In the late 1960’s, in response to a concern about the lack of public access to television airwaves, cable television programming began in earnest and, within the next decade, hundreds of public-access television production facilities were launched. The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) required that these facilities provide three channels, one each for public, educational, and local government use (thus we have PEG). In 1976, the FCC amended their rule to require cable systems in communities with 3,500 or more subscribers set aside up to 4 cable TV channels but also provide access to equipment and studios for use by the public.
In contrast to television networks and local television stations which send signals through the air, cable television stations use —guess what—cables to do the same. Cable companies pay local governments to use public right-of-ways to lay their cables. How much they pay is based on the number of households that subscribe to the cable service. A government may use a percentage of that money to support public access television programming and services (which Manistee and Filer Township do) but it must make public, educational and government (PEG) channels available.
Manistee TV (Channels 189/190) has been in existence for many years and serves Manistee, Manistee Township, Manistee County and Filer Township. It’s ‘governed’ by an appointed board of commissioners and run by a paid executive director. All others involved are volunteers.
In addition to airing a wide assortment of non-commercial programming, our services also include instruction on video production, free use of television production facilities and support for the creation of locally produced shows.