So, I logged into the PBS app on my streaming device and was surprised to see that the vast majority of content is now behind a paywall. Viewing most episodes of Nature, Nova, and the like requires a “donation” of at least $5 a month! Upon receipt of the… freewill donation, the content becomes available for streaming.
Now, there’s still some content that does not require money changing hands, but let’s just say it’s probably not going to be any of their most popular offerings…
Am I overreacting? Is it right for PBS to stand up for itself and demand compensation for this completely voluntary service? Or are they waaay off-base for charging for content that is (at least partially) taxpayer-funded?
Lastly, is this even compatible with PBS’s mission to provide educational and cultural programming to citizens who might not otherwise be exposed to it? Is the future of public television going to be BigBirdflix?