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History Final
Undergraduate 3

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1970's Regulation: Justice Department Investigation

-What were the networks doing?


Department of Justice lawsuit resulted in?


1. Forcing independents to give them financial interest

2. Refusing to support independent programming

3. controlling prices of made-for-TV-movies


*Prime-Time Access Rule

-Asks the Big 3 networks to give up one hour of prime-time television a night. Gives individual stations (independent producers) access to prime time.


Financial Interest and Syndication rules? (Fin/syn)

-enforced when?


Networks can only own a small percantage of their own programming. When a show goes into syndication the network gets nothing, the production company gets it all.

-not fully enforced until 1979.


Production Strategy: Spin-offs?

-Goals of spin-offs?


Take the base shows popularity and translate it into new success. Ex) Mary Tyler Moore Show --> Rhoda (was on Mary Tyler Moore Show)

-Used to eliminate financial risks for producers/networks because its coming from an already successful show.

-Cut down on production costs (pilot)

-used to ensure higher initial ratings (audience familiarity)


What happened to relevance?

-Family Hour?


Late 1974: "Family Hour" as self-regulatory policy.

-CBS President, Arthur Taylor

-first hour of prime-time every week is family hour- family friendly shows.

-Caused scheduling/production problems espeically for NBC and CBS.


The "Turn Toward Irrelevance" (mid to late 1970's)



Fantasy series?



"Kiddie" shows (ABC did great with these) escapist programming.

-Happy Days, Laverne & Shirley, Welcome Back Kotter


Fantasy - Also popular with ABC and good with kiddie audiences. Men/women with special powers.

-The Bionic Woman, The Six Million Dollar Man.

-managed to have action sequences that weren't to violent. (no blood, no weapons)


"Jiggle" shows?




Charlie's Angels, Three's Company

-Not the shows you would see during family hour.

-adult humor - sexual references.


Who invented the spark gap transmitter?

-what is it?



Marconi- 1896. It was a device for generating radio frequency electromagnetic waves using a spark gap.

-It only could travel 1-5 miles

-weather affected its reach

-morse code, NOT talking



-purchased by British government (British Marconi) where they further developed it into the first "wireless" telegrams to send to the United States. 


What did Reginald Fessenden invent? 

-what is this?




-makes voice broadcasts possible

-new frequencies are created by mixing two frequencies. 

-he sold his patent to the United Fruit Company


Lee de Forest? 

-what did his device do?

-how did it work?



Edwin Armstrong?


-invented the audion tube (vacuum tube)

-improved voice transmission and amplified sound

-crystal set - similiar to dial up internet. 


Edwin- An american electrical engineer and inventor. 

-invented FM (frequency modulation) radio.

-audio was now free of "static" which was a problem with AM radio. 


Who are radio amateurs? 


Why was the Navy so interested in radio?


Radio hobbyists who enjoy building new equipment for radio


*They used it to transmit messages from ship to ship or ship to people back on the coast. People would use radio and interfere with their messages that were trying to be sent out. 

*They felt not everyone should be able to transmit messages over radio waves. There was no government regulation, no rules on content or who uses radio at the time. 

Radio Act of 1912?

United States federal law that mandated that all radio stations in the United States be licensed by the federal government, as well as mandating that seagoing vessels continuously monitor distress frequencies

-put in place after the Titanic disaster.

-if you want to broadcast you must have a license

-very unorganized, really did nothing. 


What happened to radio during WWI?


Post-War Control Struggles?



No one was able to broadcast unless given permission by the U.S. military. 


The Navy proposed a monopoly, so Hiram Percy Maxim and thousands of radio amatuers created the Amateur Radio Relay League in order for radio to be openly available to anyone again. 



-What is it?

-Who are the 4 major partners?

-Their major question?


Radio Corporation of America (1919-1920)

-government sponsored monopoly that devoted all radio technology to the U.S. military groups (mainly Navy) 

-basically a patents pool

-Partners: AT&T, GE, Westinghouse, United Fruit

-question: what should radio be? 



What is DX'ing?
the hobby of receiving and identifying distant radio or television signals, or making two way radio contact with distant stations in amateur radio. Many DXers also attempt to obtain written verifications of reception or contact verifying they heard a distant station. 

KDKA- Pittsburg, owned by Westinghouse

-the worlds first commercial radio station (this has been challenged by many other stations) 



WEAF- Owned by AT&T, out of New York City

-first station to bring advertising to American radio.

- "toll broadcasting" - began selling time to anyone to use a licensed AT&T station to broadcast any message of their choosing. 


Sponsored programming?


Networks or "chains" ?



Sponsored- offer audience music, drama, comedy and then put in all the ads. 


Networks or "chains"- used wire technology to link stations to send out same content as other stations do. 


How did RCA restructure in 1926?


