CPB poll: Pub TV fare ‘wholesome’

Public TV is viewed as a “wholesome” alternative to the excessively violent programming aired on network and cable TV, according to a new study commissioned by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting.

The poll of 1,000 adults conducted late last year found that only 14% of viewers perceive public TV as being too violent, compared with 70% of network viewers and 57% of cable watchers.

Bias factor weighed

Public TV is also viewed as less slanted in the presentation of the news than the broadcast networks or cable, according to the report.

In the study, only 22% viewers believed “The MacNeil-Lehrer NewsHour” slants or sensationalizes the news to improve ratings, compared with 71% of network news watchers and 42% of cable viewers.

Docu slant

Some 45% of pub TV watchers agreed that PBS documentaries on environmental issues are “slanted in favor of the environmentalists.” Moreover, 44% of PBS viewers believe public broadcasting docus on political movements in foreign countries are slanted and “do not present the views of all sides.”

‘Doing something right’

Sheila Tate, chairman of the CPB board of directors, said, “You know you’re doing something right when 82% of Americans identify public television with the word wholesome.”

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