Search This Blog




Digital Television, The Oregon Trail, Wolves, and Idaho Legislature

March 23 2009 by Peter Morrill

During these unpredictable times, Idaho Public Television strives to serve our audiences. We prefer to be out front, chronicling our history in ways that, hopefully, you will find useful and necessary.

Our motto is "carpe diem"... Seize the Day.

Telling the stories of our times in Idaho is the core of our organization's DNA.

We know we're making a difference by the overwhelming response to the FESTIVAL membership campaign, having received $953,987 in pledges. Tens of thousands of supporters lent their time and contributions to benefit our service mission.

While raising financial support is critically important, we're continuing to press on with programming and services about our times.

  • More and more people are discovering the advantages of our new digital television channels -- IdahoPTV Prime, HD, Learn, and World. These are available free, over-the-air, and on many cable television systems statewide.
  • IDAHO REPORTS and IDAHO LEGISLATURE LIVE continue in-depth coverage of the affairs of state government on-air, on-line at, and through new media outlets, including Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.
  • DIALOGUE is continuing conversations about our times, including interviews with Guantanamo defendant attorney and Idahoan David Nevin, the controversy revolving around wolf delisting, and how our state and federal representatives are slicing the federal stimulus pie.
  • It's been called the "longest cemetery in the world," and OUTDOOR IDAHO explores this inspirational story of our forbearers in "Pathways of Pioneers: Idaho's Oregon Trail Legacy." If you've ever wondered where Idahoans got their grit and determination, this show will tell you!
  • Looking forward, we're working on many new initiatives, including our first High Definition concert program, "Kevin Kirk and Onomatopoeia at the Egyptian Theatre," produced by Jeff Tucker; the inspiring story of OUTDOOR IDAHO: "Special Olympics Comes to Idaho," produced by Marcia Franklin; OUTDOOR IDAHO: "Wolves in Idaho," produced by Bruce Reichert; and "Capitol of Light: The People's House," produced by Bruce Reichert.

And one last thing: Is it possible that federal policy can hinder basic services in rural areas? The answer is a resounding Yes. In fact, they've done just that with access to free over-the-air television. We've been working feverishly to address poor federal digital television policy and its impact on our rural areas.

The federal government has known for years that digital signals do not travel well in mountainous areas. Yet they waited until the eleventh hour to implement a "fix" to this problem. Naturally, it comes down to licenses and cash, neither of which we have. But we are working hard to obtain both, via federal, state, and private sources.

So why is this important? Idaho City, Emmett, Boise Front/Harris Ranch, Glenns Ferry, mid/southern Wood River Valley, and the Portneuf Valley are going to be impacted, through no fault of their own.

These areas, many of them seats of county governments, deserve to continue to have all the free over-the-air television stations after the federally mandated shutdown of the nation's analog television transmitters on June 12, 2009.

We're doing our part to ensure our service continues in these areas.


Posted in |