. In fact, given the nature of media today, I (and some other pretty smart people) actually am of the opinion localizing news and programming is actually going help traditional media survive. But that's too in the weeds, unless you want to talk about it. I'm happy to engage. And I also believe that PBS' survival (and ability to thrive) into the future may require some very major shifts in how things are done. I don't expect those shifts to happen naturally. PBS is a bit bureaucratic and will not change until they absolutely have to, IMO. I think part of the change they need to make is a shift toward the model used by broadcast networks - one where certain times of day, affiliate stations are required to air certain programs. I think it's important for their future. Any similarities in program schedules you see today is either planned at the individual level (program managers each choosing those times to air a show because they know others are choosing that same time) or in some rare cases the show/series producers (and even sometimes PBS) requires it to be aired at a certain times.

    I think there's brand value in people knowing that no matter where they are "this popular show" comes on at 7 p.m. on Sundays. The PBS model doesn't really support that. It's much more locally oriented. Program decisions are made at the local level.

    I think there's a balance to be struck between the two. As I said, I don't expect to see any shift in a different direction with regards to this longstanding policy any time soon.

    For the record, I am not a member of Courtesy Kos. Just so you know. Don't be stupid. It's election season. My patience is short.

    by mdmslle on Sat Oct 06, 2012 at 03:06:11 PM PDT

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    •  The presumed weak stations of the 'rural' (1+ / 0-)
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      Alabama, Georgia, South Carolina all have state wide feeds. In each state, there were flourishing PBS stations on television prior to the establishment of these state networks in the 1980's - 90's.

      Most of them had a "state" common schedule during the day for "educational programming," and I am old enough to remember that programming being actually educational for grade levels rather than purely pre-school. However, once the state -PB came along, a dumbed down feed came along, and a lever for meddling.

      Atlanta has independent stations that subscribe to PBS, as it would, but the rest were cowed.

      There is a long history of efforts at "reforming PBS" by putting in political appointees at the national level. These are nothing compared to the efforts at the state level. When we add in the presumption that the blue haired ladies will only pledge during a "Rockin' with Motown as Remembered by the All-Star Nelson Riddle Orchestra" and a "Make your Brain Young Forever," and you've got the end of education, news, and value on the television side. (Anyone else remember when "Nova" had hard science in it?)

      If money is the root of all evil, then what is Mitt Romney?

      by The Geogre on Sat Oct 06, 2012 at 07:06:51 PM PDT

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      •  Well something else happened in the 80s (0+ / 0-)

        And 90s that I think you're not taking into account: the proliferation of cAble networks.

        Prior to the early 80s it was just abc, NBC, CBS, and PBS.

        Discovery changed that. And it ushered in some major shifts in entertainment delivery.

        PBS might've been the first with a cooking show, Julia child, but eventually there was the food network.

        A&E was actually arts and entertainment back then.

        Nature programming wasn't constrained to Sunday night Mutual of Omaha wild kingdom.

        My point is that the market changed and PBS failed to. Now, with the Internet presenting more segmentation, PBS' old model is killing it. It's really not a viable sustainable system as it stands right now. This is why you get crappy infomercials instead of good programming. It's why the Koch brothers are a major funder of nova. It's why they can't pose off those blue haired ladies who've pledged legacy gifts the minute the drop dead. They've failed to evolve with the entertainment landscape. If they don't change, they won't be around in 20 years, once all the blue haired ladies are dead.

        This is all to say that today there's literally no way for all those previous separate stations to support themselves. Not the way things are right now. So they have to consolidate. There's no other solution.

        For the record, I am not a member of Courtesy Kos. Just so you know. Don't be stupid. It's election season. My patience is short.

        by mdmslle on Sat Oct 06, 2012 at 07:45:35 PM PDT

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