1 AFTERNOON SESSION
2 (1:40 p.m.)
3 MR. MOONVES: Ladies and gentlemen, can we
4 gather. Can we reconvene, please.
5 First, Norm Ornstein for a couple of brief
7 MR. ORNSTEIN: I just wanted to suggest to the
8 members, we will be discussing this at the conclusion of
9 this panel or towards the end and not everybody will be
10 here. Since we are meeting in Los Angeles next, our early
11 plan, which was to focus next on the larger questions of
12 the political process, it doesn't make a whole lot of
13 sense to do that out in California.
14 So we should think a little bit more and come to
15 a conclusion about our agenda for the next session in Los
16 Angeles. We have some ideas that we'll put on the table
17 later on this afternoon.
18 PANEL: EDUCATIONAL PROG
19 RAMMING IN THE DIGITAL ERA
20 MR. MOONVES: Good. Thank you, Norm.
21 We are graced with a wonderful panel of five
22 experts in the area of education programming. Our panel
23 member Peggy Charren has put this together. Peggy, as you
24 all know, has been the bane of every network's existence
25 for many years and is fondly known as the godmother of
1 children's television.
2 So Peggy, I would love to turn the panel over to
4 MS. CHARREN: Thanks.
5 I'll sit over here since we have so many members
6 of this panel.
7 First I want to thank the committee staff and
8 some members of this committee, too, for --
9 MR. MOONVES: Peggy, put the microphone closer
10 to your mouth, please. Thank you.
11 MS. CHARREN: First I want to thank the
12 committee staff and the members of this committee for
13 helping to put this panel together, and it was very
14 significant help.
15 This afternoon's panel focuses on education.
16 There's no question that television educates. It's
17 because violent, stereotyped, overcommercialized program
18 educates that so many people worry about it. But when we
19 talk of TV's power to educate we usually mean the ability
20 to give us what we need to know to grow up healthy and
21 prosper in a democratic society.
22 Every U.S. broadcast license includes a legal
23 mandate to serve the public interest. Over the past 50
24 years Congress and the FCC have developed policies
25 designed to reinforce that obligation. For example, the
1 Children's Television Act of 1990 presently requires three
2 hours a week of educational programming for children on
3 each station. Yet even this minimal guideline is too much
4 for some TV executives to accept.
5 In "Any" magazine this month Mark Lieber, who's
6 the Senior Vice President of Children's Programming at
7 Polygon Television, wrote: "No matter how cleverly we
8 disguise education, most children over the age of four are
9 inclined to turn the channel. Instead of mandating a
10 specific number of hours per broadcaster, it would be more
11 effective to devise a collaboratively funded one-hour
12 family special to air each month."
13 He suggests that all the networks and cable
14 companies air that show simultaneously. That's one hour a
15 month. Well, so much for diversity.
16 Without discussion and decisions about how many
17 new programming opportunities are inherent in digital uses
18 of the spectrum that can be used to serve the American
19 public, we think that maybe vested interests will win out
20 over the public interest.
21 James Day, who is the past President of WNET and
22 a big person who helped to organize public broadcasting,
23 put it very nicely in a book he recently wrote. He said:
24 "In the communications shakeout that's coming there will
25 be winners and losers. Some will survive and others will
1 slip into limbo, victims of the inexorable economic forces
2 that shape the fate of the mass media."
3 "Economic forces," he said, "however, are not the
4 only arbiter of social needs. This Nation, dependent as
5 it is upon an informed electorate, must not permit its
6 organs of enlightenment to be shaped by the same forces
7 that determine its leading brands of beer, headache
8 remedy, and dog food."
9 Now, you may ask what all this has to do with
10 our deliberations here today. I'm sure that today's panel
11 will have some answers. First we're going to hear from
12 Gordon Ambach, who's the Executive Director of the Council
13 of Chief State School Officers. He holds a B.A. in
14 American studies from Yale, a master's in teaching
15 history, and he served as the New York State Commissioner
16 of Education and President of the University of the State
17 of New York.
18 He developed and implemented the Nation's most
19 comprehensive school reform act, the Regents' Action Plan,
20 establishing rigorous diploma standards. He served on the
21 National Committee on Libraries and Information Services.
22 And I was particularly pleased to note in his
23 resume that he's a graduate of Hope High School in
24 Providence, because that's where my husband went.
25 Anyway, we're delighted to welcome Gordon
2 STATEMENT OF GORDON AMBACH, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR,
3 COUNCIL OF CHIEF STATE SCHOOL OFFICERS
4 MR. AMBACH: Thank you very kindly, Peggy.
5 Co-Chairs and members of this distinguished
6 committee: It is a great privilege for me to be with you
7 this afternoon and to address the subject of public
8 interest obligation with respect to elementary and
9 secondary student achievement.
10 I have provided a copy of my brief remarks. It
11 should be at your places. I really would like to make
12 five points. I have five minutes and that divides rather
13 evenly, although a couple of the points have much more
14 weight than do others.
15 I'm going to speak not only on behalf of public
16 elementary and secondary, but nonpublic elementary and
17 secondary interests, and about learning both inside and
18 outside of schools.
19 The public interest obligation for the use of
20 digital television to improve student achievement has
21 extraordinarily high stakes for our Nation. The
22 acquisition and use of knowledge is the major resource for
23 our society in the coming century. Information
24 technologies are keyed to access and use of knowledge,
25 which is pivotal for our quality of life, our economic
1 development, and indeed our security.
2 The Nation's success depends upon how
3 effectively all members of our society are prepared to use
4 information technologies, which in turn means that the
5 proficiency of our citizens depends upon the quality of
6 our elementary and secondary education offerings and
7 student capacity to use the information technologies.
8 The advice of this committee in my judgment on
9 the public interest obligations with respect to elementary
10 and secondary education must be exceptionally bold and
11 commensurate with the high stakes of our Nation for our
12 information IQ, if you will, in an internationally
13 competitive environment.
14 Now, at pivotal points in the history of this
15 country over these past two decades -- two centuries,
16 excuse me -- the Federal Government has in fact from time
17 to time made very significant decisions to commit the
18 Nation's resources to address our educational challenges.
19 In the eighteenth century we made land grants for
20 establishing local school districts. In the nineteenth
21 century we made land grants to establish the most
22 extraordinary system of colleges and universities that the
23 world knows, the land grant acts in the latter part of
24 that century.
25 In the twentieth century we had things like the
1 GI Bill post-World War Two, which created probably the
2 greatest access to the development of advanced capacity
3 that any society has ever put forward at one particular
4 time. In the sixties we've had major Federal
5 interventions for children who happen to be economically
6 disadvantaged or have disabilities, which have changed
7 substantially opportunities. I know you saw the
8 demonstration this morning with respect to persons who
9 happen to have disabilities. The Federal Government and
10 its initiatives here have been absolutely extraordinary.
11 And of course, most recently we've had the universal
12 services discounts for schools and libraries with respect
13 to telecommunications services.
14 Now, I cite these because at various times there
15 have been extraordinarily bold decisions made and I
16 believe we're at the same point with respect to the use of
17 the digital capacity, digital television broadcasting.
18 Now, in order to justify a public interest
19 obligation and elementary and secondary education, rather
20 than starting with this perspective of what's the
21 technology and how we might use it, it seems to me that we
22 must start with what are the needs in elementary and
23 secondary education and in fact can any of them or should
24 any of them be addressed by the applications of digital
1 I've suggested for you several very specific
2 items where there is a great need within the elementary
3 and secondary schools that can be addressed at least in
4 part through applications of digital television. A, point
5 4: Access to the use of information technologies so that
6 students can learn the skills and proficiencies to help in
7 their learning. This is an extraordinary equity issue
8 right now across our country. Perhaps the most important
9 equity issue in elementary and secondary education right
10 now is the have's and have-not's issue with respect to
11 access to information technologies.
12 The second is in access to timely, inexpensive
13 databases. This is the issue of how extensively is the
14 Internet or its successor nets going to be available to
15 children in our schools and outside.
16 The third is the opportunity for interactive
17 distant direct teaching and learning in subjects which are
18 typically unavailable: AP courses, for example, in some
19 schools; or calculus or advanced mathematics; or master
20 classes with performers or artists, such as Izaak Perlman
21 with respect to teaching in very, very special
22 circumstances by distance learning.
23 I happen to have seen Perlman, incidentally,
24 conduct a master violin class with four students in remote
25 locations -- one of the most extraordinary things I have
1 ever seen. And he would tell you, just as a parentheses,
2 he can teach more effectively that way in many cases than
3 he can teach in person. There's an interesting dynamic,
4 that the student loses the anxiety of being at the
5 master's side and focuses on what are the techniques. The
6 sound isn't as great as if you were next door, but the
7 potential, I use just as an illustration, is incredible.
8 Next and in a way a derivative from the issue of
9 those subjects not ordinarily available, but one which is
10 so important for our country, is the use of our digital
11 capacity to help with the learning of languages other than
12 English, both with respect to our populations who are non-
13 English speaking and who need to learn both English and
14 maintain their own language for our overall capacity and
15 for our English speaking population that needs to learn to
16 communicate with the majority of the world which of course
17 speaks languages other than English.
18 The next is using technologies to learn to
19 conduct scientific experiments or operate complex
20 machinery by simulation, what any major industry does at
21 this point with respect to its own employees and something
22 that is extraordinarily important for learning for
23 occupations in our secondary levels, to be able to learn
24 at distance by simulation.
25 The next: cost effective, round the clock
1 channels of communications for students, parents, and
2 teachers to reinforce learning through understanding
3 expectations for student performance, for access to
4 curriculum materials at home, for informing about
5 progress, for homework assignments, for monitoring
7 The next is recording and displaying student
8 performance through portfolios or other examples related
9 to their standards and for informing the public on school
11 Finally, the preparation of teachers through
12 observation of good practices in the United States and
13 other nations, exchanges on teaching technique, coaching
14 of candidates and practitioners from offsite locations.
15 I might also offer you a brief parenthetical
16 note there. There has just been done a major study
17 comparing mathematics and science education in this
18 country and in 40 other countries. I happened to
19 represent the United States in conducting that study. The
20 most fascinating aspect of it is comparative videotapes of
21 teaching in different countries, and it is stunning what
22 effect that has been by way of having our teachers now be
23 able to watch Japanese teachers of mathematics or German
24 teachers of mathematics and actually see how they handle
25 the subject.
1 Now, the potential there, both within this
2 country and across countries, is just extraordinary.
3 Remember, we are dealing with the heart of the educational
4 system, the teaching and learning of that system.
5 Incidentally, you'll notice every single example
6 I have just given you is on teaching and learning. Every
7 one of them has to do with student achievement. We're not
8 talking here about management information systems, we're
9 not talking here about other aspects. We're talking about
10 the core of the function of education.
11 So let me conclude then by way of saying that
12 the capacity of digital television and that which can make
13 a contribution on each of these needs, surely on other
14 needs, is fantastic. To use it effectively will require,
15 in my judgment, new and very imaginative decisions on the
16 dedications of entire channels or sub-channels or major
17 parts of them in order to expand the number of pipes or
18 the size of the overall pipeline for information flow and
20 In addition, the Nation must make a substantial
21 commitment of a part of the revenues from the growth of
22 using digital television for dedication to creating the
23 content for the learning that goes through these
24 pipelines. There is precedent for Federal action to
25 establish revenue streams for education that use allocated
1 resources, and they go back two centuries: the land
2 grants and then allocation of how they were used; timber
3 rights, mining rights; and indeed, brought up to date, in
4 a way the universal services provision is such a kind of
6 Now, I said to you that I was going to propose
7 some bold solutions. Maybe these are beyond the scope of
8 this particular advisory committee. I hope they're not,
9 because in my judgment what you do by way of your
10 recommendations and what is done by way of the use of this
11 incredible capacity in technology, an asset which is
12 genuinely that of our Nation as a whole, will have or can
13 have an extraordinary impact on achievement of elementary
14 and secondary students in the future.
15 Thank you very much.
16 MS. CHARREN: Thank you, Gordon. You validate
17 what I made my approach to this panel when I started
18 thinking about it. It's, after all, "Programming in the
19 Digital Era" and, instead of focusing on particular kinds
20 of programming, I thought it was appropriate to focus on
21 where we learned. First is K, pre-K through 12, and next
22 it's higher education, and it's also libraries and public
23 broadcasting as a place on the screen and as a thread for
24 all these institutional possibilities.
25 Anyway, next we have higher education, and to
1 discuss it we have Janet Poley, who is President of
2 American Distance Learning Consortium -- ADEC. Is that
3 right, ADEC? Right.
