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2022, vol. 56, br. 2, str. 582-606
Javni medijski servis u Srbiji - izazovi i perspektive iz ugla profesionalaca
Univerzitet umetnosti u Beogradu, Fakultet dramskih umetnosti
Ključne reči: javni medijski servis; Radio-televizija Srbije; funkcije; načela; fokusgrupno istraživanje
U tekstu su predstavljeni rezultati dela istraživanja o načinima na koje zaposleni u Radio-televiziji Srbije (u daljem tekstu RTS) vide i razumeju društvenu ulogu, funkcionalnost i specifičnosti ovog medija kao javnog medijskog servisa (u daljem tekstu JMS). U fokusu su urednici operativnog ranga RTS-a i njihove percepcije funkcija i načela JMS-a, odnosno sprovođenje tih funkcija i načela kroz različite forme programskih sadržaja. Empirijsko istraživanje je, metodom fokusne grupe, pokazalo da urednici koji imaju značajnu ulogu u proizvodnji programa imaju svest i znanje o funkcijama JMS-a, ali nedovoljno poznaju njegova načela. Ispitivanje je ukazalo na značajnu nepodudarnost između zvanične uređivačke politike RTS-a i stavova ispitivanih urednika o uređivačkoj politici funkcionalnog JMS-a.


Ever since it was first introduced in the Serbian media system, public service broadcasting became the subject of research of local communicologists. In addition to the establishment of an independent regulatory body, within whose scope of competence is to regulate the operation of electronic media, transformation of the state-owned radio and TV stations into an independent broadcaster with a public service broadcasting mandate, which was a milestone of the media system, as part of Serbia's transition to a parliamentary democracy (Jakubowicz, 2004; Veljanovski, 2009). Communicology research has on a regular basis been following the process of the SBC transforming into a public media institution, noting some problematic aspects and reasons of structural nature (Мilivojević, 2012), as well as legislative (Marko, 2017) and financial ones (Matić and Valić Nedeljković, 2014), as well as others, which do not allow the SBC to fully realise its function as PSC, especially in terms of providing viewers with a diversified and credible information content (Matić, 2014; Nikolić, 2018). The focus of this research was the position of PSB in the media market and attitude of viewers towards this medium as opposed to other media which hold the national frequency and ever more noticeable competition of commercial broadcasters (Ipsos, 2015), and also that despite the fact that the SBC has been transforming into a public service medium for almost two decades now, there is still no meticulously defined and thoroughly elaborated and publicly available development strategy (Popović, 2017).

Nevertheless, there is no sufficient research into perception and achievements of this change, as seen from the inside, by the employees of the SBC as the main bearers of this transformation. In that context, this paper aims to fill in the identified gaps, on the basis of uniform empirical research.

This research was a result of the need to create a solid, scientifically based and relevant recapitulation of the current state of affairs and to meticulously analyse the SBC system functionalities as PSB, at a point in time when in our society there is a pronounced polarisation in terms of views and PSB's activities.

The subject of this research is SBC editors' perception, through various categories of functions and principles of PSB, whereas the objective of this paper is to establish whether and to what extent editors are familiar with these categories in the production of programming content. The starting hypothesis has been formulated based on the results of our initial focus group research (Matić and Valić Nedeljković, Hrvatin, Petković, 2014) and direct professional observations of the authors': operational-level editors at the SBC do not have precise knowledge of principles, i.e., postulates of PSB, on which editorial policies, programme concepts, internal production standards and procedures should be based. The importance of enquiries into these issues arises from the fact that it is only with strict observance of functions, principles, standards, and procedures is it possible to form proper concepts and to properly realise programme content, thus making PSB functional and unique compared to all other media.

The starting point of the author's approach are based on a proactive approach to media and many years of immediate, professional and editorial experience at the SBC, this experience having been gained prior, during and after it transformation to the PSB. Pragmatic objective of a broader research is to present empirically verified foundation for a complex and demanding endeavour of redefining communication practices of the SBC as PSB.

