The Public Access Digital Network (PADNET) is Long Beach’s community media center and public access television station (Charter 32 / Frontier 41).
PADNET provides media training classes, professional video equipment, a high-definition television studio, and affordable production services. In short, it’s everything you need to produce your own non-commercial video content for the public access channel, online and beyond.
Public Access Channel
PADNET is the people’s channel—and one of the few public access channels in the state. It’s an equalizing force in a media landscape where local voices often go unheard. Check the schedule, and then tune in at Charter channel 32 or Frontier channel 41—or watch live online!
Learn more at PADNET.tv.
Historically, cable television providers were required to give the public access to free studios, equipment and training in exchange for the use of “public rights-of-way” for the delivery of video services provided within their jurisdictions. In California, that changed in 2006, when the state legislature passed the Digital Infrastructure and Video Competition Act, which allowed cable providers to drop that obligation.
Designed to make it easier for phone companies to enter the cable market, the law had a devastating side effect on public access TV stations throughout the state. Over 50 stations closed over the next several years, including the Charter-operated Public Access Studio in Long Beach.
Understanding the community value of locally produced, locally focused news, information and entertainment, the City of Long Beach set out to re-launch its public access channel—but needed an agency to take on the daily management responsibilities and assume responsibility for operational costs.
As a Community Action Agency, LBCAP’s mission includes community advocacy and skills development. Seeing an opportunity to build on the success of our LAMP video production program, we submitted a proposal to take over the operation of the Long Beach public access television channel in 2011. The City of Long Beach awarded us the contract in 2012.
On August 31, 2012, the channel went back on the air. Later that year, PADNET began offering classes, video equipment and editing suites to the public. Not long after, members started to submit new, original content to the station. In May 2013, PADNET opened a full HD television studio.
PADNET.tv is now becoming a respected source of community news, information and entertainment, produced by the citizens of Long Beach. PADNET has increased LBCAP’s profile as we engage political and other local leaders in interviews and programming. Additionally, we use the media center to create, and the channel to broadcast, public service announcements about our work. PADNET has also created an excellent environment for college interns and local high school youth to gain marketable job skills and experience in the digital media industry.
The community media center has grown to include four satellite centers: one at WE Labs, one in The Studio makerspace at the Main Library, another in the El Dorado Library and a fourth at Century Villages at Cabrillo.
Operating PADNET.tv as a program of LBCAP helps us in our mission to raise awareness about the issues facing families that live in poverty.