4 In March she was named one of the hundred
5 outstanding technology leaders in government, business,
6 and academia by Federal Computer Week. She's been
7 Director-Deputy Administrator for Communication,
8 Information, and Technology of the Extension Service of
9 the U.S. Department of Agriculture. She served as
10 Coordinator of the Development Management Center, Chief of
11 Party for the Training for Rural Development Projects for
12 six years in Tanzania, and for that she was given an
13 Excalibur Award from Congress in 1983.
14 She's been involved in technology, technical
15 assistance, and all kinds of evaluation in more than 20
16 countries from Asia, Africa, and Europe, and was a member
17 of the first USDA Extension team sent to Poland to explore
18 establishing an Extension Service there.
19 I imagine it's easier to do what you have to do
20 this afternoon. Anyway, Janet.
21 STATEMENT OF JANET POLEY, PRESIDENT,
22 AMERICAN DISTANCE EDUCATION CONSORTIUM
23 MS. POLEY: Thank you very much.
24 Good afternoon. I'm very pleased to have an
25 opportunity to speak with you on behalf of ADEC, the
1 Distance Education Consortium that includes about 50 of
2 the major state universities and land grant institutions
3 in the United States. We're also affiliated with many
4 nonprofits and professional associations, and what I hope
5 to do is to share with you some of our vision and ideas
6 that may be helpful as you think about this very important
7 public and educational interest.
8 I wanted you to know that as a group of higher
9 education institutions we have about 39 uplink sites
10 across the United States, about 2,000 downlink sites that
11 go into almost all of the counties of the United States.
12 We partner with many groups, and I would applaud what
13 Gordon has said in terms of the K-12 sector. I think we
14 have a seamless kind of operation and some of the needs
15 that he mentioned will not be met without a collaboration
16 between higher education, a number of you, and the K-12
18 One of the things that I wanted to mention up
19 front: I come from the land grant institutions and ADEC
20 was founded on that land grant base, and I think this is a
21 very important dimension of who we are and where we come
22 from. Today we are active participants in the Next
23 Generation Internet and Internet 2. We're experimenting
24 with interactive technology integration that's appropriate
25 for learning applications. We have historically black
1 colleges and universities that are members of our
2 organization as well as tribal colleges.
3 We stretch from coast to coast and around the
4 world. We have foreign educational institutions involved
5 in Australia, Mexico, Latin America, and Africa.
6 As a distributed virtual organization, we work
7 with a variety of professional associations and nonprofits
8 in nutrition, health, children's welfare, youth
9 development, food technology, and the physical and
10 biological sciences. If you want to know more about ADEC,
11 you can find us on the World Wide Web, www.adec.edu, and
12 you'll find some very interesting programming there that I
13 hope will be more broadly used in the public interest and
14 educational sector.
15 My member institutions want you to know how
16 important we think it is to ensure that this transition to
17 the digital television age takes into account building a
18 vibrant public and educational broadcasting sector. We
19 think that the digital revolution must be developed to
20 serve educational goals critical to the future of our
21 Nation. I think Gordon did an eloquent job of saying how
22 important education is to this Nation's future. We talk
23 here about knowledge economy. It's absolutely essential.
24 Today I want to talk briefly about the five
25 areas that we think are highly important to expand
1 programming to meet the growing demands of our clients
2 around the country. We are currently using all available
3 technology to program to community leaders and learners in
4 parenting, nutrition, health, environmental science, food
5 production, food safety, community development, consumer
6 affairs, workforce skills, and volunteer development.
7 Research tells us of the importance of active
8 learning and we're entering an era where multidirectional
9 digital communication can restore our ability to treat
10 each other as intelligent and engaged partners. But we
11 must think about this as an evolution, and I think that's
12 what many of you were saying this morning. It isn't going
13 to happen overnight.
14 In the short term, we can work together to
15 provide existing educational offerings to our citizens.
16 In the longer term, we can develop new integrated digital
17 systems matched to learning styles and the needs of those
18 we serve. I want to just briefly hit on those five areas
19 that we are hearing from across the country as being
20 important, and my paper testimony will give some very good
21 examples of the institutions doing that kind of
23 First of all, parenting and other programs
24 focused on improving the lives of children and youth;
25 Secondly, the area of health;
1 Third, lifelong learning, and with a special
2 emphasis on the aging population. I notice I'm not the
3 only one here who's taking on and putting off glasses.
5 So there are some special needs that we all have
6 as we age.
7 Workforce technology; and virtual certificates
8 and degrees.
9 We're hearing a great deal, I think, these days
10 about those five areas and there are a tremendous number
11 of activities and efforts going on in state universities
12 and land grant colleges. The governors are even involved
13 in something called Western Governors University, the
14 private sector in Phoenix University. So it's a whole new
15 evolving, developing kind of marketplace as far as
16 education and learning.
17 The digital television revolution gives us, I
18 think, a wonderful opportunity to move from a mindset of
19 scarcity to a mindset of abundance, of multiple channels
20 and services. We can now have the long overdue national
21 conversation about what this television appliance does and
22 does not bring into our homes. We can talk about quality
23 and content and finally bring the television medium to a
24 place front and center in strengthening our local and
25 national economies.
1 We've already alluded to the fact that 98
2 percent of American homes have at least one television and
3 67 percent have two. We know this is the most ubiquitous
4 media that we have that goes into our homes.
5 In the short term, our task may simply be
6 organizing broader access to more program choices. In the
7 longer term, we have a wonderful opportunity to develop
8 this public and educational sector so as to engage
9 learners actively in an environment where data, voice, and
10 video are integrated interactively, as talked about this
12 Today, for all practical purposes the
13 institutions that I work with, the land grant
14 institutions, are frozen out of the prospect of creating
15 affordable access to the medium people watch, or have on,
16 more than six hours a day. The evolution to digital
17 television will give us an opportunity to become more
18 socially responsible.
19 Surely we can encourage broad participation in
20 this new television and Internet integration. Surely we
21 can carve out some organized time and space among the
22 hundreds of digital channels and services to assure that
23 educational programs are easily found -- and I'll repeat
24 that -- easily found among the offerings. Surely we can
25 allow universities and nonprofits to have some control
1 over deciding what they will offer and when. And we need
2 to do this in partnership.
3 We need many groups to be involved in organizing
4 this new and dynamic digital public interest and education
5 sector. We need real collaborations and partnerships. We
6 need to look at this so channels can be dedicated to
7 various audience segments and types of programs. We need
8 to plan so that a rich diversity of programs are aired for
9 the rich diversity of the people we call Americans.
10 Beyond all else, we need to develop this public interest
11 sector so that it spans and encompasses the Nation. The
12 quality of our future depends upon everyone becoming
13 lifelong learners.
14 In the 1800's colleges and universities were
15 granted land to develop an organizational system that
16 would take knowledge to the people. Higher education
17 based on a practical curriculum, learning applicable to
18 real life and open to anyone, not just elites, was a
19 radical idea. The Land Grant Act of 1862 changed our
20 world forever.
21 You on this committee hold the future of America
22 and the globe in your hand. I know you will think long
23 and hard about this digital grant to broadcasters and how
24 it can be used in the public interest. It's clear to my
25 constituents in every state and county in this Nation that
1 broadcasters, in return for their exclusive use of a
2 public good, should be required to carry an increased
3 amount of educational and public interest programming,
4 located so it can be easily found and widely offered on an
5 affordable basis.
6 The digital revolution, after all, is about
7 restoring the rights of all Americans to participate in
8 the dialogue which shapes their Nation. The development
9 of a broadcasting environment that encourages the
10 development of a real public and education sector is
11 essential for the sustainable security of our Nation.
12 I wish you well and know that Americans in every
13 community in the Nation will be following your actions
14 closely. They must. Their vital interests are at stake.
15 Thank you very
16 MS. CHARREN: Thank you very much, Janet.
17 Next we have Marilyn Gell Mason, who is Director
18 of the Cleveland Public Library. She served as Director
19 of the White House Conference on Library and Information
20 Services and as a member of the Board of Trustees of the
21 Online Computer Library Corporation. She is a member of
22 the Visiting Committee School of Information Studies at
23 Syracuse University.
24 And I'm going to cut short the bios, which are
25 in your packets, so that we can get to the question
2 STATEMENT OF MARILYN GELL MASON, DIRECTOR,
3 CLEVELAND PUBLIC LIBRARY
4 MS. MASON: You forgot the "walk on water, talk
5 to God," all that.
6 When Peggy invited me to meet with you today she
7 warned me. She said: Now, Marilyn, this isn't like
8 testifying before a Congressional committee; these people
9 really want to hear what you have to say.
11 But I can't help thinking that many of you may
12 be wondering what libraries have to do with broadcasting.
13 I hope in the five minutes I have allotted to me I can
14 convince you that libraries and digital broadcasters have
15 interests that intersect in some very important points.
16 Public libraries are our most democratic
17 institutions. Their job is to provide every man, woman,
18 and child, regardless of age, race, level of education,
19 economic condition, physical ability or disability, with
20 the knowledge and information that is needed, in the time,
21 place, and in the format they need it. Thus we are
22 democratic not only in the people, or audience, that we
23 serve, but also in the services, or the programming, that
24 we provide.
25 Because libraries are modestly funded, you may
1 be unaware of the range of our reach. A poll that was
2 completed just this week in Cleveland revealed that 77
3 percent of the residents of the city have been in the
4 library in the last year. I hope you're surprised. I
5 was, and I'm used to working with all of those people.
6 All of these people are inner city residents.
7 Cleveland is an intensely inner city city, with almost no
8 suburban reach to it. 30 percent are below the poverty
9 level. Almost half of the children are in below poverty
10 level homes. The population includes young children,
11 senior citizens, owners of small businesses, students,
12 people struggling to get a job, learning to read, getting
13 information about public assistance, or simply reading the
14 newspaper or perhaps a good book.
15 They find what they want in printed material, on
16 audio or video tape, and more and more frequently on the
17 Internet. Beginning in 1991, the Cleveland Public Library
18 was the first large library in the country to provide
19 Internet access to the public. We were, however, far from
20 the last. Today 60 percent of the public libraries in the
21 country provide Internet access to the public.
22 Now, I know you're wondering why I'm talking
23 about the Internet because we're talking about digital
24 broadcasting today. Technologies continue to change, and
25 what was once the exclusive domain of print, then shared
1 by broadcast technologies, now by Internet, will in the
2 future be shared by digital broadcasting.
3 Although many of us continue to think of
4 television as a distribution mechanism for entertainment
5 and perhaps advertising, it has always had a larger public
6 responsibility, as demonstrated by broadcasts of the
7 Persian Gulf War, confirmation hearings of Clarence
8 Thomas, children's educational programming, and a recent
9 tradition of televised presidential debates. Even the
10 controversial broadcast of the O.J. Simpson trial last
11 year provoked stimulating conversations about race
12 relations in the United States, a topic that has smoldered
13 underground for far too long.
14 With the advent of digital television, the
15 public responsibilities of broadcasters will expand in
16 direct proportion to expanded technical capabilities. I
17 think that's an important point. As television moves
18 beyond entertainment in a definitive way to transmit data
19 and even provide an interactive capability now available
20 through wired computer transmission, digital broadcasters
21 must be part of our long-standing national commitment to
22 public access to knowledge and information, a commitment
23 that gave rise to public schools, public libraries, and,
24 most, recently public access to the Internet.
25 As technologies continue to change at an ever
1 increasing rate, the public has come to rely on the
2 library to ensure that information does not become the
3 sole prerogative of the rich. Some of you may have heard
4 the discussions of signs of death of the public library,
5 the fact that libraries have become obsolete. In the same
6 poll that was on my desk on Wednesday, we asked the public
7 how important they thought libraries were in this
8 information age. Some of you might want to pause a minute
9 and think about the answer to that question.
10 The question was: "Because of the increased use
11 of computers and information technology, libraries are
12 more important than they used to be. Yes, no, or not
13 sure." Just form in your own mind, how many people think
14 libraries are more important? The answer was 81 percent.
15 Far from becoming obsolete, libraries are becoming
16 essential to the lives of the vast majority of individuals
17 in the community.
18 Digital television is the next big leap in the
19 development of information technology, and you just
20 thought it was for broadcasting. Discussing the future of
21 digital technology today is like the discussion of
22 computers in the 1970's, when I opined that they had no
23 future, especially in libraries, because they didn't have
24 the storage capacity, they were too slow, and they were
25 too expensive. That was true in the 1970's. It is, of
1 course, no longer true.
2 While it is true that the digital spectrum is
3 limited, it is not yet clear what that limitation may mean
4 in the future, as signal compression technology continues
5 to improve. My best guess -- and I listened with great
6 interest to the panel this morning -- my best guess is
7 that, whatever any of us may anticipate, it will be wrong
8 and will probably fall short of what we imagine it will
10 Still, even today many are suggesting that
11 digital broadcasting will be the vehicle that brings the
12 vast holdings of the Internet to the masses. If that is
13 the case, all of us have a stake in ensuring free public
14 access to the information people need to live every aspect
15 of their lives.
