ERIC Number: ED207087
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1980-May
Reference Count: 0
Choosing a Color Television System.
Robinson, Sondra G.
Social thinkers in the United States do not recognize that technology is a result of conscious decisions that directly reflect the social order, and, therefore, have an impact upon American life that goes beyond the technological development itself. The decision by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) in 1954 established standards for color television systems in the United States that were consciously created by the corporate interests of the electronics industry. The process by which this decision was reached further demonstrates the ways in which technological choices are dominated by the corporate goals of a capitalistic economy, rather than by the needs of the public. Indeed, beyond personal connections, corporate relations among the giants of the television industry have an extensive history. A committee was called together in 1950 to draw up standards for color television that would be compatible with the black and white sets already in use. However, before the color standards were established, the FCC approved a CBS field sequential color system that was noncompatible. The final FCC decision on color standards can be seen as the result of efforts exerted by television industry representatives to increase sales of television sets and to create a larger consumer market for television. What is gained by this integrated examination of an aspect of television history is new insight into the complex manner by which such technology is produced and the extent of its further implications. (HOD)
Publication Type: Information Analyses; Opinion Papers; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Federal Communications Commission; Television History
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the International Communication Association (31st, Acapulco, Mexico, May 18-23, 1980).