Chapter 9
Television: Reflecting and Affecting
Society
Chapter Outline
• History
• Industry
• Controversies
Television: The Numbers
Americans watch a LOT of TV
Mass Media in a Changing World
Second Edition
Mass Media in a Changing World
Second Edition
A Brief History of Television
Early Technology
• Pre-war RCA
• 32-line mechanical television
• Another mechanical televisi...
Philo T. Farnsworth
A Brief History of Television
Early Technology
• 1927: Vladimir Zworykin, a Russian immigrant working
for Westinghouse Cor...
A Brief History of Television
• 1932: David Sarnoff of RCA builds one of
the first commercial television
stations, with tr...
A Brief History of Television
Development of Technical Standards
• Each manufacturer wanted to reap profits that would
fol...
A Brief History of Television
NTSC (National Television System Committee) is the analog
standard for televisions in most o...
A Brief History of Television
World War II Stops TV’s Growth
• Most of the engineers in television joined the
military and...
A Brief History of Television
Channel Allocation
• Channel allocation is the placement of a
station’s frequency on the ele...
A Brief History of Television
The Rise of Network Television
• Four early networks: NBC, CBS, ABC and Dumont
• The Dumont ...
A Brief History of Television
The Rise of Network Television
• Stations not connected by cable had to run
kinescopes of ne...
A Brief History of Television
Television’s Golden Age
• Many critics consider 1948 to 1958 a time of
unusually good dramat...
A Brief History of Television
A Brief History of Television
• Not all programming was high quality, and many
lacked realistic portrayal of non-whites an...
A Brief History of Television
The Entrance of the Movie Studios
• 1954: Walt Disney becomes the first studio leader to
ass...
A Brief History of Television
Television Changes Family Life
• Like radio, television brings American family indoors to
ex...
A Brief History of Television
Television Changes Family Life
• 1968: “60 Minutes” becomes first news magazine
• Classic ch...
A Brief History of Television
Television Changes Family Life
• “Camel Cavalcade of News” (1948-1956) with John
Cameron Swa...
A Brief History of Television
Television’s Economic Golden Age
• By 1966, the networks were broadcasting all their
prime-t...
A Brief History of Television
Enter Cable
• Cable television began in the 1950s as “Community
Antenna Television” (CATV). ...
A Brief History of Television
• One of FCC rules for cable was that cable systems could
not duplicate network programs on ...
Issues
• Should everyone be guaranteed access to television
signal?
• Should government regulate over-the air TV
programmi...
A Brief History of Television
Emerging Networks
• In 1985, Rupert Murdoch formed the Fox network by
purchasing 20th Centur...
A Brief History of Television
Adapting to New Technologies
• Broadcast television networks compete with newer
technologies...
A Brief History of Television
Adapting to New Technologies
• Today, television networks and program suppliers
are experime...
A Brief History of Television
Adapting to New Technologies
• The cultural effects of the VCR were many:
• Time shifting
• ...
A Brief History of Television
• How have the DVD and the VCR/DVR
changed the business model for television?
Understanding Today’s Television
Industry
The Cable Industry
• Today’s cable operations are run almost exclusively by
mult...
Understanding Today’s Television
Industry
Basic Cable
• Basic cable is made up of channels that are supplied
with the leas...
Understanding Today’s Television
Industry
Basic Cable
• By 2007, the average cable subscriber received
96 channels but onl...
Issues
Should Congress force cable TV providers to
make ala-carte programming available to
customers?
Understanding Today’s Television
Industry
Superstations
• The first superstation, a local station delivered to
cable syste...
Understanding Today’s Television
Industry
Premium Cable
• Premium cable channels such as Home Box Office
(HBO), Showtime, ...
Understanding Today’s Television
Industry
Premium Cable
• Public Access Channels are provided by
cable systems as part of ...
Understanding Today’s Television
Industry
Satellite TV
• Satellites were an integral part of the success of cable
televisi...
Understanding Today’s Television
Industry
Satellites in Geostationary Orbit
A geostationary satellite orbits the earth at ...
Understanding Today’s Television
Industry
Broadcast Television
• Technically all broadcast television stations are
local b...
Understanding Today’s Television
Industry
• VHF stations are historically more profitable than
UHF stations because they h...
Understanding Today’s Television
Industry
Digital transmission
• As of April 2009, all TV stations in the nation had to be...