16 Whether future delivery systems are wired,
17 wireless, or some combination of the two, there is a rich
18 opportunity for public libraries to work with broadcasters
19 to ensure public access to information. A dedicated
20 interactive library channel, for instance, would enable
21 anyone without a computer or an Internet connection to
22 access to full range of electronic library offerings using
23 his or her television set.
24 These offerings already include today: the
25 library's catalogue, numerous electronic databases, access
1 to other libraries, access to other Internet resources,
2 materials that the library has already digitized,
3 materials that other libraries, including the Library of
4 Congress, have digitized, and educational programs,
5 including computerized literacy programs.
6 At a time when only one household in seven has
7 access to the Internet, this scenario is appealing for
8 public as well as commercial ventures. I can imagine, for
9 instance, a child doing some research on Martin Luther
10 King, Junior, a popular topic this time of year, who
11 cannot get to his or her local branch library, as much as
12 we try to make them close and convenient, who could turn
13 on the television, search the electronic Encyclopedia
14 Britannica, and actually see Martin Luther King, Junior,
15 delivering the "I Have a Dream" speech. This could be
16 done today.
17 Commercial and public interests are not always
18 at war. Often they exist side by side in a symbiotic,
19 mutually productive relationship. One example of this is
20 the now almost ancient relationship between libraries and
21 bookstores. Study after study has demonstrated that
22 people who use libraries also buy books. They don't use
23 libraries instead of buying books. It is not a zero sum
24 game. The existence of each encourages the use of both.
25 The United States has a long-term commitment to
1 educating and informing its citizenry, and for good
2 reason. Educated and informed people not only contribute
3 to the community as a whole, but educated and informed
4 people are also more likely to buy other goods and
5 services. They are employable and interested in a broader
6 spectrum of activities.
7 Today there are many routes to the same truth.
8 Libraries and educational institutions must be part of the
9 broader picture. Use of the latest technology to further
10 educate and inform citizens will be of benefit to our
11 entire country socially, politically, and even
13 MS. CHARREN: Thank you so much, Marilyn.
14 Next we have Fred Esplin, who is the General
15 Manager of KUED Channel 7 in Salt Lake City. In 1989 he
16 assumed the additional responsibilities of Associate
17 Director of the Utah Education Network and of the
18 University of Utah's Department of Media Services.
19 He began there in 1979 as Director of Marketing.
20 His broadcast background includes development and
21 promotion work for PBS in D.C., WITF-TV and FM, the
22 Pennsylvania Public Television Network in Hershey,
24 He's a native Utahn, which is the first time I
25 ever saw that word in print. His education included an
1 internship with columnist Jack Anderson, graduate study at
2 American University, and a White House internship.
3 We're delighted to have you with us.
4 STATEMENT OF FRED ESPLIN, GENERAL MANAGER,
5 KUED-TV, SALT LAKE CITY, UTAH
6 MR. ESPLIN: Thank you very much, Peggy.
7 It's good to be with you, and I appreciate the
8 opportunity to share one public broadcaster's perspective
9 on how public television might better serve the public
10 interest in the digital age. I should say from the outset
11 that I applaud the creation of this group and I applaud
12 your taking up the challenge in the important work of this
13 committee to ensure that the public interest is protected
14 and advanced as we broadcasters are entrusted with this
15 finite and significant public resource.
16 As you well know, public broadcasters are
17 committed to harness the most current technology in the
18 service of education and public interest, and it's a
19 commitment we've had from the beginning. We have it today
20 and will carry it with us into the digital age.
21 Our commitment to education is manifest in four
22 areas that I'd like to speak to briefly. One is early
23 childhood services. Another is digital -- excuse me --
24 technology integration in K through 12 education. The
25 third is workforce technology and education; and the
1 fourth is digital service accessibility. I'd like to
2 share my view on what we're doing in each of these four
3 areas, briefly touching on the national, but talking about
4 our experience in Utah as well.
5 First, public broadcasters are committed to
6 providing programming which helps with early childhood
7 development and school readiness. Right now over 120
8 public TV licensees covering most of the country provide a
9 service called "Ready to Learn." It's a comprehensive
10 programming and outreach service that's designed to assure
11 the school readiness, that kids are ready for school and
12 ready to succeed when they get to school.
13 While many public TV stations -- despite this
14 fact, a lot of public TV stations can't carry the "Ready
15 to Learn" service today because of commitments to the
16 daytime instructional schedule. In a multiplexed DTV
17 world, this important service could be made available to
18 every child and parent and caregiver in America.
19 The second area: As you know, public TV has a
20 strong track record in using the latest technologies to
21 provide K-12 educational programming. As we speak, some
22 30 million students in 70,000 schools are currently served
23 by public television, and we're in the process nationally
24 of developing a comprehensive plan for delivering news
25 services in a digital environment.
1 In Utah, for example, we already partner with
2 the 40 school districts in the State and with the State
3 library system, to connect them to the Internet, to
4 provide online services, to develop CD-ROM's and
5 videocassettes and study guides, all to supplement
6 instructional services.
7 Let me just give you briefly one example of
8 that. We are in the third year of a project called Utah
9 Collections, where we take the best of some of our video,
10 audio, historic photographs, text, digitize it, put it on
11 CD-ROM, put it online, and ultimately we anticipate
12 putting it on air with digital TV, to supplement the
13 instruction that is made available in the public schools.
14 We anticipate building on this collaboration by offering a
15 dedicated SDTV service for the public schools with an
16 integrated online and broadcast data instructional support
17 materials to back it up.
18 That's what we're doing in Utah, and we're not
19 alone in that. A lot of my colleagues throughout the
20 country are making similar plans.
21 Third, public television has a proven track
22 record in both adult literacy and workforce education, and
23 we plan to leverage the features of digital technology to
24 meet critical workforce needs. Already, public TV around
25 the country provides over 70 college credit TV courses to
1 more than 400,000 students each academic year, not to
2 mention a broad array of professional development courses
3 and teleconferences to organizations nationwide.
4 In Utah, which is really where the idea of the
5 Western Governors University began to develop, through our
6 Governor Levitt, we're very active in this as well. We're
7 working with the nine colleges and universities in our
8 State in the creation and delivery of telecourses and in-
9 service technology, and are planning for a dedicated SDTV
10 service to make these kinds of services available to even
11 more students and working professionals.
12 Finally, public television is and always will be
13 committed to serve the unserved and underserved
14 populations in our country, those who because of economic,
15 geographic, physical, cultural, or language barriers have
16 been left behind in the commercial marketplace. Public
17 television, as I expect you know, pioneered in the
18 development of open and closed captioning for the deaf,
19 descriptive video services, and radio reading services for
20 the blind or visually impaired.
21 Digital technology I believe will give us the
22 flexibility and capacity to expand that commitment to
23 those populations and to ensure that the educational
24 services are available to all Americans.
25 I want to cite one other Utah example here as
1 well. Mr. Ambach talked about the need for access to
2 people who might not otherwise get the services, and I
3 cite this as illustrative. Part of Navajo Nation is in
4 Utah, in the southeast corner of the State, Monument
5 Valley. You remember the old John Ford movies; a lot of
6 them were shot down there. There are several high schools
7 in the Navajo Nation and they don't have access to a lot
8 of the curriculum that you do in the urban schools. There
9 aren't qualified teachers in a lot of the areas.
10 Working with the school districts in that area,
11 we have been developing, not only for broadcast but for
12 closed circuit, interactive, and now Internet services,
13 which have allowed them to share programming in the Navajo
14 language to preserve that language, which is being lost to
15 a lot of those Native peoples, to deliver Russian,
16 Japanese, and other foreign language classes, to deliver
17 AP courses, and so forth.
18 It's an integrated approach that involves today
19 four or five different means of delivery. In a digital
20 environment, the ability to do that and other things like
21 that I think will be enhanced.
22 In closing, I would note that in Utah we
23 recognize that it will take a coordinated active
24 partnership among public broadcasters, schools, colleges,
25 and libraries to realize the full potential that I've
1 described here. In Utah we've already banded together to
2 create what we call the Utah Education Network. Working
3 together, we are providing distribution through broadcast,
4 two-way interactive audio and video, Internet access, and
5 wide area computer networking. And we're developing
6 instructional content for each of these means of delivery,
7 to make certain that Utah students are not road kill on
8 the information superhighway.
9 Along with my public broadcasting colleagues
10 throughout the country, we are looking forward to
11 harnessing the potential of digital television to work
12 with and to advance the goals of our partners in public
13 and higher education and the public libraries.
14 Thank you.
15 MS. CHARREN: Thank you.
16 Lastly, I want to introduce Gary Poon. It
17 occurred to me that because he's here, here in Washington
18 that is -- he's the Executive Director of the Digital
19 Television Strategic Planning Office at PBS -- and because
20 he's very knowledgeable in the issues that we're talking
21 about, I thought first that I'd have him here as a
22 resource in case there were questions that the rest of us
23 couldn't answer. But I thought, while you're here and you
24 have a microphone, why don't you do a few minutes to tell
25 us what you would tell us if I let you talk.
2 STATEMENT OF GARY POON, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, DIGITAL
3 TELEVISION STRATEGIC PLANNING OFFICE, PBS
4 MR. POON: Sure. Thank you, Peggy. I've very
5 deeply honored to be asked to speak before this very
6 distinguished committee.
7 Let me sort of step back and give you my
8 perspective from a membership organization -- PBS, as you
9 know, is a membership organization that provides
10 noncommercial educational services and programs to our
11 membership stations and provides interconnection. Part of
12 my job is to help strategically position ourselves for the
13 digital future and to help our member stations make that
15 I have three very brief points. That is:
16 Number one, we feel that digital television is tailor-
17 made for public broadcasting; second, that we can turn
18 lifelong learning into customized services for the
19 learners; and third, that this is a tremendous opportunity
20 for us to fulfil the original vision of our founding
21 fathers and really take it to a higher realm.
22 As for the first point, the tailor-made, why
23 DTV is tailor-made for public broadcasting, you heard a
24 lot this morning about the uncertainties and the
25 challenges that are facing us as a system, and we want to
1 turn those challenges into opportunities to further our
2 mission. We think that HDTV is perfect for prime time
3 broadcasting. You heard this morning that that's where
4 the audience is. But also our programming, our prime time
5 programming, is tailor-made for that type of technology.
6 The crystal-clear pictures and the CD-quality sound will
7 enhance our science and nature, our music and performing
8 arts, our drama and theater type programming.
9 Fred talked a little about the types of services
10 that we could provide. During the day we can multicast,
11 we can experiment with multicasting. We don't have as
12 much of a worry about fragmentation of audiences as
13 perhaps our commercial colleagues might because our
14 programming is targeted to niche audiences. In fact, this
15 allows us to really expand our types of services.
16 One point that we want to emphasize is that the
17 data capacity can be then broadcast throughout the day,
18 both in terms of HDTV and multicasting.
19 This kind of leads me to my second point, which
20 is the flexibility of this technology allows us to
21 customize the types of services to the learner. If we
22 have time we can show a video of how one vision of how
23 that could be done.
24 But as you know, one of the challenges of
25 education is how we provide materials that learners can
1 then tailor to their uses. The ability to deliver a rich
2 mix of video, audio, text and data allows us to do that
3 and allows the teacher, as well as the student, to
4 customize the types of materials for their own needs.
5 Finally, why I feel this is a golden opportunity
6 to fulfil the mission and the vision of our founding
7 fathers, they recognized way back 30 years ago -- and we
8 just celebrated our thirtieth anniversary of the passage
9 of the Public Broadcasting Act -- they realized 30 years
10 ago that television is a great technology, but it also is
11 a great technology to serve great purposes.
12 In order to do so, they recognized that we need
13 to be adequately funded. You heard this morning that the
14 transition will be very expensive. Bruce Allan testified
15 here that it costs about $5.7 million per station. You
16 multiply that out by 350 stations and you get over $1.7
18 We have asked the Federal Government for only a
19 portion of that and our stations have the responsibility
20 of raising the rest through traditional means. I think
21 this committee has an opportunity to make a recommendation
22 to the administration to ensure that public broadcasting
23 will be adequately funded for the digital future.
24 So thank you very much.
25 MS. CHARREN: I think you can cue up the video.
1 MR. POON: Yes. This is a video that was put
2 together by our educational task force. It's about four
3 minutes long.
4 MS. CHARREN: That's good.
5 MR. POON: And it gives an example of one vision
6 of how the integration of data could be made.
7 (Videotape, with sound track inaudible.)
8 MS. CHARREN: Louder.
9 MR. POON: Volume, please.
10 (A videotape was shown, whose sound track is as
12 VOICE: -- inside the White House, the West, and
13 the Great War in his classroom. With the introduction of
14 The Learning Port of PBS online, these programs have grown
15 much more curriculum-connected, making them easy to access
16 and use. Through The Learning Port, Jim can now look at
17 teaching units organized by content area and grade levels,
18 covering virtually every major historical event in his
19 classes' required textbooks.
