November 5, 2012 | Vol. 31, No. 20
A3 Op-ed: Public media’s role B1 is to support civic discourse fills new top-level jobs B2 NPR in marketing and strategy
Twin Cities Localore game questions value of schooling
Current FOR PEOPLE IN PUBLIC MEDIA
Pubcasters battered by Superstorm Sandy By Andrew Lapin and Mike Janssen
hen Superstorm Sandy slammed into the most populated region of the United States Oct. 29, claiming at least 90 lives and wreaking havoc on everything in its path, public broadcasting stations along the Eastern Seaboard couldn’t escape the storm’s wrath. Stations knocked off the air by electrical blackouts included WBGO in Newark, N.J.; New York’s WNYC-AM; two of the New Jersey Public Radio stations operated by WNYC; and WFMU in Jersey City, N.J. Station managers, engineers and deejays improvised during the chaos of the storm to maintain news and information broadcasts to anxious listeners or to provide a musical respite from the pounding winds and rain. To get back on the air in Providence, Rhode Island Public Radio temporarily took over a student-operated college station; in New Jersey, a crew of WBGO staff set up a makeshift studio in the home basement of chief engineer David Tallacksen. WBGO News Director Doug Doyle was among those riding out the storm in Tallacksen’s basement. Unbeknownst to him, his own home — in a beachside apartment building — was destroyed while he was on the air. WBGO’s primary transmitter is in New York City, and the jazz station didn’t have a working generator for its studio headquarters in Newark when Sandy hit. When the power grid for downtown Newark went down, the station’s engineers realized that they couldn’t get to their transmitter in New York. Tallacksen offered his basement. “Our plan in this instance was to get to a place that still has power and connectivity,” Tallacksen wrote in an email to Current. “Luckily, my home in nearby Bloomfield was in a pocket of an area that remained lit and connected. So we quickly set up a studio area in my basement.” The fly-by-night setup allowed WBGO to continue programming music; the station picked up NPR newscasts by accessing online streams of other public radio stations. The team spent more than 24 hours at Tallacksen’s house manning the station, returning Continued on page A14
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CPB sets 10 percent aside Deal with OMB puts $44 mil in reserve in case of sequestration By Dru Sefton
he looming political battle over federal spending — and the possibility of across-the-board budget cuts imposed through sequestration — has prompted CPB to alter distribution of Community Service Grants to stations. The change, implemented after CPB execs negotiated an agreement with the White House Office of Management and Budget over possible sequestration of its $445 million appropriation, boosts the amount of money stations will receive in the first of two CSG checks to be issued by CPB for fiscal
iBiquity pegs future on getting its chips into dashboards By Ben Mook
early a decade after HD Radio went live on its first station, iBiquity Digital Corp., the company that developed and sold the technology to terrestrial broad-
WCNY-TV is ‘stronger and moving in a better direction’ pledge-free and its leaders say they have no regrets. Compared to 2007, the last year that the TV station solicited viewer donations via on-air fundraisers, WCNY’s membership revenues have dropped 7.5 percent, to $1.2 million in 2011, according to WCNY requests donations from viewers figures the stawith on-air graphics, dubbed “snipes,” but it
By Elizabeth Jensen
Continued on page A7
Slow growth for HD Radio
Pledge-free in Syracuse
hen Syracuse PBS station WCNY-TV announced that its September 2007 pledge drive would be its last, skeptics predicted the new policy would be short-lived. But five years later, the station is still proudly
2013. But the second batch of checks, to be issued in March, will be much smaller. How much smaller depends on the outcome of the Nov. 6 general election and whether lawmakers and the Obama administration can work out a deal that would forestall some $1.2 trillion in automatic spending reductions required under the Budget Control Act of 2011. The law triggering sequestration imposes $110 billion in across-the-board cuts on both mandatory and discretionary government spending for fiscal 2013; it includes provisions that cap future spending. While President Obama has said sequestration won’t happen on his watch and members of Congress are working on plans to resolve or postpone it, the government and the agencies and contractors that rely on federal dollars are preparing for it.
doesn’t disrupt programs with pledge breaks. Continued on page A10
casters and electronics manufacturers, has yet to convince consumers that they must have HD Radio in their cars and homes. Only about 2 percent of radio listeners are tuned to HD Radio channels in their cars at any given time, according to the Pew Project for Excellence in Journalism’s State of the News Media 2012 report issued earlier this year. Separate research by Mark Kassof & Co. reported in January that 54 percent of respondents had heard of HD Radio but knew little about it. Adoption rates are slightly higher among public radio listeners. The 2012 Public Radio Technology survey, released by Jacobs Media and the Public Radio Program Directors Association in September, found that 6 percent of listeners have access to an HD Radio, a figure that hasn’t changed since 2010. By comparison, the survey found that almost 10 percent of public radio listeners drive cars equipped with entertainment systems that combine traditional radio and compact disc players with smartphone and iPod connectivity, satellite radio or HD Radio. Consumer adoption of HD Radio has also been slowed by the high cost of receivers and the absence of wow-factor programming helping to spur demand. Retail costs of receivers dropped below $100 starting in 2008; they’re now available for $50 or less. Public radio enthusiastically embraced HD Radio technology from the outset but has taken note of the slow uptake by listeners — NPR quietly ended distribution of its three Continued on page A8
12 People Online Current.org Awards A2 Jobs B7 People B2 Thinking B1JobsOutput B4 8Online atatCurrent.org
A2 | November 5, 2012 | Current
THIRD COAST INTERNATIONAL AUDIO FESTIVAL
ATC’s “Teen Contender” captures gold award for best documentary. The segment produced for All Things Considered’s “Radio Diaries” by Joe Richman, Sue Jaye Johnson and Samara Freemark told the story of 16-year-old boxer Claressa Shields’ preparations for her gold medal–winning performance in the 2012 Olympics. At the Third Coast awards ceremony Oct. 7 in Evanston, Ill., Shields said that she would have been disappointed if the documentary had lost because she had never received anything less than gold in her life. This American Life won a silver award for best documentary for “What Happened At Dos Erres,” the story of a 1982 military massacre in Guatemala produced by Brian Reed and Habiba Nosheen, and co-reported by Sebastian Rotella of ProPublica and Ana Arana of Fundación MEPI. American Public Media’s Marketplace received the TCIAF award for best news features for “The Battle over Billing Codes,” a segment about healthcare paperwork produced by Gregory Warner and edited by Betsy Streisand. Allison Swaim was named Best New Artist for “Big Ship Diary,” a documentary about the crew of a Great Lake cargo ship
that she produced and reported for the WBEZ Chicago series Front and Center. This year’s winners received cash awards of $1,000 to $4,000 plus a license for Hindenburg Journalist Pro editing software. The programs will also be broadcast nationally this month in Best of the Best: The 2012 Third Coast Festival Broadcast, distributed by PRX.
WBUR AND BOSTON UNIVERSITY
KUNC’s Grace Hood wins Daniel Schorr Journalism Prize. A reporter for the NPR station based in Greeley, Colo., Hood earned the award for Investigating Colorado’s Online K–12 Schools, a threepart report about for-profit education. It aired in fall KUNC’s Hood, honored 2011. for her investigation of “Her reports online education. (Phodemonstrated to: Vince Darcangelo) the likely abuse of millions of dollars in public funds for an online education that was producing decidedly inferior results while at the same time enriching the for-profit management company,” said Schorr Prize judge Philip Balboni, c.e.o. of Global Post. Hood has also contributed to NPR’s Morning
Edition, the National Radio Project’s Making Contact and Voice of America. She also won three Edward R. Murrow Awards for KUNC. Presented Oct. 15 in Boston, the $5,000 prize named for NPR senior news analyst and veteran Washington journalist Daniel Schorr, who died in 2010, honors public radio journalists 35 years old and under.
NATAS MID-AMERICA CHAPTER
AETN and KOMU won three regional Emmys apiece, leading pubTV stations. The Arkansas Educational Television Network (AETN), based in Conway, won three Emmys for “Clean Lines, Open Spaces: A View of Mid-Century Modern Architecture,” a doc that explored mid-century modern architecture through a regional lens. The program was named best cultural documentary, and Mark Wilcken received individual awards for writing and editing. Two of three Emmys won by KOMU in Columbia, Mo., went to Sarah Hill and Scott Schaefer for news stories in the historical/ cultural (“Concentration Camp Wedding Dress”) and human interest (“Baby Chloe’s Diamond in the Sky”) categories. In addition, KOMU’s Hill, Nathan Higgins, Jennifer Reeves, Stacey Woelfel and Lindsey Tyler received Emmys for interactivity with “Live Cyber Shave.” The Nine Network of Public Media in St. Louis received an Emmy for special achievement in community service for its live broadcast of “American Graduate Teacher Town Hall.” Nine Network producer Jim Kirchherr won a Presidential Emmy in recognition of his five years (2007–2011) as president of the Mid-America Chapter.
KCPT in Kansas City also won a pair of Emmys for special events coverage produced (Angee Simmons, Randy Mason and Mark Stamm); and for community/public service (Simmons, Jim Button). The NATAS Mid-America chapter includes TV markets in Missouri, Arkansas and Illinois. The awards were presented Sept. 22 in Kansas City, Mo. —Theodore Fischer with reporting by Andrew Lapin
6930 Carroll Ave., Suite 350, Takoma Park, MD 20912 Web: Current.org Phone: 301-270-7240, extensions below Fax: 301-270-7241 E-mail: see below Interim Managing Editor Karen Everhart, x 33, email@example.com Senior Editors Dru Sefton, x 39, firstname.lastname@example.org Ben Mook, x 32, email@example.com Assistant Editor Andrew Lapin, x 34, firstname.lastname@example.org Associate Editor Mike Janssen, email@example.com Project Editor Steve Behrens, firstname.lastname@example.org Business/Circulation Manager Laura Rogers, x 38, email@example.com Advertising Director Kathleen Unwin, 877-745-8776, x 1 firstname.lastname@example.org Administrative Assistant Dorian Jones Director of Strategic Initiatives Mark Fuerst, 877-745-8776, x 2 Contributing Editors Louis Barbash, Theodore Fischer Editorial Intern Dawn Morgan Founder of Current, 1980 James A. Fellows, National Association of Educational Broadcasters Published 23 times a year as an editorially independent service of American University School of Communication, Washington, D.C. Postmaster: Send address changes to address above. ISSN: 0739-991X. Copyright 2012 American University.
Year to Year Book to Book AQH—Spring 2011 vs. Spring 2012
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| November 5, 2012 | A3
TPT Localore project critiques high-school education By Mike Janssen
mentaries have included an educational component. Eklund’s proposal to produce a game was attractive to TPT because, unlike most other Localore projects, it did not emphasize newsgathering. TPT previously produced the statewide news program NewsNight Minnesota but now offers relatively little local news. By staging an interactive game, TPT hoped to learn how it might engage younger audiences and also take more risks in its programming. “This seemed like a way that we could really open up our process and involve the public more in the unfolding,” McDaniel says.
PB’s American Graduate initiative has set its sights on targeting dropouts, but another project in public media is zeroing in on “rise-outs” — students who are excited to learn but feel that high school is failing to meet their needs. The interactive, genre-defying Ed Zed Omega stems from Localore, the Association of Independents in Radio initiative backed by CPB to spawn collaborative, innovative multimedia projects at TV and radio stations around the country. The only Localore project based at a TV station, EZO has no broadcast comEscaping the classroom ponent. Instead, it deploys actors to breathe life into stories of disenchanted high-school students who are TPT put out a call for actors, specifying that considering dropping out. Created by game designer nonprofessionals were welcome. From more than 50 Ken Eklund, EZO is an alternate-reality game that respondents, the station picked actors who talked challenges participants to tell the students whether about their high-school experiences with the most they should stay in school. passion and emotion. The project, produced in collaboration with Twin Ed Zed Omega’s eight actors range in age from 16 Cities Public Television in St. Paul, Minn., is the secto 31. Only one actual high-school dropout is in the At an event intended to encourage participants to reflect on their school ond in which Eklund has blended elements of reality mix; another was homeschooled. experiences, visitors to the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis walked over and gameplay to call attention to a social issue. Most of the actors are portraying high-school a map labeled with hot-button topics of modern education, such as “StanIn 2007, his game World Without Oil, presented seniors who are considering dropping out. “I feel dardized Testing.” They were encouraged to call the Ed Zed Omega hotline to by the Independent Television Service, asked particivery trapped and suffocated. . . . There is a lot more pants to imagine themselves in a world facing a global share their reactions; recorded messages were later posted on the Ed Zed than just sitting in a classroom,” one says in an introoil crisis. Through blogs, podcasts, YouTube videos Omega website. (Photo: Andi McDaniel, TPT) ductory video on EZO’s website. The project’s name and other online media, World Without Oil’s “playtranslates to “totally done” (“zed omega”) with educaers” explored how a catastrophic shift in the world’s tion. a participant in CPB’s American Graduate project, TPT had energy sources would affect our everyday lives. Eklund draws a distinction between the EZO students and been exploring stories of dropouts, which suggested narrative Eklund was looking to create another alternate-reality the students that American Graduate targets — those who possibilities to Eklund. game when AIR paired him with TPT for Localore; both he face pressures outside of school, such as pregnancy or family Education was a suitable topic for TPT, says interactive and the station had applied to participate in the initiative problems, that keep them from attending. The students porwithout partners in mind. The designer had been considering producer Andi McDaniel. The station’s family and education services department has been growing, and many of its docua game about education but hadn’t found a hook for one. As Continued on page A12
A4 | November 5, 2012 | Current
Governing board rejects final bids for San Mateo’s KCSM Trustees of the San Mateo County Community College District in California have rejected offers from two finalists vying to acquire KCSM-TV, a pubcasting station that was put up for sale in December 2011 after accruing an $800,000 deficit. The two bidders were San Mateo Community TV Corp., aligned with Independent Public Media and headed by former pubcasters John Schwartz and Ken Devine; and FM Media TV Inc., affiliated with Public Media Co., an independent arm of Public Radio Capital. Six entities initially bid for the station. San Mateo Community TV Corp. offered $5.8 million, and FM Media TV Inc. bid $7 million, according to public records that the Bay Area advocacy group Media Alliance posted on its website. During an Oct. 24 meeting, Jan Roecks, the college’s director of general services, told trustees that the college had been negotiating extensively with both entities since March, according to meeting minutes. FM Media TV Inc. “has not been able to demonstrate funding as promised,” Roecks told trustees. Ken Ikeda, Public Media Co.’s co-managing director, told Current that FM Media has financing in place. The challenge, he said, was demonstrating that to the college’s satisfaction. “We made every effort and have every intention to continue work to acquire the station,” he said. San Mateo Community TV Corp. “has not been able to demonstrate . . . that it could meet the FCC’s requirement of local representation, or at least that it could do so within a reasonable time,” Roecks told the board. Roecks told Current that she will update trustees on the sale at their Nov. 14 meeting.