Understanding Today’s Television
Industry
U.S. Television Markets
There are 211 television markets nationwide.
Source: Nie...
Understanding Today’s Television
Industry
Network Affiliation
• Most network owned and operated stations (O&Os) are in
maj...
Understanding Today’s Television
Industry
Station Groups
• Nearly all licensees today are group owners
with properties in ...
Understanding Today’s Television
Industry
Program Providers
• Networks provide programming to affiliates for a large part
...
Understanding Today’s Television
Industry
Public Television
• The Public Broadcasting Act of 1967 created the
Corporation ...
Understanding Today’s Television
Industry
PBS Ownership
Today’s public broadcasting stations are owned by four groups.
Understanding Today’s Television
Industry
The Ratings
• Rating is the percentage of all homes equipped
with TVs that are t...
Understanding Today’s Television
Industry
The Ratings
• Overnight ratings are most important to networks
while local stati...
Understanding Today’s Television
Industry
Top-Rated Television Programs of All Time
The top-rated television programs were...
Controversies
• Some say lowest common denominator
programming damages viewers.
• TV entertainment is too violent, critics...
Controversies
• The Telecommunications Act of 1996 required
that new television sets contain V-chips.
• Compulsive TV view...
Controversies
• Why do conservatives decry TV?
• Why do liberals decry TV?
Chapter 9
Television: Reflecting and Affecting
Society
Chapter Outline
• History
• Industry
• Controversies
Mm ch 09 television
Mm ch 09 television
Mm ch 09 television
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Mm ch 09 television

  1. 1. Chapter 9 Television: Reflecting and Affecting Society Chapter Outline • History • Industry • Controversies
  2. 2. Television: The Numbers Americans watch a LOT of TV
  3. 3. Mass Media in a Changing World Second Edition
  4. 4. Mass Media in a Changing World Second Edition
  5. 5. A Brief History of Television Early Technology • Pre-war RCA • 32-line mechanical television • Another mechanical television
  6. 6. Philo T. Farnsworth
  7. 7. A Brief History of Television Early Technology • 1927: Vladimir Zworykin, a Russian immigrant working for Westinghouse Corporation, develops a circuit for transforming a visual image into an electronic signal. • Around the same time, Philo T. Farnsworth completes a working model for a similar system, and applies for a patent. • Farnsworth had to endure years of suits and countersuits before RCA paid him $1 million for the rights to his patent. • Inventors in several countries including England, Japan and Russia, claim to have come up with the idea of television around the same time.
  8. 8. A Brief History of Television • 1932: David Sarnoff of RCA builds one of the first commercial television stations, with transmitting facilities in the Empire State Building, spends $1 million promoting the medium. • 1939 World’s Fair: FDR becomes first president to appear on television • Problems affecting early sales: high costs, limited and low-quality programming, no technical standards.
  9. 9. A Brief History of Television Development of Technical Standards • Each manufacturer wanted to reap profits that would follow if their patents became the broadcast standard. • Some wanted black and white technology to be the standard, while others were working on color and wanted government to wait for it to be perfected. • Other patents involved different lines of resolution, those rows of lighted dots, or pixels, that make up the picture image. • 1941: government and industry agree that television would present black and white pictures with 525 lines of resolution moving at a speed of 30 frames per second.
  10. 10. A Brief History of Television NTSC (National Television System Committee) is the analog standard for televisions in most of the world except for Europe, which utilizes the PAL (Phase Alternating Line) standard
  11. 11. A Brief History of Television World War II Stops TV’s Growth • Most of the engineers in television joined the military and developed radar, sonar, radio-guided missiles and battlefield communications. Post-War Development • In the early 1940s programming was terrible. Some people would watch test patterns. • By 1948, set sales increased by 500 percent over the previous year, and viewership grew by 4000 percent.
  12. 12. A Brief History of Television Channel Allocation • Channel allocation is the placement of a station’s frequency on the electromagnetic spectrum used for transmitting electronic signals. • FCC charged with ensuring that every community in America has at least one channel, with no overlapping or interfering channels. Places a freeze on license applications (1948 to 1952) • During that period the number of sets purchased rose from a 250,000 to more than 17 million.
  13. 13. A Brief History of Television The Rise of Network Television • Four early networks: NBC, CBS, ABC and Dumont • The Dumont network lacked the radio relationships of the others and could not line up enough affiliates to be attractive to advertisers. Dumont folded in 1955. Its stations went on to become the nucleus of Metromedia Television, which eventually became the Fox network.
