My Thoughts on Recent Events and Public Access Television

By David G. Firestone

When it comes to The Driver Suit Blog and DGF2099 I hated having to bring politics in, but the situation left me with little choice. I want to make this clear, I will try my best never to use either of my sites for personal political speech. The situation with the NFL owners and NASCAR owners forced a lot of people to have to make statements. Again, I hated doing it, but I had little choice. I will try to the best of my ability not to discuss politics on either of my websites.

With the heavy stuff out of the way, I can discuss something I’ve been wondering about for some time. Could someone explain to me how in 2017, public access television is still a thing? I get there are legal requirements for certain aspects, but I can’t believe in the era of YouTube, Dailymotion, and so many other video websites, that public access is still a feasible setup. Many local and even county systems are switching to internet based streaming services.

Why is public access beyond obsolete? Well let’s say I have a band in Chicago. We decide that we want to get some exposure. Our options are either go on YouTube, and, for free, let hundreds of millions of people all over the world whenever they want to see it, or, for $100, go on local access, which can reach 3,000,000 people at most, even though most people won’t be watching any of the public access channels. Anyone with any brains at all can see that YouTube is the better option.

Many city meetings and county meetings are streamed via YouTube, yet there are requirements that cable companies carry these same meetings. If you aren’t watching live, you can watch one of the reruns, provided that there isn’t anything else on television that anyone else in the household wants to watch. This outdated technology makes no sense in the era of On Demand systems which come with every cable system in 2017.

Who in the world is paying $100 to broadcast to a few hundred thousand people, when you can use a system that can bring millions of people on your product for free. I am amazed that there aren’t one, or two, but hundreds of public access television stations across the country. How do these stations stay in business?

Not all that long ago, there used to be many stores that sold the newest music, in the form of records and cassette tapes. How many of these stores are still around? Not many of the stores are, because a newer technology, that is superior in every way to the outdated technology has taken over. I think that public access is the same as a cassette tape, and is obsolete, and needs to go away. We are in the 21st Century, and we should start acting like it.

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