CPB renews grant assisting African-American stations The National Federation of Community Broadcasters has received a second CPB grant to support its work assisting radio stations with largely African-American audiences. CPB awarded NFCB $300,000 in 2010 for the project’s first round, which involved about 20 of the system’s 29 African-American stations. The new $270,000 grant will allow it to continue that work over the next year. NFCB produces webinars, conferences and training workshops to help stations implement best practices across their operations. Since many participating stations are university licensees, NFCB is trying to help them strengthen relationships with their institutions “and to get the licensee to understand the
value of having a strong and vibrant public radio station,” said Ginny Berson, NFCB v.p. CPB’s grant allows NFCB to continue working with three North Carolina stations that are developing a collaboration to share music and information programming. WNCU in Durham, WSNC in Winston-Salem and WFSS in Fayetteville began the partnership under the previous CPB grant.
WKYU restructuring trims 3 jobs; merges radio, TV production Three staff positions — including that of the television station manager — have been cut at WKYU at Western Kentucky University in Bowling Green, part of a restructuring that prepares the dual licensee for a potential 10 percent reduction in federal funding. WKYU staff members who lost their jobs are Terry Reagan, development director; Linda Gerofsky, TV station manager; and Dorin Bobarnac, engineer. Thirty-one employees remain. James Morgese, a veteran pubcaster who took over as director of educational telecommunications at the university last month, told Current that the station is also creating a single content division that allows radio and television staff to collaborate in producing programs across both platforms and the web. The changes position WKYU to be “a nextgeneration new-media outlet,” he said. Morgese, former president of Denver-based Rocky Mountain PBS, moved quickly to streamline operations in anticipation of the possible sequestration of the federal budget in January (see story, page A1). If the cuts take effect, WKYU would lose $95,000 in CPB aid. The station operates on an annual budget of between $1.2 million and $1.5 million, he said. “Small stations like us pay attention” when they hear of a potential 10 percent drop in their CPB Community Service Grants, he added.
Nine Network breaks ground on $5M Public Media Commons The Nine Network of Public Media in St. Louis kicked off a yearlong construction project Oct. 30 to build the Public Media Commons, an interactive “urban space” in the city’s midtown district. Designed to be a “powerful expression” of the future of public media, the Commons is an interactive, pedestrian-friendly space that will allow visitors to view programs on wallsize screens and to curate content via interactive and touch displays. The community space will also have concert space and public art, including a digital “tree.” Nine Network’s partners include the University of Missouri–St. Louis and St. Louis Public Radio. The project, which will cost around $5.2 million, is privately financed by local foundations and individual contributors.
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Please join our host, Peter Van De Graaff as he guides you through music of the 16th and 17th centuries by composers such as Michael Praetorius, Thomas Ravenscroft, Elizabeth Poston, Giovanni Gabrieli, Claudio Monteverdi and Peter Cornelius, among others in this special by Chicago’s Music of the Baroque.
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Encompassing classical music, theater, literature, popular and folk music, Scottish storytelling this radio series will give listeners a first-hand experience of being in one of the world’s most important festival cities. Classical music highlights include: pianists Leif Ove Andsnes and Daniil Trifonov, bass-baritone Luca Pisaroni, violinist Leonidas Kavakos, the Calder Quartet, the European Union Youth Orchestra, and many others.
This one-hour program contains music of classic Christmas arrangements and original music by Leroy Anderson and is hosted by conductor Leonard Slatkin and the composer’s son Kurt Anderson. Listeners will also hear Leroy Anderson talking about how he wrote some of his famous Christmas music and what Christmas means to him.
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All of these programs are available free of charge. To schedule programs and for other information, contact: Tony Macaluso (773.279.2114 or firstname.lastname@example.org) or Carol Martinez (773.279.2112 or email@example.com) The WFMT Radio Network is: ■
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Youth in the Arab World: After the Revolution Arabs under thirty drove the region's revolutions, and they have emerged as prominent social and political actors. But as new governments take power, are youth satisfied with the pace of change?
This month on America Abroad, we'll hear from university students in Egypt, young Syrian refugees in Lebanon, and an anti-violence activist in Tunisia about how young Arabs are faring since the revolutions.
America Abroad is an award-winning documentary radio program produced by America Abroad Media and distributed by Public Radio International (PRI). Broadcast on public radio stations nationwide, America Abroad is always available via Content Depot.
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Sequestration Continued from page A1
In CPB’s case, preparation required negotiating with OMB to reserve $44.5 million — 10 percent of its 2013 appropriation — in its own accounts, instead of OMB withholding the amount until policymakers resolve the budget standoff, according to Michael Levy, CPB e.v.p., corporate and public affairs. In talks concluded last month, OMB agreed to provide CPB with its entire forward-funded appropriation on the condition that CPB withholds that amount from its grant programs and operational spending. “After conversations with the OMB,” Levy said, “and given that we are committed to acting with the utmost fiscal prudence in how we handle these funds, we are setting that amount aside.” CPB invested the funds in 90-day certificates of deposit, Levy said. Interest earned on those will be spent on radio and television programming, in accordance with statute, he said. It’s unclear how long CPB will have to hold the money in reserve, according to Levy. Under sequestration provisions of the Budget Act, CPB’s funding would be cut by 8.2 percent. Lawmakers must strike a deal by Jan. 2 to prevent sequestration from taking effect. To adjust its own grant programs for the worst-case scenario, CPB will distribute $262.8 million in CSGs for fiscal 2013, an amount that reflects the 10 percent sequestration reduction required by OMB. Since the grants will be less than anticipated, CPB will break from its traditional practice of dividing the grant payments into two equal sums. To
cushion stations from an immediate funding cut, CPB will pay 70 percent of each station’s CSG in the first batch of checks, which are now being processed. However, the amounts distributed in March will be 30 percent of the total CSG. A deal resolving the federal budget crunch may be worked out by then. The government is now operating on a continuing resolution through March 27. The CPB Board approved the change to the CSG program. CPB’s management and directors are concerned for stations suffering “dramatic reductions” in state funding and diminished individual and corporate contributions, Levy said. CPB’s leaders reasoned that a significant drop in stations’ first CSG payment “would exacerbate the stress that stations are already under,” he said. To avoid sequestration, Congress may opt to reconstruct Policymakers could resolve the federal budget, “resulting in more for some, less for the stalemate over federal others,” says SRG’s Thomas. That’s when CPB’s appropriaspending in a variety of ways, tion could come into play. (Photo: Wikimedia Commons) Levy said. Sequestration could be delayed or replaced by anothwill return to Washington. The results of the er deficit-reduction mechanism, or Congress election will affect whether lawmakers put off could decide to rescind funds from accounts sequestration, jump over the so-called “fisafter completing FY13 appropriations. cal cliff ” or work out a bipartisan agreement “We’re aware of the fluid nature of the with the White House. conversations occurring in Washington, both Patrick Butler, president of the on the Hill and in the White House,” Levy Association of Public Television Stations said. advocacy organization, remains hopeful that After Election Day, a lame-duck Congress the across-the-board cuts will be averted.
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| November 5, 2012 | A7
Both President Obama and congressional Republicans want to prevent sequestration from taking effect, and “various bipartisan ‘gangs’ on Capitol Hill” are working on plans to do so, Butler wrote in an email to Current. One option would be simply to delay dealing with the issue for several months. “I am hearing unanimous sentiment for avoiding sequestration somehow, as Capitol Hill is taking very seriously the warnings of a new recession if sequestration takes effect next year,” Butler said. But avoiding sequestration isn’t the only challenge pubcasting faces in Washington, said Tom Thomas, co-director of public radio’s Station Resource Group. “The whole premise of sequestration is to impose uniform cuts on spending,” he said. “Everybody feels the pain. And nobody wants that.” To avoid sequestration, Congress may choose to reconstruct the federal budget, “resulting in more for some, less for others,” Thomas said. That’s where pubcasting funds could come into play. “And of course all this tumbles forward into deliberations over funding levels for the years that follow,” he said. CPB and pubcasting stations have weathered rescissions in the past, but never a sequestration, according to Levy. For example, after Congress rescinded 1 percent of the federal budget in 2006, the CPB Board moved $2.8 million to the CSG pool from its discretionary pool of systemsupport money. And in February 2004, CPB protected stations by absorbing a 0.59 percent rescission that trimmed all federal spending (Current, Feb. 9, 2004). n Questions, comments, tips? firstname.lastname@example.org
A8 | November 5, 2012 | Current
The technology, controlled by privately held iBiquity, was conceived by commercial broadcasters as the answer to the competiContinued from page A1 tive threats posed by satellite radio, and, later, dedicated HD Radio streams Oct. 1. Stations on-demand listening experiences offered can still buy individual NPR programs for on iPods, smartphones, and Internet-based broadcast on HD channels, however. radio and music platforms. “We made a strategic guess more than five NPR and its engineering division NPR years ago of what we thought stations’ interLabs worked extensively with iBiquity to ests would be,” said Eric Nuzum, NPR proadvance HD Radio technology and played gramming v.p. “We guessed that they would a key role in developing features such as the want a ‘Set it and forget it’ option that would multicasting capability that allows stations to basically be a placeholder for them. They just offer multiple listening options to their audididn’t catch on very well.” ences. But listenership for these secondary WXPN-FM in Philadelphia, which syndichannels is tiny. cated its XPoNential Triple A music stream Many analysts now regard HD Radio as through NPR, opted to continue offering having been overtaken by rapid consumer the packaged feed to stations through indeadoption of audio programming offered pendent distribution. About 20 stations pay through web-based platforms, all of which $3,000 annually to carry the programming; provide on-demand service to listeners General Manager Roger LaMay said WXPN without stations as intermediaries. Usage is mainly looking to recoup the costs of pack- of web-based digital services is projected aging the channel. But he also sees a strategic to accelerate as carmakers begin building advantage in stayInternet access into ing the course with car dashboards. A HD Radio. report released Oct. “I would say that 25 by IMS Research the jury is still out predicted eightfold in terms of where growth in the numcertain technologies ber of automobiles will end up,” LaMay wired for Internet said. Continuing access by 2019. to distribute “HD Radio was XPoNential allows the answer to satelWXPN to stay in lite radio,” and an the game in case awkward one at that, HD Radio does said radio researchThe standard radio on the 2013 GMC Acadia is er and strategist gain more traction, he said. one of the first to include a new HD Radio fea- Mark Ramsey, one “We don’t know ture — the “Artist Experience” display of album of iBiquity’s most if HD is the future. vocal critics. “It cover art, station logos and other information. We also don’t know (Photo: Courtesy iBiquity) was fundamentally totally that it’s not,” ill-conceived from LaMay said. “Either day one, and now way, multiple channels are the way to go. We they’re trying to reverse-engineer it to find want to be in the multi-channel business.” something that fits the technology.” With the benefit of hindsight, researcher New competitive threats Fred Jacobs said HD Radio suffered because it lacked the simplicity and coolness of HD Radio uses a digital hybrid technolApple’s iPod, which hit the market in January ogy, piggybacking on analog radio signals to 2001, three years before HD Radio receivers pack more into each channel — improved were sold at retail to consumers. “[A]round sound quality, transmission of text and picthe same time, here comes HD Radio and it tures and the capacity to deliver multiple was confusing, hard to understand and had program streams.