Research methodology

The text that follows presents the results of just one empirical part of a more comprehensive research, for which conceptual, quantitative and qualitative approaches were additionally used. Since the issue at hand is multi-tiered, and for the purpose of gaining as credible as possible insight into the observed phenomenon, this research has used multiple ways of gathering data as well as various methods of their processing. Due to complexity of this topic, this paper used a multi-perspective approach and also various methods of gathering materials were used (original empirical research conducted with the use of the focus group method, as well as desk research), while for the purpose of data processing, critical analysis and generalisation were used.

The empirical segment of this research was conducted with the use of the focus group method and stands for a continuation of the initial focus group debate with radio and TV editors at the SBC, in which they discussed operational issues at the Serbian Broadcasting Corporation, in the context of its transformation into the public service medium (Matić et al, 2014).

A group discussion which was organized in early 2019 focused on pre-defined research questions regarding how the respondents perceived the SBC as PSB, how much they knew about its functions, principles and to what extent they were applied in the production of programming content. The respondents were editors - "operative" staff of the SBC, as persons realising and the qualitative and creative potentials of editorial policies. For the first research, the respondents were mainly selected based on their status1, whereas for the second research, the sample for recruiting focus group members was defined based on insight into the entire staff structure and organigram of the SBC. The selection of respondents was made on the basis of relevant demographics and work and professional features: gender - female and male, proportionately; age - from 30 to 50 years of age; educational level - university degree; work status - operational-editorial staff; length of professional experience - minimum 10 years at the SBC. The focus group presented in this paper consisted of nine editors from different desks at Radio Belgrade and Television of Serbia. They belonged to a group of same-level editors, which according to the provisions of their labour contracts were obligated to independently create smaller or larger programme sections - ranging from shows to complex sets of footages. A portion of data was collected with the use of a questionnaire that the respondents filled out prior to participating in the mentioned group discussion, while the major portion of data was obtained by analysing the content of group discussion transcripts. For the sake of credibility and credibility of research, polls were conducted in writing, by a professional, licensed researcher. Due to a proactive status of the authors of this research and approach to the topic that was being looked into, objectification of the research was carried out on three levels: research, author and mentor.

The described social circumstances, proactive approach to the subject of this research and researched managerial problem situation called for an action-based approach, which entailed a certain intervention with which "the researchers observe and participate in the phenomena they research" (Zlatanović, 2010:96).

Perception from the inside: Functions and principles of the PSB

The actual aim of the focus group discussion was to establish what the awareness of SBC executive-operational level editors was, in terms of social role, functionalities, and idiosyncrasies of the SBC as PSB. Additionally, it was necessary to verify more precisely to what extent they knew the definition, functions, and principles of the media institution in which they are engaged in their professional capacity.

All respondents recognise the PSB as an institution "whose role should be to serve the citizens" and which has three roles: informational, educational, and entertaining. Additionally, they know precisely the meaning of each of the functions and they rank them differently. They prioritise the informational functional, they believe the educational role to be extremely important, whereas they merely acknowledge the entertainment role, without giving it any qualitative label. In the opinion of the respondents-editors, it is precisely diversity, complexity, and importance of PSB's functions the feature that makes it unique compared to all other media.

The respondents' view is that public service broadcasting must not be equalised with commercial media, and in the opinion of a news desk editor: "I find it offensive if anyone says that we should be in pursuit of viewer ratings and profit because we don't produce the same content as commercial media do, because they create only entertainment content. " The culture desk editor mentioned a different type of specific task. "It's our job to choose what's best in the areas of culture and art and also to preserve our heritage and create cultural content. We are the only ones who do that and if we no longer do it, this non-commercial stuff won't be made by anyone. " The editors were unison in insisting on the difference between PSB and commercial electronic media, pointing out its uniqueness, which is based both on type and diversity, as well as quality of programming content.

As regards programming and editorial presence of PSB's functions, their position and ranking in the SBC system, the editors unanimously said that all three of them, being basic, should have identical status and importance in editorial policies. However, in their view, this is not the case at the SBC.