20 The teaching units contain lessons plans with
21 short video segments, classroom activities, and home
22 activities. He can also preview and order programs
23 through The Learning Port and see which ones have been
24 rated highest by other teachers.
25 To help his classes better understand the
1 Declaration of Independence, Jim ordered "Thomas
2 Jefferson" for his classroom after watching the broadcast
3 version on his local public television station. When
4 placing his order he requested that the program be
5 transmitted in digital format by one of his local
6 stations' DTV media channels so it could be recorded on
7 his media center's Internet server.
8 The curriculum index transmitted with the
9 Jefferson program enabled Jim to have on-demand access to
10 the exact video segments that address the concepts and
11 skills he was teaching. When the class was studying the
12 events leading up to the selection of Jefferson to write
13 the Declaration of Independence, he was able to call up
14 the exact segment to portray what happened.
15 MODERATOR: On June 7, 1776, Richard Henry Lee
16 of Virginia introduced a resolution that declared that
17 'These united colonies are and of right ought to be free
18 and independent states.' Congress scheduled a vote on
19 Lee's resolution for early July, hoping it would convince
20 France to join the struggle against England, the mightiest
21 power on Earth.
22 They established a committee to draft a
23 Declaration of Independence to which all 13 colonies could
24 subscribe. Benjamin Franklin was asked to write the first
25 draft and refused. He made it a policy, he said, not to
1 write documents subject to editing by others.
2 Jefferson and Adams were assigned the task.
3 VOICE: Both Jefferson and Adams were committed
4 to a republic, but they had very different styles.
5 Jefferson was bland and careful and aphoristic and high-
6 flown. His rhetoric always soared toward aspiration and
7 human dignity. Adams was earthy and anecdotal and
9 Jefferson says, I think you ought to do it, and
10 Adams says: "No. Three reasons you must do it: First,
11 you are a Virginian and a Virginian must be at the head of
12 this business; second, I John Adams am disliked and
13 obnoxious and if I write it it will lack credibility; and
14 third, you are ten times better a writer than I am."
15 VOICE: Classroom activities for the Jefferson
16 lessons focused on students knowing and understanding the
17 five basic freedoms in Jefferson's writings. Text data
18 was transmitted with the video, providing Jim suggested
19 lessons plans, program transcripts, still pictures, and
20 graphics and other materials.
21 He printed the specific materials he wanted to
22 use in class and sent home to parents suggested homework
23 assignments, encouraged parents and children to watch the
24 program together if possible and answer the questions in
25 the Jefferson student study sheets provided online.
1 Jim Overbie now uses public television more than
2 ever because of the convenient access he now has to these
3 effective teaching tools.
4 (End of videotape.)
5 MR. POON: Thank you. Stop the video now.
6 We have actually two other scenes that we
7 developed. Again, these are hypotheticals of one vision
8 of how the digital television can combine video, audio,
9 text and data to make a much more enriched learning
10 experience over the air and provide it to schools and to
11 the homes.
12 MS. CHARREN: That was just what I wanted us to
13 be able to look at. I'm so pleased.
14 Before we close the panel let me point out that
15 the fact that we're meeting here and talking about issues
16 like this is causing other organizations and institutions
17 to focus on how it should work, on how to make it work
19 I was asked to announce that the American Center
20 for Children's Television, based in Chicago, is going to
21 be having -- they haven't put the dates on it and
22 everything, but you can stay in touch with them. They're
23 putting together sort of a seminar, a one-day conference
24 which will be a briefing and brainstorming for people who
25 are in the business of making children's television, about
1 how this new technology can apply to new formats and
2 enhance program content and that kind of thing.
3 I expect that to be happening across all kinds
4 of constituencies once this is talked about in a
5 meaningful way.
6 Thanks very much.
7 MR. MOONVES: Thank you, Peggy and the panel.
8 I'd like to open it up to any questions,
9 comments. Yes, Cass?
10 MR. SUNSTEIN: This was a very wonderful set of
11 presentations about the needs and opportunities with
12 respect to children's programming. I'd like to put it a
13 bit in the framework of our particular mission, which is
14 the public service obligations of digital television
15 broadcasters. There are really four simple possible ideas
16 that I think would come out of what you've said.
17 One idea, maybe an inadvertent idea, is that
18 you've given, the last two speakers especially, a very
19 strong plea for deregulation. Here the idea would be in a
20 digital era, the idea of public interest obligations,
21 that's really a dinosaur, because PBS can provide a
22 tremendous amount of material with digital technology.
23 There the notion would be that now that Nickelodeon, PBS,
24 Disney, and the Internet Plus are available, well, no more
25 public interest obligations on broadcasters. That would
1 be one idea.
2 A second idea would be the status quo, what
3 Peggy describes as the minimal three-hour requirement,
4 basically makes best sense, that, as Marilyn Mason
5 suggests, things are changing very rapidly, and we don't
6 really have enough knowledge to do anything other than
7 just stick with what we've been doing. That would be a
8 second possible approach.
9 A third approach, which I think is consistent
10 with some of the spirit of the things you said, a third
11 possible approach would be to say status quo plus, that we
12 need more obligations in a digital era. What would that
13 mean exactly? Well, it might mean six hours rather than
14 three, or it might mean broaden the requirements beyond
15 broadcasters to other providers. That would be to suggest
16 this is so important that we need more.
17 A fourth idea would be really I think what was
18 suggested by Gary Poon's remarks, would be to rely not on
19 the kind of rigidity of the status quo or the greater
20 rigidity of status quo plus, but to have more in the way
21 of market incentives and trading, such as for example a
22 situation in which each broadcaster would have to provide
23 three hours, but they could sell it to anyone who'd be
24 willing to buy it so long as that person were another
25 broadcaster; or a situation even more flexible: they'd
1 have a three-hour obligation, but they could provide money
2 to PBS instead as a way of fulfilling their obligation.
3 So these are basically four frameworks that your
4 remarks all went in the direction of: deregulation,
5 status quo, status quo plus, or incentives and trading.
6 And insofar as our mission is to talk about really
7 regulatory obligations and not about the value of
8 educational programming -- everybody agrees on that --
9 we're thinking about governmentally imposed obligations.
10 Those are really, I think, four families of reforms.
11 Now, my question really is mostly for the last
12 two speakers, though for all of you, is first: Why not
13 deregulate entirely, given what you've said about PBS?
14 And the second question is, if you've got an answer to
15 that one, why not incentives and trading rather than three
16 hours or three hours plus? Those are not meant as
17 rhetorical questions.
18 MR. ESPLIN: Let me take off my public TV
19 manager hat and put on my father hat here for a minute.
20 I've raised four kids. They're now into college, so I
21 guess they're close to being raised. And I look at how
22 they consumed television as youngsters and growing up. I
23 was real happy when they were little and listened to what
24 dad said to get them to watch Sesame Street, Mr. Rogers,
25 and Reading Rainbow and what-not.
1 But that control became less and less as they
2 got older, which leads me to the point, I guess to answer
3 your question directly: Speaking as a citizen, not as a
4 public broadcaster advocating this, from that hat it seems
5 to me would be a terrible misfortune if this opportunity
6 were missed to have at least some portion of what the
7 commercial broadcasters are doing to be for public service
8 and education.
9 The bulk of the time spent watching television,
10 for better or for worse -- and much of it is good and some
11 of it perhaps isn't -- is spent with commercial
12 television, not with public broadcasting. The opportunity
13 for service on the part of commercial broadcasters is
14 enormous. The opportunity to do good as a modest payback
15 for the opportunity to use this finite public resource is
16 minimal, it seems to me.
17 So I'm in favor of having the obligation and,
18 while I would welcome maybe, putting on my public
19 broadcaster's hat, to have someone pay me to do something
20 we're going to do anyway, it doesn't seem to me that's
21 really in the public interest here.
22 MR. POON: Well, I guess I would add that I'm
23 holding actually in my hand the personal copy of the
24 Public Television Program for Action that was owned by Mr.
25 Bob Soddick, who passed away earlier last year. He was on
1 the original commission and he gave it to me before he
2 passed away, and I refer to it often.
3 The Carnegie Commission thought that they needed
4 to create a system of public television stations in order
5 to meet an obligation that was unfortunately not fulfilled
6 by the commercial stations. That being the case, we've
7 created a tremendous system of stations that are
8 absolutely committed to the public service and the public
9 interest obligations, and we feel that we've been doing a
10 fine job in that respect.
11 So my remarks I guess could be, I guess,
12 construed as favoring deregulation in some respects, but
13 in others it still does -- it could be interpreted as
14 favoring regulation to ensure that those types of services
15 are provided if the marketplace doesn't otherwise step up
16 to the plate.
17 As for sort of the second comment, about trading
18 and perhaps selling the obligation and maybe perhaps
19 having PBS or its member stations fulfil some of those
20 obligations in return, certainly we are open to creative
21 means that would allow for a steady stream of funding that
22 would come to public broadcasting so that those
23 obligations indeed are fulfilled for the marketplace.
24 MR. MOONVES: Yes, Marilyn.
25 MS. MASON: I want to say -- did I say that? I
1 didn't think I said that.
2 I am reminded of something Arthur Clarke used to
3 talk about, which is in looking into the future people can
4 have either a failure or nerve or a failure of
5 imagination. A failure of nerve is when you have all of
6 the factual elements you need and just fail to project far
7 enough ahead. For instance, in the seventies when I
8 thought computers had no future because they were too slow
9 and all the rest of that, I failed to project, to see
10 faster, cheaper, and so on. A failure of imagination is
11 where you fail to see that computer chips are going to be
12 invented at all, for instance.
13 In this instance it seems to me that, while we
14 say and even the survey that was reported on earlier today
15 noted that 47 percent of those interviewed or polled or
16 surveyed said that they expected to provide information
17 services which is significantly different than what
18 broadcasters do now, we continue to think of television in
19 the same old way, programming as the same kind of
20 programming that is provided today.
21 My guess is that that is really going to be only
22 part of the future, and we're talking about not only
23 conventional television programming, whether it's for
24 educational purposes or sports or the Simpsons -- I'm
25 sorry -- but it will be data services. And if information
1 services are provided only for a fee and if this becomes a
2 dominant technology, wireless over wired -- and we don't
3 know the future of that -- then you will be closing out a
4 vast number of people from getting information because
5 they cannot pay for it.
6 Now, there are lots and lots of assumptions
7 built into all of that and I could argue either side of
8 any of those assumptions myself. But the important point
9 for you to keep in mind is that if we completely
10 deregulate we can be almost sure that public purposes will
11 be ignored, and if we wait until we know what's going to
12 happen it will be too late.
13 So it is important to keep the door open, to
14 keep almost a place-saver there, so that we have a
15 capability of having the public purpose served as the
16 technology develops further.
17 MR. MOONVES: Janet.
18 MS. POLEY: Just a quick add to that. I think
19 in my testimony I emphasized that we need a more vibrant
20 public interest and educational sector. I think what you
21 said about the status quo plus, that's really the position
22 I'm coming from, that we need a sector, not simply one set
23 of things going on.
24 I think that's a real opportunity for commercial
25 broadcasters. If you look at the local level, where my
1 organization does a lot of work, there are opportunities
2 to have an educational laboratory, if you will, at the
3 margins, to work with local communities and universities
4 in this sector, that might produce some interesting
5 opportunities with larger markets.
6 I think that as you look at the past one of the
7 things in the numbers game that we've been playing in the
8 marketplace, you're less apt to have the innovation kinds
9 of things occurring in terms of -- I mean, I think we all
10 understand the tough marketplace stuff we're trying to
11 deal with here.
12 But I guess I'm concerned about what we won't
13 get to, not necessarily because you aren't, those of you
14 in broadcasting, aren't doing good things in the public
15 interest in terms of public affairs and news and emergency
16 kinds of things -- there's a lot of public service
17 announcements that come on at 2:00 o'clock in the morning
18 -- but I think there's some opportunities if we can look
19 at some ways to do some new partnerships.
20 So my sense is that that status quo plus has
21 opportunities if we look at how to do it.
22 MR. MOONVES: Gordon, go ahead.
23 MR. AMBACH: I just wanted to take one bite at
24 the apple if I could on this one. First of all, I want to
25 commend the perceptive question. I think it's a
1 fascinating way that you've structured it to sort of go
2 right through.
3 The premise, of course, is that the more there
4 is the commodity available, the less you need to regulate.
5 I mean, if it's the air, we don't control how much each of
6 us takes in; or the water, not much control. And if it's
7 going to be digital and it's got almost unlimited
8 capacity, then you don't have to bother regulating because
9 some way or other there's going to be room for education.
