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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:  22 television’s transmission was enhanced so that the signal could be seen in other islands of The Bahamas. In 1993, ZNS TV had a transmission power of 50,000 watts, broadcast on Channel 13 and operated in full color 10 hours per day, Monday to Friday, 17 hours on Saturday, and 16 hours on Sunday. On November 5, 1990, TV-13 commenced a television service in Freeport, Grand Bahama, via the CATV cable system. In Freeport, local programs are offered Monday to Friday from 7 p.m. to 11 p.m. In 1977 The Bahamas Government borrowed $6 million from local banks for the television project. 50 Television is expensive. As a result, the government continues to borrow money to keep local television on the air. After the first three years of television operation, the BCB felt the strain of operating this expensive medium. Most crucial to its survival was the cost of operation. By the end of 1980, Mike Smith, former public affairs director at BCB, predicted over a half million dollars loss for ZNS. In June 1993 the once profitable entity had an accumulated debt of $34 million. 51 The first phase of the television project began with the inception of the service in 1977 and covered the capital of The Bahamas, New Providence. Phase two began in 1990 and covered the northern islands of Grand Bahama and Abaco. Phase three was in the planning stage in 1993. This phase was designed to cover the southern portions of the archipelago. To date, the corporation has not implemented this phase. New Technology and the Era of Competition: 1980-1993 The 1980s was a period of prosperity for The Bahamas. Tourism boomed. Drug trafficking, like its predecessor rum-running, provided some local residents with untold wealth. The country emerged from the turbulent 60s and transitional 70s to encounter a period of rapid development, particularly in the urban centers Nassau and Freeport. The racial rhetoric that was prominent in the public discourse in the 1960s and 1970s, particularly during a general election,

Authors: Storr, Juliette.
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22
television’s transmission was enhanced so that the signal could be seen in other islands of The
Bahamas. In 1993, ZNS TV had a transmission power of 50,000 watts, broadcast on Channel 13
and operated in full color 10 hours per day, Monday to Friday, 17 hours on Saturday, and 16
hours on Sunday. On November 5, 1990, TV-13 commenced a television service in Freeport,
Grand Bahama, via the CATV cable system. In Freeport, local programs are offered Monday to
Friday from 7 p.m. to 11 p.m.
In 1977 The Bahamas Government borrowed $6 million from local banks for the
television project.
50
Television is expensive. As a result, the government continues to borrow
money to keep local television on the air. After the first three years of television operation, the
BCB felt the strain of operating this expensive medium. Most crucial to its survival was the cost
of operation. By the end of 1980, Mike Smith, former public affairs director at BCB, predicted
over a half million dollars loss for ZNS. In June 1993 the once profitable entity had an
accumulated debt of $34 million.
51
The first phase of the television project began with the inception of the service in 1977
and covered the capital of The Bahamas, New Providence. Phase two began in 1990 and covered
the northern islands of Grand Bahama and Abaco. Phase three was in the planning stage in 1993.
This phase was designed to cover the southern portions of the archipelago. To date, the
corporation has not implemented this phase.
New Technology and the Era of Competition: 1980-1993
The 1980s was a period of prosperity for The Bahamas. Tourism boomed. Drug
trafficking, like its predecessor rum-running, provided some local residents with untold wealth.
The country emerged from the turbulent 60s and transitional 70s to encounter a period of rapid
development, particularly in the urban centers Nassau and Freeport. The racial rhetoric that was
prominent in the public discourse in the 1960s and 1970s, particularly during a general election,


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