From the very outset of the focus group discussion and then all through it, the respondents insisted that on principle and in practical terms, the priority for the SBC was the informational function. Nevertheless, based on professional criteria, what they thought had priority importance was the social and cultural aspect of PSB's programming activities (see Figure 1).

Figure 1 РТС уредници – Пожељни програми јавног сервиса / SBC editors - Public service broadcasting programmes in demand

The majority of respondents thought that emphasising the informational function of PSB was connected to a high level of professionalism which is required for this purpose, and this applies especially to staff working in the news desk, especially those whose report on politics. The position of respondent-editors is that the culture desk is that professionalism is necessary in order to maintain PSB's credibility: "[…] for the purpose of building trust because no one should wonder whether what they are watching or listening to on the SBC is true."

The respondents felt that it was particularly important for the operation of PSB to have a culture and art "function". In theory, it is not defined as being basic but instead is seen as a part of the educational function, although some authors, such as Eric Barendt, deem it to be an integral part of the operation of broadcasting organisations, along with maintaining national identity (Mendel, 2001). Members of the focus group see the realm of culture as an area where the SBC's idiosyncrasies and capacities as PSB are affirmed the most potently. According to their views, one of the PSB's main functions is that it should be an independent production of culture programmes, i.e. in the words of a culture desk editor "[…] to maintain but also produce cultural goods." So, in their opinion, the SBC is not only a medium that disseminates content from the field of culture but also actively follows, independently creates and nurtures culture-related content of all citizens who live in Serbia, which is confirmed by the words of the entertainment desk editor "[…] nurturing culture, and not only that of the national majority". Giving it priority in editorial and production terms, they understand culture as being broader and more complex than just a simple media presentation of this area through various presentations of art events. Such a professional position of the editors is also theory-based. "Typical misconceptions in relation with culture refer to equalising them with or mistaking culture for a 'higher culture' or 'art' (e.g., media content in the area of 'culture' typically entail footages of art events)" (Žegarac et al., 2016)

A broad understanding of culture entails that it permeates all three functions of the PSB and is reflected in the international news desk's editor, who notes that the PSB "[…] as a unique and multifunctional institution nurtures by its own example the culture of communication, speech, behaviour in the broadest of senses, rather than only in terms of production culture-related content".

Said respondents' opinions confirm the existence of professional awareness of PSB's mutuality educational function, as well as culture, as understood in social and anthropological sense, and as recognised in theory of culture: "Culture is a manner of behaving and lifestyle of a certain group of people in a certain society. It is reflected in knowledge and views, morals and norms, in myths, literature and art, as well as customs, habits and world view, which exist in a certain environment over a certain period of time. This is the manner in which things are done" (Žegarac et al., 2016).

Unlike precise knowledge of all the functions and their meanings, the majority of participants in the focus group research were unable to list and precisely explain all principles of PSB, nor their meanings and roles. This is about the original PSB (public service broadcasting) principles, as formulated by John Reith, the first director of the BBC, as early as 1927. These principles include: universal geographic accessibility, funding by service users, high quality programming, special programme content for minorities, contribution to sense of national identity and community, distance from vested interests and guidelines that do not restrict programme makers (Shingler & Wieringa, 2000).

During their professional engagement, the respondents-editors were not even systematically guided nor were they familiarised with these principles, although they are believed to be indispensable for the purpose of efficiently realising PSB's objectives. Nevertheless, they are directly or indirectly familiar with most principles of PSB, and they identify them through some fundamental features of this type of medium, this being based on either their professional experience or intuition (see Figure 2).

Figure 2 РТС уредници – Познавање начела јавног сервиса / SBC editors - Knowledge of public service broadcasting principles

Out of the mentioned Reith's principles, they were able to recognise the following: national interest and community, programmes for national minorities, universal appeal and distance from vested interests. However, they did not recognise universal geographic accessibility, universality of payment, competition in good programming rather than numbers and guidelines that liberate rather than restrict programme-makers.