  14. 14. A Brief History of Television The Rise of Network Television • Stations not connected by cable had to run kinescopes of network programming.
  15. 15. A Brief History of Television Television’s Golden Age • Many critics consider 1948 to 1958 a time of unusually good dramatic programming • Quality dramas were needed to attract wealthy, educated viewers who could afford television sets. • Network programming originated in New York City and producers had access to up-and-coming Broadway writers, actors, and directors. • Most television dramas were performed live, essentially stage drama in front of a camera
  16. 16. A Brief History of Television
  17. 17. A Brief History of Television • Not all programming was high quality, and many lacked realistic portrayal of non-whites and women. • “I Love Lucy,” “Father Knows Best” and “Ozzie and Harriet” featured women who were either humorously incompetent or subordinate to men who made all important decisions. • Virtually all the playwrights, producers, actors, and directors of the live dramas were white. Minorities were systematically excluded from production jobs. • The 1980s success of the Cosby show opened the door for more black oriented programming with black production staffs.
  18. 18. A Brief History of Television The Entrance of the Movie Studios • 1954: Walt Disney becomes the first studio leader to associate his name with a television program. In an early example of horizontal integration, Disney saw the possibilities of TV for promoting his Disneyland theme park and his feature films, as well as generating income from the program itself. • 1955: Warner Brothers produces the western “Cheyenne” for ABC; all the major film studios follow this lead.
  19. 19. A Brief History of Television Television Changes Family Life • Like radio, television brings American family indoors to experience programming together. • Families didn’t talk during prime-time programs; they talked among themselves and among outsiders about what they’d seen on television the night before.
  20. 20. A Brief History of Television Television Changes Family Life • 1968: “60 Minutes” becomes first news magazine • Classic children’s shows: “Bozo the Clown,” “Romper Room,” and “Sesame Street.” • “Wide World of Sports” • Classic programs are regularly scheduled, long- running prime-time entertainment programs that changed what people talked about over coffee the next day.
  21. 21. A Brief History of Television Television Changes Family Life • “Camel Cavalcade of News” (1948-1956) with John Cameron Swayze is considered the father of television news.
  22. 22. A Brief History of Television Television’s Economic Golden Age • By 1966, the networks were broadcasting all their prime-time shows in color. People rush to replace black & white sets. • 1967: Public television established • 1960-1980: Lack of competition for the big three networks makes for an economic golden age for television. • Independent stations began to compete a little, but the real challenger to network television will be cable TV.
  23. 23. A Brief History of Television Enter Cable • Cable television began in the 1950s as “Community Antenna Television” (CATV). CATV was designed to give hard-to-reach areas satisfactory reception from the nearest broadcast television stations. • The earliest CATV pioneers were appliance dealers who hoped to sell TV sets. They would install a large antenna on a nearby hilltop, amplify the local station signals that were received, and distribute them to the community by means of a cable. • CATV became cable television in the 1970s when it began to offer additional signals from distant stations, a service called importation.
  24. 24. A Brief History of Television • One of FCC rules for cable was that cable systems could not duplicate network programs on the same day that the network aired them. • Another important regulation came to be known as must carry rules, which said that cable systems had to carry all local televisions stations within each system’s area of coverage. • Cable’s big growth period was between 1970 (10 percent of homes wired) and 1990 (60 percent of homes wired). • Time Inc.’s HBO was the first pay cable channel (1972). • Today’s cable systems carry hundreds of channels.
  25. 25. Issues • Should everyone be guaranteed access to television signal? • Should government regulate over-the air TV programming? • Should government regulate cable TV programming?
  26. 26. A Brief History of Television Emerging Networks • In 1985, Rupert Murdoch formed the Fox network by purchasing 20th Century Fox studios and the Metromedia chain of independent TV stations. • Ten years later, with shows such as “The Simpsons,” “In Living Color,” “Beverly Hills 90210,” and the broadcast rights to National Football League games, Fox was earning more money per program than CBS or ABC, and, was quickly catching up to NBC. • Warner Brothers (WB) and United Paramount Network (UPN) started within a week of each other in January 1995, after deregulation permitted networks to produce prime-time programs (In 2006, WB and UPN merged into CW – CBS-Warner).
