Charting the Digital Broadcasting Future, 1998

Advisory Committee on Public Interest Obligations of Digital Television Broadcasters
Final Report, Dec. 18, 1998
a.k.a. PIAC or the Gore Commission

See PDF of full report; sections of the report posted in HTML by the Benton Foundation; and the list of commission members. Executive Summary
As this Nation’’s 1,600 television stations begin to convert to a digital television format, it is appropriate to reexamine the long-standing social compact between broadcasters and the American people. The quality of governance, intelligence of political discourse, diversity of free expression, vitality of local communities, opportunities for education and instruction, and many other dimensions of American life will be affected profoundly by how digital television evolves. This Advisory Committee’s recommendations on how public interest obligations of television broadcasters ought to change in the new digital television era represent a new stage in the ongoing evolution of the public interest standard: a needed reassessment in light of dramatic changes in communications technology, market structures, and the needs of a democratic society.