PTS ActHistoryResourceOrganizationMission CriticalProgram Guidelines

The Public Television Service Foundation, or PTS, was founded on 1 July 1998. Operating as an independent public organization, its chief objective is to establish a popular broadcasting institution to serve the public. Its mission is to improve the standards of local broadcasting culture and promote society's sustained prosperity. The establishment of PTS is a major milestone in Taiwan's public broadcasting industry 18 years in the making, finally coming to fruition with the rapid development and maturity of Taiwan's civil society.


Back to 1980's, whilst ex-premier, Mr. Sun Yun-hsuan proposing to set up a Public Television Service, it was then the mission impossible in Taiwan. Since Taiwan was still under the martial law at that time and the Ministry of Transport had strictly controlled the radio frequencies, having permitted the three already existing commercial television stations only to air and to produce the programs which were aimed to make profits as its main goal. And this historical background has determined the predominant government involvement in the initial period of fundamental development of PTS

Government Information Office, which is responsible for publication affairs, motion picture affairs, as well as television and radio broadcasting being monitored under Executive Yuan, planned to set up the PTS Production & Broadcasting Committee and arranged from the local three networks for time slots to broadcast PTS' programs.


The responsibility of producing the programs for Public Television was shifted to the PTS Program Production & Broadcasting Team of the Chinese Public Television Broadcasting Development Fund, and in the meantime, the local three networks was still scheduled to broadcast PTS' programs.

The Executive Yuan has officially approved the "Outlines for setting up the Public Television Preparatory Committee" and also regulated the Government Information Office to be its competent authority. After the Public Television Preparatory Committee was established, the Chinese Public Television Broadcasting Development Fund was relieved of its assignment to make Public Television's programs. The Public Television Preparatory Committee then immediately started to push legislation for a Public Television's Law and the preparatory issues also to set up the Public Television station. At the same time, Taiwan had just lifted the martial law and the wave of democratization was taking up the speed, spreading out the whole society. Since the social movements were all among the daily headlines and which had made the government unable to dominate the startup of the Public Television during that time.

At the same time, Executive Yuan has proposed the draft of Public Television Service Act (PTS Act) to the Legislative Yuan, and some advocates from the cultural circle has organized the "Non-governmental Public Television Preparatory Committee" to propel its own legislation and to develop the public perception of PTS. After heated debates over the PTS Act, it's been passed its first read in December of that year.


In August, the Draft of PTS Act went into its second reading, but soon met with difficulties. After 5-sessions-debates in the Legislative Yuan, the second reading was still not concluded. However, a steady flow of public support has become a huge force behind the PTS' founding.

In September, the scholars and people from cultural circles have formed the Public Media Speeding up Alliance, to joint the forces of various groups to support the urges of passing the PTS Act.


In April, the counter-proposition was raised, intended to stop the buildup of PTS for the large financial resources has cost only in the early preparatory stage. In face of this threat, the Public Media Speeding up Alliance and the Public Television Workers Association combined the forces of all those who concerned about the startup of Public Television, initiating a variety of "save the Public Television" activities to support its buildup.

1997 On May 31st, the PTS Act finally passed through the third reading after persistent drumming up of support by the people and intensive inter-factional consultation in the Legislative Yuan.

In July, the Public Television Interim Operational Planning Committee was set up to be responsible for planning the future operational schemes of PTS. And after the members of the Interim Operations Planning Committee had been appointed, the establishment of PTS became the major turning point in Taiwan media's transformation. PTS is aiming to bring the fourth force into the society, to supervise the developments of various public issues, and also to produce the higher quality programming for the public other than the consumers-oriented environment among the local media.

According to the PTS Act, article 1, the Planning Committee affirmed that the mission of PTS is to safeguard the public's freedom of speech, easy accessing to the knowledge, and to enhance the standard of national education as well as cultural preservation. Besides, to further become the watchdog of local democratic social movements, to ensure the public's welfare.


In January, board directors and supervisors of PTS were nominated and have been passed by the Examination Committee which was elected by the Legislative Yuan.

In March, the board directors and supervisors convened their first meeting and elected Mr. Wu, Feng-shan to be the chairman of the board and Heh, The-fen, the managing supervisor.

On July 1 st, the 18 years' preparatory path was finally completed with the official establishment of PTS. On the same day, it has also launched its first broadcasting, which is a major achievement in Taiwan's Public Television's sphere and it's the only broadcaster that belongs to the general public in the local media industry.