10 I'm not sure that I would agree with the
11 premise. I would come to the conclusion that probably
12 some requirement for regulation is necessary, some
13 allocation. But I'm kind of intrigued by the trade or
14 incentive issue, because the more there is availability of
15 the pipeline then the less is the requirement for specific
16 hours of this or that. It could be done by various ways
17 Now, the biggest problem here is that we really
18 don't know what kind of potential there is out there for
19 using this asset. The technical capacities are moving so
20 rapidly that it's very hard to just say, okay, we've got a
21 fixed asset here and we can pretty much judge what we
22 ought to carve out for education and let the rest go.
23 None of us is going to be willing to say that because if
24 it turns out there's an incredible expansion of the
25 capacity and you can do all sorts of things in education,
1 they don't want to give it away at this point, and neither
2 would any commercial broadcaster want to give it away.
3 But, having said that, it strikes me as though
4 you have to have some kind of regulation. I tried to put
5 an emphasis in my remarks on the fact you start with what
6 it is that you really need. I mean, it's our obligation,
7 I think, in the elementary and secondary domain, and I
8 think it is in the other domains, to be able to clearly
9 state, this is what we need in the area of delivery of
10 information technologies, and then figure out how much do
11 you have to sort of earmark in terms of that regulation as
12 to what portion is required to provide it.
13 If you can do that, if you can come up with some
14 kind of a sensible quantification of the proportion of the
15 capacity that you earmark for education, I have no problem
16 personally with a kind of a trade arrangement or a buyout
17 arrangement, that if a commercial company says we don't
18 want to put this stuff on, but we'll put money in the pool
19 for somebody else to do good programming, I'm all for it.
20 I think that makes sense, and I think it gets at
21 this issue I was trying to push earlier. We not only have
22 the issue of pipelining here, we have the issue of what's
23 the quality of content that goes down the pipe, and that's
24 not going to just happen.
25 Thank you.
1 MR. MOONVES: Frank.
2 MR. CRUZ: I just wanted to in a sense expand on
3 that question and on the comments you made. If the five
4 of you stop to consider what it is that each one of you is
5 asking for, you're very, very clear. You're K through 12,
6 university, at the public library level, at a particular
7 station, and at a particular branch of public broadcasting
8 in America.
9 I think what Cass is basically saying, is there
10 not a creative way, if we want to look at bold moves and
11 if the times call for unique bold, brave moves now, rather
12 than waiting for someone to do something at your
13 particular level or at your requests, maybe the time is
14 right now where you possibly could achieve some of those
15 particular goals through some of these creative market
16 incentives that could take place, to finally achieve.
17 Now, this is not my idea. There are many
18 politicians at the national level who have said that and
19 are really thinking, let's deregulate the commercial side
20 completely, but let's make sure there is funding so that -
21 - I've heard it at that angle, but I haven't heard it
22 applied to your three areas -- that could be done at this
23 particular time.
24 That might be a particular feature of something,
25 Mr. Co-Chairs, that we could possibly think of as
1 alternate solutions or recommendations.
2 MR. MOONVES: Frank, let me go on the record.
3 Let me take off my Co-Chair hat and let me put on my CBS
4 hat for a second to explain a very practical situation
5 which, Gordon, I think supports what you're saying.
6 CBS is not watched by children. We have the
7 oldest demographic. Very few children watch it. We have
8 no means of promoting to children during the week.
9 Therefore, on Saturday morning our children's programming
10 comes in about twelfth. No exaggeration, we get killed by
11 cable networks.
12 We were watched this year, this season from
13 September until now, on the average by about 500,000 kids,
14 which means the TV was probably turned on, they weren't
15 watching. You know, it had been left on the night before
16 by their parents.
17 We lost many, many millions of dollars. Now,
18 I'm not asking for a benefit for CBS. However, there are
19 -- and by the way, our programming was good. It wasn't
20 bad programming. This money would have been so much
21 better spent going to a place where they were watching it,
22 and we would have supported that, going to PBS and saying:
23 Here, here's X millions of dollars; use it for children
24 who are really watching. That will be a lot more
25 effective than that. It's a real practical example of
2 Fred, I also -- one second, Peggy. I want to
3 comment on something that you said which is ironic and as
4 a parent I agree with you. The government issues in terms
5 of broadcast television sometimes go back and forth. On
6 one hand, the three hours of children's, or educationally
7 sound programming that the government demands is exactly
8 that, so that we as parents who are not always there will
9 make sure that our children are getting better things on
10 the air.
11 By the same token, a recent code was instituted
12 with letters and numbers -- V, S, and L-14 -- specifically
13 so the parents would regulate what is going on in their
14 home, which by the way we also support. We think it is
15 our job as broadcasters to give the parents as much
16 information as possible. But it is an odd combination
17 between the broadcaster, the child, and the parent, and
18 it's a triangle that we are struggling with.
19 Anyway, Peggy, to you.
20 MS. CHARREN: Well, before I deal with what I
21 was going to say before you took off your hat --
22 MR. MOONVES: I just put it back on.
23 MS. CHARREN: Right.
24 -- I'd like to deal with that first and then
25 talk to something that the panel brought up. Since Les
1 put out in front of us the CBS children's programming
2 problem -- I have been very careful to try not to bring
3 these things up. Having talked about them so much for 30
4 years, I thought everybody knew where I stood, so I
5 wouldn't have to say anything.
6 But I'd like to point out that CBS' Saturday
7 morning has a two-hour news block in the middle of it, and
8 it's a bloody miracle that any child in America watches
9 any of CBS' news on Saturday morning -- I mean,
10 programming on Saturday morning, which is quite good as a
11 matter of fact. It's a question, that audience flow is so
12 inimical to raising an audience that I couldn't understand
13 it when I first heard it and I'm not surprised that it's
14 not working very well.
15 ABC seems to be very happy with its ratings and
16 it has that nifty program Science Court, for example.
17 MR. MOONVES: ABC's ratings were three times
18 ours before the news block went in.
19 MS. CHARREN: Yes, but ABC is doing it.
20 MR. MOONVES: Wouldn't $5 million of our money -
22 MS. CHARREN: Look, you brought this up and I'm
23 answering you, right?
24 MR. MOONVES: Wouldn't $5 million of our money
25 be better given to PBS?
1 MS. CHARREN: I'm saying that -- and that
2 relates to the second point I was going to make, which is
3 that, as much as I love public television, and I do love
4 public television -- I mean, I'm very supportive of the
5 system, which personally I watch a lot of -- I do not
6 think the idea of one publisher for information and
7 education is a terrific idea, and PBS is one institution.
8 Now, as much as I think that what we have here
9 today is extraordinary -- I mean, I helped plan it --
10 there are other --
11 MR. MOONVES: Sorry, Gary. I was going to give
12 you $5 million and now Peggy has killed it.
14 MS. CHARREN: The fact, the fact is that Les' $5
15 million won't buy hats, I mean for everybody else to put
16 on when he takes his off. The amount of money that the
17 broadcasters were talking about to fulfil this need -- and
18 this idea has come up many times before -- is just not
20 I mean, if they really want to fund the system I
21 can give them some numbers that might make that a
22 reasonable idea. It has nothing to do with what they keep
23 talking about.
24 But the point is that there's a nonprofit sector
25 out there. We could have had another representative from
1 the whole nonprofit sector that wants the ability to
2 control its own speech and to set its own program
3 requirements for getting certain kinds of messages out.
4 There are a lot of places that you need to separate out
5 the vested interests from the public interest. This is
6 one set of them. There are other sets, and I do not
7 believe that public broadcasting can necessarily serve
8 them all. There's an opportunity here to set other kinds
9 of structures, that may be smaller than the structures you
10 represent, but that certainly aren't going to show up and
11 get funded with the idea that we should just ignore this
12 and let the marketplace take care of, she says gently.
13 MR. MOONVES: Before we go any, I want to shift
14 our conversation just for one moment to say that Rob
15 Glaser, who has to catch a plane, that it's his birthday
18 MR. ORNSTEIN: As a present we're going to give
19 you the $5 million.
21 MR. MOONVES: He doesn't need the $5 million.
22 MR. GLASER: Thank you.
23 MR. ORNSTEIN: Thanks for everything you did
24 today, Rob.
25 MR. ORNSTEIN: Thanks a lot. See you in L.A.
1 MR. MOONVES: Peggy, are you finished?
2 MS. CHARREN: Yes, I'm through.
3 MR. MOONVES: Robert?
4 MR. DECHERD: I think this is a fairly
5 intriguing discussion if you look at it in today's
6 environment forward. The point was made by Janet and
7 Marilyn both and it seems to me the real point of
8 contention comes down to one simple idea, and that is
9 audience size. Now, in a perfect world a large part of
10 our population is going to be drawn to the programming you
11 would like to put on the air and all the public interest
12 groups, which have for years argued very persuasively that
13 commercial broadcasters have an obligation, that they
14 would like to have on the air.
15 But we also have to deal with the reality, just
16 as we have in children programming and in the V-chip and
17 in ratings, that people make choices. So all we're really
18 talking about is what kind of choices are going to be
19 presented to them in the future and who is best able to
20 present those choices to them.
21 Now, it seems to me this breaks down first of
22 all as we begin by defining what we need. Let's just say
23 for purposes of this hypothet that we need all of the
24 things you've described and we need all of the things
25 you've described this morning from some public interest
1 representatives and our prior meetings, and that there's
2 this panoply of others who have equally valid needs.
3 If we could further hypothesize that there is a
4 way for all of them to have ready access to a programming
5 mechanism to convert their needs into quality programming.
6 Then I think we go to three fundamental issues:
7 spectrum, funding, and audiences. For purposes again of
8 this example, let's say that the Congress decided to leave
9 with public broadcasters all 12 megahertz that you will
10 have as of this year, that there's no giveback. And let's
11 say you then multiplex all of those channels six to one.
12 We now have, instead of where we are in 1997 or
13 were, one channel per market, we have 12 which have all
14 these capabilities we're talking about, plus all of the
15 imagination of the future that Marilyn has very properly
16 caused us to think about.
17 So as a mutual friend of ours Ralph Rogers would
18 have said -- he loved to provoke discussions like this --
19 he said: Now, who's best able to do that? The people
20 who are genuinely interested in it or people who are being
21 compelled to do it?
22 So my question is, if you could for the moment
23 imagine that audiences could somehow be made aware through
24 Gemstar's programming guides and the Internet and a
25 zillion other ways that we're going to provide choices for
1 viewing in the future -- it's not going to be on-air
2 promotion pulling people from our newscasts into Wheel of
3 Fortune and CBS prime time, where by the way none of this
4 is ever going to get on the air anyway -- I mean, let's
5 not kid ourselves.
6 If these funding mechanisms that have been
7 talked about, whether it's Chairman Tauzin's plan, whether
8 it's the kind of trading we're talking about here, whether
9 it's any number of things, could provide adequate funding
10 for experts to deal with 12 pipes, back to the pipes idea
11 -- there will probably be 24 some day, and may be
12 available through all these different mechanisms -- and if
13 the availability of those pipes, further, gave you the
14 opportunity to get all of your inventory onto the air,
15 which presently doesn't have any visibility and therefore
16 you can't market to people like the state board of
17 education in the State of Texas, which is going PC if the
18 Governor has his way, why doesn't it make more sense for
19 that to happen properly funded and for we then to have the
20 ultimate litmus test, a point I've been making in every
21 meeting, which is broadcasters, commercial broadcasters,
22 will inevitably be drawn to public interest because it
23 builds audiences?
24 Why isn't that a triple win?
25 MS. CHARREN: What was the last sentence?
1 MR. DECHERD: The last sentence is that
2 broadcasters, commercial broadcasters like the people
3 represented here, are always going to be drawn to public
4 interest programming such as news, information, public
5 debate. We had a half-hour debate last night in Dallas
6 leading out of our late news over an arena that's going to
7 be voted on Saturday. We had huge numbers, huge numbers.
8 We're going to do that anyway.
9 But if I've written Leslie's check and everybody
10 else here, it's not just CBS' $5 million. It's the entire
11 industry, and Chairman Tauzin's idea, and maybe the states
12 wake up and fund some of this, and maybe the Federal
13 Government says, you know, $1.5 billion for this is not a
14 lot. Why isn't that a good hypothet?
15 MR. MOONVES: Yes, Janet?
16 MS. POLEY: Let me comment on that and bring an
17 example in from another area I've been doing some work in,
18 the digital broadcast satellite area, where we've been
19 talking about some kind of consortial mechanism where we
20 can bring to the table various providers to do sort of
21 what I think you're talking about in terms of trying to
22 program some channels that would create a public interest
23 and educational sector.
24 That's not a real easy thing to do, but I think
25 that's something that has, looking ahead, has a whole lot
1 more viability to it as something to talk about as a
2 possible solution.
3 One of the things that I think is terribly
4 important to keep in mind is that on the one hand
5 commercial broadcasters are trying to build big audiences
6 and on the other hand a lot of us in education are not
7 necessarily trying to build huge audiences, but we want
8 the right community of interest and that we don't want to
9 be fragmented all over the place.
