A Commentary on 'Local Public Service Television'

  • David Rushton

    Student thesis: Doctoral Thesis


    The Commentary and Portfolio (introduced in the form of Outputs at the end of each Chapter and particularly following Chapter Three) considers the public space that 'local public service television' might occupy. Taking an historical view and a protagonist or interventionist stance the author demonstrates that a demand for local communications through television broadcasting has had strong public support since the introduction of commercial regional television in the 1950s, although government and regulator have variously thwarted its introduction.
    The author's background for this task is unorthodox, emerging from a critical art education that questioned the role of institutional norms in the pursuit and interpretation of social knowledge. The methodology is therefore reflective and at times quixotic, working through a variety of methods and forms of organisation and practice in pursuit of what has long been an evident - if overlooked - public objective,the realisation of a more identity enhancing localised form of television broadcasting.

    Working with several formal and informal associations - including the Institute of Local Television, the Community Media Association, Scottish Association of Smallscale Broadcasters (SASB), The Broadcasting Trust, Media Access Projects Scotland (MAPS), Advisory Committee of (local) Television Operators (ACTO), United for Local Television (ULTV) and the Scottish Local TV Federation - the author has contributed reports and academic papers on local and community television, organised conferences and run small scale television channels under license exempt and shortterm licenses, responded to regulator consultations and drafted amendments to legislation while developing and testing technologies appropriate for delivering programmes to serve local purpose. Through 'local public service television' the author has sought greater representation of civic and cultural views, arguing and debating access to regulate local channels under local control, first on local cable, then as a fifth or sixth terrestrial channel to offer city TV and, most recently, to encourage the introduction of digital spectrum for local public service television to be made available throughout the UK.
    Date of AwardFeb 2008
    Original languageEnglish
    SupervisorStephen Lacey (Supervisor)


    • Public Service Television
    • Local TV
    • Community TV

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