Statement before Glenn A. Walsh

the Board of Directors P.O. Box 1041

of WQED Multimedia: Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 15230-1041 U.S.A.

New Status of Telephone: 412-561-7876

WQEX-TV 16 Electronic Mail: < gawalsh@planetarium.cc >

Internet Web Site: < http://www.planetarium.cc >

2004 May 27

 

Good afternoon. I am Glenn A. Walsh of 633 Royce Avenue, Mt. Lebanon. Today, I am representing no formal organization.

 

This month, WQEX-TV, channel 16, started broadcasting a new program schedule, which is predominantly advertising and selling products. I must tell you that I am very disappointed with this new program schedule. During the many years that the status of channel 16 was in question, the management of WQED Multimedia emphasized that a change to channel 16s programming would bring new information and entertainment options to the residents of Western Pennsylvania.

 

Many people, including me, questioned the value of this new entertainment programming, considering the loss of channel 16s valuable educational schedule. However, it was never contemplated that WQEX would revert to strictly advertising and selling.

 

An immediate consequence of this new schedule has been the de-listing of channel 16 in the daily and weekly television listings of both Pittsburgh daily newspapers and TV Guide. I am glad to see that the WQED web site includes a full listing of the WQEX program schedule. However, as this schedule is currently displayed, it is not easy to find the few educational programs that still air on channel 16. I would ask that these educational programs be either highlighted, or listed separately, so people can easily find the schedules for these few educational programs.

 

Further, although there was a large write-up about channel 16s new program schedule in the June issue of Pittsburgh magazine, the magazine does not include a program schedule for channel 16even a schedule of WQEXs educational programs. So, I would also ask that Pittsburgh magazine include a monthly schedule of channel 16s educational programs. Regrettably, this will be a very short list, so it would not take-up much magazine space.

 

In the past, at the end of a program that repeats later in the week, there has been an announcement of when the repeat broadcast airs. So, I would also ask that for programs which air on channel 13, which will later air on channel 16, that an announcement be given at the end of the program on channel 13 mentioning that this program will be repeated on channel 16.

 

Now, the main reason I did come today is to tell you that I agree with the decision, made by the WQED Multimedia Board of Directors, not to sell channel 16. With this decision, you have left programming options open for you, and future boards of directors.

 

No one knows what the future will hold. You, or future boards, may find reason to restore most educational programming to channel 16, even if some commercials remain. Particularly when digital broadcasting finally becomes popular, WQED Multimedia will have the potential of programming eight separate channelsinstead of just four. With eight potential channels, it may seem quite reasonable to restore WQEXs original mission.

 

So, I strongly urge you, even after the three-year lease with the Home Shopping Network has expired, to maintain your decision not to sell channel 16. Keep programming options open for you and future boards of directors.

 

Thank you.

 

gaw