Frequently Asked Questions

I want to find a show on-air

  • How do I locate a program I saw on PBS?

    All final program scheduling decisions are determined locally by each of our member stations, and it is possible that this program was acquired by your local public television station from a source other than PBS. Unlike the commercial television networks, which provide their local affiliates with a set program menu, PBS provides its member stations with programs from which they choose and schedule independently.

    You might want to contact the station where you saw the program. They may be able to identify the program and tell you who to contact for the information you are seeking. Contact information for PBS member stations is available at:
    PBS Station Finder

  • When can I see a program again in my area?

    All final program scheduling decisions are determined locally by each of our member stations. Unlike the commercial television networks, which provide their local affiliates with a set program menu, PBS provides its member stations with programs from which they choose and schedule independently.

    Please contact your local public broadcasting station for information on their broadcast schedule. Contact information for PBS member stations is available at:
    PBS Station Finder

  • Can PBS change the time of or re-air a particular program?

    All final program scheduling decisions are determined locally by each of our member stations. Unlike the commercial television networks, which provide their local affiliates with a set program menu, PBS provides its member stations with programs from which they choose and schedule independently.

    Please contact your local public broadcasting station for information on their broadcast schedule. Contact information for PBS member stations is available at:
    PBS Station Finder

  • Why doesn’t PBS broadcast old program or series?

    PBS generally holds the rights to its programming for three years following the original broadcast. After the PBS term of broadcast expires, the program rights revert to the producers, and PBS is therefore no longer able to distribute these expired programs to our member stations.

    Since all final program decisions are made by local stations, and sometimes includes programming from distributors other than PBS, we suggest you contact your local station for more information on their schedule. Contact information for PBS member stations is available at:
    PBS Station Finder

    You might be interested to know that several libraries throughout the country may have copies of programs within their holdings. You may wish to contact your local library to see if they might be able to borrow the program you are interested in through an inter-library loan. Here is a useful web site that allows you to search library holdings to find items you are interested in:

    Worldcat.org

    Please note that PBS is not affiliated with this web site.

  • How do I find a program I saw filmed or was featured in?

    PBS is not a production entity. We acquire previously completed programming or enter into production agreements with a variety of independent producers. We do not have information on filming that is in progress, as it may or may not have been submitted to PBS for review.

    Some of our local stations, which are independently owned and operated, do produce programming and may be connected to the program you are interested in. We suggest that you contact your local station directly to see if they have further information. Contact information for PBS member stations is available at:
    PBS Station Finder