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Reflections on the Past, Questions of the Future--Public Service Broadcasting: A Case Study of The Bahamas Broadcasting System,
Unformatted Document Text:  17 independence. In 1973, a five-member board of directors was appointed by the governor general on the advice of the prime minister. Today, the five-member board, headed by an executive chairperson, is still appointed by the governor general. The BCB operates both the national radio and television network. ZNS, Independence and Television 1960-1980 In the 1960s ZNS entered another phase of growth—the creation of a network. In the 1950s it had moved beyond the early years of a small station with economic, technical and human resource struggles to a station built on the economics of commercialization—profit. This meant that, as Ralph Lowenstein and John Merrill stated, there was an institutional change. 41 Lowenstein and Merrill believe that in order for an institutional change to occur, the concept (that is, the purpose to be served) or goal must change. In 1950 ZNS modified its purpose from a non-commercial entity to a commercial one. However, certain basic elements remained— ownership and control. Broadcasting continued as a public service designed to inform, educate, and entertain the citizens of The Bahamas. The new commercial format also brought with it another source of influence—sponsors. When ZNS began commercial broadcasting it extended its hours of operation from nine to fifteen hours a day. By 1960 the station was operating eighteen hours from 6 a.m. to 12 midnight, Monday through Saturday and seventeen hours on Sunday, 7 a.m. to 12 midnight. In 1968 the station became a 24-hour station. The increases in hours of operation meant changes in other areas—staff, facilities, equipment, and programming. By 1969 the station was operating at a profit of $B123, 748. 42 The annual grant from the government had also increased from £800 in 1944 to £10,000 in 1959. The annual grant remained at £10,000 until the government borrowed $B6 million 43 for the television project in 1977.

Authors: Storr, Juliette.
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17
independence. In 1973, a five-member board of directors was appointed by the governor general
on the advice of the prime minister. Today, the five-member board, headed by an executive
chairperson, is still appointed by the governor general. The BCB operates both the national radio
and television network.
ZNS, Independence and Television 1960-1980
In the 1960s ZNS entered another phase of growth—the creation of a network. In the
1950s it had moved beyond the early years of a small station with economic, technical and
human resource struggles to a station built on the economics of commercialization—profit. This
meant that, as Ralph Lowenstein and John Merrill stated, there was an institutional change.
41
Lowenstein and Merrill believe that in order for an institutional change to occur, the concept
(that is, the purpose to be served) or goal must change. In 1950 ZNS modified its purpose from a
non-commercial entity to a commercial one. However, certain basic elements remained—
ownership and control. Broadcasting continued as a public service designed to inform, educate,
and entertain the citizens of The Bahamas. The new commercial format also brought with it
another source of influence—sponsors. When ZNS began commercial broadcasting it extended
its hours of operation from nine to fifteen hours a day. By 1960 the station was operating
eighteen hours from 6 a.m. to 12 midnight, Monday through Saturday and seventeen hours on
Sunday, 7 a.m. to 12 midnight. In 1968 the station became a 24-hour station. The increases in
hours of operation meant changes in other areas—staff, facilities, equipment, and programming.
By 1969 the station was operating at a profit of $B123, 748.
42
The annual grant from the
government had also increased from £800 in 1944 to £10,000 in 1959. The annual grant
remained at £10,000 until the government borrowed $B6 million
43
for the television project in
1977.


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