Public access channels remain a major source for local TV programming

Alliance for Community Media:

The Alliance for Community Media, in partnership with The Buske Group, recently completed an online survey regarding first-run, locally produced programming on public, educational and governmental (“PEG”) cable access channels. More than 200 PEG Access Centers participated in the survey, with responses from 37 states and the District of Columbia. Key findings indicate that PEG Access facilities are very often the leading provider of local, original programming in communities across the United States.

• Total number of hours of first run, locally-produced programs at participating PEG centers during 2009: 245,383
• Average (mean) per facility: 1,180 hours (98 hours per month)
• Sixty (60) respondents reported that they presented over 25 hours per week of first run, local programs during 2009.
• Thirty-one (31) respondents reported that they presented over 40 hours per week of first run, local programs during 2009.

“PEG Access channels provide an impressive array of community-based programming, including candidates’ forums, government and school board meetings, youth-produced programs, job training, local parades, high school sports, local performing artists, and more. The information from this survey about the amount of locally-produced content that they generate is further evidence of the importance of PEG Access Centers,” said survey coordinator Randy VanDalsen of The Buske Group.

Sylvia Strobel, Executive Director of the ACM stated that “The number of hours of original programming produced by our members highlight the critical “local” service PEG Access Centers provide to educate, inform and enhance the lives of their communities. As local sources of news and information continue to disappear, the role of, and need for, PEG Access Centers continues to increase.”

In addition to the ACM, several key national partners assisted in deploying the survey, including the National Association of Telecommunications Officers and Advisors.

article originally published at Alliance for Community Media.

The media's job is to interest the public in the public interest. -John Dewey