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A Future for Public Service Television$
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Des Freedman and Vana Goblot

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9781906897710

Published to MIT Press Scholarship Online: September 2018

DOI: 10.7551/mitpress/9781906897710.001.0001

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Television, Quality of Life and the Value of Culture

Television, Quality of Life and the Value of Culture

Chapter:
(p.151) 16 Television, Quality of Life and the Value of Culture
Source:
A Future for Public Service Television
Author(s):

David Hesmondhalgh

Publisher:
The MIT Press
DOI:10.7551/mitpress/9781906897710.003.0018

This chapter foregrounds two concepts that need to be central in discussions about the future of television in the UK: quality of life, and the value of culture. It makes four main claims: (i) television can contribute to quality of life in important ways, but we should not understand that contribution in terms of ‘consumer preferences’; (ii) television's contribution to quality of life should be thought of in terms of what it enables people to do or to be; (iii) television markets, if not well constructed and regulated, are unlikely to enhance cultural quality of life adequately, because high-quality television is a particular form of ‘merit good’ and is therefore likely to be underproduced; and (iv) digitalisation does not remove the fundamental problems surrounding cultural markets and quality of life — it makes a public service ‘common provider’ more important.

Keywords:   broadcast television, UK, quality of life, culture, public services television, public service broadcasting, digitalisation

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