10 So for example, if I am trying to do
11 environmental programming, for example, including programs
12 from all over the United States, I want to be able to pull
13 that together, to market it, to package it, and that has a
14 whole lot more value added than throwing one thing here
15 and one thing there.
16 So my sense is that that organizational
17 structure, those mechanisms, if we can figure out a way to
18 do that I think that would be very exciting.
19 MR. ORNSTEIN: Let me throw in a couple of
20 comments here, related comments. I'm not sure that we
21 have an either-or here, first of all, that it has to be
22 something that's totally market-driven, where it's either
23 we leave everything over to PBS because everybody else
24 just wants to pay, or none of that at all. You can have a
25 hybrid model and you can have a flexible model, and indeed
1 we can have one where CBS, which simply doesn't have the
2 reasons to do this or the interest to do it, could pay,
3 but others would find that it's perfectly appropriate for
4 them and we can serve more interests.
5 MR. DUHAMEL: Disney, Disney would be the
7 MR. ORNSTEIN: Sure. But I think if we move in
8 this direction as a group our task is going to be, to use
9 Bob Wright's watchword from our last meeting, flexibility
10 to try and make sure that we can serve a lot of different
11 interests here in the same way.
12 I would also suggest to you that we can't have a
13 status quo or even a status quo plus, that we can't
14 define, I believe, in a digital world where broadcasters
15 are going to have probably at some time of the day a high
16 definition signal with one stream going out, at other
17 times of the day six or eight streams going out, maybe two
18 at others, and say, all right, you're going to do three
19 hours of children's programming a week, because we're
20 going to get into an unbelievable morass trying to define
21 what three hours is on which of those streams.
22 One of the ways in which we may want to at least
23 think about this is, if indeed we move to a situation
24 where, in non-prime time, where you've got the opportunity
25 to do 6 or 8 or maybe 12, maybe we can have some
1 flexibility on the commercial channels that would meet
2 Janet's needs, where one of those channels is in fact set
3 aside for some of these larger purposes and we pick times
4 that would fit.
5 Then you could do a narrowcast in a sense that
6 would cover a broader area. That may be one possible way
7 or one little piece of what we're dealing with here that I
8 would just throw out.
9 MR. MOONVES: Gigi?
10 MS. SOHN: I actually would like -- is this
12 MR. MOONVES: Yes.
13 MS. SOHN: I'd actually like Janet to expand a
14 little bit about her discussions with the DBS providers.
15 In the interest of full disclosure, Janet is my client at
16 the FCC where we're trying to get them to implement the
17 public interest obligations of direct broadcast satellite
18 providers, one of them being that they have to reserve
19 between 4 to 7 percent of their capacity, of their channel
20 capacity, for educational and informational programming.
21 There's a lot of talk today about how digital
22 may or may not eliminate scarcity, but I would argue that
23 if you've got five multiplex signals and one person
24 controlling it you've still got scarcity. The problem is
25 not scarcity, Cass; it's access.
1 I'd like Janet to talk a little bit about how
2 she has approached DBS providers -- these public interest
3 obligations have not been implemented yet -- how she's
4 approached DBS providers, some of whom control 150 and 200
5 channels. And I'd like her to talk about her success in
6 getting on those systems. It's going to be a very short
8 MS. POLEY: Well, we have had no success in
9 terms of getting access. We've had a lot of conversations
10 at this stage. And I guess I would back that up with how
11 we even started moving that direction is that we have a
12 system of satellite uplinks and downlinks all over the
13 country -- I'm sorry for my voice; I'm very froggy today -
14 - and once satellite time went up in terms of going from
15 putting in place an infrastructure for educational
16 purposes in higher ed where satellite time was about $100
17 an hour roughly, to bumping up to $800 to $1,000 an hours,
18 it caused my community of higher ed institutions and
19 nonprofits to start immediately to look around for other
20 options and hybrid systems. And thank goodness the
21 Internet was there, and you can mail a lot of videotapes
22 for what that transponder time was costing.
23 But one of the things that we thought was very
24 important, we have a lot of clients in rural areas and
25 when you talk about distance ed you're really in many
1 cases dealing with place-bound people who can't get
2 somewhere for college classes easily without driving a
3 couple of hours, et cetera.
4 So we thought that DBS, which was heavily
5 marketing to rural areas, would be a natural in terms of
6 trying to work together on access as far as distance
7 education was concerned. We have met with the DBS
8 providers. To date, I won't run you through all the
9 conversations, but I've spent a lot of time on planes
10 between Lincoln, Nebraska, and here and back and forth and
11 out to Denver, and to date we have not succeeded in
12 getting access through that channel.
13 These are things that we know we have markets
14 for. It's not as though -- but they're not huge markets.
15 MR. MOONVES: Yes, Gordon.
16 MR. AMBACH: May I come back to Robert's
17 proposal, if you will, or at least kind of thesis that was
18 advanced. And I'm struck -- I'm not a broadcaster, I'm
19 not a programmer. I'm involved in running major
20 educational systems. We've got 50 million clients out
21 there. This conversation if it stays mostly on what is
22 sort of real-time broadcasting is missing the point with
23 respect to what is going to be the availability of work-
24 through digital and the provision of convergent services
25 in the schools and in the homes.
1 I hope that you really give that very, very
2 close attention because the capacity to be able to
3 deliver, as I very briefly suggested before, the content
4 of what it is that we expect our children to be learning,
5 reports on how they're learning, interactions between
6 parents, teachers, and students about that, and the
7 availability of the pipes to be able to handle that is in
8 my judgment probably the most significant thing down
10 It isn't going to be real-time broadcasting.
11 It's going to be what's the availability of getting into
12 the huge storage of information, whether it's in video or
13 data or voice form, whatever it is, and use it when you
14 want it, so that it's on time for the particular learning
15 that's at stake.
16 Now, just two observations about your proposal,
17 because again I think it's a very intriguing one. You
18 have two premises which you have to get agreement on. One
19 is that it would be possible to get some kind of
20 aggregation of need if we went across the different
21 desires, if you will. You probably could get an
22 approximation there. The proposition is based that you
23 could do that.
24 And you put in a sort of a statement at the end
25 which, if properly funded, and that's the part of it
1 which, frankly, I'm most concerned about. If we are going
2 to be involved in deregulation which doesn't require
3 everybody to put on three hours, trades, other kinds of
4 arrangements for the financing of essentially what's the
5 content, then we've got to talk very, very specifically
6 about how do you finance that, and whether, as I suggested
7 earlier, there are legitimate ways to think in terms of
8 how the digital asset, if you will, grows in the
9 commercial environment.
10 Do you tap in for a part of that and in the
11 public interest allocate that back over to the educational
12 forces? That's the theory behind the universal services
13 discounting which is going on right now. That may be a
14 way to do it. I recognize that may be beyond the scope
15 here of the advisory committee or it may be not a very
16 popular idea among many.
17 But if properly funded, it forces us then to
18 have to ask the question, well, what do we mean? What
19 would the obligation be on the commercial stations for
20 purposes, or the commercial broadcasters for purposes of
21 doing it?
22 But if we could get at those two questions,
23 you've got something.
24 MR. DECHERD: May I just interrupt for a moment?
25 MR. MOONVES: Yes.
1 MR. DECHERD: These are not ideas that are
2 developed at all in my mind, but I go back in my mind, for
3 example, to Chairman Tauzin's suggestion of a couple
4 months ago, actually this summer, of a trust fund, which
5 would be an opt-out for many of these obligations into a
6 literal discrete corpus from which income is derived. But
7 I think that's only part of it.
8 Several people on this panel have said either in
9 these discussions or offline that there's a very
10 interesting question about what will happen to the fees
11 that are incurred by broadcasters who use any part of the
12 spectrum for non-broadcast purposes. For example, those
13 fees which are supposedly now going into the Treasury
14 might be dedicated to this purpose.
15 Moreover, the thing that struck me when I
16 listened to all of you is -- and really I'm taking
17 Marilyn's admonition to heart -- I don't think any of us
18 has stepped back and thought, you know, we're talking
19 about an available resource which has not even been a
20 discussion point with state legislatures, but let's say
21 educators, what I meant to say first, but it's really
23 When you look at the educational crisis in K
24 through 12 in this country and you look at the strain on
25 two-parent working families trying to obtain higher
1 degrees, it's a lot of difference to say, you know, we
2 have this one PBS channel over here and in the mornings
3 and on Saturdays and Sunday at 2:00 a.m. we can do this,
4 that, and the other kind of programming or, for that
5 matter, public interest programming generally, which is
6 outside of your purview except for Gary and Fred, but now
7 to say there's this vast, available, right now, here today
8 set of pipes.
9 If you go to the California legislature, they
10 can say what they want about affirmative action and a lot
11 of very complex educational questions, who gets access to
12 universities and not. This is direct access to a huge
14 Now, who along the political spectrum wouldn't
15 be attracted to at least trying this? This is not the, if
16 you will, the paradigm which has hounded the funding for
17 public broadcasting. It's a completely different decision
19 MS. POLEY: It's completely different.
20 MR. ORNSTEIN: But it's also -- let me
21 reiterate, Chairman Tauzin basically wanted to channel all
22 of this into PBS, public broadcasting, in effect use PBS
23 as the ground for all of it. That isn't necessarily the
24 only way to go. You could have a funding mechanism or a
25 mechanism which you could then channel in a whole range of
1 other directions.
2 Gary, apropos this, let me ask you one other
3 question. I know that in terms of the streams of data
4 coming through the pipe that if in prime time you're
5 putting on a high definition program you're going to use
6 up almost all of that stream. But say at 3:00 o'clock in
7 the morning, you can send through an enormous amount of
8 data. Is it the case that you could, for example, send
9 through a lot of data in the middle of the night when not
10 many people are watching and have it go to the schools or
11 to the libraries and they could then store it in some
12 fashion and then call it up at any time?
13 MR. POON: Yes, indeed, that is one use of the
14 spectrum when it's not being broadcast either in high
15 definition or standard definition. There is that big pipe
16 of data capacity, 19.4 megabits, in the wee hours of the
17 night where that could be done to the schools. Indeed, we
18 within public broadcasting are thinking of ways in which
19 that could be used to further the educational mission.
20 MR. ORNSTEIN: So getting at what Gordon and
21 Janet in fact were both talking about, it's not real-
22 time, but just having access to those things, presumably
23 we have an enormous opportunity here. And that's another
24 one where commercial broadcasters in the middle of the
25 night, when they're not looking for the same kinds of
1 audiences, we might be able to have ways of saying, at
2 very low cost you can open up to data streams for
3 libraries, educational institutions and the like, where we
4 may be able to have a sharing.
5 MR. MOONVES: Yes, Janet.
6 MS. POLEY: In fact, some of the work that we've
7 done to date has been that kind of thing over the
8 satellite system, where you send something, then you use
9 the Internet to do your interactive aspect of the program.
10 So there are a lot of ways.
11 Right now it's real clunky because you do the
12 sending, either sending out the videotape or put it over
13 satellite, and then you use the Internet or audio
14 conferencing or whatever. It's just not integrated. But
15 I think that's an excellent idea.
16 MR. AMBACH: Incidentally, if I can take you
17 back to the New York experience, 20 years ago through the
18 public television network we ran the system all night long
19 sending out videos to the schools on order. It's not a
20 new practice. It's been going on for a long time. So the
21 question of expanding it is not really very complicated.
22 MR. MOONVES: Frank?
23 MR. CRUZ: I was just going to add that in the
24 public broadcasting realm I know what Fred Esplin has done
25 in Utah, in the State of Utah, but there are other very
1 good examples of how the full spectrum of linking up the
2 political forces, the educative forces, the broadcasting
3 forces in the State have all come together for quite some
4 time and they all bought off and they do long distance
5 learning at various levels, not only for K through 12 but
6 also for nurses and teachers and policemen, et cetera, et
8 In the State of South Carolina they have a very,
9 very well developed system where they do that. I think I
10 really believe that we are at a right particular time here
11 in this digital technology revolution where we can, I
12 think, can come up with a variety of different
13 recommendations and solutions regarding public interest
14 obligations and different ways for them to be met by
15 different entities, commercial side and public
16 broadcasting side.
17 MR. MOONVES: Yes, Fred?
18 MR. ESPLIN: It's our view in Utah -- and I am
19 not alone, either -- within public broadcasting that data
20 delivery will become increasingly important as our service
21 to education and libraries and so forth, for the very
22 reasons that have been described. We see it the same way
23 that my colleagues here on the panel have described it as
24 far as making information available at the time the
25 researcher, the student, wants to use it, whether it's a
1 course or access to data.
