Three hours of Car Talk will soon air weekdays on SiriusXM Satellite Radio, the New York Times is reporting. Ray and Tom Magliozzi stopped producing new weekly episodes of the NPR show in October but the program continues on NPR in reruns. On Friday, SiriusXM will begin broadcasting three episodes from the Car Talk archive each weekday to its 23.4 million subscribers, during the evening rush hours. The SiriusXM Car Talk episodes will differ from the NPR reruns, Jeremy Coleman, SiriusXM’s senior vice president, talk and entertainment programming, told the newspaper. He declined to discuss terms of the deal.
Ron Hull, a former director of the Program Fund, reflects on the value of buffer from partisan politics
Jan. 2, 1979 — Robben Fleming, a university president and an authority on (labor) negotiations, comes to CPB as its third president. Also in January, the politically appointed CPB Board suspends its committees to reevaluate their roles. This decision shelved the board’s Program Committee, which traditionally had voted aye or nay on national production proposals for public TV. Even before Fleming arrived, the CPB Board had been rethinking this process.
Ron Hull, a leader in Nebraska public television since the 1950s, recommends that CPB consider reinstating the semi-autonomy of its grantmakers in TV programming. That was how CPB’s Television Program Fund was set up in 1982 when he succeeded Lewis Freedman as the fund’s director. Hull bases this commentary on a chapter of his new book, Backstage: Stories from My Life in Public Television, published in October by the University of Nebraska Press. When CPB’s Television Program Fund began operating with a measure of autonomy, it inspired “an outpouring of heartfelt creative ideas from myriad producers, both independents and those at PBS stations,” Hull writes.
During the 1980s I was the fortunate guy in the right place at the right time when the CPB Board appointed me director of the CPB Program Fund for public television.
Ruby Calvert, who has worked at Wyoming PBS for three decades, will retire as general manager in June 2013, according to the Ranger daily newspaper in Fremont County. “It was a very difficult decision,” Calvert said during a Central Wyoming College Board of Trustees meeting on Monday. “It’s still difficult. But I think it’s a good time, for both me and the station.” Calvert has been at Wyoming’s sole public television broadcaster since it went on the air 1983, working as the programming director for 23 years as well as supervising production, promotion and educational services. She has served on the University Licensee Association, the Pacific Mountain Network Executive Council and the Small Station Association.
WNET in New York City has announced a capital campaign to raise $150 million, reports the New York Times. Half will go to the station’s $91.2 million endowment, and most of the remainder will support WNET’s local and national programming, including Great Performances and Nature. About $50 million has been pledged already.
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. She then led a brief tutorial on proper jab technique. 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.
Produced by Small World Productions for American Public Television, the Adventures With Purpose episode “Pearl River Delta, Hong Kong, Macau and Guangdong: Quest for Harmony” delved deeply into what the producers called “three pearls in one exquisite setting.”
Citing the program’s vidoeography and writing, judges in the competition praised the show for “telling a story rooted in culture and tradition.” The Lowell Thomas Awards winners were chosen by faculty members of the University of North Carolina–Chapel Hill School of Journalism and Mass Communication.
Allan Pizzato, who was suddenly terminated in June as executive director of Alabama Public Television, is the new president and general manager of WYES-TV, the New Orleans station announced today. Pizzato takes over in January 2013, succeeding Randall Feldman, who is retiring after 22 years. Jonathan McCall, chair of the WYES Board of Trustees, said in a statement that Pizzato “possesses a great depth of experience in award-winning television production, development, financial management, engineering and technical infrastructure, education and outreach, as well as leading successful new building construction and campaigns.”
Pizzato served 12 years at Alabama Public Television prior to his dismissal, which came in the midst of a programming dispute with the state licensee’s governing body. He later sued the Alabama Educational Television Commission; that complaint is currently pending in the Alabama Supreme Court. Prior to his time in Alabama, Pizzato spent 13 years as g.m. and director of WSRE-TV in Pensacola, Fla., and seven years as station manager at WSIU-TV in Carbondale, Ill.
Following this week’s media scandal over allegations that were aggressively rebutted and later recanted, award-winning Sesame Street puppeteer Kevin Clash remains on a leave from his role as Elmo, one of the show’s most beloved characters. An accusation that Clash had an inappropriate relationship with an underage boy, published online early Nov. 12 by gossip news site TMZ, prompted Clash to request leave so that he could defend his reputation. Sesame Workshop, which looked into the allegations after learning of them in June, granted the leave and issued a statement:
Might public radio be heading down the same rocky road as newspapers and public television? That’s what pubradio consultant John Sutton is pondering in his latest column. Several top executive positions at NPR, he notes, have recently been filled by former pubTV and newspaper people. Thus, “public radio is well-positioned to repeat many of the same mistakes made by PTV and the newspaper industry. It will take much more than smartphone apps, mobile websites, and local news to avoid the fate of these other industries.”
The Hollywood Reporter has proclaimed an “A+++ guest list” for the Beverly Hills premiere of the new American Masters documentary Inventing David Geffen on the life of the agent, producer and philanthropist. Just a few of the luminaries at the Tuesday event: Steven Spielberg, Tom Hanks, Warren Beatty and wife Annette Bening, Cher, Bruce Springsteen, Ron Howard and Jane Fonda. “PBS execs who flew in from New York were beside themselves with joy — understandably,” the newspaper noted.
All five radio broadcasters in the nationwide Pacifica network will suspend their regular programming on Nov. 15 from 9:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. EST to hold a day-long fundraiser for New York City’s WBAI-FM, which sustained massive damage to its studio and operations during Superstorm Sandy.
Intelligence Squared U.S., the nonpartisan public policy debate series airing on public radio and some public TV stations, is coming to PBS Plus in January, with Chicago’s WTTW as the presenting station.
Pittsburgh Public Media is looking to buy WVBC’s 1,100-watt signal from licensee Bethany College in West Virginia to broadcast jazz “just like WDUQ used to,” the group’s c.e.o., Chuck Leavens, told the local Tribune-Review. Back in January 2011, the group had attempted to purchase WDUQ, which ultimately went to a partnership of another Pittsburgh pubradio station, WYEP, and a nonprofit established by Public Radio Capital
Leavens said the group hopes to raise $150,000 to pay for the station outright, and already has $15,000 from donors. He is former chief engineer at WDUQ and the technical designer of the station’s JazzWorks service.
Puppeteer Kevin Clash, the performer behind Elmo, one of Sesame Street’s most beloved characters, has taken a leave of absence following news reports of an allegation that he had an inappropriate relationship with an underage boy, according to a statement released today by Sesame Workshop. The accuser recanted Tuesday afternoon (see update, below). The Workshop heard of the allegation in June, when a 23-year-old who claimed to have had a relationship with Clash at the age of 16 first communicated with the company. “We took the allegation very seriously and took immediate action,” the Workshop said in its statement. “We met with the accuser twice and had repeated communications with him.
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.
Sesame Street will broadcast an edited version of its five-part special on hurricanes on Friday, Nov. 9. Editors cut the original to eliminate segments on storm preparation, focusing the new version on dealing with the aftermath of a storm, according to Entertainment Weekly. In the original program, first broadcast in 2001, a storm ravaged the iconic neighborhood of Sesame Street, leaving Big Bird’s nest in ruins. This is the third airing for the hurricane special. Sesame Street re-ran the entire series in 2005 after Hurricane Katrina assaulted the Gulf Coast. Last week, during an Oct.