So central is the public to discussions of the role of broadcasting in civil society that it routinely passes without comment. "Media and Their Publics" offers a critical insight into this key component of media policy and practice. Ideas and activities around public opinion, public interest and public service are introduced and opened to question, as are various routines of framing public voices, representing the public and public advocacy. The book draws upon and develops a distinction between political and cultural forms of public, showing that while both draw upon similar sets of assumptions they give rise to quite different issues of empowerment and control.The book addresses the shift of the political public towards marketisation. It examines representations of the citizenry in the studio audience as well as through media institutions, and looks too at the place of populism and entertainment in the public sphere. The parallel development of a cultural media public is presented within regimes of value and judgment, and presented as part of a politics of representation. The book scrutinizes the discursive arrangements of public participation formats, outlining a number of techniques in claiming public legitimacy and the performance and politics of public authenticity. Also examined is the construction of a legitimated form of expertise in the public sphere, together with a discussion of its limits. Throughout "Media and Their Publics", shows in clear and persuasive terms how the relationship between media and the various discourses of public are central in understanding wider issues of politics, governance, and cultural influence.