2 Even with digital compression and even with the
3 possibility of multiplexing, it's a finite pipe, and I'm
4 very, very intrigued with the thought that Robert
5 suggested. If there were a way to hang onto the spectrum
6 we have now and the spectrum, the DTV spectrum assignment,
7 the possibility of doing multiplexing of the instructional
8 programming during the day and the night both and
9 providing HDTV, but also providing significant data
10 streams, that's very, very interesting, and I would hope
11 this group looks at it very carefully.
12 MR. MOONVES: Anybody else?
13 (No response.)
14 Well, thank you to the panel. You were all very
16 Yes, Charles?
17 MR. BENTON: Picking up on Gordon's point, to be
18 needs-driven here, it's been a wonderful panel and it's
19 gotten me to thinking about something that I've given a
20 lot of thought to, which is the whole area of literacy.
21 We have 40 million functional adult -- adult functioning
22 illiterate people in this country, and there's a crying
23 need for the people in the schools not only to learn how
24 to read and write, but also to learn how to use computers,
25 media literacy.
1 So here's a tremendous need. Now, isn't there
2 some way in which both public and commercial broadcasters
3 could work with schools, libraries, and colleges to take
4 the three arenas represented here to attack nationally the
5 problem of literacy? We need campaign thinking about
6 solving national problems, but doing it in a local way.
7 It's not a mandate by the Federal Government -- we all
8 know that's not very popular these days -- but to focus on
9 a big problem, like literacy, where we know there is a
10 huge problem, and to incentivize everyone working together
11 on this problem so there is a structure like the National
12 Defense Education Act which, Gordon, I'm surprised you
13 didn't mention in your review of national acts.
14 MR. AMBACH: I only had five minutes.
15 MR. BENTON: The secret of the National Defense
16 Education Act, which was our response to the Russians
17 putting up Sputnik, the Federal Government putting up
18 money for math, science, and foreign languages, literally
19 the first major Federal legislation since the Land Grant
20 College Act in Lincoln's Administration -- so I mean that
21 was 100 years later.
22 But the secret of the National Defense Education
23 Act was the idea of a matching grant. The government puts
24 up half the money, but the other half's got to come out
25 locally. So that smoked out all the innovators that were
1 interested in getting on board with new ways of teaching
2 math, science, and foreign languages, teaching and
4 It was a brilliant idea. I think we need this
5 kind of thinking that would really address some big
6 national problems that we all know are national problems
7 and they're not being addressed adequately now, given the
8 infrastructures that are trying to piecemeal look at them.
9 I just couldn't resist throwing that out before we
11 MR. MOONVES: Once again, thank you to the
12 panel. Thank you, Peggy. It was a very good afternoon.
13 Thanks very much.
14 Let's take a 15-minute break.
16 COMMITTEE DISCUSSION OF FUTURE AGENDA
17 MR. MOONVES: All right, we'll begin discussion.
18 We have reversed the order on our agenda. We're going to
19 talk about our future agenda first and then we'll do the
20 public comment questions and answers.
21 So our next meeting is going to be in L.A. and
22 we have to decide on an agenda. Norm, you want to jump in
23 on some of the thoughts you were sharing with us at
25 MR. ORNSTEIN: Sure. Let me say, too, Les, that
1 we should at least have a few minutes, some of the members
2 have suggested, about those future dates and have some
3 discussion about what we can possibly work out there.
4 MR. MOONVES: Sure.
5 MR. ORNSTEIN: When we discussed the agenda last
6 time we talked about continuing basically our deliberative
7 and factfinding process, where we would focus the next
8 meeting on the political process. Having now decided for
9 a whole host of reasons that we would go to Los Angeles
10 for the next meeting, it doesn't seem to make a great deal
11 of substantive sense to discuss the political process out
13 At the same time, as our discussion of the last
14 15 or 20 minutes of this panel indicates to me at least,
15 we are now among ourselves starting to float a lot of
16 interesting and innovative ideas about where we go, and it
17 is not necessary in any way, intellectually or otherwise,
18 for us to defer discussion of ideas for solution until we
19 have finished gathering facts and having discussions of
20 some of these substantive areas.
21 So I would suggest that we take at least the
22 afternoon of our day in Los Angeles to have, without a
23 panel of outside people, for discussion among ourselves,
24 where we begin to talk about and go back and forth on some
25 of the ideas that we have raised indirectly or directly or
1 others that emerge, and begin to move at least on a
2 parallel track towards some framework for the public
3 interest obligations in the digital era and see where we
5 I suggest this in part as well, frankly, because
6 whatever time frame we have, with whatever extension we're
7 able to get, we're clearly not going to be able to sit
8 down in one meeting and hammer out those ideas, and we
9 clearly want to start thinking about our report long
10 before the report is written, and we're going to have to
11 share drafts among ourselves as well.
12 Now, the next question is whether we want to do
13 that for the whole day or take advantage of our location
14 in Los Angeles or simply for other reasons and have in the
15 morning continuing deliberation or discussion of one of
16 the areas we've talked about. There was some suggestion
17 earlier that -- the National Association of Broadcasters
18 is in the midst of doing a survey of its members on what
19 in fact all of the stations now do for the public
20 interest. We thought about perhaps having some
21 presentation and discussion there, but it turns out that
22 the timing will not work for Los Angeles.
23 So we're going to have to -- let's open up for
24 some discussion of whether there's another idea, whether
25 there's something that would be particularly suited for a
1 West Coast location -- it doesn't have to be -- or what
2 else we might do with that day that we have out there.
3 Why don't we see if there are ideas.
4 MR. CRUZ: Norm, can I ask a question? Is it
5 possible -- let me ask it this way and backtrack. In
6 terms of the political process of the thing that we want
7 to discuss in the political arena, the campaign funding
8 and so forth, is it possible to do some of it out there on
9 the West Coast? Would the panels be sufficient enough to
10 do some out there and some out here?
11 MR. ORNSTEIN: I think that we could probably
12 have some discussion of the political process out there,
13 and we might very well not only draw on some resources
14 that are already out on the West Coast, but very likely
15 some of the people we might want to have involved who are
16 not on the West Coast would be willing to make the
17 terrible sacrifice of coming to Los Angeles in March.
18 That's certainly one possibility.
19 MR. MOONVES: Yes.
20 MR. DUHAMEL: I was going to say one of the
21 things might be what the broadcasters political
22 obligations are right now, because every time I look it
23 seems to be getting worse.
24 MR. ORNSTEIN: But that's what I think the
25 National Association of Broadcasters study --
1 MR. DUHAMEL: No, that's public interest. I'm
2 talking about in political, just the political area.
3 MR. CRUMP: That's part of that study, too.
4 MR. DUHAMEL: Oh, is it?
5 MR. LA CAMERA: So they will be prepared to
6 deliver that to us?
7 MR. MOONVES: They will do that the following
8 meeting, here in Washington.
9 MR. ORNSTEIN: Not in April.
10 VOICE: The question Mr. Duhamel raised on what
11 the political rules are now is not part of the public
12 interest survey. It's an interesting question, but the
13 public interest survey asks for things like debates and
14 not what the Commission's rules are.
15 MR. ORNSTEIN: No, no, I think that's what Bill
16 is saying. This is what people are doing now.
17 MR. DUHAMEL: No, no. I was saying what their
18 obligations are under the present rules, because they get
19 confused. I get confused with them every --
20 MS. SOHN: Didn't we get that already in our
21 papers in the first meeting?
22 MR. ORNSTEIN: Yes, we did that in our first
23 meeting. We did the inventory of what those obligations
25 MS. SOHN: We went over all that already.
1 MR. ORNSTEIN: You actually have a paper that I
2 think outlines all of those from our first meeting.
3 MR. DUHAMEL: Oh, from what's his name.
4 MS. SOHN: Kraznik.
5 MS. CHARREN: Maybe we could do what you
6 suggested for the afternoon, which is a continuation of
7 where we started today, do that in the morning, and use
8 the afternoon as a real outreach thing to hear from people
9 who live out there. People are complaining that they
10 can't get here. There's a lot of people who might want to
11 say something to us and we could use part of the afternoon
12 to let them say it.
13 MR. MOONVES: They always have that opportunity,
14 but I think we --
15 MS. CHARREN: But they don't come.
16 MR. ORNSTEIN: Well, we certainly want to make
17 sure we have a significant period for public comment and
18 to have it stretched a little bit more is a possibility
19 out there because it's an opportunity away from
21 MS. CHARREN: Could we have the programmers, the
22 people? There's a lot of people out there who are the
23 creative community.
24 MS. SOHN: Jim Yee might -- I think we should
25 talk to Jim about whether there are some programmers.
1 MS. CHARREN: Right.
2 MS. SOHN: One of the points that I brought up
3 in the last panel is the lack of access even in an "age of
4 abundance." I guess I'd like to hear some programmers
5 talk about getting on, their possibilities for getting
6 their product out.
7 I'd actually like to hear from Les, since he's
8 the Hollywood guy, how he thinks being out there could
9 benefit us.
10 MR. MOONVES: Where are my sunglasses?
11 MS. SOHN: Suntan.
13 MS. CHARREN: Take advantage of who's out there.
14 MS. SOHN: I think Peggy's right. I think
15 hearing from the programming community would be a terrific
17 MR. MOONVES: About what? I'm not quite sure.
18 I'm not being facetious. What do you mean about from the
19 programmers? What would you like to hear from them?
20 MS. SOHN: What I'd like to hear from them is
21 whether they believe that they can get their programming
22 on broadcasting now and what they see the possibilities
23 for digital television are. If we're talking about
24 diversity and abundance, is there really an opportunity
25 for alternative voices to get on now and will there be an
1 opportunity in a digital era? That's what I'd like to
3 MS. CHARREN: And are they thinking about how
4 the digital opportunity can change their ability to be
6 MR. MOONVES: Who are "they"? Who are you
7 talking about, mainstream programmers?
8 MS. SOHN: Independent programmers, like Jim
10 MS. CHARREN: It's just an idea.
11 MS. SOHN: It's just an idea.
12 MR. MOONVES: That's fine, that's fine, yes.
13 MR. ORNSTEIN: Well, it would make sense if --
14 MS. SOHN: It could be anybody.
15 MR. ORNSTEIN: -- whether we do this for a
16 lengthy period or even take an hour, it certainly makes
18 MS. CHARREN: Just take five minutes.
19 MR. ORNSTEIN: Actually, you know, what might
20 make sense is to have somebody who represents one of the
21 larger studios, somebody who represents an alternative or
22 independent, just talk about whether they're thinking
23 about the digital age or what differences may be there.
24 It wouldn't be bad to do that for an hour or so.
25 Let me just suggest this, that if it's all right
1 with the rest of you, if you have other ideas let us know.
2 And then, if you're willing, let Les and I with our staff
3 talk about what is logistically feasible and come up with
4 an agenda.
5 MR. MOONVES: Because I think Norm's right, I
6 think we should plan on having an agenda in the morning
7 and in the afternoon let's start getting into some
8 preliminary deliberations and bring up some of the issues.
9 MS. SOHN: Yes, we need to start getting down to
10 brass tacks and start talking about specifics.
11 MR. MOONVES: That's correct. That's what the
12 afternoon will be about. I think to do it the whole day
13 probably -- I think that's right, Norm. Let's hear from
14 all of you. Why doesn't everybody think about it for a
15 few days and send us faxes about ideas, suggestions.
16 Getting programmers is not a difficult thing to do if we
17 feel it's relevant and valid. That's fine, that's fine.
19 So we'll be hearing from you.
20 MR. ORNSTEIN: Yes, so just let us know what you
22 We need to -- there are at least a few people
23 that -- it's always difficult to set schedules -- who are
24 quite concerned that, having set our schedule, we not
25 change our schedule. But we need to hash that one out.
1 Obviously we do not want to cause great discomfort for
3 The Tuesday meeting -- certainly we tried to set
4 meetings so that they would cover over a Saturday night
5 stay, but --
6 MS. EDWARDS: And garner the largest group of
7 members as well.
8 MR. MOONVES: Obviously we missed this time.
9 MR. ORNSTEIN: And believe me, when we looked at
10 all of the calendars it becomes a very difficult task to
11 find a date where the bulk of people were available to
13 Now, we can do this in a couple of ways. We can
14 -- maybe the easiest thing is for us to go back to those
15 calendars, which I hope have not changed materially since
16 then, and see if there is another acceptable date around
17 that time frame, and then get in touch with you to see if
18 that still works. We can try and find one that is better.
19 MS. CHARREN: Could you ask now if at least the
20 bunch sitting here look like they're free on the 17th?
21 MR. MOONVES: Two months ago we each sent in
22 calendars and that's why we set it out and compared all
23 the schedules.
24 MS. CHARREN: Yes, I know. I did, too.
25 MR. CRUZ: Yes, I want to make reference to
1 that, because I think Karen Edwards and the other young
2 lady, whose name escapes me -- Anne -- I know they went
3 out of their way. We sent these calendars in and we were
4 pretty explicit on dates back and forth, and I think it
5 would be unfair to a lot of us to have to remodify that
6 now if it went in that way. And I say that in all due
7 respect to religious holidays.
