Aspirations that go beyond driveway moments

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An “essay to read and keep“: Margaret Low Smith of NPR describes the basic ingredients needed for public radio to “become essential in the lives of more Americans.” In the final commentary commissioned by the Station Resource Group’s Grow the Audience project, the network’s top programmer calls upon the field’s creative talents to go beyond the classic “driveway moments” and learn what it takes to create “harddrive-way moments.” Smith boils it down to traditional elements of public radio journalism–good story-telling, engaging guests and vibrant personalities, “great tape,” and versatility in the crafts of reporting, producing and editing. She also sets the bar high for the content being produced in any medium for any platform. “It needs to be extraordinary. . . .We need to distinguish ourselves at every turn.”