The Value of TV, According to The American Television Society in 1944

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So, you think public relations people are more aggressive now than they used to be in fighting for regulation that benefits them? You might want to rethink that. Check out what Norman Waters of the American Television Society said back in 1944 during FCC hearings on how to allocate spectrum for the nascent technology of TV:

It is my belief that it would be just as criminal to hold back television as it would be for a scientist to keep from the public a known cure for one of mankind's great ills, once he had discovered it. The analogy is fair, for Television will bring about the enlightenment of mankind, and may well hold within its grasp the solution of a lasting peace in the world.

That's some big talk. 

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Alexis C. Madrigal

Alexis Madrigal is the deputy editor of TheAtlantic.com. He's the author of Powering the Dream: The History and Promise of Green Technology. More

The New York Observer has called Madrigal "for all intents and purposes, the perfect modern reporter." He co-founded Longshot magazine, a high-speed media experiment that garnered attention from The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, and the BBC. While at Wired.com, he built Wired Science into one of the most popular blogs in the world. The site was nominated for best magazine blog by the MPA and best science Web site in the 2009 Webby Awards. He also co-founded Haiti ReWired, a groundbreaking community dedicated to the discussion of technology, infrastructure, and the future of Haiti.

He's spoken at Stanford, CalTech, Berkeley, SXSW, E3, and the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, and his writing was anthologized in Best Technology Writing 2010 (Yale University Press).

Madrigal is a visiting scholar at the University of California at Berkeley's Office for the History of Science and Technology. Born in Mexico City, he grew up in the exurbs north of Portland, Oregon, and now lives in Oakland.

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