What is PEG?
PEG programming stands for Public, Educational and Governmental programming. Per federal law, cable operators are required to set aside channel space to carry PEG (which focuses on local) non-commercial programming.
Public access channels are available for use by the general public. They are often administered by the cable operator.
Educational access channels are used by educational institutions for educational programming. Usage of these channels can be in the franchise among local schools, colleges and universities.
Governmental access channels are used for programming by local government. In most jurisdictions, these channels are managed by the franchising authority.
While channel space must be set aside by the cable operator, it is up to the franchise authority to negotiate the inclusion of these channels into its franchise.
Franchise authorities may require cable operators as part of the negotiation process to provide facilities and equipment for use with PEG channels.
Typically, the content of the material carried on PEG access is determined by the individuals, groups or organizations that produce it.
PEG channels must be free of commercial content but may include "PBS-style" credit for underwriters.
PEG channels allow for local community information and expression not available on other commercial outlets.
"PEG access channels are often the video equivalent of the speaker's soap box or the electronic parallel to the printed leaflet. They provide groups and individuals who generally have not had access to the electronic media with the opportunity to become sources of information in the electronic marketplace of ideas."
While PEG channels often do not generate the ratings of other "network" providers, they do provide long term benefit for a large number of viewers over the life of the franchise.