This year’s Public Radio Technology Survey by Jacobs Media and PRPD found little use of HD Radio — even less than the prior year. Meanwhile, listeners rapidly took to using tablets and smartphones. no real outside marketing to explain it well,” Jacobs said. “HD Radio just hasn’t worked,” said Amy Mitchell, deputy director of the Pew Project for Excellence in Journalism and a co-author of Pew’s annual report on the news media. “People aren’t really aware of it and stations aren’t finding it worthwhile to change over, and that’s because technology has really moved beyond it.” These criticisms aren’t lost on iBiquity, which is in the race to get HD Radios into more cars and looking to have its chips built into smartphones as well. “We’re 10 years into it now, and we’ve built out the infrastructure to where it’s available to 90 percent of the population,” said Bob Struble, iBiquity founder and c.e.o., referring to the availability of HD Radio signals in top markets. “And we’re at critical mass in getting it into cars right now.” He’s convinced that the increased availability of HD Radios in automobiles will get listeners tuning into the new channels. HD Radios are now offered by 28 dif-
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ferent automotive brands, including Volkswagen, Ford and Rolls-Royce. Last month, iBiquity unveiled “Artist Experience,” a new technical feature that allows transmission and display of album art and other information; VW, Chevrolet, Buick and GMC are among the automakers offering it. Increased availability of HD Radios in cars has given stations new incentives to convert, said Rick Greenhut, iBiquity director of broadcast sales. “With all of these cars coming online, the station managers are seeing it more and more and deciding they need to get off the fence,” Greenhut said. “It’s changed the whole tone of my job just in the last few years.” Slow rollout, small audiences According to iBiquity, as of last month 2,093 radio stations were broadcasting in HD. Nearly a third were pubradio outlets. Compared to the total universe of 13,000 FM and AM radio stations broadcasting in the United States, iBiquity’s count of the number of converted stations translates into an adoption rate of 16 percent among radio broadcasters. After peaking at 521 stations in 2006, the number of annual station conversions declined to 17 in 2011, but it’s now back on the upswing, according to Greenhut. IBiquity reported 49 HD Radio conversions this year. But there are other signs that commercial broadcasters are cooling on HD Radio. Cumulus Broadcasting, the second-largest broadcaster in the U.S., warned investors earlier this year that it was delaying plans to convert 240 stations by June 2012. Cumulus had already scaled down its rollout plans for HD at least once. In March 2009, the company amended an earlier contract with iBiquity on its conversion schedule. The revised agreement allowed the broadcaster to reduce the number of planned station conversions and extend the buildout schedule; in exchange, it agreed to pay iBiquity higher licensing fees for each conversion, according to a recent filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. In the March SEC filing, Cumulus notified investors: “At this juncture, we cannot predict how successful our implementation of HD Radio technology within our platform will be, or how that implementation will affect our competitive position.” For pubradio, the multicasting capabili-
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ties of HD Radio technology offered a rare opportunity to expand audience service by broadcasting differentiated channels. In addition, stations received federal assistance for HD Radio upgrades. Starting in 2002, CPB’s Digital Conversion Fund awarded grants to local pubcasters for transmitter upgrades; proceeds from stations’ local fundraising also helped pay for conversions and programming to fill the new channels. The CPB grant program, which ended last year, awarded $60 million in grants to convert 680 public radio transmitters, according to Bruce Theriault, senior v.p. of radio. CPB also paid a group license fee to iBiquity for public radio stations to adopt its technology. In its later years, the conversion fund provided assistance for equipment upgrades that allowed some stations to increase the power of their HD Radio transmitters. Wisconsin Public Radio is among the beneficiaries of CPB’s grant program. It operates 33 stations to provide statewide public radio coverage and completed conversion of half of its transmitters last year, according to Mike Crane, director. At the time the massive technical project was initiated, it was regarded as a strategic move to prepare the state network for a digital future. But so far the return on investment has been hard to measure. “I would say that I’m feeling very mixed about it at this point,” Crane said. “It has been a really wonderful experience — for the people who have been able to find an HD receiver. But that so far is not a huge audience.”
pretty much Listeners in Milwaukee seem pick your cliché to have caught about it — the on to HD Radio goose is cooked, more than anythe horse has where else in the left the barn state, he said. or the ship has In that market, left the harbor.” WPR airs an allThe time and classical service money spent to on an HD2 chanadopt and pronel of WHAD, mote HD Radio its Ideas Network was wasted, he station broadsaid, primarcasting news and ily because The key to broader adoption is getting more autotalk programs. it diverted makers to offer HD Radios in car entertainment The HD service resources from on 90.7-2 is the systems, says Struble, iBiquity c.e.o. and founder. creating the only radio chan“We’re at the steep part of the adoption curve and one thing that nel in the city it’s been a long time coming.” (Photo: David Hobby would generate offering classical Photography) interest among music, including listeners — betcommercial and ter programanalog stations. In 2010, Arbitron measured ming. a cumulative weekly audience of 600, accord“The shame of it is, just imagine what ing to Crane. It’s now pulling a cume that we’d have to show with all of those millions approaches 1,000 listeners. if they’d been spent on funding content “Obviously, it’s not a huge audience,” instead,” Ramsey said. “Think of the dollar Crane said. “But, it is 1,000 people listening, value of all that time spent promoting HD and that number is growing.” Radio. What if they sold a spot instead, or Because HD Radio helps stations expand had been able to devote the time to content? programming to underserved audiences, a It’s been an astonishing waste of precious mission of public broadcasting, most pubindustry resources and audience attention.” casters aren’t ready to pass judgment. “It’s a little early to make a final call about Plethora of listening options this, if the technology has worked or hasn’t As the number of stations offering HD worked,” Theriault said. Radio channels grew over the past decade, For Ramsey, the verdict is already in. and as the cost of radio units decreased “Everyone can read the tea leaves at this point about HD Radio,” he said. “You can enough that price was less of a barrier for
| November 5, 2012 | A9
consumers, research reveals that interest among listeners has not grown. Radio listeners have stayed loyal to traditional AM and FM, signed up as Sirius XM subscribers or, increasingly, turned to mobile and on-demand platforms for entertainment. In the 2012 Public Radio Technology Survey, 41 percent of the 30,768 public radio listeners who participated said they most often listen to the radio while in the car. Just over half of them — 52 percent — already have the ability to plug in and listen to smartphones and digital devices in their cars. “The strategy to work with the carmakers is probably HD Radio’s best hope for gaining some ubiquitousness,” Jacobs said. “If it gets baked into the cars, it could catch on.” Fifty-six percent of public radio listeners use music players such as iPods, according to the technology survey. Around 18 percent of those surveyed reported that they listen to Pandora; another 46 percent said they listen to Internet radio. “People are always looking for a silver bullet for why things are going up or going down,” said NPR’s Eric Nuzum, “But the best way to look at it is there are multiple reasons why audiences behave the way they do, and while you can’t look at HD Radio or Pandora or mobile individually as a dominant platform, the collective effect of all those things is the game changer.” Pew’s researchers pointed to increased competition from other digital options, most notably Internet-based radio like Pandora, as a threat to all terrestrial broadcasters, including those who program HD Radio channels. “Traditional radio is by no means a thing of the past. The vast majority of Americans
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A10 | November 5, 2012 | Current
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tion reported to CPB. But Robert Daino, the president and CEO, said in an interview that the trends are turning around. When the TV station stopped pledging, he said, its membership was on a declining trajectory, similar to other PBS member stations nationally. While WCNY’s total member dollars have continued to drop year to year, the number of members grew in 2010 and 2011. WCNY reported 11,541 members in 2011, down 6 percent from 2007. In the last five years, the station developed alternative income streams to replace contributions from those members whose pledges were spurred by premium offers, Daino said. New revenue-generators, such as a production company that sells its video services to the community, are much more dependable year to year than the “soft” pledge revenues, which vary based on the economy. “We are certainly stronger and moving in a better direction,” he said, with a more loyal member base and more predictable income. Overall, Daino said, the station’s revenue
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still report listening to AM/FM weekly, and the bulk of audio revenue remains tied to that traditional platform,” Pew reported. “But as many as 38 percent of Americans now listen to audio on digital devices each week, and that is projected to double by 2015, while interest in traditional radio — even the HD option — is on the decline.” According to the Pew study, the number of listeners who stream web-based radio in their cars almost doubled from 2010 to 2011, to 11 percent. Based on listening habits of drivers ages 18–24, Pew projected that this rate will increase to almost 20 percent by 2015. Young adults told researchers they regularly stream Pandora through their phones while in their cars. Radio listeners are aware that HD Radio exists, according to Pew, but “very few adults express interest in it.” Pew cited a 2010 poll by Arbitron in which 7 percent of respon-
for FY2011, ended June 30, was about $6.5 million (excluding one-time items), up from about $5.5 million in 2007. About 20 percent of WCNY’s current revenue is derived from membership. In addition to the TV station, the pubcaster also operates a classical FM station. WCNY’s Board of Trustees enthusiastically supports the move to reduce the stations’ reliance on pledge revenues. “We’ve never once talked about going back to what we were doing before,” said Board Chair Jeffrey Scheer, an attorney. “The discussion has always been, ‘How are we going to generate revenues from other sources to make up for what we weren’t getting in pledge?’” Daino, a software entrepreneur and former GE executive, was a WCNY board member when he was tapped as the station’s interim g.m. in 2005. Four months later, he was offered the job. In an interview with the local newspaper, he announced he would end pledge within two years. And then he told his stunned staff. Both inside and outside the station, the pronouncement “was met with tremendous skepticism that, one, we could get there, and, two, that we could maintain it,” Daino said.
“Some were saying it was more of a gimmick.” But Daino said he was convinced that the station needed to change, “that the current model we had embraced for a long time was not sustainable for the next 40 years.”
dents expressed interest in HD Radio. From 2006 through 2010, the percentage of people interested in HD Radio never topped 8 percent. This is not the first time that broadcasters have struggled to market a new technology to the listening public. “I think the parallels are very close with the rollout of FM radio, where the industry pushed the technology — the sound quality, for example — and that’s not what people buy,” said Christopher Sterling, associate dean of media and public affairs at George Washington University in Washington, D.C. A common criticism of HD Radio’s introduction — that instead of attracting listeners by offering them better content, HD Radio’s proponents focused on the bells and whistles of the new technology — was leveled at FM broadcasters as well, he said. “My impression of HD Radio is that whatever wind was in the sail has long since gone,” Sterling said. Not so, according to iBiquity’s Struble. Sales of HD Radio units in cars and home
receivers hit 2 million in 2011, he said, and iBiquity is projecting sales of 3.3 million units in both 2012 and 2013. “We’re at the steep part of the adoption curve, and it’s been a long time coming,” he said. According to business news service Hoovers Inc., iBiquity, which is headquartered in Columbia, Md., had annual sales of $21.3 million at the end of December 2011. Since its founding in 1998, the company has secured more than $300 million in venture capital. It derives income from licensing fees: a $3 royalty for each HD chipset installed in home, clock and car radios, and $10,000 for each station that converts its transmitter. Fees paid by broadcasters have been cut dramatically from the $25,000 charged during early years of the rollout. According to a 2009 SEC filing, Ibiquity raised $42.4 million in a cash and stock offering. Other rounds of financing in 2001 and 2004 garnered $75 million for the company from investors. The recent boost in sales put iBiquity in
where content is the
Daino, pictured at right on the construction site for the station’s new building, says the transactional pledge revenues that WCNY depended on were not sustainable. (Photo: Courtesy WCNY)
“I said, ‘Our members are so important to us that I don’t want to interrupt them,’” he added. By eliminating pledge drives, the station gained back 70 days and 330 hours of broadcast airtime that had been dedicated to pledge appeals. Once pledge was gone, the station had to find new ways to ask viewers to support the station. “I never believed that we’d take pledge off and people would be so happy that they’d just throw money at us,” Daino said. To keep the station’s financial needs topof-mind for viewers, requests for membership donations began appearing on-screen as eight- or nine-second “snipes,” popup graphic elements that catch the viewers’ attention without stopping the show. The station does air some PBS fundraising specials, including performance shows, but with the pledge breaks stripped out. Pared-back selections of premiums are offered to members through the snipes. “We’re really trying to emphasize the value of the programming,” said John Tonello, WCNY’s v.p. of advancement, communications and content delivery. The average member gift has dropped Continued on next page
a strong financial position, Struble said. “We have plenty of money and we’re capital positive.” Struble isn’t daunted by the popularity of mobile players and streaming audio, because the disruptions caused by spectrum limitations will frustrate listeners, especially those in large cities, he said. In addition, carriers are dropping unlimited data plans; as smartphone users incur more data charges, they will use mobile audio streams less, he predicted. Pubcasters programming HD Radio channels are less worried about the long-term viability of the technology. They see stations’ HD Radio channels as another platform for providing content and a complement to their digital offerings. Radio audiences have more listening choices, regardless of which device they prefer to use. “There is a lot of wisdom to the thinking that you want to be everywhere, whether it’s mobile, HD or web streaming,” Nuzum said. n Questions, comments, tips? firstname.lastname@example.org
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Pledge-free Continued from previous page
from $131 in 2007 to $104 in 2011, according to WCNY’s CPB filing. But Daino attributes the decline to the fact viewers are no longer making transactional pledges to purchase expensive premium gifts, which stations must pay for. Moreover, he said, WCNY reduced the overhead associated with its membership program, because it no longer has to bear the personnel costs of managing lots of premium gifts. Maintaining connections to its members, and recruiting new ones, remain WCNY’s biggest challenges. Daino said he wanted to get rid of expensive direct mail in addition to pledge, but after studying the situation decided the station needed to keep it, because of its success rate. According to Tonello, WCNY recently had “one of our biggest Augusts in years,” between new members and renewals received through direct mail. WCNY’s staff also changed the language they use to request donations. “We erased the word ‘gift’ in everything we had,” Tonello said. “We’re not a charity; we’re a not-forprofit.” Instead, WCNY emphasizes the concept of investing in the community. New revenue sources While member dollars have declined, overall underwriting revenues for the station (including its radio and web operations) have doubled, climbing from $500,000 to some $1.1 million over five years. The growth came in part from underwriters’ response to a revamp and upgrade of WCNY’s magazine, which
adds a print component to the sponsorship packages they can buy. The department that sells the packages is named Business Media Solutions, emphasizing that WCNY sponsorship can be an effective marketing tool for companies. A variety of businesses affiliated with the station — including a for-profit company that produces ads and corporate videos, among other video materials — helps to diversify the station’s revenue streams. WCNY is also launching a new business as the operator of a joint master control for other public broadcasters. All nine New York State public TV stations have joined the CPBbacked centralcasting unit, and there’s room to accommodate more. The master control is scheduled to go online Dec. 7, bringing income to the station while cutting equipment costs for the others. And when WCNY’s new 56,000-squarefoot broadcast center in Syracuse’s Near Westside neighborhood is completed in December, it will include a space for an income-producing educational project called “Enterprise America,” where middle and highschool students will role-play the running of an entire city over five and a half hours using a STEM- and civics-based curriculum for which their teachers will have received special training. The building’s 1,500-square-foot café will be open to the public, and a related catering business, of which WCNY will own 50 percent, will also bring in revenue. The station expects to close on the sale of its old location and tower leases by the end of the year, Daino said, and because a capital campaign is covering the costs of the new building, WCNY will soon be debt-free. It plans to establish its first endowment with some of the sale revenue.
