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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:  27 The new competitive electronic media environment has created new challenges for the state-own broadcasting system. Today BCB, ZNS radio and television, struggles to compete with local private radio, Florida radio and television stations, satellite transmissions, cable television, VCRs and the Internet. The new technologies and dependence on foreign media products have raised issues of cultural imperialism and dependency, quality and quantity of local programming and the privatization of public broadcasting. These are the challenges at the beginning of the twenty-first century. Conclusion When ZNS began in 1937 it provided the citizens of the country with a faster means of disseminating information. It also ameliorated the fears and isolation of the people who lived in the Out Island communities. Radio allowed them to learn more quickly about impending threats like hurricanes and informed them about other activities that were important to the economic and social well-being of their communities. However, because of its early concentration on the Out Island communities (a strategy of colonial development), in the first thirteen years of its existence ZNS did not meet all the needs of Bahamians. This condition changed when the institution shifted its goals in 1950 to commercialization. Commercialization also brought broadcasting’s sole dependence on the government for economic survival to an end. Decision-making powers were shared with advertisers who demanded that the station attract larger audiences. Those demands resulted in improvements in the facilities and quality of service and increases in staff. As a result of these mid-twentieth century changes, broadcasting became a significant medium for transmitting culture, mediating politics and economics, selling products and services, and extending communication capabilities throughout and beyond the archipelago. Merchants and politicians paid more attention to radio’s ability to reach a large audience at the same time,

Authors: Storr, Juliette.
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27
The new competitive electronic media environment has created new challenges for the
state-own broadcasting system. Today BCB, ZNS radio and television, struggles to compete with
local private radio, Florida radio and television stations, satellite transmissions, cable television,
VCRs and the Internet. The new technologies and dependence on foreign media products have
raised issues of cultural imperialism and dependency, quality and quantity of local programming
and the privatization of public broadcasting. These are the challenges at the beginning of the
twenty-first century.
Conclusion
When ZNS began in 1937 it provided the citizens of the country with a faster means of
disseminating information. It also ameliorated the fears and isolation of the people who lived in
the Out Island communities. Radio allowed them to learn more quickly about impending threats
like hurricanes and informed them about other activities that were important to the economic and
social well-being of their communities.
However, because of its early concentration on the Out Island communities (a strategy of
colonial development), in the first thirteen years of its existence ZNS did not meet all the needs
of Bahamians. This condition changed when the institution shifted its goals in 1950 to
commercialization. Commercialization also brought broadcasting’s sole dependence on the
government for economic survival to an end. Decision-making powers were shared with
advertisers who demanded that the station attract larger audiences. Those demands resulted in
improvements in the facilities and quality of service and increases in staff.
As a result of these mid-twentieth century changes, broadcasting became a significant
medium for transmitting culture, mediating politics and economics, selling products and services,
and extending communication capabilities throughout and beyond the archipelago. Merchants
and politicians paid more attention to radio’s ability to reach a large audience at the same time,


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