The respondents are fully aware that public service broadcasting has responsibility to all citizens, i.e., that the focus must not be on the national majority, but that instead it should, as noted by the science desk editor "[…] serve all citizens - unlike commercial media" and that the SBC should "[…] mind traditions of all citizens who live in Serbia." Reith's PSB principles of universality and accessibility can be recognised in the stated positions.

Keeping in mind the needs of all citizens, in editors' opinion, entails minding and satisfying needs, which range from the needs of national minorities to the needs and interests of marginalised groups. What is also emphasised through the all-encompassing framework of culture is Reith's principle of nurturing national identity and community as an important homogenising social factor in which PSB plays a major role (Shingler & Wieringa, 2000).

Such understanding of the principles of PSB may have a strong impact on regional policy of national reconciliation and European integrations. Also, it is of utmost importance to a multinational community, such as Serbia is, because it is similar to the idea of homogenisation of local differences through the model of civil and national homogenisation of society.

As part of the discussion on principles, the respondents also pointed out the importance of programmes for national minorities and content intended for marginalised and disenfranchised social groups. According to them, PSB "[…] should be on the side of those who are at a particular point in time vulnerable in their relationship with the state" and also "[…] those whose voice cannot be heard on other media, of those in need of media support and the vulnerable", noted the news desk editor.

By pointing out the approach of PSB to disenfranchised groups in their relationship with the state apparatus, what is indirectly acknowledged is the perception of very PSB and state apparatus, in which the principles of autonomy and independence are recognised. Editorial, political, economy, financial, ideological, and all other types of PSB's independence are seen here as playing the role of needs, matters of interest and best interests of all citizens, especially those who are socially marginalized in any manner whatsoever2. Since marginal groups are not the focus of programming and editorial policies of the commercial media, this area is not only a matter of principle and obligation but it is also an inexhaustible source of topics for the SBC in particular. This is especially relevant to the current social ambience in which "[…] voices from the outside, voices from the margins, paradoxically enough, in present day democracy, stand a chance of being heard and moving to action" (Dragićević Šešić, 2011).

What was also noted during the focus group discussion were particular views on the capacities of PSB: "PSB presents to the outside world all things local, it is the reflection of a country, as it is seen by the rest of the world", which expands the set of the PSB principles and modernises it, by shifting it from the local to the global.

Internal standards and production procedures for programming content

The next task of the focus group debate was to establish whether standards and procedures for creating concepts and producing programmes of the SBC were in accordance with the objectives, functions and principles of PSB. To this end, idiosyncrasies of production procedures were re-evaluated in critical terms-starting from the manner of choosing topics, collecting and selecting information, through to realising programmes3.

According to formally established procedures of creating concept and editorial policies for radio and television, editors-in-chief, upon consultation, alignment and approval of editorial teams (that consist of editors of programme groups), define the programming line-up, which represents the starting point for editors. It is then used as a basis for further shaping of individual shows. However, the research has shown that such an editorial model is not applied to all programmes, which is especially goes for news and politics topics. In the respondents' view, entirely different standards and procedures are applied to these.

The respondents see this situation as being politicized and discriminatory both in technical and financial terms. One of the news desk editors said "[…] the more thematically-wise a programme is distant from everyday politics, the more procedures for defining programming content seem to be regulated, so editors and reporters are exposed to less intense pressures but in that case technical and financial work conditions are worse".

The expressed view is indicative specifically that the differences in "thematically-wise distance from everyday politics" have led to inconsistencies in production standards and clearly defined and binding procedures of the SBC, but also to discrepancies in the respondents' opinions.

Participants of the focus group are ambivalent regarding the issue of the existence of production standards and procedures in realising programming content. It is highly unusual that one half of the respondents confirm their existence while the other half denies it. Ambivalence of this type is not good in terms of management and work organisation of the SBC as PBS because it shows that there are imprecisely defined circumstances of working processes, without knowledge of all production aspects and all procedures. This describes their inconsistencies and poor in-house communication, which to a great extent affects the quality of work and accomplishments.