Navajo and Hopi cross-country runners from two rival high schools put it all on the line for tribal pride, triumph over adversity, and state championship glory.
The Syracuse pubcaster hasn’t given up onair appeals completely; the TV station devotes 13 days a year to two auctions: a travel auction and the Tel-Auc, offering a potpourri of some 4,000 items. The number of auction days has been reduced, however. And WCNY’s radio station still pledges, for 10 days — down from 24 when Daino arrived. “I haven’t figured out a way to stop that,” he said, noting, “You can’t snipe on radio.” But if he could eliminate it, he would, he said. Pledge-free precedents Earlier experiments in going pledge-free by other stations didn’t work. Cincinnati’s WCET tried twice, first in the late 1980s. “It does not give you a good way to replace the viewers that are falling off your rolls,” said Jack Dominic, WCET’s executive v.p. and station manager. “On-air usually is very effective because it gets you new people in the door.” A second experiment, in 1998, that offered a separate pledge-free channel to members who were also Time Warner Cable subscribers faltered for lack of interest. “As much as people said they liked it, when push comes to shove not that many people signed up for it,” said Dominic, recalling that fewer than 1,000 of the approximately 15,000 eligible members signed on. More recently some stations have succeeded in reducing the number and length of their pledge breaks. Austin’s KLRU revamped its approach to on-air fundraising, cutting its pledge-break minutes by nearly a third from 2007 levels and switching to live breaks featuring notable community members. The changes brought in slightly more money in a lot less time: Pledge-break minutes totaled 11,846 in fiscal 2007 and brought in $860,000
Host Chris Bashinelli highlights the captivating facets and challenging issues of everyday life as he follows “a day in the life of” the Oglala Lakota on the Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota.
Native American Public Telecommunications, Inc. (NAPT)/ Vision Maker Media, a nonprofit 501(c)(3), receives major funding from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting.
| November 5, 2012 | A11
in revenue; in 2012, the station clocked 7,980 pledge minutes and raised $869,000, according to Betsy Gerdeman, senior v.p. of development. During live pledge breaks, community leaders talk up the services KLRU provides, Gerdeman said. University of Texas astrophysics professor Karl Gebhardt and Torvald Hessel, executive director of the Austin Planetarium, recently pitched in for a Nova break, and a host of Austin chefs and restaurant owners took part in a special celebrating what would have been Julia Child’s 100th birthday. Complaints about pledge are down significantly, she added. The results in Austin and Syracuse run counter to the national trend in on-air fundraising. The amount of airtime PBS member stations devoted to on-air pledging grew 1.5 percent from fiscal 2011 to 2012, according to Jan McNamara, PBS spokesperson. The amount of revenues raised increased a corresponding 1.6 percent, she said. Arizonabased TRAC Media reports show that clients for its pledge service, who are predominantly independent community licensees that rely more heavily on on-air fundraising revenues, averaged 79 pledge days over the last 12 months, up 16 percent from the 2007 average of 68 days. At least for Daino, devoting more airtime to on-air fundraising is a mistake. “I don’t think it’s right that every time there is an issue you turn to the people who own this,” he said, referring to the community. “I believe we should not constantly poke people in the eye in a reach for discretionary money that’s continuing to dwindle,” he added, referring to audience donations. “You have to take control of your own destiny.” n
Two brothers from the Onondaga Nation pursue their dreams of playing lacrosse for national powerhouse Syracuse University. The obstacles in their way are frequent and daunting, but their love for the game, each other, and their family’s unyielding determination, propels these youth towards their dream.
Native Stories for Public Broadcasting
NAPT is now Vision Maker Media.
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trayed in EZO are instead “rise-outs,” who want to learn but feel that school is no longer helping them achieve their goals. As the EZO students struggle with the decision to either stay out of school or return to graduate, they share their thoughts and ask for feedback via a variety of channels: YouTube, Tumblr, Facebook, Twitter, email, a phone hotline and the EZO website, edzedomega.org. Eklund and TPT want their questioning to spark conversation about whether the U.S. educational system is preparing students to succeed in a rapidly changing world. Today’s middle-schoolers will have jobs that haven’t even been invented yet, Eklund says, and schools aren’t giving students a crucial enthusiasm for learning and being creative. He wants EZO’s students to be the equivalent of the boy in “The Emperor’s New Clothes,” who points out something that is obvious to everyone but discussed by no one. “Ed Zed Omega has been this really cathartic moment where the truth about education is coming out, and also this realization that you don’t need to follow that path if that path is not working for you,” he says. Eklund and TPT furnished the cast with backstories but no scripts, encouraging the actors to improvise and draw on their own experiences in school as the project unfolds. Real-life experiences have intruded as well. An actor who took a hiatus when his cousin passed away wrote about the death in character upon returning to EZO.
The game’s creators were unsure which elements would prove successful when they launched EZO. It’s turned out that using the actor-students at live, interactive events has sparked some of the most thoughtful discussions. “The game, and explaining what an alternate-reality thought experiment is, can get bogged down in concept,” McDaniel says. “But if you’re interacting with someone playing a role, there’s no explanation required.” At live events, the actors have talked for 15 minutes, and the discussions after they leave the room have gone on for 40 minutes, with no guidance needed from Eklund or McDaniel. “It’s easy for adults to talk about teens in a third-person way,” Eklund says. “But when they’re confronted with having that conversation with a teen, all of a sudden it becomes an entirely different discussion, with assumptions laid open for questioning.” At an event at the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis, the EZO students invited visitors to walk across a map on the floor that featured islands with labels such as “Standardized Testing,” “I Hate People” and “My 21st Century Job.” Explorers were directed to call a phone number and record their reactions to the islands they stood on. “One of the things I find myself wishing I had when I was in high school was better orientation — really, somebody along the way who would’ve told me what it was for,” one caller said. As EZO wraps up, the students will decide whether they’re returning to school. Some have yet to have what may be tumultuous
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Ed Zed Omega creator Ken Eklund, at left; writer and producer Maggie Ryan Sandford; and TPT’s Andi McDaniel. (Photo: Aramis Ikatu) fights about the matter with their parents. In December, the actors will step out of their characters and talk about how the roleplaying exercise has affected their views of education. The project has inspired McDaniel to look for more ways that TPT could use actors to facilitate conversations, as the EZO students have done. Eklund’s improvisational approach to creating and guiding interactive games has inspired TPT to be more nimble, she says, possibly by creating a division within the network that regularly undertakes such projects. “We don’t want someone to hear about a project like this and think, ‘Really? TPT
is doing that?’” she says. “We want them to think, ‘This is part of their mission.’” TPT will sift through the many calls, comments and letters that it received from the public and posted on its website, then figure out how to package them in some finalized form, McDaniel says. For his part, Eklund hopes that the ripples created by EZO will influence the ongoing discussion of America’s educational system. Change will come “when people start gathering together their individual complaints and expressing how dissatisfied they are with the system,” he says, “and when they’re ready to support someone with ideas about what the system should be.” n
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A14 | November 5, 2012 | Current
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to the Newark studio facilities Oct. 31 after power had been restored. WBGO’s website remained down for the rest of the week. Doyle, who had been working overnight at a commercial station before settling in with the WBGO crew, had been away from his apartment for days, he told Current. “There was a period of a couple days where I had no idea if I had a place or not.” From Tallacksen’s basement, Doyle heard from neighbors about the devastation Sandy had wrought on his neighborhood. He finally returned to his apartment Oct. 31. “It looked like a war zone,” he said. The building was still standing but had been condemned because the floors were unstable. Authorities agreed to let him retrieve his items from his apartment, and now he’s staying with his girlfriend. “That was my home,” Doyle said. “I don’t have a home anymore.”
damage. Freedman estimated that the station sustained $250,000 in damage from the storm, with $150,000 of that chalked up to the cancellation of WFMU’s annual record fair, its biggest event of the year. Three of the four New Jersey transmitters operated by New York’s WNET were running on backup generators late last week, and station officials couldn’t predict when power would be restored. The transmitter serving New Brunswick, WNJB, was knocked off the air during the peak of the storm Monday evening but was restored by 11 a.m. Tuesday. WLIW in Long Island, a sister station to WNET, went dark for 20 hours after its backup generator failed.
