On a cold February night, 1956 Azerbaijani people witnessed a new miracle which was called "miracle box" during many years. The people were not accustomed to using the name "television" then. Besides, many people were unaware of the etymology of the words "tele" and "video" mixed of Latin and Greek origin, meaning "far sight".
Many years would pass and television would become commonplace. Then the number of TV channels would increase and the establishment of one more television would become a social need and only then it would be possible to build a democratic society.
After the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991 Azerbaijan restored its independence and showed to the world that it is on the way towards democracy. After great forerunner Haydar Aliyev came to power, stability was restored in the country in its hard transitional period and key elements needed for a democratic society appeared.
In order to ensure the freedom of the press in Azerbaijan, a new law on Mass Media was developed and adopted. And opening of a new democratic institution- the public television became more important for Azerbaijan. After long discussions a law on public television and radio broadcasting was approved.
On November 5, 2004 President Ilham Aliyev issued a decree on law of the Republic of Azerbaijan on public television and radio broadcasting, it was the expression of people's wishes and will. After the establishment of such legal basis meeting international standards, Public Television and Radio Broadcasting Company was created in Azerbaijan. President Ilham Aliyev, as the architect of realization of this democratic idea, pressed the symbolic button of the television and one more time demonstrated to the world Azerbaijan's adherence to the principles of democracy, pluralism, freedom of speech and freedom of the press. This unprecedented event would enter into the history on August 29, 2005.
Today, public broadcasting is operated in the many countries in the world. However, not all democratic countries have public televisions. Though Azerbaijan's independence was less than 15 years old, the country agreed to establish such a democratic institution which showed the position of the government about the freedom of speech and the freedom of the press in the country.
The Public Television, which is regarded today one the main attributes of democratic society in Azerbaijan was founded in 2005, relying on the international experience, in a classic style, at the initiative of the government.
There are different kinds of public service broadcastings in the world, but they have four common principles.
The first, all public broadcasts are based on the special legislation that was adopted on September, 2004.
The second, any public service is controlled by the society through corresponding collegial institutions, in accordance with the law of the Republic of Azerbaijan on Public Television and Radio Broadcasting. In order to express the interests of different social groups, a Broadcasting Council consisting of members from Azerbaijan Trade Union Confederation, National Academy of Sciences, Press Council, Youth Organizations, Woman Societies, Sport Federations, Religious Confessions and Creative Organizations was created in accordance with the law on public television. Members of the Council were approved by the Azerbaijani Parliament after long-awaited discussions.
Members of the Council are representing different sectors of the society including public organizations. So, the society as a whole takes control over the public broadcasting service.
Financing of all public broadcasters in the world is very important. Financing of the Public Television of Azerbaijan is also regulated by the legislation, and prevents the channel from falling under commercial influence and helps to implement transparent funding.
The last principle is that the public broadcaster's concept and program policy should be based on unbiased and impartial information and ensures the interests of the population.
The Public Television is operated based on the legislation of Azerbaijan and the above-mentioned four key principles. It is demanded by the international experience about public broadcasting, by legislation of Azerbaijan, by Azerbaijani audience and people. According to the legislation of the Azerbaijan Republic, one of main principles of public broadcasting service is to provide impartial and unbiased information to the public. The Public Television adheres to this principle.
The public broadcaster informs the public, not expresses attitude towards it.
"Jarchi" news provides immediate, impartial, unbiased and accurate information covering not only Azerbaijan, but also the whole world. Russian version of Jarchi news is popular as well.
Azerbaijanis have got accustomed to wake up with the program "Yeni Gun". This 6-day live program broadcasts nearly 3 hours. It targets the people getting ready for work.
The Public Television strictly works with principles of plurality and tolerance and remains aside open political interests which are demanded by legislation.
No political impartiality and propagation is allowed on public broadcasting programs. In accordance with the principles of pluralism and tolerance, different views, problems, comments and analytical analyses are put into discussion, based on alternative ways.
In accordance with the principle of partial impartiality, parliamentary and presidential election debates are broadcast via this channel. The people can get informed about essence of political platforms through the Public Television.
Over the past years the television has formed its own traditions, objective standards on election campaign. Both the society and international organizations are pleased by these standards.
The Public Television intends to organize as fair and democratic election campaign on this October, as it was before.
Ortaq Məxrəc"(Middle Ground) talk show discusses the important themes interested by the society. The program is focused on all themes from moral and national values to the positive and negative sides of up-to-date social networks. The show brings together experts from different fields and those who want to join the debate.
The talk show "Open lesson" has become the brand of the public television. The discussions focus around the most important directions of the modern education and key issues of public concern.
Video clips describing those who achieved high scores during entrance examinations organized by State Student Admission Commission over many years raises interest among public, and these talented youth are presented as role models for the society.
Unlike those "heroes" of most crime stories covered by most TV channels, successful youth can penetrate into mind and make best changes.
It is no secret that today one of the biggest parts of the television broadcasting networks is the commercials which mostly prevents the television making lucrative shows promoting patriotism, history, culture and various spheres of art. The Public Television is entrusted to fill the gap in this field. That is why the channel broadcasts special programs about different spheres of culture and art and glorious pages of Azerbaijani history.
Series of programs such as "Songs of the last century", "Short history of a song", "Baku time", "Baku secrets" sheds a new light on less studied parts of our culture and history.
The channel has its own concept of culture. It is regarded that there are some parts of the Azerbaijani culture that should be studied and presented to the public from time to time. According to the law of the Republic of Azerbaijan on Public Television and Radio Broadcasting, programs shall express national-cultural values, national customs and traditions, all features of culture and art.
As a result of attention to the art and culture, prominent figures travelling Azerbaijan from different countries are invited to the the program "Guests of Baku". The program also focuses on universal ideas and the role of culture and art in the global world.