Rialto Network FAQ

Public access exists due to an agreement between the cable company and the communities it serves. Public access programming is community programming on cable TV. It gives you the opportunity to write, produce, direct, and perform in your own programs. People who normally are not allowed easy access to the mass media find a powerful resource for local expression through public access. A majority of public access programs are produced locally by non-professionals.

Anyone with a non-commercial message or idea can present it on the public access channel.

Public access is a great opportunity to take a stand on a current issue, or let the community know what your group is doing. It’s a cost free way to promote your special interest or event and have fun doing it.

What programs are seen on public access? Any programming protected by the first amendment which is NOT commercial, libelous, slanderous or obscene in nature may be shown on public access. These include interviews, panel discussions, sports, documentaries, performances, political, religious, educational, entertainment and many other types of programs.

Getting involved with public access begins with taking our public access workshops. Through these classes, you can become a Community Access Producer. Then you can use Rialto Network video equipment to make your own programs. The classes cover the basic elements of TV production: camera, lighting, audio, editing, and so on.  

The classes, channel time, and use of equipment are free. The amount of time and energy you devote to the program is up to you. It can be hard work, but well worth the effort.

The costs to produce a public access show are minimal. The classes are free, the use of facilities and equipment is free. Therefore, generally, your only costs are the costs for your external hard drive (To backup your files). Any additional costs are up to you – if you wish to invest your money into the production value of your show, you are free to do so.

No, you cannot make a profit from your public access show. You are also prohibited from using public access equipment and facilities on other projects which can generate revenue.

No, you may not use public access equipment or facilities for your own interests, even if they generate no revenue. The equipment and facilities are provided to you SOLELY for use in producing public access programming. They are not intended for use in producing school projects, family videos, or other hobbies — unless you intend to SHOW said projects on the public access channel.

Yes, you may use your own equipment to produce your show. The final video must be in a format which is acceptable for playback on Rialto Network.

The best way to find crew for your show is by “networking.” We encourage the “buddy” system, where producers help each other on their shows. By doing so, your chances of finding crew is increased.

The more people you have to crew your show, the easier it will be to produce and the better it will look! To cover every crew position, you will need 4 people. You may or many not need this many people, depending on the complexity of your show. On a more simple production, you may be able to combine some of the crew positions.

We require a minimum of 2 people to crew your show. Rialto Network staff should not be considered to fill crew positions.

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