SATV Frequently Asked Questions
- What is SATV?
- Who is SATV for?
- How can I get a show on SATV?
- What TV shows are seen on public access?
- What does it cost to produce a show on SATV?
- Can I make money off of my show?
- Can I use SATV’s equipment or facilities for my own personal interests?
- Can I use my own equipment to produce my show?
- How do I get an announcement on the bulletin board?
- Can I use music or video from other sources in my show?
- Can SATV cover my event?
- On what channel, and in what areas will my show play?
- How do I get a time slot on the schedule?
- How do I get a copy of an SATV program?
- If I don’t have time to do a regular series, what are my options?
Salem Access Television is the City of Salem’s Public Access TV Station – it exists due to an agreement between the city’s cable provider and the communities it serves. Public access programming is community programming on cable TV. It gives members and organizations of the community the opportunity to write, produce, direct, and perform in their own programs. SATV’s channels feature programs which are produced locally by members, SATV staff and other professionally produced programs. SATV provides members of the community with the necessary training, equipment, and use of facilities to produce TV programs.
Anyone who lives in Salem, non profit organizations and other organizations located in Salem, full time Salem State students, businesses located in Salem.
Producing a show for an SATV channel begins with joining SATV as a member and taking our free classes. Throughout these class sessions, members can become certified Public access equipment users. The classes cover the basic elements of TV production: camera operation, lighting, audio, directing, video switching, field shooting, editing, and more. The classes, channel time, and use of SATV equipment are free for members working on projects through SATV.
What TV shows are seen on public access?
Any programming protected by the First Amendment which is NOT commercial, libelous, slanderous or obscene in nature may be shown on public access. These programs include interviews, panel discussions, sports, documentaries, performances, political programs, religious programs, educational programs, music, entertainment and many other types of programs.
What does it cost to produce a show on SATV?
There is no cost to use SATV’s facilities or field equipment for active SATV members. Members only have to purchase their own sd cards, dvds, dv tapes, hard drives etc. (Hard drive space is available for members in Edit bays, but members are allowed to purchase their own hard drives and store their projects. Once completed all projects must be aired on one of SATV channels.)
Can I make money off of my show?
No, members cannot make any profits from their public access TV shows and productions. Members are prohibited from using SATV’s public access equipment and facilities on projects which can generate revenue.
Can I use SATV’s equipment or facilities for my own personal interests?
No, members may not use public access equipment or facilities for their own interests, even if they generate no revenue. SATV’s equipment and facilities are provided for members to use in producing their public access programming exclusively. They are not intended for use in family videos, birthday parties, weddings, advertisements, or other personal or commercial videos.
Can I use my own equipment to produce my show?
Yes, members may use their own equipment to produce their show. The final compression, or_dvd must be in an acceptable format for playback on any access channel. Acceptable formats need to be discussed with SATV’s Program Director or any SATV staff member.
How do I get an announcement on the bulletin board?
The Community Bulletin Board airs on channels 3, 15 and 22 between programs. It features announcements about upcoming events and programs. Bulletin Board announcements are free of charge. To have your bulletin posted you can do one of two things:
Send us an email to email@example.com with BULLETIN BOARD ANNOUNCEMENT as the subject.
or print out this form [pdf] and bring the information to our offices at 285 Derby Street, or fax it to 978-740-4499.
Can I use music or video from other sources in my show?
As a certified access user, members assume the responsibility for the content of their shows. Members are responsible for acquiring permission to use anything from other sources in your show – whether it is music, video, photographs, etc.
SATV staff attempts to cover as many events as possible and does cover events by request when able to. SATV provides the training and facilities for the public to cover events they are interested in when they become SATV members.
On what channel, and in what areas will my show play?
SATV’s program director determines on which of SATV’s three channels shows will air. SATV shows only air on Comcast in Salem, Massachusetts. SATV producers are allowed to play their shows in other towns, cities and states. Producers must make their own arrangements with other TV stations.
How do I get a time slot on the schedule?
When your first show is completed, you will hand in the master tape for playback to the SATV program director. In addition, you will fill out a playback form. This form indicates to the public access coordinator and the traffic coordinator who you are and what your show is about. It also serves as your permission for us to play your tape over the air. Once your tape has been viewed by the access coordinator and approved for airing, the program director will select an available and appropriate time slot, based on the information related on the playback form. Once your show has been given a time slot, you will keep that time slot, unless the program director has a scheduling conflict, or if you fail to turn in your shows in a timely fashion. Time slots can also be revoked if you lose your access privileges for other reasons.
How do I get a copy of an SATV program?
If you want to get a dvd copy of a program you have seen on SATV, you can request a dub by e-mailing our program director. Be sure to include the title of the program and date, your name, and a phone number you can be reached.
If you have produced a program for air on SATV and want to keep a copy, there are three basic ways to get a copy of your program:
Use your own tape for your edited master.
Copy the program off the air when it is shown.
Request a dub.
NOTE: MAKING YOUR OWN COPY IN THE EDITING SUITE OR ELSEWHERE IN THE FACILITY IS NOT PERMITTED.
If I don’t have time to do a regular series, what are my options?
If the possibility of a weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly series is too demanding on you or your available time, then we have several options. If your show idea could be produced in a single program, you can submit it as such. It will be scheduled as a special program, receiving no more than 4 total airings – and perhaps only one airing, depending on schedule availability. Another option within the realms of special programming is a mini-series. You can produce a series of at least 2 and no more than 12 installments, and submit it as such. In similar fashion, it will be scheduled to run, and you will be notified of the dates and times which it will be aired.
This document is not an official representation of the rules and regulations of public access, nor is it inclusive of FCC regulations. It is meant to be an informative tool.