Fund cuts for public television lead to mergers; is there life after PBS?

WASHINGTON – Coping with reduced funding by state governments and other sources, public television stations are pursuing diverse options ranging from mergers and consolidation to dropping PBS network programs. As reported in early July, funding cuts led to the demise of the New Jersey Network of PBS stations, which were merged into New York's WNET. The station had earlier acquired WLIW on Long Island, so currently, WNET controls PBS programming on stations well to the east and south of New York City. New York is not unique: San Francisco's public television station, KQED, acquired KTEH, serving San Jose and the…

Landmark FCC Report highlights CCLP research

For its new report assessing the national and local media landscape and offering policy recommendations on how to preserve the public's access to news and information, the Federal Communications Commission appointed award-winning journalist and CCLP Senior Fellow Cinny Kennard to the working group that led research, conducted interviews and drafted the document. FCC chairman Julius Genachowski publicly thanked Kennard in his remarks at the FCC meeting in Washington D.C. on June 9. Kennard (pictured below) assembled a research team that included CCLP junior fellows Rebecca Shapiro and Monica Alba, along with research associates Cater Lee and Sarah Erickson. They investigated…

PBS: End of the Old Boys Network?

Los Angeles station KCET's announcement on Friday that it is canceling all PBS programs is a dramatic, all-stakes-on-the-table gamble. KCET is gambling that, without hefty payments to PBS and substituting a new lineup of independent and international programs for the PBS network feed, it will be a smaller but sustainable public service broadcaster. For its part, PBS is gambling that KCET cannot possibly go through with its plan and will have no alternative but to pay the substantial dues required to keep PBS programs on the station….

Updates from the War Room

Cinny Kennard and her team of researchers are hard at work preparing their report for the Federal Communications Comission entitled Future of Media & Information Needs of Communities in a Digital Age (FOM) . Based in the offices at the CCLP, the team has set up a war room, spending countless hours researching each member's assigned area of focus. Kennard was approached by the FCC for this project, specifically to research the state of television news on commercial broadcast. The FOM project is led by Senior Advisor to the Chairman of the FCC, Steve Waldman….

Why does anyone really want to buy NBC?

WASHINGTON – Any day now, if published reports are accurate, cable giant Comcast will celebrate Thanksgiving not by dining on turkey but by feasting on peacock: Comcast is set to acquire NBC from General Electric. However, reports in the past few weeks touching on the financial performance and prospects of NBC Television raise an interesting question: Why does anyone really want to buy NBC? And why does Comcast, in particular, really want to buy NBC?…

Essay and a Woman’s Nation

I have just returned from the Los Angeles launch of A Woman's Nation –an ambitious project and a unique report on the status of American women which includes an essay I co authored with Stacy Smith, Ph.D. and Amy Granados entitled Sexy Socialization: Today's Media and the Next Generation of Women" . The Womens' Nation initiative is produced by California First Lady Maria Shriver with partners including the Center for American Progress (CAP) and the CCLP and the multifaceted report –including a comprehensive national poll–is known as, The Shriver Report….