In most countries, there are fewer than ten broadcast stations that provide television for the population. However, in the US, there are more than 7,000! This is a huge difference, and it says a lot about how much people in the US watch TV. The US is also quite large, which means that local coverage for news and other regional programming requires many different TV stations that are not offered in other states or regions.
Why Are There So Many TV Stations in the US?
One of the main reasons that the US has so many TV stations is that there are limited government-sanctioned television stations. The entire TV industry is privately owned. This means that there is no cap on competition in the marketplace, and it also allows for regional and county-specific TV stations as well as national offerings in most locations.
Broadcast businesses are also privately owned in the US, so this makes it easy for companies to have as few or as many stations as they wish to offer in specific areas. In many countries, the cost of owning a TV network or station would be so prohibitive that most people could never dream of taking on this commitment. In the US, however, there are enough wealthy business owners that this kind of company ownership is realistic and practical.
There are still major corporations that dominate most of the national television programming and which have a lot of sway over the way that TV is offered to the public in the US. These companies fight with each other for viewership and for business, and they often try and compete with one another for ratings as well. There are both pros and cons to the system as it stands in the US. Many people who visit the United States are surprised by the vast array of television programming that can be accessed when you turn on the TV.
When Did TV Stations in the US Start to Multiply?
TV has been incredibly popular in the US almost since it became a reality in the 1930s. Once people were able to have TVs in their homes, local stations cropped up all over the states. National television programming that was privately owned was quick to develop, and then it was off to the races.
The US Has the Greatest Number of Television Stations Around the World
Due to the way that the US entertainment and television industry was structured from its inception, there has been no cap on the creation of TV stations across the country. There is an almost unlimited amount of local and national programming that US residents and visitors can watch at any given time. This can be a little overwhelming for those from other countries, but it has been the standard procedure for US citizens for generations now.
This article was last updated on June 6, 2023 .