-NBC red vs. NBC blue


Buys WEAF, and forms NBC RED

Buys WJZ and forms NBC Blue. 


NBC Red-audience pleasing (comedy, dramas) reached a large audience

NBC Blue - more sophisticated - symphony music


Radio Act of 1927?

-Who is the FRC?


FRC- Federal Radio Commission- regulated radio use until the replacement of the FCC. 

-made decisions on who gets to be a trustee and who broadcasts where. 

- divided the country into five geographical zones. Each zone was represented by one of the five Commissioners. required each zone to have equal allocations of licenses, time of operation, station power, and wavelength.


Communications Act of 1934

-What is PICAN?



FCC (Federal Communications Commission) is made permanent. 

-origin of PICAN "public interest convience and necessity"

-issues licenses, public inspection files (letters from haters) that are required to be open to the public. 

-restricts you from saying certain things on-air. 

-controls stations transmission ranges. 


How as ABC formed?

-whats its stand for?


In 1943, Government forces NBC to divest. Must get rid of red or blue networks so they get rid of blue. 


-American Broadcasting Company


RCA's Four efforts to consolidate power?



1)Controlling interest in NBC networks

2) RCA - victor (purchased record company)

3) RKO - went in on the studio system

4) GM deal to produce radio in cars. 


Paul Nipkow?

-The Nipkow disk?


Vladimir Zworykin?


 using a spiral-perforated disk (Nipkow disk), to divide a picture into a mosaic of points and lines, this disk began to spin creating moving images. Poor image quailty.  Build your own mechanical TV set. Didn't last very long or get popular. 

Zworykin- inventor who worked at RCA. Invented the Iconoscope which breaks down an image line by line by line.  first practical video camera tube to be used in early television cameras.

Philo T. Farmsworth?

Invented the image dissector. He felt he was really the one that came up with the Iconoscope but he couldn't sue RCA. 

-instead he made the image dissector better quality by scanning the lines into pixels. 


1939 World's Fair?



-what were the national standards? 


The birth of television was demonstrated at the world's fair. This fair was 18 months long and showed the worlds latest innovations. 44 million people came! 


NTSC- National Television System Committee

-Set up by 15 major electronics companies (Led by RCA)

-made to resolve the conflicts that were made between companies over the introduction of a nationwide analog television system in the United States. 

-Standards: 525 lines per frame, 30 frames per second. 

-held until 1996 when the Advanced TV Standards Committee when it switched to digital transmission resolution. 


License Freeze?



Dumont Network? 


1948-1952- lasted 4 years

-Stopped handing out licenses in order to fix issues. 

Stations that currently had licenses could continue to broadcast. 


Dumont- Had very nice television sets, most expensive cost about $2,500!! RCA TV's only cost about $350 dollars. 

-during the freeze they couldn't do much. They predicted 3D TV's, recording shows and VCRS. 


Four types of Early TV Genres?

-examples of each?


1. Variety Shows- Ed Sullivan Show, Texaco Star Theater - hosts who get comedic performances, musical artists and special guests on their shows. 

2. Sitcoms- 30 minute live programs, pre made sets, lighting and not much movement of actors. Examples: I Love Lucy, Burns and Allen, Honeymooners. 

3. Live anthology dramas- give you a new story every week. Examples: Philco TV Playhouse, General Electric Theater. Often times sponsorships were named right in the middle of the show. The sponsors decided the content shown in the show. 

4. Episodic Dramas

-Example: Dragnet

-different locations shot at on film. 

-took awhile to produce and cost alot of money, but they can air and re-air. Used music to emphasize intro and outro. 


Eisenhower's Presidential Campaign?


Eisenhower vs. Stevenson




-Used TV to reach the public

-Got spot ads: Eisenhower Anwsers America

-Richard Nixon is vice president



Eisenhower was a military hero, never voted before in his life. There was clear evidence that voters prefferred Eisenhower. Stevenson was a princeton educated lawyer with military experience. Eisenhower never talked shit about Stevenson.


The "Checkers" Speech


Given by Nixon. Rumors that Nixon had accepted improper donations. Embarrassing because of Eisenhower's promise that his administration would be never deceive the people. In this speech, Nixon denied that he had done anything wrong, but vowed that he would not give up his daughters' little dog, Checkers, also a gift to the family, no matter what the consequences. The public responded to the "Checkers Speech" with an outpouring of emotional support, and Eisenhower kept Nixon on the ticket.

1950's social context: Cold War?


TV as a news medium in the early years?



Introduction of politics to U.S. television?


There was little focus on news on television

-they called it "Hopscotching the world for headlines"

-no breaking news yet.

-sponsors still controlled content so it was never just a news story it was almost like advertisements to.


Edward R. Murrow?

-his show? What was it about?



major innovator of Television news.

