Tuesday, November 7th, marks the 50th anniversary of the Public Broadcasting Act, which established public broadcasting services in the United States. When President Lyndon B. Johnson signed this historic act in 1967, he hoped public media would serve to satisfy "America's appetite for excellence" and " to enrich man's spirit.".
This crucial piece of legislation created the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, which today supports nearly 1,500 public media stations across the country by distributing federal funding amounting to roughly $1.35 per citizen, per year. This investment is crucial to public media stations, like our own WOSU, which leverage federal funding – many times over – to provide a welcoming space for childhood education and lifelong learning, the arts and culture, history, science, and civil discourse.
While public media receives a portion of its funding from the federal government, President Johnson was explicit in his decree that "it will be carefully guarded from the government or from party control. It will be free and independent - and it will belong to all of our people.".
Since that day 50 years ago, public broadcasting services like PBS and NPR have been enriching the lives of citizens across our great nation and around the world through creative, original content, and thought-provoking news coverage. ITSCO is proud to be a part of WOSU Public Media which serves as central Ohio's leading PBS and NPR member stations and to enrich the lives of those we serve through content and experiences that engage, inform, and inspire.
At a time when local news coverage is dramatically reduced, public media stations are expanding their journalism network, innovating in their storytelling and reaching audiences on platforms they prefer, anytime, anywhere. In a recent survey, public radio stations have achieved the No. 1 ranking as the primary news source in 26 of the country’s top 50 markets.
Join us in celebrating public media, and the many valuable services it helps provide, by using the hashtag #PubMedia50, and showing your support for PBS, NPR, and your local member station.