Hudson River at the door As ears turned to New York’s flagship public radio station, WNYC, for news and comfort during and after the storm, the pubcaster was grappling with numerous technical setbacks. Its transmitter WBGO chief engineer David Tallacksen, left, and broadcasting on 820 AM went down in news director Doug Doyle kept the jazz station the storm, and at least two of its four New broadcasting during Superstorm Sandy from Jersey Public Radio outposts — WNJT a makeshift studio in Tallacksen’s basement. 88.1 FM in Trenton and WNJY 89.3 FM (Photo: Andrew Meyer) in Netcong — also went dark. New York Public Radio began operating four stations serving northern New Jersey in June NJTV, the network of stations serving 2011. New Jersey, produced a live report on Sunday WNJT and WNJY recovered within night as the state girded for Sandy’s arrival, the first few days of the aftermath. But at and six live programs over the next two days. Current’s deadline, engineers were unable Tuesday night, after the worst of the storm to confirm the status of WNJO, according had passed, WNET and NJTV collaborated to WNYC spokesperson Jennifer Houlihan. to produce a live news program about the The station serves the Jersey Shore commusuperstorm’s impact. nity of Toms River, about 50 miles north of Atlantic City, where Sandy made landfall. Student radio to the rescue WNYC tapped longtime anchor Brian Lehrer for special live coverage on the eveFaced with a power outage and a failed ning of Monday, Oct. 29; his regular mornbackup generator at Providence-based Rhode ing show was extended by an hour the next Island Public Radio, General Manager Joe day. During the Tuesday morning broadcast, O’Connor called on a powerful friend of the Lehrer interviewed Elmo from Sesame Street station for help. for a segment about comforting children who When O’Connor first met the Reverend were frightened by the hurricane. Brian Shanley two years ago, the president Another bright spot for WNYC: Its webof Providence College had complained to site, which maintained service through the O’Connor about the limited reach of WRNIstorm, is seeing record traffic, according to AM, a station that Rhode Island Public Radio Houlihan. Visitors are drawn to comprehenlater swapped in a 2011 deal. WRNI now sive data maps of the storm’s path, which broadcasts on 88.1 FM in Providence, but as have been picked up by Reuters, Google and Sandy blew through, the station was off the many other outlets. air. Freeform WFMU was not as lucky. Its stuOn the evening of Monday, Oct. 29, dios and transmitter sites lost power during O’Connor emailed Shanley to inform him the superstorm’s assault, knocking the station of RIPR’s dire situation. The broadcaster off the air and Internet. The Hudson River thought the message was a shot in the dark, came within 50 feet of the station’s front and he expected it to go unanswered for a door, but the studios were not flooded, said few days. But Shanley responded in less than Ken Freedman, g.m. 30 minutes, insisting over the phone that WFMU restarted its web stream after a RIPR’s staff come to campus and broadcast 12-hour outage by streaming directly to its from WDOM, the school’s 125-watt student web servers from deejays’ homes. Freedman radio station. Though its signal is weaker hosted programs from the house of a friend than RIPR’s, WDOM’s service covers all of in Hoboken who had working power and Providence, including the areas hardest hit by Internet. His own home had lost power and Sandy’s fierce winds. was flooded with four feet of sewage. “I dropped the phone, and he must’ve As Current went to press, both of heard me say ‘Holy shit,’” O’Connor recalled. WFMU’s transmitters — 90.1 FM in Mount After campus security fetched WDOM’s Hope, N.Y., and 91.1 FM in Jersey City — student general manager Brennan Callahan remained off-air. Electrical power had been from his dorm, where he had been waitrestored to one, but the station could not feed ing out the storm in his pajamas, RIPR was audio to it. Deejays had returned to WFMU’s broadcasting out of WDOM that night. headquarters in downtown Jersey City, but Following the generous display of camathe studios had suffered major electrical Continued on next page
| November 5, 2012 | A15
City rejects revived proposal to house Port Arthur’s KSAP-LP By Mike Janssen
low-power FM station in Port Arthur, Texas, is on the hunt for a new home after city officials defeated a proposal to lease a vacant firehouse to the broadcaster. It was the second time that city officials had voted against associating themselves with the 100-watt KSAP, operated by the Truth and Education Corp. The station broadcasts an eclectic array of locally programmed news and music shows, including some that feature local youth behind the control board. It now broadcasts from a tiny former funeral-storage facility that lacks soundproofing and allows off-air conversations in adjoining rooms to leak into the broadcast studio and on the air, says Stephen Mosely, executive director. In 2008, the nine-member city council voted to lease the firehouse to KSAP. But it reversed that decision two months later after Mayor Deloris “Bobbie” Prince, who also sits on the council, questioned whether the city could be held liable for political opinions expressed on the station’s airwaves. Her concerns garnered enough political support to keep KSAP out of the firehouse. Prince cited a situation in Beaumont,
Texas, in which city officials were sanctioned for advocating a position on a ballot initiative while appearing on a public-access cable show. The Port Arthur city attorney also noted in a brief that the local council’s members had bashed each other during appearances on KSAP. Mosely believes some city politicians oppose him because KSAP offers a venue for townspeople and hosts to question their performance. “Any time I go before the council, you can cut the atmosphere with a hatchet,” he said. KSAP does have some friends in high places, however. At an August meeting, Councilmember Harold Doucet reopened the
four-year-old debate about whether the station should be allowed to lease the firehouse. “It’s only right that this council go back and take a look at what was done,” Doucet said at the meeting, referring to the 2008 vote. “I don’t think it was done properly. I think it was an injustice.” Doucet proposed that the city draft an agreement with KSAP that would absolve it from any liability for political statements made on-air. But Councilmember Robert Williamson recalled statements broadcast during previous elections and said that taxpayers should not have to support such programming. “If I disagree with you, why should I spend my tax
money to supplement your political views?” he said. The motion was defeated by a 5–4 vote. Councilmember Derrick Freeman, who opposed the motion, told Current that he supports KSAP but thinks the station should preserve the independence of its programming by avoiding ties to the city. “I just didn’t think it would be a great mix,” he said. Mosely’s latest plan would achieve that goal, if it succeeds. He hopes to win a grant from the Port Arthur Economic Development Corporation, which is funded by property tax revenue, to build new studios for KSAP, and is working to put a proposition on the ballot for an election scheduled for May 2013. n
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raderie from the private Roman Catholic university, “I texted Father Shanley and said ‘I am now reconsidering my agnosticism,’” O’Connor said. Further north, Sandy disrupted one of the most high-profile election programs planned by Boston’s WGBH-TV — a debate between Elizabeth Warren (D) and Scott Brown (R), candidates in Massachusetts’ hotly contested race for the U.S. Senate. The face-off, scheduled for Oct. 30, was to be moderated by CNN anchor John King. WBGH postponed the debate Oct. 29, and when producers tried to reschedule with the candidates, Brown pulled out, citing a packed schedule in the final week of the campaign. Linda Polach, e.p., told the Boston Globe that the debate’s cancellation was “very disappointing for all the citizens who will not have an opportunity to hear directly from the candidates a week before the election.” Coastal stations farther from Sandy’s landfall zone path got through the storm with no disruptions. WCAI-FM, serving Massachusetts’ Cape Cod and coastal communities, broadcast continuously, as did WDDE, the new NPR station serving the state of Delaware. WHYY-FM in Philadelphia, which also operates five stations in New Jersey, also maintained power and remained on the air. Sandy also disrupted one of public TV’s major fall confabs — the National Educational Telecommunications Association conference, convened in St. Louis Oct. 30– Nov. 1. Although dozens of attendees and speakers from the East Coast had to cancel their travel plans, NETA went ahead with the conference, offering Skype and web-based file-sharing services to allow presenters to participate virtually. NETA officials reported that about 50 of the 300 registered attendees missed the conference because of flight cancellations. — Reported with assistance from Dru Sefton and Jon Kalish
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| November 5, 2012 | B1
CurrentThinking Public media must revitalize open civic discourse in our communities “A press independent of the conversation of culture, or existing in the absence of such a conversation, is likely to be . . . a menace to public life and an effective politics.” — James W. Carey
By Torey Malatia
hen the Radio Research Consortium releases its periodic eRANKS, public radio programmers in communities all over the country examine them as report cards on their stations’ audience service. This is the big score of their performance relative to other markets. But the true measure of effectiveness of our public media institutions is not found in an infograph derived from Arbitron ratings. As sociologist Michael Schudson reminds us, our effectiveness is best reflected in our contributions to facilitating an inclusive public discourse in our communities. In a pluralistic America, public media is a central resource for promoting inclusiveness in civic engagement. This misson-based role has become even more important in today’s broadcast and digital media environment, in which content is tailored exclusively to audiences based on their ideology and beliefs. Evidence of the divisiveness of civic dialogue in the media pounded on WBEZ’s door last month. I hope this account of the decision we made, and the philosophies behind it, will benefit our public media colleagues. Whenever a public radio station removes a regularly scheduled program from its lineup, the staff can expect to hear from listeners upset by the decision. Such was the case at WBEZ when we chose not to renew our annual purchase of Smiley & West, a weekly news program from Public Radio International. A major factor in our decision was a significant, steady decline in audience for the one-hour broadcast. Over 18 months the program’s cumulative audience declined by two-thirds, while the programs surrounding it remained stable. But there was another overarching concern that influenced our evaluation of Smiley & West. A couple of years ago, the show was reframed from public radio’s typical opendialogue approach — in this case, on topical social and political issues — to a framework of what I consider advocacy journalism. I am among those who believe that complete objectivity in journalism and public affairs is humanly impossible, but I reject the notion that public media should veer into advocacy. Granted, in some cases journalists who reveal their personal views often seed or reframe the public’s discussion in a new way. As long as the journalist’s contribution supports the public dialogue that allows the community to reach an evolved outcome, he or she plays a role in facilitating the democratic process. But advocacy journalism elevates the voice of one citizen — that of the journalist — and frames the discussion with the intent of persuading the community to agree with the journalist’s desired outcome, whether it has real value or not. To me, “advocacy journalism” is an unhappy meeting of two words, the second word dragged along by the first to get a better table. In the case of this particular program,
the mismatched couple favored fare on the left side of the political menu. We did approach PRI about the program’s eroding audience in Chicago and our concerns that the declines were linked to the editorial shift of Smiley & West. In our view, any news or commentary program should reflect public media’s signature for open and fair dialogue of competing ideas. A program that concentrates on issues in a singular way — rejecting ideas or opinions to the contrary — doesn’t fit with our standards. Smiley & West was moving in this direction, examining issues in the public dialogue within an increasingly closed universe of agreement. Our recommendation that producers evaluate whether the program was dogmatic in ways that turned off the audience was distorted, and producers mounted a write-in campaign accusing me of censoring views “in the interest of balance.” This accusation was wholeheartedly embraced by the outraged, some of whom proposed that we change our standards for balance. Others wrote that a left-leaning program such as Smiley & West represents the heart of the editorial mission of public media. These writers believe that public radio should promote leftist ideology to “balance” the public’s indoctrination by right-leaning corporate-controlled media. One listener suggested that we balance Smiley & West by adding “some equally vociferous right-wing program.” By broadcasting them back-to-back, each could refute any lies or truths promoted by the other. The logic of these proposals eluded us. Those who wrote to us seemed to be arguing
As part of its news 2010–11 news series on juvenile detention, WBEZ convened a public event where community members could share their experiences and insights. (Photo: Richard Cahan) that we should shoot journalism in the chest to balance those who had been shooting it in the back. Balance is a subjective value and an impractical metric. An editor who employs it as a measurement of news reporting would be as frustrated as a chef describing the flavor of air. You can’t calculate communication and argument in their nuance with algebraic precision. We have become so accustomed to being “informed” by partisanship packaged in journalistic attire that we expect little more. We are so conditioned to being attentive to ideologically obsessed commentators, analysts and “experts” consuming massive volumes of
Read |Write Public media’s “value” derived from service to local communities To the editors: Amanda Hirsch asks if the “value proposition” for public media is different today from what it was in the 1960s, and if tax dollars are essential in support of noncommercial media (Current, Oct. 22). I was there in the 1960s, making the case along with a great number of others who believed in the “educational broadcasting” that was at that point the core of our movement. The notion of federal funding came only after all other options had been declared politically or financially impossible. Many of us continue to worry that in our treasured democracy public money in support of any mass medium is precarious at best and downright dangerous at worst. When “public broadcasting” finally came into its own, it was the only system of broadcasting in the world that was developed with no visible means of support. Thus, we considered the Public Broadcasting Act of 1967 to be a major victory — and so it was, at least at the time. There has been little change in funding patterns since then, so federal and state appropriations remain important in bringing noncommercial media services to the widest possible national audience. Whether that’s good or bad in a democracy is arguable, but only peripherally relevant. More important is the matter of “value proposition,” which I conclude means, “What have you done for your communities lately?” A good answer might be a series of additional questions, asked
oxygen on American broadcast media, cable channels and online that we’ve forgotten that these familiar personalities represent only a handful of the citizen voices that should be heard in daily discourse. We have unknowingly licensed these few use of our rightful function in democracy. Citizens in our republic were intended to be actors, not just responders; they should never be content to be consumers of ideas; they have the authority and responsibility to be authors of them. The hard work of public media journalism for the next few years is to counteract the partisanship of news media and reverse Continued on page B6
of individual public radio and television licensees, most of which have evolved into purveyors of “content” through a number of increasingly technical and exotic means. n Do you have operational partnerships with service agencies and educational institutions in your area? n What percentage of your effort goes into providing local service, rather than retransmitting national material? n How much of your budget comes automatically from public appropriations, how much from memberships and how much from payments for services you provide? n What is your role in producing “MOOCs” (massive, open, online courses), as major colleges and universities move energetically to build new educational paradigms? n Do you brand yourself as the local “PBS” service, or do you primarily promote the local services you provide? n Do your membership drives focus on national programs and series you broadcast, or have you shifted to attracting support from those who also benefit from your other services? Historically, spirited dialogue has centered on the question of local identity and power versus the popularity and draw of national programming. At this point, the “value proposition” has less to do with arguing for the centralized agencies and more to do with the emergence of local instrumentalities of noncommercial telecommunications services. The public broadcasting we knew is not likely to thrive or die suddenly; it’s more likely to happen community by community. Some will do well and some will not, and the former will likely be those who work to become educationally indispensable in their local markets. Rick Breitenfeld Author of “The Long-Range Funding of Educational Television Stations,” published in 1965 under a grant from the U.S. Office of Education. Founding c.e.o. of Maryland Public Television Former president of Philadelphia’s WHYY-TV/FM
B2 | November 5, 2012 | Current
NPR added new positions to its executive ranks with two appointments announced Nov. 1 by President Gary Knell. Emma Carrasco, currently executive vice president of Republica, a Miami creative agency specializing in multiplatform marketing, takes over as NPR’s chief marketing officer Dec. 3. Carrasco has 30 years of experience in advertising, branding, digital, promotions, communications and media. She has worked for Fleishman-Hillard in Los
Carrasco, left, and Mayor join NPR’s executive staff; Davis hosts her last KQED broadcast this week. Angeles and New York and at major firms such as Univision, McDonald’s and Nortel Networks. Carrasco serves on the board of directors of WPBT, the PBS member station
in Miami. She will report directly to Knell and work to develop and lead implementation of a marketing strategy to expand the visibility of NPR and public radio.