-made the show: See It Now - that focused on an hour long subject in depth.

-an American newsmagazine and documentary series broadcast by CBS.

-focused on controversial issues in the 1950s, but it is best remembered as the show that criticized the Red Scare and contributed to the political downfall of Senator Joseph McCarthy.


The Model for TV News

-list 5


1. On location

2. Unstaged interviews

3. Anchor as the voice of authority

4. Simplified stories

5. Faced controversial issues

Kennedy vs. Nixon Debates

"The Great Debates" - 1960. The first televised presidential debates in history.

Kennedy = was younger, good looking and smart. In the debates he remained confident looking directly at the camera, poised and all done up with makeup

Nixon= currently vice president, got caught in a scandal and then got sick with an infection from a cut. a long time lawmaker. At the debates he looked flustered, tired, sick and stared off to the side alot.

Quiz Show Scandals?

The sponsors who owned the shows during primetime were rigging them.

-that contestants of several popular television quiz shows were secretly given assistance by the show's producers to arrange the outcome of a supposedly fair competition.

-many networks canceled their existing quiz shows and replaced them with a higher number of public-service programs


How did the Classic Network System shift their roles?

-2 ways


Theme of shows in the 1960's?

What else happened during this time?

-list 2


1. Selling audiences to advertisers.

2. Creating programming to accomplish #1. Relied on safe programming, non-controversial topics. Ratings became very important to managing these roles.


Return to Escapism

1. Minow (chairman of the FCC) leaves

2. JFK assasinated


Network-affiliate relations?



Network-producer relations

-Steps to producing a show- list 3


Primetime - 6-10 p.m. central time

Affiliates/networks must clear network programming


*Producers bear financial risk for new programs.

1. Pitch

2. Pilot- might get network's money if they like it

3. Series - only about 10 pilots make it here, most shows eventually fail.


When a show goes into syndication you make bank!!

"Vaste Wasteland" Speech?

Given by FCC chairman Newton Minow under Kennedy.

-the speech called for more educational/documentary programming (news).

-broadcasters should serve the "public interest"

-some people applauded his assualt on commercial television while others saw it as snobbish to comment on shows that people enjoyed.


What was the industry response to the "Vast Wasteland" speech?


the Payola scandals?

-two famous examples?


Made more news/documentary programs

Examples: NBC White Paper and CBS Reports, also made social issues and entertainment programming.


1958-59 - Payola = pay for play, Artists were illegally paying DJ's to spin their records on radio stations. People would buy houses, cars or whatever for DJ's to play their music.

-Alan Freed and Dick Clark



1960's genres for television

-list 4 with examples


1. Rural Sitcoms- Most watched! All on CBS. Shows like "The Andy Griffith Show" and "Beverly Hillbillys" - all situated in americas heartland in rural areas. Some of the most re-aired shows on tv.

2. Sexuals- On ABC mainly. Reached a youth audience. "Payton Place" -first primetime soap, very intimate, lots of sex. inspired habit viewership.

3. Teen Shows- Shindig! (rock and roll dance show)

and the Patty Duke Show.. audience was to small to work for big networks like NBC.

4. Fantasy Sitcoms- Family-friendly, no political or cultural views, extremely popular. Increased NBC and CBS ratings alot! Shows like "Bewitched", "I Dream of Jeannie" and "Adams Family"


First-run Syndication?


Off-network syndication?


broadcast for the first time as a syndicated show. and then air on commercial broadcast stations in a significant number of markets.


involves the licensing of a program that was originally run on network television or in some cases first-run syndication: a rerun; these are usually found on stations affiliated with smaller networks like Fox or The CW

The Prime Time Access Rule?

-instituted by the FCC in 1970 to restrict the amount of network programming that a local owned-and-operated or affiliated station of a television network may air during "prime time".

-Concern that the three major television networks dominated the television program production market 

-applied only to network-owned or -affiliated stations in the 50 largest television markets. It restricted these stations to broadcasting no more than three hours of network programming during the four-hour prime-time block each evening

Fin/Syn rules?

a set of rules set up by the FCC that preventing the big 3 networks from owning any of the programming that they aired in primetime

-networks now cannot benefit from the resale of these shows.

They can only license them from the studios or independent producers for a limited number of years.


Network affiliate


Owned and operated station?


network- a local broadcaster which carries some or all of the television or radio program lineup of a television or radio network, but is owned by a company other than the owner of the network.


O/O- refers to a television station or radio station that is owned by the network with which it is associated


What is a spinoff?


What is the Family Hour Policy?


a radio program, television program, video game, or any narrative work, derived from one or more already existing works, that focuses, in particular, in more detail on one aspect of that original work


Family- established by the FCC in 1975. each television network in the U.S. had a responsibility to air "family-friendly" programming during the first hour of the prime time lineup.

