WGBH’s Greater Boston goes nationwide on World Channel with bombing coverage

Tonight's special edition of Greater Boston from WGBH, focused on the shocking bomb blasts at Monday's Boston Marathon, will be distributed nationally on the World Channel, the public TV multicast service produced by WGBH and distributed by American Public Television. WGBH spokesman Michael Raia told Current the 30-minute show will extend to an hour and begin airing at 9 p.m. Eastern time on World. In Boston, the show will be broadcast on WGBH's primary TV station at 7 p.m., its regular timeslot. Planned guests include terrorism expert Jim Walsh, a research associate at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Security Studies Program; Jarrett Barrios of the Red Cross, who took part in the race; and Haider Javed Warraich, a resident at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston who wrote an op-ed in today’s New York Times about his experience growing up amid explosions in Pakistan. WGBH staffers producing segments for the Greater Boston special include host and executive editor Emily Rooney, who lives three blocks from the explosion site and will provide a first-hand perspective on the still-unfolding story; Jared Bowen, who is covering the law enforcement investigation; and Adam Reilly, reporting from Logan Airport with reactions from runners.

WGBH’s Accessible Media center waives theater captioning fees

The Carl and Ruth Shapiro Family National Center for Accessible Media (NCAM) at WGBH in Boston is permanently waiving license fees for its patented movie-theater captioning system, to celebrate the 20th anniversary of its work to improve media for users with disabilities. Larry Goldberg, WGBH’s director of media access and head of NCAM, told Current that most theaters have made a one-time payment of around $2,000 for the license. The center hopes the waiver will encourage more theaters to offer Rear Window Captioning, one of several systems available for viewers who are deaf or hard of hearing. More than 400 theaters nationwide have installed the technology since it was first available in 1996, WGBH said in a statement. To use Rear Window, viewers look into clear panels in front of their seats that reflect a large LED screen on the theater’s back wall displaying captions in mirror image.

WGBH’s Jared Bowen receives Commonwealth Award

WGBH News’ Jared Bowen received the Commonwealth Award recognizing “exceptional achievement in the arts, humanities and sciences.”

Bowen is an Emmy-winning reporter with WGBH-TV’s Greater Boston with Emily Rooney; host of the weekly TV show Open Studio with Jared Bowen; and a regular contributor to Morning Edition and WGBH’s Boston Public Radio. “Jared’s coverage takes him from breaking news to politics to arts and culture. In his cornerstone arts reporting, Jared covers the latest in the Boston area’s theater, art, music, dance and film scenes,” the Massachusetts Cultural Council stated in its awards announcement. “I'm beyond astonished and grateful to receive the Commonwealth Award,” Bowen said. “The fact of the matter is I simply love my work.

PBS cancels Market Warriors series from Antiques Roadshow producer

This item has been updated and reposted with additional information. PBS is ending production of Market Warriors, the much-anticipated series that premiered in July 2012 as a partner program to longtime ratings hit Antiques Roadshow, according to a March 14 WGBH internal memo to employees. Marsha Bemko, executive producer of both programs, today told Current the decision was PBS’s and declined further comment. The demise of the series triggered several layoffs. The memo said that Field Producer Rebecca Donahue and Editors Peter Hyzak and Sean Sandefur left WGBH the week of March 4, while Senior Producer John Kalish, Associate Producer Joey Toppan, Production Assistant Rebecca Taylor and Assistant Editor Jim Fetela departed on Friday.

Chris Lydon returns to Boston airwaves as WGBH-FM contributor

Former radio host Christopher Lydon will return to the Boston airwaves as a weekly contributor to Boston Public Radio, a daily local news/talk show on WGBH-FM. Lydon will appear on the show Thursdays to discuss current events with Jim Braude and Margery Eagan, who debuted as hosts Monday. The duo formerly hosted a show on commercial talk station WTKK in Boston, which switched format last month. WGBH also announced that Emily Rooney, host of Greater Boston on WGBH’s TV channel, will be Friday’s featured guest. Rooney previously served as a Boston Public Radio co-host.

Downton Abbey season finale nets 8.2 million viewers

The third-season finale of Downton Abbey drew 8.2 million viewers for its Feb. 17 PBS broadcast, the network and WGBH announced Feb. 19. The numbers come from Nielsen and gave the episode a 5.2 household rating. The episode came in with 50 percent more viewers than the season two finale in 2012 and also drew 300,000 more fans than this year's season premiere.