Meaning of BROADCASTING in English
electronic transmission of radio and television signals designed for public consumption. It does not include private or military transmissions intended for specific receivers. Generally speaking, broadcast systems deliver a wide range of educational, informational, and entertainment programming to a large audience. After Guglielmo Marconi's pioneering wireless broadcast of Morse code across the Atlantic Ocean in 1901, experiments in practical radio communication were vigorously pursued on both sides of the Atlantic. Radiobroadcasting was first undertaken in the United States by amateur enthusiasts, one of whom aired the first known program on Christmas Eve of 1906. This transmission was typical of the noncommercial nature of early broadcasts. The rapid development of technology increased public demand for equipment and programming, and the first commercial station, KDKA of Pittsburgh, became operational in November 1920; by November 1922 there were 564 licensed radiobroadcasters in the United States. Rapid expansion, however, brought problems. The establishment of the first broadcasting network, in 1926, made radio into a national industry. Profits from advertising revenues and equipment sales turned the broadcasting systems into a powerful economic force. Because the industry was essentially unregulated, monopolistic practices evolved, with receiver manufacturers establishing favourable business relations with certain broadcasting companies. The federal government responded with the Radio Act of 1927, which clearly delineated the rights of both consumers and producers and created the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to oversee broadcast operations. The 1930s and '40s were the golden age of radio. As broadcasters learned how to utilize the medium, new types of drama, light entertainment, and documentary programming were developed; traditional art forms (especially stage drama and music) were also transmitted with success. During this time, regular television broadcasting began in several countries, including Germany (1935), Britain (1936), and the United States (1941). World War II severely restricted the growth of the new industry, but after the war it developed rapidly, especially in the United States. Television stations often began as subsidiaries of existing radio networks, with shared administrative and creative policies, but the new service swiftly superseded the older medium in importance to become the most powerful and pervasive mode of communication in the industrialized nations of the world. Colour-television broadcasts were inaugurated in 1954, but the widespread use of colour sets did not begin until a decade later. The development of satellite transmission of live television, videotape and videodisc machines, and subscription-television systems has vastly expanded the entertainment choices available in private homes. Radio and television systems can generally be categorized by two criteria: the legal and commercial status of administration and ownership, and the nature and intent of the programming offered to the audience. All broadcasting organizations are to some degree subject to government control, but state-operated systems are directly controlled through government agencies or departments. They often serve as conduits for official information and programming. Public corporations, on the other hand, are licensed, chartered, and financed by government grants and public subscription but exercise virtually complete control over administrative and creative policy. The British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) is generally acknowledged as a prototype in this area. Radiotelevisione Italiana is an example of a partnership between government and private enterprise. The Italian government owns the largest share of its stock but exercises no direct control over editorial decisions. The system is instead managed by a nonpartisan committee, with input from private stockholders. Operating revenue is generated by both advertising sales and government stipend. Privately owned and operated systems predominate in the United States, and there are equivalent companies worldwide. Almost all these systems are commercial in structure and derive profit from the sale of advertising time to sponsors. Publicly franchised corporations are usually sensitive to audience taste and, freed from commercial considerations, are able to provide programming of a challenging or controversial nature. Commercial broadcasters, however, must attract a large audience to ensure the success of their advertising promotions, and they are quick to cancel or alter programs that do not generate a wide appeal. Most avoid material that is challenging or of limited interest, and concentrate instead on programs that have the broadest appeal, such as adventure, drama, comedy, and sports. electronic transmission of radio and television signals that are intended for general public reception, as distinguished from private signals that are directed to specific receivers. In its most common form, broadcasting may be described as the systematic dissemination of entertainment, information, educational programming, and other features for simultaneous reception by a scattered audience with appropriate receiving apparatus. Broadcasts may be audible only, as in radio, or visual or a combination of both, as in television. Sound broadcasting in this sense may be said to have started about 1920, while television broadcasting began in the 1930s. With the advent of cable television in the early 1950s and the use of satellites for broadcasting beginning in the early 1960s, television reception improved and the number of programs receivable increased dramatically. The scope of this article encompasses the nontechnical aspects of broadcasting. It traces the development of radio and television broadcasting, surveys the state of broadcasting in various countries throughout the world, and discusses the relationship of the broadcaster to government and the public. Discussion of broadcasting as a medium of art includes a description of borrowings from other media. For more detailed information about electronic components and techniques used in radio and television communications, see the articles electronics; telecommunication system; radio; and television. Jorge A. Camacho The