Political news from Michigan’s WKAR goes mobile with new app

WKAR-TV in East Lansing, Mich., will make content from a weekly state politics and public affairs show available via a mobile app funded by a grant from the Investigative News Network. The scope of WKAR’s proposed app helped it stand out among a pool of 48 applicants, said Kevin Davis, c.e.o. and executive director of INN. “What made it unique was that the app was focused more on a program rather than on general content,” Davis said. “It was quite niche.” (Disclosure: Current is contracting with INN for web development services.)

The weekly show, Off the Record, has provided coverage of Michigan affairs for 43 years, aided in part by WKAR’s location near the state capital. The half-hour broadcast is supplemented by OTR Extra, a live webcast featuring additional discussions among the show’s guests.

The doctors are in as Sesame Workshop tackles effects of mass incarceration

Two doctors who focus on the relationship between incarceration and public health have teamed up with a Sesame Street Muppet to call attention to the issue. Prompted by Sesame Workshop’s “Little Children, Big Challenges: Incarceration” initiative, the video released in October features two experts on prison health, the creator of the Sesame Workshop initiative and Alex, a Muppet with electric blue hair and an incarcerated father. The video followed the publication of “Sesame Street Goes to Jail: Physicians Should Follow,” an article in the medical journal Annals of Internal Medicine. Drs. Dora Dumont, Scott Allen and Jody Rich called for physicians to pay more attention to mass incarceration and took note of Sesame Street’s involvement.

Radiotopia’s Kickstarter funds will support internships, health care and more podcasts

Public Radio Exchange’s podcast network Radiotopia has raised $620,000 from 21,808 donors on Kickstarter, setting a record among publishing, radio and podcasting projects that have used the crowdfunding platform. “We were dazzled by the response,” said PRX CEO Jake Shapiro. “It shows how dedicated the listeners are to the shows. And it means we’re going to be shipping out a lot of T-shirts.” After reaching its initial goal, the campaign achieved stretch goals as well.