Programming FAQs


I want to watch an APT show, but my local public television station does not carry it. Why?

The public television community consists of 350+ individually owned and operated stations. Local and regional interests and other factors play a key role in whether your station purchases and schedules a program. Decisions are made on a market-by-market basis because a program that enjoys popularity in one part of the country may not resonate in another. Contact your local public television station to express your interest in a particular APT program. It does not guarantee placement, but it will help communicate your programming preferences to the station’s scheduling manager.

Other reasons may include:
The program may still be in the production stage and not yet available for broadcast.
The rights term between APT and the producer expired and therefore, your station may no longer air the program.

My local public television station no longer runs my favorite show. When will it return?

In today’s television landscape, a series can run for years or as few as two weeks. And each month, your station must accommodate required (“Common Carriage”) PBS series, locally produced programs and timely shows from other distributors. Sometimes, a series goes on hiatus or goes back into production to create new episodes. (This process can last months and/and years.) Some producers simply decide to cease production and move on to other projects. For these reasons, your favorite show may no longer air. However, older seasons may continue to run for years because of their popularity within your local television market.

When will my station rebroadcast my favorite program?

Use APT’s Station Finder to locate the station nearest you and contact their programming department directly for information about rebroadcast times and schedule change requests.

Can I watch APT shows online?

Most producers only grant APT rights for broadcast, not new media. As a result, APT currently does not stream any of its full-length titles. In rare cases, viewers may watch some locally produced documentaries and limited series on select public television websites. (Check the individual program pages on APTonline.org for links.) APT is working closely with our producers to secure the rights to stream full-length programs on our website. We hope to offer this service in the near future. Stay tuned!


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