Friday, October 22, 2010

Fox Reports, Public Radio Listeners Decide

Day Two of the Juan Williams predicament. We've heard from about a dozen stations holding pledge drives. All of them are fielding lots of complaints about NPR's firing of Juan Williams. But they still are meeting or exceeding pledge drive goals. New member results appear to be as strong as usual.

What's up with that, you ask?

It turns out there are two types of complaint calls -- those coming from thoughtful, calm people who express their disappointment at NPR's handling of the situation and those coming from people who were incited to call by watching Fox News.

A large number of callers are claiming to be donors but their names do not appear in the station's donor database. Very few current donors are asking for refunds on contributions.

We're also starting to hear about people giving additional gifts to the station. That's not surprising given the calls to eliminate federal funding for public radio. Loud opposition to federal funding always motivates listeners to give.

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6 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

My local NPR (WXXI in Rochester NY) reported a record day on Friday, with over $100,000 pledged for the day, and a record for the drive, too, just over $300k.

7:13 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I support WNYC.

I do not support NPR.

I will not give money this year.

NPR can get its money from George Soros; and continue to do his bidding...

7:21 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You liberals should be happy the fund raising is going so well. Now you don't NEED the federal funding! So stop crying about it being cut.

9:44 AM  
Anonymous Aaron Read said...

What is this with the George Soros nonsense? Do you people even know who the donation was actually from? What it was for? How much it was for?

No?

Anyone?

Hmph.

The donation is from the Open Society Foundations, a foundation run by Soros, yes, but that's rather different from a personal donation. The donation was for $1.8 million and designated for NPR's "Impact of Government" project. Specifically, to produce a year-long pilot series with eight NPR member stations. If fully funded, the pilot will be expanded to entail hiring at least two new journalists per state, journalists whose job it will be to report on local, state and federal government. The $1.8mil is only 10% of what the expected annual cost will be; it's a kickstart to help NPR get things going and to attract other donors...by no means will it even come close to providing all (or even the majority) of the funding necessary for this project. So it's ludicrous to suggest that NPR will "do Soros's bidding" because of this donation.

4:00 PM  
Blogger Brad said...

FWIW, I have heard from some GM's in southern states (LA, TX, MI) that their fundraising was noticeably DOWN and (they feel) in no small part due to the Juan Williams and George Soros issues.

On the other hand, if you want to counter the George Soros argument, just remind people that one of NPR's underwriter's is "The Public Notice", an organization run by Gretchen Hamel who has long ties to Republicans and supporting Republican causes. The server that hosts the PN's website also hosts Tom Delay's site, in addition to several other anti-Democrat sites.

11:35 PM  
Anonymous Bill Dupuy said...

The Williams affair tells me I was right on target with Santa Fe Public Radio's newsroom policy -- news team members do not express opinions in public forums (e.g. letters to the editor, public hearings, etc); they do not appear on any other broadcast outlet; and they do not lend their voices to non-news announcements, like underwriting, even on our own station.

Williams shouldn't have crossed the line. NPR should have had a similar policy.

3:36 PM  

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