Loren Mayor will join NPR as senior vice president of strategy. Since 2008, Mayor has been v.p. of strategy and ventures at PBS, where she oversees long-term and annual strategic planning, media strategy, corporate partnerships, major revenue initiatives, and licensing and sponsorship programs. Prior to PBS, Mayor spent five years at CPB, rising to vice president of media strategies and technologies. Her previous experience includes consulting for McKinsey & Co., primarily with clients in nonprofit and media. Mayor will report directly to Knell as one of four executives assigned to the office of the president. Others are Joyce MacDonald, chief of staff and v.p. member audience partnership; Mike Riksen, v.p., policy and representation; and Keith Woods, v.p., diversity. Carrasco will join Knell’s executive committee, whose members are McDonald; Debbie Cowan, c.f.o.; Dana Davis Rehm, s.v.p. of marketing and communications; Monique Hanson, chief development officer; Margaret Low Smith, s.v.p. of news; Steve Moss, c.o.o. of the underwriting sales unit National Public Media; Joyce Slocum, chief administrative officer; and Kinsey Wilson, chief content officer.
Belva Davis, a pioneering AfricanAmerican journalist and host of KQED-TV’s public affairs show This Week in Northern California, will conclude her two-decade run on the program this week.
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Her final show, airing Nov. 9, will feature an interview with famed writer Maya Angelou. Davis began her journalism career in the Bay Area nearly 50 years ago. “Belva Davis is an icon of fair, thorough and local journalism,” said John Boland, KQED president, “and she has opened up so many doors for women and African Americans in television and beyond. We count ourselves lucky to have had such a trailblazer as part of the KQED family.” Davis has received more than a dozen journalism awards, including eight local Emmys. She is widely recognized as the first female African-American broadcast journalist to rise to prominent on-air roles on WestCoast television. In her autobiography, Never in My Wildest Dreams: A Black Woman’s Life in Journalism (Berrett-Koehler Publishers, 2011), Davis recalls a San Francisco station manager dismissing her from an early job interview simply by saying he “wasn’t hiring any Negresses.” She endured racist insults and trash thrown at her while she covered the 1964 Republican convention in San Francisco. Davis persevered and went on to report on many important stories of the time, including the Free Speech Movement at Berkeley; the birth of the Black Panthers; the People’s Temple cult and its mass suicides at Jonestown; assassinations of San Francisco Mayor George Moscone and Supervisor Harvey Milk; the onset of the AIDS epidemic; and the terrorist attacks on the U.S. embassy in Tanzania that first put Osama bin Laden on the FBI’s Most Wanted list. She has interviewed an array of A-list newsmakers such as Malcolm X, Frank Sinatra, James Brown, Nancy Reagan, Huey Newton, Muhammad Ali, Alex Haley, Fidel Castro, Dianne Feinstein and Condoleeza Rice. Actor Bill Cosby, who had watched Davis on local television early in her career, wrote in her book’s foreword: “Belva Davis was someone who sustained us, who made us proud. She was the first woman of color that Continued on page B12
B4 | November 5, 2012 | Current made ecological disaster in American history,” as described in voiceover narration. At a recent preview event in Washington, D.C., Burns said he didn’t know that the catastrophe could have been avoided until he began work on the documentary. “I didn’t understand the manmade dimension of this,” Burns told the crowd, referring In February 1983, Phoenix’s PBS sta- to the mountains of killer dust that swarmed the Great Plains in the 1930s after enterpristion KAET aired the world’s first live ing farmers unknowingly doomed themselves telecast of open-heart surgery. The by plowing away the land’s topsoil. station marks that upcoming 30th Dust Bowl survivor Cal Crabill, who anniversary with a pilot for its new appeared at various events promoting the occasional medical series, The Latest film, recalled experiencing dust storms as a Procedure, featuring an anterior total child: “I was really frightened, but then I just assumed that it was the end of the world and hip replacement. it was my turn.” For the hourlong Nov. 13 program, orthoBurns and his production crew recruited pedic surgeon Dr. Ted Firestone of Scottsdale survivors such as Crabill to participate in the recorded the entire operation through a film by collaborating with local PBS stations minicam strapped to his head. Viewers are in states affected by the Dust Bowl, includwith him as he meets with the patient, scrubs ing Oklahoma, which survivors fled, and in, explains surgical tools and provides a per- California, where many of them settled. sonal tour of the operatStations that produced ing room before surlocal documentaries gery begins. They also to coincide with the observe what Firestone release of Burns’ film sees as he operates. include KUAT in Tucson, During the show, host Ariz., which is airing its Jim Cissell interviews Lessons Lost, a one-hour Firestone at the station’s documentary focusstudios at Arizona State ing on how the Dust University in Phoenix. Bowl affected Arizona’s Firestone reviews hipeconomy and demoreplacement basics and graphics. In Oklahoma, So that viewers could see what he explains how he uses the state’s OETA network did during surgery, Dr. Ted Firestone instruments and implant is partnering with the wore a minicam on his head during components during surOklahoma Conservation filming for The Latest Procedure. gery. Partnership to plan “Our goal of The Phoenix’s Arizona Public Media/ community engagement Latest Procedure is to KAET debuts its latest medical and educational activiinform individuals about series Nov. 13. (Photo: Arizona PBS) ties around the film. — healthy living practices, Andrew Lapin medical discoveries, diagnoses and treatments to foster better NPR’s Hearing Voices has ended health,” said Kelly McCullough, general man- production after four years. ager. Producer Barrett Golding had been thinkThe multimedia project uses broadcast ing about ending the show when he learned as well as web, social media and educational that NPR was considering dropping its conoutreach. Content advisor is the Maricopa tract to distribute it. “That gave me the reaCounty Medical Society. son to stop producing,” Golding wrote in an “I find it somewhat prophetic,” email. Golding was “kinda sick of the mostly McCullough said, “that one of Dr. Firestone’s volunteer work,” he said. best-known patients, Dr. Edward Diethrich, The weekly hourlong program compiled was also the world-renowned cardiac suraudio pieces from archives, independent and geon featured in Eight’s live telecast of opendocumentary producers, and elsewhere in heart surgery in 1983.” Diethrich was medical public radio, usually around themes. It aired director of Arizona Heart Institute when it on about 100 stations. — Mike Janssen co-produced The Operation with Eight in February 1983. Commercial progressive-talk station That program was carried live by 97 PBS WCPT in Chicago has picked up Smimember stations in 33 states, aired on tape ley & West, the weekly show hosted delay on the BBC and run as a segment on by Tavis Smiley and Cornel West that ABC World News Tonight. Since then, KAET has broadcast The was recently dropped by WBEZ. Implant: Hip Replacement Surgery in 1987; The show debuted on WCPT-AM at 3 The Implant II: Knee Replacement Surgery p.m. Nov. 4. The station also picked up The in 1990; and The Implant III: Hip Revision Tavis Smiley Show in the preceding hour. Surgery in 1996. WCPT will add the shows to its three FM The second program in the new series, stations starting in January. airing in February, will cover new techniques Chicago public radio station WBEZ in cardiovascular treatments. KAET is seekcanceled Smiley & West last month, citing ing funding to produce additional episodes, a drop in audience. Station President Torey McCullough said. Malatia also expressed concerns that the tone Programs produced so far have been of the show’s political discussions may be backed by the Bob & Renee Parsons turning off listeners (see commentary, page Foundation of Phoenix and the Friends of B1). Smiley responded that the show actively Eight. — Dru Sefton seeks out all points of view. Thirteen stations have dropped the show Ken Burns’ new documentary The since June 2011, with several citing the coDust Bowl has a clear message: What hosts’ political opinionating or complaints happened before can happen again. from listeners (Current, Oct. 13). Smiley & West is distributed by Public The two-part, four-hour film, premiering Nov. 18 on PBS, examines “the worst manContinued on page B6
B6 | November 5, 2012 | Current
Continued from page B1
public passivity by refocusing journalism on civic discourse. To restore meaningful journalism that amplifies and supports the public agenda and democracy, we must better understand how to connect with our communities and how a community functions. Too frequently, our editorial planning is driven by our journalists’ personal interests and the content of competing news companies. This must change. In editorial meetings, the agenda we set for coverage should directly relate to the issues that citizens have identified as important to them. And we can do this only by opening up multiple avenues for connecting with the community — in person, online and on-air. We can use our professional editorial judgment to broaden the public debate by encouraging more and different voices to speak up. By doing so, we support universal involvement among citizens. In the process, it is always important to stay humble. After all, journalism is the many speaking for themselves. The real Daily Planet Journalists and their employers tend to embrace concepts of their profession that have been perpetuated by Hollywood. As with most things portrayed in the movies, the realities of journalism today are not so picture-perfect. Tides of technological change have fragmented news audiences, cut short careers of talented reporters and raised alarms that the profession is on the verge of extinction. Yet the myths popularized by Hollywood live on. Take, for example, the false construct underlying all the others — that the journalist serves as democracy’s savior. It’s no coincidence that Superman’s day job was newspaperman. This myth posits that the objective of journalism is not to support the public’s agenda but to set the agenda for public discourse. In other words, to champion ideas, to lead the masses to truth. There are certainly journalists who have served the public interest heroically by bringing previously obscured facts into the civic
Young noticed that in any multicultural conversation. The central tenets of journaland multieconomic community of individuism are integral to earning public credibility als, those citizens who have authority, civic — verification of facts and comprehensive status or facility with argument have an research about historical, social and political advantage in civic discourse. Thus, even in a contexts. Most importantly, journalists must have extraordinary capabilities to use the tools setting of community problem-solving, those whose opinions differ significantly from of communication to effectively represent those who dominate the discussion, or whose ideas, actions and issues. life experiences are unfamiliar to the majorBut journalism’s goal and responsibility is ity, are effectively excluded. not one of leadership, but of Those in the minority hold service — to follow and help back — or are held back support public conversation. — because the demand for Practitioners and theorists agreement implies simplifyfrom Edward R. Murrow to ing considerations, not comJay Rosen have made the same plicating deliberating. observations: In a democracy, For civic discourse in a journalists take direction from pluralistic society to be succitizens. cessful, resolution must be In this public-centered delayed until universal parconception of journalism, the ticipation — inclusiveness profession is dominated not — is all but total. This may by telling, but by listening. In prolong discourse, but it prothe process of observing the vides an atmosphere in which public discourse, journalists A journalist’s role is to communication is embraced make professional judgments serve the public is as a true right. Equal respect about the patterns of current is given to all participants; discussion and what appears dialogue, Malatia says. all are allowed to talk; all are to have salience in the democrequired to listen. racy at that moment. Then Inclusiveness creates the environment in their task is to support the ongoing public diswhich difference is seen a resource for richer course, serving the needs of the conversation debate and better solutions because they have — verifying and helping to interpret the facts been crafted to serve more of the community. that are essential to a shared understanding of To Young, only “by hearing from differently the matter discussed. situated knowledge” can civic discourse add Journalists should not abduct the dis“to the knowledge of all participants.” course. On the contrary, they should devote This is why public media journalism will themselves to supporting an environment of forfeit its greatest promise if it turns to advoinclusiveness that provides an open stage for cacy journalism, or to fighting perceived idedifferences — making way for the participaological fire with opposing ideological fire. tion of even the most taciturn citizens. Inclusiveness in journalism brings forConversational democracy ward the notion that difference is an asset to decision-making. And it demonstrates incluIn refocusing journalism on supportsiveness by being a place where every person ing public discourse, there is no better served feels that journalists seek to sincerely place to start than the concept of “converrepresent the lens through which she or he sational democracy” described in the work views human experience. of the late political scientist Iris Marion Young. Professor Young, who taught at the University of Chicago, is probably best known for her research on feminist policy issues. Her work in that area led her to look at deliberative democratic theories and how they worked in the increased polyculturalism of a changing America.