The respondents illustrated the topic that was researched through status and functionality of editorial teams - the most important programming body for all types of programmes. These teams are entrusted with the preparation, selection, production, and presentation of programming content. In addition to this, editorial teams also define principles of professional communication, organisation and motivation of media professionals. Nevertheless, most of the respondents-editors pointed out that different reasons cause inconsistencies in terms of existence, status and functioning of these bodies in certain parts of the SBC, which places focus on an important organisational issue.

The focus group spoke of many examples of the breaches of basic editorial and organisational procedures, in particular in terms of editorial teams. In some sections of television programmes, meetings have not been held for ten years, and invitations for editorial team meetings at some desks are not sent to the editors of all sections or even editor-in-chief, which is confirmed by a statement of the documentary programme desk editor: […] editor-in-chief of the documentary programme section is not invited to editorial team meetings". The most dramatic described situation referred to certain radio programmes for which editorial teams were never formed, although the programmes in question are on air 24x7.

The absence of the institute of editorial team and/or its inefficiency show that care for programming content, structure and production do not represent a continuous and coordinated action or process in which editors take active team participation. The culture desk editor speaks of this matter in the following manner: "My former editor-in-chief defined everything with his own editorial team while the current editor-in-chief comes up with all ideas by himself and issues instructions accordingly, while the editorial team is there just for show". In this manner, being an editor becomes a highly personalised matter and comes down to individuals, typically at the highest managerial level, while professional cooperation among staff diminishes, which unequivocally affects the quality of programming content.

In the opinion of the respondents-editors, the quality of programming production is additionally affected by poor communication between management and the SBC staff: "I've been working here for over 20 years and I've never once been told that there's something I should change about my show". A similar situation can be seen in the statement of the environment desk editor: "Over a period of 28 years, I've only once been told that I should change my show". What inevitably stems from such professionals' experiences makes one wonder how programming formats that have not been changed for decades can possibly keep up with modern needs of citizens and to what extent they serve the general public?

According to the SBC, at this media company, which calls for a high level of professional creativity on a continuous basis, there are no mechanisms to encourage production creativity or initiatives for innovative production changes. The SBC editors' view show that, despite the fact that this is a media organisation which should develop the highest professional and creative standards, there are no clear mechanisms which would encourage their innovativeness in terms of creating programming content and overall production. "I've been awarded for the quality of my documentary programmes, but on the other hand I've never been awarded for this quality by my own media company". This is experience of the news and politics desk editor. The same experiences are shared by the editors of the education and science desk and culture and art programming: "No, I've never been awarded any prize for quality, I get my bonuses for quality - if I work more" or "Only rarely are we given floating salaries - in my case - not once in the past five years".

This is why the described situation results in the reporters-editors doing their jobs in conditions which do not incentivise or encourage. Instead, they work in a business environment which cannot guarantee top-notch results. Introducing systemic procedures, whose goal would be to encourage and reward proactive staff members, would probably represent a significant improvement in the operation of this media company, whose smooth functioning is a social imperative.

Internal criteria for the selection of topics and creating programming content

Editorial perceptions of the SBC as PSB have been considered through an analysis of the criteria for selecting topics and creating programming content, which reflect thematic priorities. The purpose of this segment of discussion was to establish to what extent editorial criteria are aligned with the functions and principles of the PSB, as a medium which produces programming content.

Participants of the focus group debate were all in agreement and held the same position that what is prioritised by the SBC is news-politics content, which, according to the education and science desk editor, it is reflected in the following: "[…] news desks get the prime time airing, the strongest financial support, state-of-the-art equipment, so - they are treated as a priority".

In their opinion, this is the reason why the SBC is frequently equalised with news programmes, which is clearly shown in this statement of the news desk editor: "News programmes are a reflection of who we are" (Figure 3).