  27. 27. A Brief History of Television Adapting to New Technologies • Broadcast television networks compete with newer technologies, including cable, satellite, on-demand video, video games, and the Internet. • The broadcast television industry has changed over to digital, high-definition television (HDTV) which delivers pictures as clear and crisp as a Cineplex feature. Scanning lines are more than double the standard: 1125 lines instead of the 525 of conventional TV, and the wider HDTV screen (16:9) features high-quality digital sound, interactivity and various other advanced digital services.
  28. 28. A Brief History of Television Adapting to New Technologies • Today, television networks and program suppliers are experimenting with ways to offer programming downloadable from the Internet to home computers, cell phones, and other digital media.
  29. 29. A Brief History of Television Adapting to New Technologies • The cultural effects of the VCR were many: • Time shifting • Zapping • Digital video discs (DVDs) reached the market in 1996, and Digital video recorders (DVRs), specialized computers with oversized hard discs onto which video signals are saved, were introduced in 1999.
  30. 30. A Brief History of Television • How have the DVD and the VCR/DVR changed the business model for television?
  31. 31. Understanding Today’s Television Industry The Cable Industry • Today’s cable operations are run almost exclusively by multiple system operators (MSOs), which are companies that own several local cable service providers, usually in different areas of the country. MSOs are generally owned by giant communications corporations like Time-Warner or Comcast. • An MSO must reach a franchise agreement with the local government which generally receives a small percentage of the gross revenues. • Most municipalities require the MSO to provide access channels which are open to the general public on a first come, first served basis.
  32. 32. Understanding Today’s Television Industry Basic Cable • Basic cable is made up of channels that are supplied with the least expensive program package the provider offers. These channels, like MTV and CNN, supplement ad revenue by charging the system operator for each subscriber that carries their signal-- usually 20 to 50 cents per subscriber, per month. • Today specialized basic cable channels include earliest basic cable channels include ESPN, CNN, MTV, C- SPAN (Cable-Satellite Public Affair Network), the Fishing Channel, the Home and Garden Network and more.
  33. 33. Understanding Today’s Television Industry Basic Cable • By 2007, the average cable subscriber received 96 channels but only actually watched 15 of them. • Cable companies generally charge for “tiers” or packages of programming that include many channels that individual subscribers don’t use. • The cable industry has so far resisted legislators’ calls for a “a la carte” pricing model that would allow people to receive only the channels they want.
  34. 34. Issues Should Congress force cable TV providers to make ala-carte programming available to customers?
  35. 35. Understanding Today’s Television Industry Superstations • The first superstation, a local station delivered to cable systems via satellite, was created in 1976 when Ted Turner sent the signals of WTBS, his Atlanta UHF station, for distribution throughout the country. • Turner raised advertising rates and turned what had been the lowest-rated station in Atlanta into a financial success.
  36. 36. Understanding Today’s Television Industry Premium Cable • Premium cable channels such as Home Box Office (HBO), Showtime, and Cinemax provide programming to cable subscribers for an additional fee, over and above what they pay for basic cable. A converter, or cable box, unscrambles the signals for premium cable. • Pay-per-view channels allow customers to order recent feature films, sporting events, concerts, an other special events on a set schedule.
  37. 37. Understanding Today’s Television Industry Premium Cable • Public Access Channels are provided by cable systems as part of their community agreements. • Across the U.S., 3000 public access channels operate out of more than a 1000 stations set up by cable companies.
  38. 38. Understanding Today’s Television Industry Satellite TV • Satellites were an integral part of the success of cable television, originally being used for point-to-point communications since the 1960s. • In the 1970s satellites were made geostationary, parked 22,300 miles above one section of the earth’s surface. • Direct Broadcast Satellite (DBS) systems deliver television programming to individual homes. • By 2007, satellite companies claimed to have subscribers in almost 25% of television homes making DBS a serious competitor with cable.
  39. 39. Understanding Today’s Television Industry Satellites in Geostationary Orbit A geostationary satellite orbits the earth at the same speed that the earth rotates on its axis, making it essentially “parked” in space. In orbit at 22,300 miles, three satellites can cover almost the entire earth.
  40. 40. Understanding Today’s Television Industry Broadcast Television • Technically all broadcast television stations are local because signals that emanate from a station’s transmitter will only be seen up to fifty miles from the transmission point unless picked up by cable, or satellite. • There are almost 1600 local TV stations across the United States: 1200 are commercial and 400 are public (PBS). • Half of the 1600 stations are VHF, or Very High Frequency, and operate on a channel from 2 through 13. The other half are UHF, or Ultra High Frequency, channels 14 and up.