Serving the public’s agenda At WBEZ, these concepts of journalism have reshaped our identity and how we must strive to serve the public. The ethos behind all the journalism we provide can be distilled to this: Our community identifies its news
agenda; we commit to serving it. As a local public media institution, our responsibility extends to all in our region. The FCC’s atypically lucid mandate demands this posture from public media institutions, whether or not we have newsrooms: “Broadcasting stations are licensed to serve the public and not for the purpose of furthering the private or selfish interests of individuals or groups of individuals. . . . The entire listening public [italics in original] within the service area of a station, or group of stations in one community, is entitled to service from that station or stations.” Guidance on how well we meet these our principles is continually drawn from our staff, board and advisory council, but the community itself determines the specifics of our work through interactive media, community meetings in our neighborhood bureaus, our media literacy training programs — in short, direct, broad, incessant communication. While we’ve designed these principles to facilitate the evolving conversation in our community, these fundamentals can be shaped to serve any community-based public media institution. Public media journalists should be among democracy’s insatiable seekers of inclusiveness, bringing into the civic conversation differences that richly complicate the argument. Our job is to find as many voices as we can of those who might disagree, who differ in their life experiences, circumstances, race, ethnicity, beliefs, economic circumstances and social values. The conversation must invite, make welcome, attend to and be transformed by the community’s many, not a few. In this way, citizens work through their differences to make their own reality in a democracy. Journalists help them listen to each other, and help all be listened to. n
As chief executive of Chicago Public Media since 1996, Torey Malatia led the expansion of local news programming on WBEZ and spearheaded development of Vocalo, a hybrid FM/digital media service. He has lectured extensively about public media’s role as a public trust, and serves on the boards of the Public Radio Exchange and the Station Resource Group. Send your letter to the editor to firstname.lastname@example.org
Continued from page B4
Radio International. — M.J.
KEET in Eureka, Calif., has produced a documentary featuring woodcut animation: Searchlight Serenade: Big Bands in the Japanese American Incarceration Camps. The 58-minute film provides first-person accounts of nine detainees who performed for their fellow prisoners. Their stories are animated with traditional Japanese woodcuts and drawings by local artist Amy Uyeki, whose parents had lived in the camps. After the attack on Pearl Harbor, in 1941, more than 120,000 Japanese Americans were forced into the holding areas during World War II. Musical performances in the camps by 20 big bands provided an important diversion. The documentary will be available to PBS member stations on Satellite HD04 from 12:30 to 3:30 p.m. ET Nov. 9. — D.S.
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Current Classifieds To place an ad, visit Current.org/jobs and look in the right hand side-bar for our new online insertion order form. Just fill it out, paste in your copy and hit submit. You’ll receive confirmation by email.
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Engineering/Technology Content Manager/Master Control Operations Joint Master Control Operations, Syracuse, NY JMCO, operator of PBS’s first joint master control environment and an affiliate of WCNY, in Syracuse, NY, one of the nation’s most innovative non-profit, has openings for Content Manager/Master Control Operator positions for a new central casting operation that will serve PBS stations in NY, NJ and throughout the country. This position offers an opportunity for a self-starter with good communication skills who thrives in a fast-paced independent work environment. The Content Manager will operate the systems that manage digital media assets and distribute material over various platforms, to support the operation of a multiple stream joint television master control operation. Candidates must have experience in a multiple stream digital media facility. Strong computer skills required. All inquiries should include resume, cover letter and salary requirements, directed to hr@ jointmastercontrol.org. Maintenance/IT Engineer Joint Master Control Operations, Syracuse, New York JMCO has openings for Maintenance/IT
Director, WQPT Public Television – Western Illinois University – Quad Cities The director of WQPT Public Television oversees operation of the public television station WQPT, affiliated with Western Illinois University – Quad Cities. Qualifications: Bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited institution, knowledge of all aspects of operating a television facility. Must have knowledge of and experience with: 1) FCC regulations and ability to interpret agency broadcasting rules, 2) Identifying community resources and organizations to assist with forming partnerships, 3) PBS and CPB related restrictions and fundraising guidelines. For more info see: http://wiu.interviewexchange. com/jobofferdetails.jsp?JOBID=35683. AA/EO employer. WIU has a nondiscrimination policy that includes sex, race, color, sexual orientation, gender identity and gender expression, religion, age, marital status, national origin, disability, and veteran status.
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Engineering positions for a new central casting operation that will serve PBS stations in NY, NJ and throughout the country. This position offers an opportunity for a self-starter with good communication skills who thrives in a fast-paced independent work environment. The JMCO Operations Maintenance/IT Engineer is responsible for all equipment operating at peak efficiency, ensuring proper operation of network equipment as well as broadcast equipment, creation, management, and execution of a preventive maintenance strategy and plan for hub facility and associated spokes, and make recommendations to the Director of Operations for system upgrades, capital improvements, equipment installations and equipment procedures. Candidates must have experience in a multiple stream digital media facility. Strong computer skills required. Two (2) year EE degree or 7 years electronic experience or 5 years in broadcast TV and/or FM or equivalent combination of education and experience. All inquiries should include resume, cover letter and salary requirements, directed to firstname.lastname@example.org Director Joint Master Operations, Syracuse, NY JMCO, operator of PBS’s first joint master control environment and an affiliate of WCNY, in Syracuse, NY, one of the nation’s most innovative non-profit, seeks an experienced and talented senior broadcast manager with excellent technical and communication skills to oversee daily operations. As Director of Joint Master Control Operations, the position will lead a team of content
managers and IT engineers responsible for managing the television signals for all New York and New Jersey public broadcasting stations (and other public stations across the country), set the technical direction and strategy for business growth, and develop longrange plans for ongoing technology improvements. The position requires a bachelor’s degree, at least five years’ experience as a senior manager, demonstrated understanding of broadcast workflows and the latest master control technology, and excellent people skills. The successful candidate must enjoy working in a fast-paced, dynamic environment that doesn’t just react to change, but leads it. All inquiries should include resume, cover letter and salary requirements and be directed to hr@ jointmastercontrol.org Webmaster WORT-FM, Madison, WI WORT-FM Community Radio seeks a half-time Webmaster to support the station’s website and web in order to grow audience and further fulfillment of the station’s mission. A minimum of 50% of the hours must be worked to be onsite. Hours will be split approximately 50/50 between technical support and content management. Experience in a volunteer-based and/ or collective environment is preferred. For list of duties, download full position description:http://wortfm.org/wort-jobs. This position is responsible to the IT Coordinator and the Board of Directors. Salary is $16/hour, plus prorated health insurance. Application deadline 11/16/12. AA/EEO.
Local Journalism Center (LJC) Reporter WNED/WBFO Buffalo, NY The LJC Multimedia Reporter is a beat reporter focusing on innovation and technology and their impact on the upstate New York economy. The reporter will produce balanced and engaging audio, visual, online and new media news content intended for broadcast, online, and on-demand audiences. The reporter will produce content specific to the community, and also contribute to collaborative projects with other LJC reporters. For detailed job description, visit www.wned.org. This is a grant-funded, full-time/ temporary position through June 2013. Qualified applicants may submit cover letter, resume and audio samples to hr@ wned.org or WNED, HR Dept., 140 Lower Terrace, Buffalo, NY 14202. WNED is an Equal Opportunity Employer committed to excellence through diversity.
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Production/Programming Chief Content Officer Iowa Public Radio, Des Moines Iowa Public Radio seeks a Chief Content Officer responsible for transforming IPR from a department centric content structure to an indispensable public media content-rich organization supporting multiple platforms to build and sustain audience – on the radio, on mobile devices and online. The CCO’s objectives and strategies will drive the creation and implementation of a forward-looking, multi-platform, integrated approach to audience development that generates improved ratings, online participation and concrete application of community engagement principles that are rooted in measurable objectives and outcomes. BENEFITS: IPR offers a very competitive benefits package that includes health, dental, vision, and life insurance, and employer and employee contributions towards a TIAA-CREF retirement fund. APPLICATION PROCESS: Submit cover letter, resume, and contact information for three professional references to email@example.com. Or via mail to: Chief Content Officer Search, Kelly Edmister, Iowa Public Radio, 2111 Grand Avenue, Suite 100, Des Moines, IA 50312. For full consideration, applications must be received by 5 pm Monday, December 31, 2012. Employment is contingent upon the successful outcome of a background check. Iowa Public Radio is an Equal Opportunity Employer. Social Media Editor Fronteras Desk KPBS - San Diego, CA Fronterasdesk.org seeks a Social Media Editor. Be able to spot the conversationstarter in every story and build a dialog around our stories on immigration, the border and the changing demographics of the Southwest. Grow and diversify audience across social networks. Write web stories on top news and curate our content. Req: BA or equiv, 2 yrs editorial exp, multimedia journalism, reporting or blogging exp. Bilingual (English/ Spanish). To be considered for this position, all applicants must complete an online application, supplemental questions and attach a resume at https:// jobsfoundation.sdsu.edu. Specify Job #120123. Job closes 11/9/12. EEO/AA/ Title IX Employer. Director of Program Support WRVO Public Media, NY WRVO Public Media seeks a Director of Program Support to manage our highly successful NPR news-magazine format Continued on next page
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in central and northern New York State. DPS will supervise on-air hosts, administer program-related grants and liaison with NPR, APM, PRI, and other program providers. The DPS will develop collaborations with regional organizations to cultivate community engagement, will work closely with the Director of News and Regional Content to schedule and staff coverage of community forums and other events. Licensed to the State University of New York, WRVO Public Media comprises 10 signals including stations in Syracuse, Utica, Watertown, and Clayton in addition to our 50,000 watt flagship at Oswego, NY. Translators serve Geneva, Hamilton, Norwich, North Watertown and, beginning in fall 2012, Ithaca. A new Syracuse studio will open in fall, 2012. For complete job description and requirements, visit www. wrvo.org/employment. State University of New York/WRVO is an Equal Opportunity, Affirmative Action Employer. Science and Technology Reporter KPBS, San Diego, CA KPBS San Diego seeks multimedia Science & Technology reporter to take complex concepts, carefully ground them in facts, and render them playful, moving, and engaging. San Diego has a rich array of research institutions and biotechnology firms that play an important role in the region’s economy and quality of life, and they often make news of both local and global consequence. Req: BA or equiv and 2 yrs full-time experience in journalism.Salary: $19.51-$24.04 DOE+ xlnt benefits. All applicants must apply online and attach a resume and cover letter at https:// jobsfoundation.sdsu.edu. Cover letter should include links to samples of your work including a radio, TV and web story. Job #120133 closes 11/14/12. EEO/AA/Title IX Employer. Broadcast Journalist Mississippi Public Broadcasting (MPB) Mississippi Public Broadcasting (MPB) is seeking an experienced broadcast journalist to serve as our Gulf coast/ South Mississippi correspondent. MPB has an award winning news department, which is quickly becoming a recognized news source. This person will produce NPR-style news stories/ features on issues of local and regional interest, including spot news coverage, special programs and newsmaker interviews. The ideal candidate should be a self starter with strong news judgment who’s an enterprising journalist capable of generating story ideas. Annual Salary: $31,806.94. Complete description and application process at www. mpbonline.org. Open until Filled. Host, Morning Edition NET, Lincoln, NE Join the award winning, innovative, fast paced news team at NET (Nebraska Public Radio and Television) as the host of Morning Edition. In addition to being
radio host for Morning Edition, which includes running the board, doing live interviews, weather and promos, this full-time reporter will be part of our 8-person multimedia news team (NET News) creating cross-platform news stories for radio, web and television. Enjoy the good life in Lincoln, a growing, progressive city with over 250,000 residents, several colleges and universities, a rich cultural community including a symphony orchestra, an active community theatre, semi-professional baseball team and walking and biking trails throughout the city filled with warm, friendly, hard-working Midwesterners. For more information about this position, and to apply, please visit www. netNebraska.org Five Production Positions Maryland Public Television Owings Mills, MD Maryland Public Television is searching for five energetic, seasoned professionals who can thrive under deadline pressure and deliver 13 30-minute magazine-style programs for broadcast and multimedia distribution over Maryland Public Television’s statewide network. Our new ground-breaking series about agriculture in Maryland will tell stories about farming in an entertaining and informative style – namely the people, places and diverse agricultural production found around the state. Salary(s): Commensurate with experience. Closing Date: Open Until Filled As an equal opportunity employer Maryland is committed to recruiting, retaining and promoting employees who are reflective of the state’s diversity. Series Producer The Series Producer is responsible for producing and delivering 13 30-minute magazine-style programs about agriculture in Maryland. The competitive candidate for Producer will be a creative self-starter with career experience delivering award-winning television programs on-budget and on-deadline, and managing the day-to-day operations of a series and a series staff. Minimum Qualifications: Candidates will have: at least 5 years’ experience managing a television series and its staff; exceptional staff management and interpersonal communication skills; strong broadcast-feature producing, writing and editing skills and the reel to prove it; strong production-planning and -execution skills; expertise in the operation of AVID Media Composer software; a solid background in journalism, and the ability to understand and use the latest HD broadcast production technologies to create an intelligent, timely and relevant series. Candidate must possess a valid driver’s license. ociate\Segment Producers (2 positions) The Associate\Segment Producer is responsible primarily for researching, writing, producing and editing feature segments and other program elements for 13 30 minute programs. Minimum Qualifications: The competitive candidate for Associate\Segment Producers will be a motivated self-starter and have: Continued on next page
| November 5, 2012 | B9
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at least 3 years’ experience researching, producing, and editing broadcast features; solid writing skills; expertise in the operation of AVID Media Composer software; a strong background in journalism, and the ability to understand and use the latest HD broadcast production technologies to assist in the creation of an intelligent, timely and relevant series. Candidate must possess a valid driver’s license. Videographer The Videographer is responsible for capturing high-quality video and audio for use in creating 13 30-minute programs. Minimum Qualifications: The candidate will be an energetic self-starter and have: at least four years’ experience shooting broadcast news\feature footage; the ability to direct scenes and follow the action on location; direct talent; technical mastery of the Sony PMW-100 and PDW700 XDcam cameras and/or similar cameras, as well as accompanying lenses, filters, and accessories, and its approved recording media; understanding of color temperatures in relation to camera filters; the ability to use different frame rates and shutter speeds; Genlock to sync timecode for multiple cameras; the ability to use the FP33 Shure mixer for more than 2 mics; an advanced understanding of digital media; expertise in the offloading and archiving of video and audio files from recording media; understanding of location lighting techniques such as mood; three point, and color correction; the ability to simultaneously setup, monitor and record audio during shooting using hardwired and wireless lavaliere and shotgun microphones. A valid driver’s license is required. AVID Online\Story Editor The AVID Online\Story Editor is responsible for the timely creation and delivery of assigned segments and elements to create 13 30-minute programs about agriculture in Maryland. Minimum Qualifications: The competitive candidate for AVID Online\Story Editor is a creative storyteller who has: at least 5 years’ experience independently constructing and editing segments and programs using AVID software and following approved scripting; technical expertise in the operation of AVID Media Composer, PC software version 6.5; a thorough understanding of digital media creation, manipulation and archival storage; video and audio effects, and transitions; the ability to construct a compelling story arc and create appropriate storytelling devices using effects, graphics and transitions; expertise in the use of After Effects and PhotoShop. The AVID Online\Story Editor will assemble and deliver the finished program in the prescribed time frame on Sony XD disc, as well as an AVID Sequence with all associated project information including wav files, graphics, OMF and\or AAF files for archival purposes. Candidates must possess a valid driver’s license. General Information: For each of the positions listed interest-
ed candidates should submit a CV with references; a reel containing at least 3 samples of past work written, edited or shot by the candidate(s), delivered on DVD or online; and 3 feature segment script samples to: Maryland Public Television, Human Resources Department, 11767 Owings Mills Blvd, Owings Mills, Maryland 21117. firstname.lastname@example.org Maryland Public Television is a leader in the production of broadcast programming for public television. MPT’s local/regional television credits include public affairs, original performance and documentary programs for the citizens of Maryland. Beyond broadcast MPT creates instructional videos, develops training and builds internet sites that serve tens of thousands of students, teachers and child-care providers annually. MPT outreach activities, especially relating to arts, culture and history, take place in areas of the State to further fulfill MPT’s mission to engage, enlighten and entertain. Our state of the art television facility is in Owings Mills, Maryland. The campus-like setting provides plenty of free parking and is an easy commute from any location in the greater Baltimore metropolitan area.
