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Title: Crossing the ether
Author: Street, Sean
ISNI:       0000 0004 2681 909X
Awarding Body: Bournemouth University
Current Institution: Bournemouth University
Date of Award: 2003
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This dissertation examines the rise of English language commercial radio broadcasting from the Continent to Britain prior to World War Two, and its effect on the Public Service monopoly defended by the BBC. It explores the long-term effect on the history of British broadcasting caused by this competition, and argues for a reasoned consideration of the role of commercial broadcasting in the development of British media. Aller its introduction, which sets out the author's case for the fuller examination of this subject, Part One addresses the context of early broadcasting in Britain, and the guiding principles behind the Public Service ethic. Part Two extends this context to examine firstly the cultural climate in Britain between the wars, proceeding to discuss parallels, divergences and influences between the emerging broadcasting industries of the United Kingdom and the United States. Part Three explores important areas in which commercial operators played a major role in the development of broadcasting, namely scheduling and audience research, and the development of broadcast technology, notably recording processes. In Part Four the dissertation details the central issue of concerted commercial attacks on the BBC's monopoly, exploiting in particular its controversial Sunday Programmes Policy. It further charts the response of the Corporation to these challenges, and the gradual changes to Public Service Broadcasting as a result. The effects of competition were long-term, and to demonstrate this it is necessary to extend the study beyond the main historical area; Part Five therefore takes account of the Post-War climate, the parallels between 1930s and 1960s pressure from commercial interests, and the eventual arrival of land-based Independent Radio, initially governed by a Public Service Ethic. Finally, the Conclusion proposes that the thus Far undervalued role of Commercial radio in the United Kingdom belies its importance as a presence and influence in the medium dating hack to the very earliest years of British broadcasting.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Communication, Cultural and Media Studies