List of Early Public Television Content: An NET Project Update

We are excited to post lists of NET Series Titles and Individual Program Titles on the AAPB website, as part of the National Educational Television (NET) Collection Catalog Project, funded by the Council on Library and Information Resources (CLIR). To read more about the history and significance of NET, public television’s first national programming network, check out our September update.

To begin this project, we needed to determine what content should be part of the “NET Collection.” Since there is no single complete list of programs distributed by NET, we’ve been working very hard to cobble together the most comprehensive list possible. So far we’ve compared titles from:

  • NET’s Program files
  • NET’s Flexible Service Catalog
  • WGBH databases
  • Library of Congress original inventory printouts
  • Additional inventories created for and by the Library of Congress and PBS

From these sources, we’ve gathered additional metadata. Often we could identify broadcast years, producers, runtimes, original formats and color. We’ve included this information in our title lists, and we’re hoping it will help institutions identify any NET content held in their collections.

The next phase of the project is locating NET media assets at archives and public media organizations across the country. In the next few months we’ll add episode title information to the Series Title list and contact institutions with NET content, as well as all previous producing stations. As we locate relevant materials, we’ll build inventory level records and add them to our database. By the end of the project, people will be able to see where copies of the content exist, and we’ll be able to better prioritize digitization and preservation efforts. If you have NET materials in your collection, we’d really appreciate it if you reached out to us. You can contact Sadie Roosa at sadie_roosa@wgbh.org.

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