Tuesday roundup: Pubmedia inspires poetry volume; ESPN prez responds to Kirk’s “whining”

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LiberalMediaCoverFinal• I think that I shall never see
A poem lovely as Wait Wait … Don’t Tell Me!

Granted, that’s probably not among the verses in The Liberal Media Made Me Do It!, a new collection of poems based on public broadcasting stories and shows. But the book does contain pubmedia-centric contributions from more than 50 poets who were inspired by Radiolab, Performance TodayA Prairie Home Companion and other fare.

“For me, the greatest delight in receiving these pieces has been to recognize the stories I have heard on the radio, with the added dimension of another’s perception added in,” writes editor Robbi Nester. “This brings home the truth that each of us could start with the same raw material and yet produce finished products that resemble one another only in incidental ways.”

The book is now available from Lummox Press. WMUK in Kalamazoo, Mich., featured a story about it.

• ESPN President John Skipper responded last week to a Frontline producer’s accusation that his network “abandoned” the PBS news show, reports Sports Business Daily. Frontline’s Michael Kirk first leveled the charge against ESPN when accepting a Peabody Award May 19 for League of Denial, a documentary that focused on concussions among NFL players. ESPN had initially worked with Frontline on the report but withdrew in August 2013, citing a lack of editorial control.

“I don’t know why you would waste your moment of glory whining,” Skipper said Thursday of Kirk’s statement. “I’m not sure what purpose is served by that. I didn’t appreciate it. They wouldn’t have been able to do it without us.” ESPN also “fulfilled everything we suggested we would do,” Skipper said.

• The University of Alaska Fairbanks may cut funds to its public broadcasting station as it attempts to close a $12 million budget gap, reports the local Daily News-Miner. The university’s planning and budget committee is considering cutting $815,000 to $1.4 million in support for dual-licensee KUAC as part of a “transition to self-support,” according to the newspaper.

• Rick Fernandes, who took over earlier this year as director of the Fred Rogers Center at Saint Vincent College in Latrobe, Pa., tells the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, “Anything you can do to help children or to educate children is a noble cause. I can’t think of anything I would rather do.” Fernandes is a 30-year veteran of children’s television programming and production, according to the newspaper. His career began as an apprentice at Sesame Street and includes 11 Emmy nominations for five children’s series for PBS, Disney Channel and Nickelodeon. The center was established in September 2003, seven months after Rogers’s death, to archive his show scripts, letters and other personal and professional items.

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