Over the past three editions, Television has featured photographs on its covers that show people watching television. We continue that tradition on the fifth edition’s cover with an image from LIFE magazine that Getty Images titles, “Showing different stations available to CATV subscribers.”
When it first appeared in LIFE in January 1966 it illustrated the variety of channels that were available to “community antenna TV” (CATV) subscribers at that time. CATV was the first form of “cable television” in the U.S. and would eventually lead to the vast profusion of cable channels in the 1990s. In turn, the proliferation of cable networks came to disrupt the dominance of over-the-air broadcast networks—a harbinger of future upheaval caused by on-demand streaming services.
We’re in the process of licensing the photograph from Getty and the cover still has not been fully designed. So, this photograph might not make it to the final cover, but, as of now, it’s likely that it will.
Photo credit: Arthur Schatz.