Figure 3 РТС уредници – Програмски приоритети / SBC Editors - Programming priorities

Such a respondents' view is also confirmed by programming line-up of the SBC, in which news and news-politics programmes get primetime airing, both on the radio (Radio Belgrade 1) and TV (Channel 1 of the SBC), both of which have the highest auditorium (listeners and viewers)4.

Unlike the current programming inclination, in which news programming content evidently gets primetime, the respondents thought that a programming priority should be some content which is not shown on any other media, such as children's programmes, science, culture, art, educational programmes, etc. The majority opinion of the respondents-editors at the SBC is that news-politics programme should not be the most important programming segment, of which confirmation is a statement by one of the respondents, news desk editor, who said: "news-politics programmes should not be a reflection of who we are. Instead, our reflection should be unique programmes, with the best production, created, prepared and realised by this media company".

In addition to them being dissatisfied with a conspicuous priority given to the SBC news programmes, the respondents also said that they were not happy about such programmes' quality and objectiveness. Most of them believe that the current editorial policies of the SBC are unequivocally compatible with the views of the political regime. "Topics which are of interest to the political authorities are priorities in news programmes", say the news and politics desk editor, which in his opinion should not be a feature of the SBC.

The respondents from the focus group believe that the criteria for selecting topics and creating programming content are dictated by political priorities, which are identical to the ruling authorities' priorities, this being in contradiction with the essence of the PSB, i.e., that it should serve all the citizens.

None of the focus group participants supported editorial orientation according to which criteria for the selection of topics is guided by the ruling authorities' priorities, which constitutes a form of latent and tacit collaboration between the ruling authorities and PSB/SBC. The environment desk editor notes: "With the help of the SBC, the ruling authorities shape public opinion, with news desks being given primetime airing, strongest financial support and state-of-the-art equipment. So, they do treat them as priority".

The editors who participated in our research believe that the interests of citizens would be better served with culture as the most important programming segment. "It's our job to choose what's best in the areas of culture and art and also to preserve our heritage and create cultural content", notes the culture desk editor and adds "We are the only ones who do that and if we should fail to do so, this non-commercial stuff won't be made by anyone." The editors reiterated their strong belief that in the programming context "[…] the best functioning section of the SBC is culture - Channel 3 of the SBC and Radio 2 station, and specifically such programmes should be prioritised by the SBC".

In addition to culture, other programming contents, which the respondents insisted on, are also neglected, this being in contradiction with their professional values criteria, as regards programming content of PSB5.


This paper aimed to research staffing and programming capacities of the SBC in the context of public service broadcasting upon which it relies as a unique institution in Serbia's media system.

Empirical research has established that staffing basis of the SBC at the operational editors' level represents a valuable, however insufficiently used, resource for a better operation of the SBC in achieving its role as the public media service. This potential can be seen in the attitude of editorial staff both towards the functions and principles of PSB as well as towards its production procedures and programming criteria and priorities.

Operational-level editorial staff of the PSB understand the basic functions of PSB: informational, educational and entertaining. The respondents-editors believe that the informational function at the SBC is without actual need favoured over the other two, while they understand that the culturology function (as seen in social-anthological terms) is neglected, although it holds the strongest production potential in terms of quality.

Even though editors-participants in the research do not have exact knowledge of the principles of PSB, what we find encouraging is the fact that based on their professional intuition and experience they presented valid assumptions on what PSB should stand for, both for society and the public. They stated this in their views on traditions, culture, national communities, minority groups, etc., all of which corresponds to the principles of PSB, in the manner in which these principles were established in the twentieth century and as they were developed in media environments with strong traditions of public media.

The principles of PSB have a broader social role because by observing and applying these principles, interests of the widest audiences are respected and allow participation in programming content while creating appropriate conditions and environment for democratisation of society (Colombo, 2011). PSB serves its purpose only if it implements media functions, while its social role in democratisation of society is achieved precisely due to the implementation of the PSB principles.

The identified issue of editors not being familiar with the principles which are crucial for the operation of PSB is not their sole professional responsibility. Instead, it has an institutional character. This is indicative of an absence of partial development strategies of the development of employees' professional capacities, which must be based on precise institutional standards and values.

