Since 1983, the Minneapolis Television Network (MTN) has served as the city of Minneapolis's Community Media (Public Access) Center. An independent nonprofit organization founded by the Minneapolis Mayor and City Council, MTN strengthens the community through the free exchange of information and ideas in the media. MTN is an open gathering place where anyone can congregate and create television programming. We offer regular television production, editing, and studio management courses to any interested resident, and we regularly teach and train an array of youths in media production, media literacy, and community leadership.
MTN serves residents who live throughout the Minneapolis–Saint Paul metropolitan area with a concentration on Minneapolis. In 2015, MTN trained 208 adults in camera usage, video editing, and media production and 550 youth in video storytelling. Through its three channels and online streaming channels, MTN serves a diverse population with over 55% of our programming is developed by people of African descent
Frequently Asked Questions
Our Organizational Mission
We welcome and encourage anyone interested in learning how to produce media, learn about public access, our studios and equipment to give us a call
The history of Minneapolis Television Network began with the arrival of cable television in our city. Taking advantage of a Minnesota State law that required that, as part of the franchise agreements with cities, the cable companies provide support for PEG (public, educational, and government access) TV channels, the Minneapolis Mayor and City Council founded MTN in 1983. That year, MTN began operating in the Lehman Center on East Lake Street in South Minneapolis.The first company to offer cable service in Minneapolis that year was Rogers Cablevision, which provided MTN the operating, capital equipment funds, and channel space for public use. The current franchise holder in Minneapolis is Comcast Cable.
Today, MTN is a non-profit organization governed by nine Board Members appointed by the Minneapolis City Council and Mayor. The facilities and access center of MTN are located in the Saint Anthony Main complex, where we moved in 1990, located along the Mississippi River on Historic Main Street across from downtown Minneapolis. We currently occupy about 8,000 square feet of space that includes a large checkout area, three studios, a public lounge area, a computer lab, ten edit suites, a classroom, and numerous offices for staff.
Since our inception, MTN has remained faithful to our mission of strengthening community through the free exchange of information and ideas. For this reason, MTN is a vibrant community-gathering place where citizens congregate daily to create television programming. Our three public access channels are filled with original programming from a wide range of local people, including the immigrant communities of Somali, Ethiopia, Oromia, and Southeast Asia, as well as African Americans, American Indians, Asian Americans, Arab Americans, Latin Americans, gays and lesbians, political advocates of diverse causes, artists, youths, senior citizens, and so on. We are proud to free Information Workshops about our facilities an services every two weeks and regular training in television production and editing to anyone interesting in knowing more.
By 2020 MTN resolves to:
-Community as a source of content that enriches lives, provides information and social engagement and dialogue
-Freedom of speech, expression, and ideas
-Affordable Access to our studios, equipment and stations
-Media Literacy as a basic tenet of a civil society to represent themselves using media and by creating and distributing content
-Diversity in people and all their dimensions, realizing that mutual respect for individuality and inclusion of all is vital for both personal and institutional success