The Story of SNIPETS! (Pronounced “Snippets!”)

*Le sigh* Snipets? Oh, you mean, SNIPPETS!

Some adult was tapping into their creativeness when they decided a children’s interstitial needed to be spelled wrong.

Interstitials: The Original “The More You Know”

In the later life of the Code of Practices for Television Stations, the ethical set of standards set forth for television stations, Kaiser Broadcasting (and later Field Communications, which bought Kaiser in 1977) produced a series of shorts (approximately 30 seconds to one minute in length) called Snipets (pronounced “snippets”).

The segments aired on Kaiser Broadcasting-owned stations, as well as Field Communications stations, and syndicated to other stations not under the umbrella of either company. These were the independent station version of “One to Grow On” that NBC would air in the 1980s.

You know that one – the Bateman Kids, those girls from The Facts of Life, Punky Brewster, and once in a while, a responsible adult (David Hasselhoff, for example) strove to teach kids an important lesson in less than a minute. Oh, and Jaleel White was a kid learning a lesson in a few of these.

Approximately 100 of these segments were produced between 1972 and 1978, but aired into the early 1980s, and beyond in some non-Field Communications markets.

The series was one in a trend of interstitial programming – short “programs” between broadcasts of network programming, meant to inform or educate the public. Kid-friendly segments focused on topics such as jobs, friendship, good hygiene, being yourself, sharing, taking care of yourself, as well as segments on crafting (such as building a “Come Back Here Can”) and cooking (making your own granola!).

Snipets: The Title Card

Snipets changed title cards twice. The first being a “patchwork” plaid collection of letters spelling out the title…

Tacky and loud…just like clothes in the 1970s!

While the later title card had five little worm-like creatures that appear one at a time (ding-ding-ding-ding-ding)…

…but all of them had child voiceovers excitedly saying “SNIPETS!”

Honestly, as someone who takes pride in writing and proofreading their work, I find the intentional misspelling annoying!

Snipets Topics and Program Structure

Ugh, I really hate misspelling that! Spellcheck keeps catching it!

After the horrible misspelled title card, the segment (approximately 30 seconds to one minute in length) shows the topic. Some topics are live action, others are claymation-style animation.

Images: What Will I Be When I Grow Up?, Take Turns and Share, Bad for You, and Homework First

Watching…SNIPETS!

And now that you know about Snipets, and that little misstep they made with spelling…why not watch some Snipets?

These are thirty of the shorts, uploaded by the awesome Museum of Classic Chicago Television. If you’ve never seen their YouTube channel, you really need to check it out!

Uploads via The Museum of Classic Chicago Television and fromthearchives

Now, don’t you feel like you learned something new, like how to make granola…or how to make a can that rolls back to you?

I never said all of these felt particularly useful, friends!

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Allison L. Venezio

Secretary/Blogger-Writer at Allison's Written Words and Retroist
Allison is a Secretary by day, a writer/blogger by night (and during lunch breaks and in the mornings before work), a nostalgia geek (and a geek in general), worshipper of Thor (and Chris Hemsworth), and honorary Avenger (she has a pin, so it is official).She collects Funko Pops, loves anything that takes her back to childhood, and has confessed her love for Kenny Loggins.Oh, and she listens to Chicago...alot.If any of this piques your interest, she'd love for you to visit her personal blog, Allison's Written Words, where she talks about alot of the same stuff she talks about here, and more!

She can be found at allisonveneziowrites.com.You can follow her blog on Facebook (facebook.com/allisonswrittenwords), Instagram @allisonswrittenwords, and on Twitter @AllisonGeeksOut.

(Her fiancee is supportive of the whole Chris Hemsworth and Kenny Loggins love thing.)
Allison L. Venezio
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