Though there was a thread in March regarding this subject
I thought it would interest others to the response I received.
Apparently they find that because they have declining
email/mail feedback, they have determined that the viewer
interest has declined.
So how about helping out and sending email to one or
more of the following and see if the tide can be turned:
V Serve wrote:
Greetings and Salutations..
On Tue, 27 Jul 2004 04:55:12 GMT, "Lew Hodgett"
funding for NPR, in spite of the fact that it is a drop in the bucket
of the flood of money that the Feds hose away. It seems like the
Republicans get in, and cut funding...(because the medium is too
elitist, or, biased or whatever) then, when the Democrats get in,
they either continue the cuts, or, conveniently forget to try and
It seems like most of the attitude now is "If it has public
support, then, it should be able to get enough funding from private
sources to survive". Now, the Kroc estate pumped a chunk of cash
into NPR, and, while it was one of their smaller bequests, it was
still a great and helpful thing.
However, that did not help our local NPR stations...that was
only applied to the National organization. The fundraising drives
that annoy us once or twice a year are there because Federal funding
for local stations has dropped a huge percentage. IT costs a chunk
of change just to keep the transmitter on the air, and staff to
keep the station going, much less to produce content to add to the
The question is now, and, always has been, "how important
is the alternative programming provided by Public Radio/TV stations
to YOU?". If it is important and adds to the quality of your life,
then, each of us should take on the reponsibility of helping keep
it going on that local level.
I, for one, think that the content provided by the public
broadcasting stations available to us does, indeed, add an
important alternative view to our lives. Some folks feel that
the proliferation of channels available on cable and other media
have filled the niche that used to be reserved for NPR stations.
WHile there is some validity to that view, I don't think that
it is true enough that Public stations should disappear entirely.
A vast majority of the programming available on the alternative
channels is profit motivated, and, constrained by the same rules
that have made broadcast television such a vast wasteland.
As a small example...Ken Burn's Civil War series, which
is probably one of the most evocative and complete examinations
of that period of American history was not funded by a cable
channel...but by Public Broadcasting. I suspect that if it HAD
been done by a commercial entity, it would have been shorter,
had a lot more "eye candy", and, far less interesting. It was
not "commercial"...but it was a great success. There are many
other examples of programming which would be difficult or
impossible to do on a commercial channel, but, which are
supported by Public Broadcasting.
By the by..."supporting public broadcasting" does
not simply mean writing a check, although that might
be the easiest way. To keep this from being TOTALLY off topic,
one of my contributions a few years ago was a toy, wooden
pickup truck that I made. It was used as a premium/thankyou
gift for one of the generous contributors, and, was quite
popular. Most PBS stations do this sort of thing, and,
would be more than happy to take an item for auction,
or as a premium...Every little bit helps.
<snip a commentary from some one who appears to have an inside perspective>
It is my understanding that it was the Nixon administration that tried to
cut funding because NPR was covering the Watergate hearings on a continuous
It is also my understanding that those who listen to public radio/television
basically split down the middle on a conservative/liberal mix.
IMHO, the executives of public broadcasting have lost the will to fight for
what I believe is the proper source of funding for their operations.
I don't know about your area, but here in SoCal, "begging" by public
stations seems to be their primary function.
40 years ago, Newton Minnow described broadcast television as a "vast
IMHO, it is still a valid observation.
If there's one thing that drives me nuts, it's those PBS beg-a-thons! I
turn on the TV to watch NYW, but instead of Norm, I get some all-day Yoga
"special programming". Why in the heck would anyone financially reward PBS
for screwing with the programming half a dozen times a year?!?!
And it's not like they do it for 1 weekend a month - they go on for a month
at a time.
Personally, I much prefer watch NYW on HGTV and putting up with a couple of
DIY related commercials. Besides, it's not like PBS doesn't have money
coming in from commercials. What do you call all those things before and
after each program?? As much as I like the Delta & PC promos before NYW -
they are commercials and PBS is getting paid to put them there.
These guys are making a killing while professing poverty:
- they get money for commercials - they call them program sponsors
- they get money from cable and satellite service providers who carry their
- they get money from you
Not bad eh?
On Tue, 27 Jul 2004 07:19:01 GMT, firstname.lastname@example.org (Dave Mundt) wrote:
Hi Dave glad to see you again. I still remember very kind of you helping me to
get my Crapsman going. Beside keeping the crapsman, I bought 4 Oldham 1040
Signatures Series saw blade and a 14" bandsaw. Thanks!
Not to get off the subject, I agree with what you said below. I watch and listen
PBS, NPR and C-Span more than any other stations. Beside Ken Burn, I like Nova,
Washington Review, Jim Lehrer's News Hours, Charlie Rose, BBC News and Now with
broadcast on PBS/NPR, I do think it is important to have a diversity
of views. Which, parenthetically, is why I think EVERYONE should
go see "Fahrenheit 9/11". Whether or not one agrees with Moore's
point of view, it raises some questions well worth asking.
One of my comments about the proliferation of cable channels,
which I am sure I have said elsewhere, is that having 14 channels
presenting a range of conservative views is NOT better or "more
diverse" than having ONE channel with strongly conservative views.
We have to have that synthesis of opposing views to be able to come
to an understanding of the issues and to be able to find the
"best" path to deal with them.
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