8 MR. DUHAMEL: See, the thing is, in two months
9 your calendars may have changed. If Karen could just
10 repoll us.
11 MR. ORNSTEIN: Yes. Well, we can --
12 MR. MOONVES: We can re-look at calendars.
13 MR. ORNSTEIN: I guess what we could do is, the
14 one thing we could do that might work here -- it's going
15 to be extremely difficult, I think, to find another date.
16 The 17th, for example, doesn't work for me because I'm out
17 on the West Coast.
18 MS. CHARREN: Well, try and get Easter moved.
19 MR. ORNSTEIN: Yes.
20 MR. MOONVES: Good idea, Peggy.
21 MS. SOHN: Appeal to a higher source.
23 MR. ORNSTEIN: Why don't we have Easter moved
24 through one of those channels late at night and then we
25 can just have it any time you want.
1 MR. LA CAMERA: With public broadcasting.
2 MR. ORNSTEIN: Perhaps what we could do is have
3 our staff canvas everybody for the dates that are
4 available in April and see if we can find a date that
5 still fits the other objectives that we have of making
6 sure it's sensitive to the Saturday night stay. And if we
7 can't find another date we're just going to have to live
8 with what we've got.
9 At every one of these meetings we have some
10 people who can't make it, for one reason or another, and
11 it may be that the inability to get away for Easter is
12 just one of those reasons that we have to accommodate. I
13 hope we can find a date that doesn't discomfort people,
14 but we'll try.
15 MS. EDWARDS: Are we agreeing, then, that all
16 the members will send in to me and Anne the list of dates
17 when you are available in the month of April?
18 MR. ORNSTEIN: Yes, let's do that.
19 MR. SUNSTEIN: Well, then you'll have to fax us,
20 I'm sorry to say, one of those calendars again.
21 MS. PELTZ STRAUSS: We could also write it out
22 before we leave and give it to you. It sounds old-
23 fashioned, but --
24 MS. EDWARDS: We can certainly provide the
25 calendars again. That's not a problem.
1 MS. CHARREN: Cass, there are 30 days in April.
2 MR. SUNSTEIN: Are you sure?
3 MS. CHARREN: Positive.
4 MR. SUNSTEIN: It changes every year.
5 MR. MOONVES: Can we move on? Have we got any
6 other housekeeping? Go ahead.
7 MS. EDWARDS: I have one other housekeeping
8 thought. Anne and I have a proposal and I don't know sort
9 of what your thinking about it would be, but we've
10 discussed with Les and Norm the possibility of creating a
11 LISTSERV for the members, a LISTSERV, in other words, so
12 you can communicate with each other via E-mail and
13 everybody would get the same messages. It's one bite at
14 the apple and everyone's in on the conversation.
15 I wanted to get a sense from you of whether
16 that's worthwhile. Here are the two complications: One,
17 everyone is not on E-mail, although that's not very hard
18 to fix, I guess, if everybody thought it was worthwhile.
19 Two, some of the E-mail addresses we have don't work.
20 So I wanted to raise the question and find out
21 whether or not it's something you wanted to pursue as you
22 get more into the sort of discussion, debate.
23 MS. CHARREN: And the report, too.
24 MR. ORNSTEIN: As we move, it's clear as we move
25 closer to the process where we're going to be discussing
1 among ourselves solutions, this would be a very convenient
2 way to have a larger discussion. So you ought to at least
3 see what your E-mail situation is.
4 I just wanted to make one comment before we move
5 on to the next phase of the program and maybe before Karen
6 leaves, to reiterate for the record what a wonderful job
7 the staff has done. They were here late last night.
8 Putting all this together logistically is very difficult,
9 and for Karen, Anne, Cheree, Jonathan, and others -- we
10 have others as well. This is a very small staff for what
11 is a very big operation.
12 MS. CHARREN: And Anne. I talked to Anne every
13 day for the last four weeks.
14 MR. MOONVES: He said Anne.
16 MR. MOONVES: Charles, did you have something
18 MR. BENTON: Yes. I noticed the letter you
19 passed out. I may have missed this, but on the October
20 1st deadline, I know that some of us felt that it would be
21 better to have a deadline for getting the report in after
22 the election as opposed to before. Was this considered
23 and are we really fixed on this October 1st deadline, or
24 can we go to December 31st?
25 MR. ORNSTEIN: The original plan that was
1 created in the executive order was a year, and there was a
2 pretty strong suggestion from the White House that this
3 was not to take longer than a year. So we're actually
4 talking about somewhere in the range of a year here. So I
5 think there is little likelihood --
6 MR. BENTON: So there's no wiggle room on this?
7 MR. ORNSTEIN: No.
8 MR. MOONVES: Yes. I don't think the election
9 should be a problem.
10 Yes, Karen?
11 MS. PELTZ STRAUSS: I had a question about
12 whether or not you have any idea of what the agenda is
13 going to be at the June meeting as well. The reason I ask
14 is that we have a very limited budget and I'm not sure I
15 can make two out of town meetings in the spring and I may
16 have to choose between the two. So has any thought been
17 given to that far in advance?
18 MR. CRUMP: St. Paul is a lot more fun than L.A.
19 MR. MOONVES: I beg your pardon. You haven't
20 gone to the right places.
21 MR. CRUMP: I'll go with you.
23 MR. MOONVES: We haven't gotten that far. My
24 guess is we will get heavier into our discussions in June.
25 Hard to say.
1 MS. PELTZ STRAUSS: Okay.
2 MR. ORNSTEIN: My guess is that as we move -- it
3 is very hard to say. Clearly, as we move along we are
4 going to be probably emphasizing more tapping into
5 expertise of people who have ideas that we're raising for
6 solutions. Where we get by June is going to depend on
7 where we are in March and April. So you'll have to make a
8 gaming judgment here, conditional probability.
9 MR. MOONVES: Any other housekeeping?
10 MR. BENTON: This will be the last meeting,
11 then, and the rest will be on our report?
12 MR. MOONVES: No.
13 MR. ORNSTEIN: No. I think we just didn't want
14 to plan -- I would think that what we want to do probably
15 in Los Angeles is then begin to think about, the end of
16 that day we want to begin to think about where we are,
17 make an assessment, especially after we have some
18 discussion of possible ideas and what future meetings we
19 want to schedule.
20 PUBLIC COMMENTS, QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS
21 MR. MOONVES: Public comments, questions,
22 answers. The microphone is now open.
23 MS. PUHAR: Hi. My name is Annamarie Puhar.
24 I'm Executive Director of The Television Project, which is
25 a nonprofit that promotes healthy television viewing
1 habits for families.
2 Mr. Benton gave me my segue, because I came down
3 here to ask you to really consider media literacy as an
4 important obligation that we have to our children. We
5 need media literacy and we need it nationally, and it
6 needs to be funded for research and curriculum development
7 and implementation, and so we start a campaign.
8 Thank you.
9 MR. MOONVES: Thank you.
10 MR. DINGMAN: Hi.
11 MR. MOONVES: Hi.
12 MR. DINGMAN: My name is Jim Dingman. I was
13 here last meeting, and I wanted to just give you a follow-
14 up on that paper that we gave you on a public interest
15 obligation to show missing children.
16 I urge members of the commission to call the
17 National Center for Missing and Exploited Children at 1-
18 800-THE-LOSS, because they cannot come here today --
19 they're an agency under the Department of Justice -- but
20 we had long discussions about how a system like this could
21 operate, and a lot of thought is now being put to it
22 around the country by the different missing children's
23 clearinghouses in the different states. And by your March
24 meeting, we hope to give you a more developed paper on how
25 a system like this would look.
1 But the people over there asked me to ask you to
2 call them up. Nancy Hammer is one of the legal counsels
3 there and she wants to help. And I can certainly feed and
4 give you names of other folks. Dianne Vigars, who is the
5 Manager of the clearinghouse in the State of New York --
6 again the problem is these are employees of state
7 governments and in the case of Nancy Hammer she's under
8 the Department of Justice, so they cannot necessarily
9 advocate and lobby these things.
10 But they want to talk to you about these things
11 because they're very excited with the possibility of some
12 system being set up. One idea that they suggested was in
13 terms of stranger abductions, that shows with high Nielsen
14 ratings, that there be sort of an emergency system
15 implemented where a child who's a victim of a stranger
16 abduction, alongside perhaps a daily show or a daily
17 airing of kids in the different categories that we talked
18 about -- stranger abductions, runaways, parental kidnaps,
19 et cetera -- that those shows which have the largest
20 blanket appeal to people, where they are seen by Nielsen's
21 ratings of 20 and 18, et cetera, that those shows be
22 prioritized to be vehicles for children who are seriously
23 in danger of being killed.
24 That we can certainly see as a public interest
25 obligation, and this is something we're going to petition
1 the FCC for a rule change on. But those are the kind of
2 considerations we wanted to bring to you.
3 Again, just as a sidebar, I think that community
4 broadcasters -- and I'm talking now about all the
5 different FM and AM radio stations and TV stations -- they
6 don't have a clue about the impact of this technology on
7 them. I think it would be interesting to ask some of them
8 to come in and give commentary on it, because they've not
9 thought carefully about this or have they thought about
10 their public interest obligations in response to this
11 digital technology, and they really are as ignorant as
12 most of us are in trying to comprehend it.
13 Thank you.
14 MR. MOONVES: Thank you.
15 Anybody else?
16 (No response.)
17 CLOSING COMMENTS
18 MR. MOONVES: Norm.
19 MR. ORNSTEIN: I would point out to our members
20 simply that we have gotten other public feedback through
21 the web site and through letters. You have copies of
22 those things and some of them are quite interesting. We
23 should read them.
24 MS. CHARREN: I would like to just call the
25 attention of the committee to two pages in the Electronic
1 Media, the issue of January 12th, which has two pages of
2 web sites. I don't think we're on it. You might want to
3 write a letter to the editor of Electronic Media just to
4 add ours to this list.
5 But there are two pages of web sites on digital
6 television that would be interesting for us to pull down
7 and see what they're saying. Some of them are public,
8 some are government, and some are industry. But it was 25
9 web sites.
10 MS. SOHN: Can I ask a question? Actually, it's
11 for Les.
12 MR. MOONVES: Yes.
13 MS. SOHN: Have the folks at Annenberg given you
14 any indication of how they might publicize this?
15 MR. MOONVES: They really haven't. Jeff Cowan,
16 who is an acquaintance, who is the dean of the school,
17 called me up and I said, write me a letter. And then it
18 happened that I got the letter the day I came back from
19 the last meeting or soon after, and he by the letter said:
20 "The issue the committee is examining is of intense
21 interest to students, faculty, and graduates of USC."
22 So I think they'll get the word out. They'll
23 get the word out among the L.A. community, as well as we
24 can certainly send out a press release that goes into the
25 trade papers there, Electronic Media and those things.
1 And we'll see if we can get some of those people from the
3 Once again, anybody -- and I'm open to ideas --
4 that you guys would like to hear from from that
5 community, I certainly can get them there.
6 MS. EDWARDS: I would just add to that, I spoke
7 with Jeff Cowan yesterday, Gigi, and I think that he is
8 still casting about to figure out what the publicity of
9 this would be like and looking to us for a bit of
10 guidance. So if you have some ideas about what they might
11 do, you could definitely funnel them through me because I
12 will be talking with him a fair amount next week.
13 MR. ORNSTEIN: And once we get an agenda set,
14 that'll have some impact on that.
15 I would just throw in one more small thing.
16 Judd French, who is a very, very strong technical person
17 from Harris, did a little exploration. I had asked him
18 about the emergency notification business, and what I
19 asked him was: If we're talking about this 9600 baud,
20 which is basically I think the equivalent of the width of
21 a human hair across an eight-lane highway in terms of the
22 space that it takes up, what does that really mean?
23 He just made a couple calls and gave us some
24 interesting notes. Where it becomes a question is if you
25 have a 24-hour service, including the problems that may
1 exist for stations that aren't on 24-hours, where you'd
2 have to be talking about turning it on; and also simply
3 the power needs for television sets, where you have to use
4 at least a reduced power if you're even going to have --
5 if it's off, to be able to turn it back on; that there are
6 some questions raised here in terms of energy usage and
7 otherwise, not so much for any of the purposes that are
8 directly related to us, because actually mandating this is
9 nothing in terms of the actual usage. But there are other
11 We'll maybe type this up and send it out to you,
12 but it's just one of those -- this is one of those little
13 areas that we really need to think about. But it raises
14 questions and Judd did some very nice stuff for us, for
15 which I thank him.
16 MR. MOONVES: Thank you all. See you next month
17 or the month after.
18 (Whereupon, at 4:13 p.m., the meeting was