Responsibilities in this field lie with competent bodies of the SBC, mainly with management who are in charge of organising professional education of staff in order for all the employees to be precisely familiarised with the basics of functioning of the SBC. In this context, it is necessary to reaffirm stricter criteria in terms of quality of created programmes, such criteria stemming from the principles of PSB. Such a professional approach defines necessary features of programming content, production criteria, i.e. professional standards which should be observed by all participants in the chain of programming production. In this manner, reporters at the SBC are shaped as socially responsible, active and interest-wise independent professionals who accomplish PSB's essential task, which is to serve the purposes of the public.

Findings of the research into the absence of universal, suitably defined production criteria and unique organisational standards, which are used to shape programming policies (the general one - at SBC level, and partial - at programme level), indicate that the SBC does not appropriately use the potentials of team work and engagement of its employees, which are in many cases highly competent and creative in their respective areas of expertise.

The absence of appropriate programming policies and production criteria and standards allow editors-in-chief independent decision-making on whether they will design editorial policies on their own or with their teams - editorial teams, who formally play this role. Such a procedural sketchiness inevitably makes room for editorial and production arbitrariness and inconstancy, so it holds the risk of personalisation of editorial policies of radio and television programmes of PSB.

In practice, editorial personalisation of programmes becomes a mere transmission of criteria defined by top management, without any consultation with operational editors, who should be creating programmes with their desk teams. This significantly reduces participation and impact of reporters-editors in creating programming concepts and selecting topics, thus centralising editorial policies of the SBC.

Due to significance, complexity and responsibility borne by PSB, its editorial policies should be the result of competent teams' efforts, while programmes should be created based on a general editorial policy of the media company, this policy relying on a global strategy, as is the case in European PSBs. These would be the tasks of a project team who would work on the general programming media policy and this on a solid basis of precisely defined criteria which are founded on the PSB principles.

With such an elaborate strategy of the SBC, as well as well-devised general editorial policy, the issues of sketchiness and inconsistencies of the production criteria, and also the apparent issue of unequal positions of various programmes, would be resolved. This would resolve the issue which the respondents continuously repeated in the focus group discussions, in which also they pointed out something they disagreed with - unjustified favouring of news and politics programmes and neglecting those programmes which make the SBC unique and premium quality, such as programmes in the fields of culture, education, science, sports, etc.

Since the SBC, unlike other media, has suitable capacities to produce such programmes, these potentials should not only be utilised, but also strongly developed as authentic and aligned with the mission and vision of the PSB institute.



The paper was written on the basis of independent scientific and research work under the title: “The Role of Program Contents and Human Resources in the Development of Communication Practice of Public Media Services”.


1Suitable sample
2An example of good practice in this sense was the programming scheme of Radio Belgrade 202, which was in place between 2001 and 2003, when members of marginalised groups (persons with disabilities, HIV infected persons, blind and visually impaired, alcoholics, drug addicts, etc.) created shows on this radio station.
3The starting research definition of programming content was production. According to thisdefinition “programming represents the entirety of content shown through radiophonic audio-visual presentation means, which are planned, prepared and realised with the help of available creative, technical and organisational potentials, with objectives that defined to a smaller or larger extent” (Nikolić, 1993). Visited on 24th November 2020.
5With regard to culture-related programmes, e.g., TV programme Cultural News, is mainly aired at a less than adequate time, just before midnight, sometimes even later, whereas radio stations no longer air programmes that specialise in the field of culture (Ten and a Half, on Radio Belgrade 1, and Vision/Ars Artifex, on Radio Belgrade 202.


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O članku

jezik rada: srpski, engleski
vrsta rada: pregledni članak
DOI: 10.5937/socpreg56-32041
primljen: 28.04.2021.
revidiran: 05.12.2021.
revidiran: 13.05.2022.
prihvaćen: 15.05.2022.
objavljen u SCIndeksu: 22.07.2022.
metod recenzije: dvostruko anoniman
Creative Commons License 4.0

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