Presentation: The Future is Public Service Media

UPDATE: In the comments, Tom White from the CPB noted that the math for TV production and operations noted in the presentation — stating that 84% of CPB’s annual appropriation goes to TV — is incorrect. In fact, for both FY2009 and FY2010 it’s about 67% of the total, not 84%. I based my 84% figure on the presentation slides offered by Jake Shapiro and Ellen Goodman in their November 3 talk. The figures in their presentation — on slide 15/32 — miscalculated CPB’s allocations by more than $70,000,000. I apologize for the error and will attempt to update my slides soon. In the mean time, keep in mind that 84% figure is wrong.

Last week I gave a presentation at WOSU Public Media in Columbus, Ohio, sharing with them some of the trends in media generally, talking about the economic pressures of a changing media landscape and sharing some ideas of how the station might change to meet the needs of the community in ways that transcend mere broadcasting.

WOSU was kind enough to gather a great group of people from across the company, plus one visitor from ThinkTV in Dayton and one from WYSO in Yellow Springs. (I’m not listing names here because I didn’t get permission to mention anyone specifically.) I’m hopeful some of the elements in the presentation were at least thought-provoking. One person told me afterward that he came away with three new ideas. Awesome!

I’m posting a ton of presentation links here so anyone can view and download the materials as desired. As I mentioned to a former colleague of mine, the materials are free for the taking, remixing and so forth under a Creative Commons license.

If WOSU posts a YouTube video of the live presentation itself, I’ll embed it here later. And I may just do another version of the presentation in voice-over style anyway.

I’ll start off with the embeddable SlideShare presentation, then include more links below.


Presentation Downloads

The Future is Public Service Media – Keynote (Mac) format (242MB zip)
This is the complete presentation in its native format, including all embedded videos, graphics, transitions and so on. Playback requires iWork ’09 on a Mac.

The Future is Public Service Media – QuickTime format (638MB mov)
Complete presentation in a clickable “movie” format (click to advance, click links to get to the web) that includes the complete video files inside the presentation. Playable on any Mac or any PC with QuickTime installed.

The Future is Public Service Media – JPEG images (8MB zip)
This is all the slides from the presentation as individual JPEG images.

The Future is Public Service Media – PDF (6MB PDF)
This is all the slides from the presentation in a single PDF document, readable on all computers with Adobe Reader or another PDF application.

7 thoughts on “Presentation: The Future is Public Service Media

  1. John – just wanted to share a small correction. On slide 35 of your “Presentation: The Future is Public Service Media” you state that “CPB spends 84% of their appropriation on TV programming and operations”. Under the statutory formula contained in the Public Broadcasting Act (, it’s actually 66.5% – 49.9% in grants to television stations and 16.6% in grants for television programming. Here’s a link to the CPB website with the FY10 funding allocations

    1. Thanks, Tom. I was actually pulling my numbers from a presentation given by Jake Shapiro and Ellen Goodman at the Berkman Center at Harvard in November. On slide 15 of 32, they break out the FY2009 CPB budget showing about $342,750,000 of CPB’s $406,000,000 is spent on TV station grants and TV programming. By my math, that’s 84.4% of the annual CPB budget in FY2009.

      In the FY2010 numbers you point to at the CPB web site, it’s $281,850,000 out of a $420,000,000 appropriation, or about 67.1% — a dramatic shift, to be sure, but it wasn’t evident in the FY2009 numbers I used.

      Am I seeing the numbers incorrectly?

    2. Ah-ha! Now that I’ve put the Shapiro/Goodman numbers into a spreadsheet I spot the problem — their numbers don’t add up. Or rather, they add up too much. They have an extra $71,250,000 unaccounted for — which matches their number for TV programming support. Looks like they may have mingled the TV programming number into their TV Station Grants number.

      If I take out the extra $71,250,000 from TV station grants, then the numbers fall in line. At that point, TV represents 66.9% of total CPB appropriation.

      I’ll post a correction in the blog post, but changing the slides at this point will take some time.

  2. You are absolutely right, John, that our slides (Goodman and Shapiro, Berkman 11/09) had the wrong number for CPB TV funding 2009 . I have since corrected the slide. The 2009 numbers are 49% for TV station grants and 18% for TV programming funding.


    1. Thanks Ellen! And for the record, I’m a big fan of your work. I only hope more in the public media community will hear and heed your thoughts on how the system needs to change.

  3. Damn, was hoping no one would notice and we’d sneak that cool $70M for ourselves…

    Excellent presentation John. Let’s get you to Cambridge for a PRX visit soon.

    1. Stop by Cambridge? Of course! I love Boston. Ever since the days of Macworld, lo these many years ago. 😉

      By the way, I had my first “social media” experience at Macworld in Boston back in the early 1990s. I exchanged “business cards” with another guy on our Newtons. Geek alert!

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