-put in place because of the crazy amount of sex and violence on television during primetime.

-ABC benefited from this hour because of "kiddie" programs.


Turn Toward Relevance




The turn to Irrelevance

-"jiggle" programming


Toward relevance- brought on a relaxation of industry and public attitudes regarding appropriate television content, and the new escapist shows inherited a television culture that was more open and tolerant than ever before


irrelavance- targeted to reach a younger, hipper audience. presented more sexually oriented material.

-"jiggle"- feature young, attractive, often scantily clad women and men, lots of sexual content and jokes. Shows included: Three's Company, Charlie's Angels.


Third Report and Order

-three things it now allowed cable systems to do?



1. Cable systems could lease channels to other content providers.

2. Cable systems required to carry 20 channels.

3. Cable systems required to provided PEG (Public, education and government channels) or public access channels.

-information to serve the local community


What is SATCOM I?

-its uses?


a family of communications satellites originally developed and operated by RCA

-used as the launching ground for many cable TV services including HBO, Nickelodeon, ABC Family and ESPN. 

-allowed cable TV to enter into the suburban and metropolitan markets also used to distribute their programming to some of their local affiliate stations


What are MSO's? Examples?


What is mid-casting?

-3 examples




MSO- multiple system operators. A company that operates multiple cable systems. Example: Time Warner and Comcast.


Unlike "broadcasting", you segment your audience.

1. African Americans- Fox had the most black cast shows than any network ever did. EX: In Living Color, Martin

2. Young Male Viewers- Married with Children, The Simpsons

3. Young Female Viewers- Melrose Place, 90210


The Introduction of Fox Network?

-first show?

-problems in the beginning?


1985: Newscorp purchases 20th Century Fox with their investors.

*Premieres Late Show w/Joan Rivers

-they avoided prime-time because it was to expensive and launched with a talk show that had a woman host.

*By 1987 they had 115 affiliates with 86% national reach.

*Fox had no bleep button


Problems- Quality of the affiliate stations (UHF) but cable makes its distribution possible.


The Cable Communication Policy Act of 1984

-what 3 things did this act allow?


an act of Congress that promoted competition and deregulation of the cable industry.

1. Cable operators free to determine their rates

2. left PEG channels up to communities now. Town could negotiate with service provider if they wanted to keep them

3. Served commercial over public interests.


Department of Justice Lawsuit in 1972

-two things they ordered the networks to do?


they investigated the three big networks and the oligopoly that they had. It was unfair so they wanted to break up network control.

1. Give up an hour of prime back to the local stations to do whatever they want (Prime Time Access Rule)

2. FIN/SIN rules

Role of Ad Agencies in radio?

They produced the programming of the show for a single sponsor until the quiz show scandals took place.

Example: Fibber Mcgee and Molly


1980's Cinematic Style



*Change in prime-time

-intentional strategy to draw viewers

-influence of flimmakers working in TV

-overall: result of economic crisis

Examples: Miami Vice- like a mini-action movie, used alot of current hit songs.

Moonlighting - hour long dramedy, detectives and comedy.


UPN and the WB

-who did they benefit from?


New Broadcast networks in the 1990's

-want to follow the exact same model as Fox did.


UPN benefited from: Paramount/Viacom merger

WB benefited from: Time-Warner/Turner merger

-mini-network or "netlet" approach; few affiliates, target specific audiences (mid-casting)


Telecom Act of 1996

-3 things it allowed


Under Clinton Administration - the biggest peice of legislation regarding television since the Comm act of 1934.


*Structural deregulation: get ride of the rules and ownership limits for networks.

-Eliminating cross-ownership restrictions - Examples: MSO's and Broadcast Networks

-Extension of license period: 8 years


Communications Decency Act

-said what?




-part of the Telecom Act

It is illegal to distribute pornography via the internet.

-this did not work because you can't place an American rule on the WORLD wide web.


Self-regulation offered by the TV industry

-V-chip requirement to let parents set what shows kids can and cannot watch on TV.

-had to make a new ratings syste so people knew what they were about to watch.


Result of the Telecom Act of 1996?


Analog vs. digital technology?



The biggest, fastest period of media consolidation in history (1996+)



Digital information doesn't degrade, can be compressed.

Early History of the Internet

1950's/early 60's - "networked" computers

-when the machine itself was running it would get super hot.

1962- ARPA proposes dispersed networked communications: ARPANET

1968: ARPANET design


What is Packet Switching?


What are Protocols?


Information can be broken down into peices so that it can be effieciently transferred through the network.


Protocol- rules for how information can travel across the network in a format that will be readable for all computers.

What are media conglomerates?
A media conglomerate, is a company that owns large numbers of companies in various mass media such as television, radio, publishing, movies, and the Internet. Media conglomerates strive for policies that facilitate their control of the markets around the world.
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