In its heyday, WGBH functioned under a system reminiscent of enlightened absolutism, or benevolent despotism. This worked very well for some of us who believed we had talent and a voice to express that energy. In olden times, we got away with murder (you know who you are) and thus a whole lot of wonderful things happened at 125 Western Avenue.
Then came the Reformation (I recall arguing with Hartford Gunn about this before he left for DC) and having similar discussions with Fred Friendly and James Day in New York after the Huns had moved in to WGBH (around 1980)
Inevitably, benevolent academicians were replaced by uncaring big business as WGBH and PBS became irrevocably corporate. Therefore, it should come as no surprise that David Koch weaseled his way onto the boards at WNET and now at WGBH where, alas, he has found his happy home.
Some Light reading:
PBS – Behind the Scenes by Laurence Jarvik
The Vanishing Vision – The Inside Story of Public Television by James Day
NPR by Michael P. McCauley