In television and radio scheduling, a policy of offering diverse content consisting of information, entertainment, and educational material that caters for a broad spectrum of tastes and opinions, including those of minorities. It also includes issues of timing, seeking to avoid the imbalances created when peak time viewing is dominated by programmes aimed at the ‘lowest common denominator’. The provision of balanced programming is a condition of many public service broadcasting mandates. The rationale behind this is that balanced programming provides for a plurality of views and ensures that there is equal access to information across the population. However, some public service broadcasters have been criticized as interpreting this as a licence to give the public what it ‘needs’ (in terms of highbrow programming), rather than what it wants. See also market model.
Subjects: Media Studies.