Editors of the Encyclopdia Britannica Additional reading The history of radio and television broadcasting Asa Briggs, The History of Broadcasting in the United Kingdom, 4 vol. (196179), is a solid and detailed study. Erik Barnouw, A History of Broadcasting in the United States, 3 vol. (196670), is a lively and revealing journalistic account, while his Tube of Plenty: The Evolution of American Television (1975) condenses and updates the three-volume work but focusses more on the development of television. Fred Shunaman (ed.), From Spark to Satellite: A History of Radio Communication (1979), is a basic overview. Hugh G.J. Aitken, Syntony and Spark: The Origins of Radio (1976, reprinted 1985), covers early technology, from Hertz's experiments in 1888 to events in 1912. W.J. Baker, A History of the Marconi Company (1970), studies the development and commercial exploitation of radio in the 20th century, with particular reference to Guglielmo Marconi and the Marconi company. S.G. Sturmey, The Economic Development of Radio (1958), reviews the economic forces governing the worldwide development of radio. Albert Abramson, The History of Television, 1880 to 1941 (1987), chronicles in detail television's worldwide development. Jeff Greenfield, Television: The First Fifty Years (1977), a popular, heavily illustrated overview, focusses on the United States. Francis Wheen, Television: A History (1985), contains a wealth of illustrated reference material organized by genres. The broadcaster and the public Audience measurement is discussed in William A. Belson, The Impact of Television: Methods and Findings in Program Research (1967); and Hugh Malcolm Beville, Jr., Audience Ratings: Radio, Television, and Cable, rev. ed. (1988), which includes a discussion of Peoplemeters (trademark). Les Brown, Television: The Business Behind the Box (1971), takes a critical look at network policies in programming. A history and description of radio broadcasts for external reception is found in Donald R. Browne, International Radio Broadcasting: The Limits of the Limitless Medium (1982), which gives special attention to the BBC, Voice of America, and Radio Moscow and to religious and Third World broadcasting. Philip Lewis, Educational Television Guidebook (1961), presents information on instructional television from the educational and technical points of view. Carnegie Commission on the Future of Public Broadcasting, A Public Trust (1979), is a report on the future of public broadcasting. Razelle Frankl, Televangelism: The Marketing of Popular Religion (1987), is a descriptive study of the religious television industry. Andrew Goodwin, Dancing in the Distraction Factory: Music Television and Popular Culture (1992), treats both the production and consumption of this visual medium.Sociological aspects of broadcasting are explored in Raymond Williams, Britain in the Sixties: Communications (1962), on the role of mass media in dissolving class structure; Jean Cazeneuve, Sociologie de la radio-tlvision, 6th ed. corrected (1986); and Paddy Scannell and David Cardiff, A Social History of British Broadcasting (1991 ), addressing the impact of broadcasting on modern British life. Works focussing specifically on television's impact include Harry J. Skornia, Television and Society (1965), a critical view of broadcasting in the United States; George Comstock et al., Television and Human Behavior (1978), a summary of research findings; Hilde T. Himmelweit, A.N. Oppenheim, and Pamela Vince, Television and the Child (1958, reprinted 1979), an authoritative study of the impact of television on children; R.J. Thomson, Television Crime-Drama (1959), an early study of the impact of violence on children and adolescents; Irene S. Shaw and David S. Newell, Violence on Television: Programme Content and Viewer Perception (1972), focussing on the United Kingdom; and United States, Surgeon General's Scientific Advisory Committee on Television and Social Behavior, Television and Growing Up: The Impact of Television Violence (1972), the summary volume of a three-year inquiry, supplemented by Television and Behavior: Ten Years of Scientific Progress and Implications for the Eighties (1982), an elaborated update with broader coverage of topics and age groups. Broadcasting operations Studies of the state of broadcasting in various countries and regions, some now useful only for historical purposes, include Sydney W. Head, World Broadcasting Systems (1985), a comparative analysis of all aspects of radio, television, and cable systems in developed, developing, and undeveloped countries worldwide; Philip T. Rosen (ed.), International Handbook of Broadcasting Systems (1988), including coverage of broadcasting history, government regulations, and industry economics for 24 countries, with a bibliography for each; Burton Paulu, Radio and Television Broadcasting on the European Continent (1967), Radio and Television Broadcasting in Eastern Europe (1974), and Television and Radio in the United Kingdom (1981); E.G. Wedell, Broadcasting and Public Policy (1968), a critical view of broadcasting in the United Kingdom; Sydney W. Head (ed.), Broadcasting in Africa (1974), a comprehensive survey, including a bibliography; Elihu Katz et al., Broadcasting in the Third World: Promise and Performance (1977), an analysis of broadcasting in developing countries; John A. Lent (ed.), Broadcasting in Asia and the Pacific: A Continental Survey of Radio and Television (1978); Anthony Smith (ed.), Television and Political Life (1979), a collection of essays describing patterns of control by political parties over television broadcasting in six European countries; William E. McCavitt (ed.), Broadcasting Around the World (1981), generally useful, though the chapter on the former Soviet Union should be read with caution; Douglas A. Boyd, Broadcasting in the Arab World: A Survey of the Electronic Media in the Middle East, 2nd ed. (1993); Sydney W. Head and Christopher H. Sterling, Broadcasting in America: A Survey of Electronic Media, 6th ed. (1990); Eva Etzioni-Halevy, National Broadcasting Under Siege: A Comparative Study of Australia, Britain, Israel, and West Germany (1987); and Peter M. Lewis and Jerry Booth, The Invisible Medium: Public, Commercial, and Community Radio (1989), on radio's changing roles in selected countries.
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