Management/Finance Human Resources Manager Iowa Public Radio, Des Moines Iowa Public Radio seeks a Human Resources Manager to orchestrate the administration of the human resources policies, procedures and programs; carry out responsibilities in the following functional areas: departmental development, employee relations, training and development, benefits, compensation, organizational development, and employment. H/She is responsible for strategically fostering togetherness given ongoing change and culture shift. Face time with employees in four locations is key to building trust and ensuring that all employees have a voice in the organization. H/She must demonstrate excellence in listening, facilitating conversations, team building, planning company events and corporate communications. BENEFITS: IPR offers a very competitive benefits package that includes health, dental, vision, and life insurance, and employer and employee contributions towards a TIAA-CREF retirement fund. APPLICATION PROCESS: Submit cover letter, resume, and contact information for three professional references to iprrecruiting@ iowapublicradio.org. Or via mail to: Chief Content Officer Search, Kelly Edmister, Iowa Public Radio, 2111 Grand Avenue, Suite 100, Des Moines, IA 50312. For full consideration, applications must be received by 5 pm Monday, December 31, 2012. Employment is contingent upon the successful outcome of a background check. Iowa Public Radio is an Equal Opportunity Employer. LTE Long Range Plan Project Coordinator WORT-FM, Madison, WI WORT-FM Community Radio seeks a full-time LTE Long Range Plan Project Coordinator to coordinate all aspects
of the Plan & facilitate its implementation in partnership with the Board, staff, volunteers and committees. Experience in a volunteer-based and/or collective environment is preferred. For list of duties, download full position description: http://wortfm.org/wort-jobs. This position is responsible to the Board of Directors. Salary is $31,500/year, plus health insurance. Application deadline 11/16/12. AA/EEO. Chief Financial Officer Twin Cities Public Television, Saint Paul, MN Job Type: Full-time. Job Duration: Indefinite. Min Education: BA/BS/ Undergraduate. Min Experience: Over 10 Years. Apply URL: http://www.tpt. org/?a=careers. Job Description: The overall goal of this position is to lead tpt’s financial management and reporting, building administration and process design and management to support the planning and execution of strategic initiatives across the organization. We are seeking a leader with the financial acumen as well as experience in process improvement, resource and business development experience to lead tpt’s financial division. The ideal leader will have broadcast industry knowledge and experience to be effective in short and long term organizational strategy, business development and “start-up” processes and initiatives experience, and the ability and working knowledge to lead facilities projects that ensure quality resources are available for staff, vendors and project partners. If you have a track record of success and significant accomplishments in the areas above, we want to talk to you! Please visit our Career Center for a full position description and requirements at http:// www.tpt.org/?a=careers to upload your cover letter and resume. Twin Cities Public Television is an Equal Employment Opportunity employer. General Manager RSU Public TV/KRSC-TV, Claremore, OK RSU Public Television seeks a full time General Manager. This salaried position will be an important part of the leadership team at RSU Public TV. Job Type: Full time. Min Education: BA/BS/Undergraduate. Min Experience: 3-5 years. Required Travel: 10-25%. For more information and application instructions, visit www.rsu.edu/employment. Contact person: Kristi Mallett, phone: 918.343.7796, fax: 918.343.7675, email address: email@example.com, mailing address: 1701 W Will Rogers Blvd, Claremore, OK 74017. AA/EOE. Controller KQED, San Francisco, CA KQED is currently seeking a Controller to join our dedicated Finance team. Working closely with the staff, our Controller will provide leadership and expertise in accounting, tax and risk assessment and compliance. We are seeking an individual with strong communication skills who will be able to effectively and diplomatically communicate with a variety of individuals
and organizations. Candidates must have demonstrated experience with computerized accounting systems and procedures as well as internal controls. Must have experience with GAAP and non-profit accounting. KQED Inc. is a creative multi-platform media organization with a mission to provide content that is entertaining, educational and inspiring. If you are looking for a new opportunity and would like to join and lead a team of accounting professionals, visit us online to learn more about this position. www.kqed.org/about/jobs. Please submit your resume to: janet@ bridgessf.com.
Development/Marketing Corporate Support Manager/ Representative KRCB North Bay Public Media, Rohnert Park, CA Live and work in WINE COUNTRY, San Francisco’s North Bay, California! One of the most beautiful, desirable places to live in the country! KRCB, a joint licensee public television and radio station, is looking for a unique individual to manage and sell underwriting. The successful candidate will have a minimum of four years of experience in broadcast and relevant new media sales management, be entrepreneurialminded and self-motivated with a strong understanding of customer and market dynamics. As Manager, the candidate will supervise and evaluate selling effort of other sales representatives. As Rep, the candidate will secure funding from corporate and nonprofit sources in support of non-commercial, broadcast public television/radio and online content. Experience with Salesforce CRM and International Demographics’ Media Audit software is helpful. This is an in-house, full-time, benefits-eligible position. Candidate must live within commuting distance. EEO. View full job description at krcb.org/employment. Reply via email with cover letter, resume, and salary requirements to firstname.lastname@example.org, subject line Sales Manager – Current. No phone calls please. Reply by 11/16. Development Director Mississippi Public Broadcasting, Jackson Mississippi Public Broadcasting (MPB) seeks a seasoned professional as the agency’s development director. The development director is a fundraising position at Mississippi Public Broadcasting, responsible for raising funds and developing and implementing programming for television pledge and radio drive campaigns. The position will work to maintain a Friends of Mississippi Public Broadcasting group and help the agency grow its lists of citizen and business partners. The development director will be a liaison between Mississippi Public Broadcasting and its separate fundraising entity, the Foundation for Public Broadcasting. Public broadcasting experience is a plus. Salary Competitive. Complete description and application process at www. mpbonline.org. Open until Filled.
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many viewers came to know and trust, and she met that challenge with integrity and dignity and grace.” In a letter to viewers announcing her retirement, Davis said, “It was my interest in politics and fairness that fueled my career in broadcast journalism more In Louisville, Lord is WFPL’s online managing editor; Michigan than four decades ago. The Radio’s Duffy, right, is the first pubcaster to chair RTDNA. need that the two remain intertwined is as important today as it was when I was the technology officer at the National started.” Center for Family Literacy in Louisville, and This Week continues and will have a series assisted the Center for Nonprofit Excellence of guest hosts until a new host is announced in Charlottesville, Va., in teaching IT strain early 2013. tegic planning for nonprofits. WFPL’s new online managing editor is Joseph Lord. He WMFE President José Fajardo, who will write and edit posts on WFPL.org, maninitiated the sale of the Orlando age social media and facilitate the upcomstation’s public television channel in ing launch of the Public Insight Network. Lord reported for The Anniston Star in 2011, is leaving Dec. 1. Alabama, the Tribune and Evening News in Fajardo’s departure was announced last southern Indiana and Velocity, the weekly month after the sale of WMFE-TV to the entertainment magazine for The CourierUniversity of Central Florida was finalized. Journal in Louisville. Most recently he was a Early in those negotiations, Fajardo told digital news reporter for that newspaper. As the WMFE Board that he was considering Lord joins the staff, reporter Rick Howlett a move, according to Chair Bob Showalter. becomes WFPL broadcast managing editor. Fajardo “made it clear . . . that once WMFE became a radio-only operation he would Governance initiate a dialogue with the board about his The Association of Independents in future,” Showalter said in a statement. “José Radio has elected three directors. Incumbent was clear that a new and smaller 90.7 would Amy Mayer, a journalist based in Greenfield, not need a highly compensated c.e.o. and to Mass., and current board secretary, returns his credit he kept his word.” for another three-year term. New directors Fajardo arrived at WMFE in 1996 as are Rob Rosenthal, an instructor in the director of radio programming, and became Transom Story Workshop of Transom.org, president in 2007. Previously, he was g.m. of and Laura Starecheski, producer of State of KNCT in Killeen, Texas, and sales executive the Re:Union. Two station-based pubradio and operations manager for KTEM/KPLE, a managers joined the board as appointees: commercial radio operation in Texas. Ellen Rocco, g.m. of North Country Public Radio in Canton, N.Y., who serves on AIR’s Programming strategic development committee; and Bob Gregg Whiteside is now a classical music Cross, head of finance at KUT in Austin, host at WRTI-FM in Philadelphia, on the Texas, and chair of the human resource comair from 6 to 10 a.m. weekdays. Whiteside mittee. began his career at WQXR in New York City, Michigan Radio News Director Vincent where he was chief announcer and mornDuffy is the new chair of the Radio ing host for 23 years. He hosted the national Television Digital News Association broadcasts of the New York Philharmonic (RTDNA), the first public media news direcand was the commercial voice of many of tor elected to the position. Duffy served as the city’s top cultural institutions, including chair-elect of the RTDNA during 2011. He the Metropolitan Opera. For the past three takes over from Kevin Benz of the daily digimonths, Whiteside has served as interim tal news magazine CultureMap Austin, who morning host while the station conducted a will chair the Radio Television Digital News national search to replace former morning Foundation, the educational arm of the host Dave Conant, who is now the station’s association. The RTDNA is the world’s larggeneral manager. est organization serving the electronic-news WFPL News in Louisville has hired profession, with more than 3,000 members Jonathan Bastian of Aspen Public Radio including news directors, news associates, as local host and producer of Morning educators and students. Edition. In Aspen, Bastian hosted All Things Considered. He’s also the founder and host of Management Page by Page, a weekly author-interview proBarbara Hamm Lee is the new projgram syndicated on pubradio stations across ect manager of the CPB-backed African Colorado. Devin Katayama, who served as American Public Radio Station (AAPRS) interim host of Morning Edition, is returning service grant at the National Federation of to full-time reporting. Community Broadcasters. Hamm Lee will report directly to Ginny Z. Berson, NFCB’s Digital v.p. and director of federation services, and Louisville Public Media also added two work with an advisory council of station positions in its online division: technology managers and industry executives. Under the director for its three radio stations, WFPL, CPB grant, NFCB procures service contracts WUOL and WFPK; and online managing for stations licensed to Historically Black editor for WFPL. Charles Spivey is the new Colleges and Universities or that serve a pretechnology director, overseeing all daily dominantly African-American audience. technical operations of broadcast transmitters and digital operations, as well as the Please send People items to email@example.com licensee’s IT strategy. Previously, Spivey