  41. 41. Understanding Today’s Television Industry • VHF stations are historically more profitable than UHF stations because they have stronger signals and greater over-the-air reach, but cable has made the VHF/UHF distinction less relevant. • Stations are licensed to a city but their overall market, which includes surrounding suburbs, is what matters to advertisers that support them. • There are 211 television markets nationwide.
  42. 42. Understanding Today’s Television Industry Digital transmission • As of April 2009, all TV stations in the nation had to be transmitting digitally • Forced some small stations out of business because they couldn’t afford the upgrade • $40 coupons from government to purchase converter boxes • More flexibility in programming
  43. 43. Understanding Today’s Television Industry U.S. Television Markets There are 211 television markets nationwide. Source: Nielsen
  44. 44. Understanding Today’s Television Industry Network Affiliation • Most network owned and operated stations (O&Os) are in major markets. They are usually the most profitable part of the network. • The majority of broadcast stations are affiliates with a contractual relationship with a network. The network provides programming with national advertising inserted. Local advertising revenue belongs entirely to the affiliate. • Independent stations were less profitable than network affiliates until the 1980s when major market independents started scheduling local professional sports and first-run syndicated series.
  45. 45. Understanding Today’s Television Industry Station Groups • Nearly all licensees today are group owners with properties in two or more markets. • There is no limit to the number of stations one group can own, but one group cannot combine stations to reach more than 35 percent of the U.S. population.
  46. 46. Understanding Today’s Television Industry Program Providers • Networks provide programming to affiliates for a large part of the day. • Program syndication is selling programs directly to stations, cable channels, and online venues, not to the networks. • Off-network programs were earlier on a network and generally need a hundred episodes before being offered in syndication because stations prefer strip programming, or showing a program in the same time slot five times a week. • “Jeopardy,” and “Oprah” are highly profitable in original syndication, which is sale of new programs that were not previously on a network.
  47. 47. Understanding Today’s Television Industry Public Television • The Public Broadcasting Act of 1967 created the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB) which, in turn created the Public Broadcasting System (PBS), an organization made up of public stations that solicit donations from corporations and viewers. • PBS acts like a network but differs greatly in that it does not produce programming, rather, it helps member stations share programs. • Today’s PBS stations are owned by four groups.
  48. 48. Understanding Today’s Television Industry PBS Ownership Today’s public broadcasting stations are owned by four groups.
  49. 49. Understanding Today’s Television Industry The Ratings • Rating is the percentage of all homes equipped with TVs that are tuned to a particular station at a particular time. • Share is the percentage of homes in which the television is in use and tuned to a particular station. • A.C. Nielsen collects ratings for network and local stations, syndicated programs, cable channels, and World Wide Web sites.
  50. 50. Understanding Today’s Television Industry The Ratings • Overnight ratings are most important to networks while local stations set advertising rates based on ratings during sweep months: November, February, May, and July. • Arbitron, the other major ratings company, is currently developing a wireless people meter that individuals simply carry around with them during the day, while it automatically records all of their media use. • At night, the meter is simply inserted into a docking station and the day’s data is downloaded to Arbitron as the unit charges.
  51. 51. Understanding Today’s Television Industry Top-Rated Television Programs of All Time The top-rated television programs were all presented by traditional networks, most of them in the 1970s and 1980s before increased competition led to audience fragmentation.
  52. 52. Controversies • Some say lowest common denominator programming damages viewers. • TV entertainment is too violent, critics say, particularly when the violence goes unpunished or when a program ignores the real life consequences of violent acts. • TV producers counter that pleasing the critics would severely impede storytelling. • Stereotyping • FCC requires three hours of educational programming per week.
  53. 53. Controversies • The Telecommunications Act of 1996 required that new television sets contain V-chips. • Compulsive TV viewers in college view 21 hours per week compared to the 10 hour per week avg. • Critics say too much time in front of the TV keeps viewers from productively dealing with problems. • Defenders of television insist that TV is no more addicting than any other form of pleasurable activity.
  54. 54. Controversies • Why do conservatives decry TV? • Why do liberals decry TV?
  55. 55. Chapter 9 Television: Reflecting and Affecting Society Chapter Outline • History • Industry • Controversies
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