Wednesday, May 01, 2013

A Not-So-Modest NPR Fundraising Proposal

Little did we know when writing our last posting - "The Inevitability of NPR Raising Money Directly from Listeners" - that NPR was planning its first test of direct fundraising from listeners.

NPR's Planet Money launched a Kickstarter campaign last night, a clear experiment on NPR's part to get direct access to listeners' wallets.  The goal is a very modest $50,000 in 14 days.  That goal should be exceeded in less than 24 hours.

NPR's not the only public radio network going after listener money now. American Public Media programs have been raising money directly from listeners for several years. Last month, PRI's The World launched a campaign on Indiegogo.  This American Life has run several direct-to-listener campaigns as well.

NPR raising money directly from listeners could be very good for public radio.  That's the essence of a commentary I wrote for this week's Current, public media's industry newspaper. 

NPR could raise money in a way that everyone wins big.  NPR wouldn't have to charge stations for its programming, would have tens of millions dollars more to spend on news coverage, and NPR would be able to award significant grants to stations for local news and digital initiatives. 

That's right, instead of taking money from stations NPR would be giving stations its programs and money.

That would revolutionize the public radio economy at a time when that economy is threatened by digital disruption. All it takes is a commitment for all boats to rise together.

Click here to read the Current article - A Digital Revolution for Public Radio Fundraising.

See the links below for additional RadioSutton postings on NPR raising money directly from listeners.

Everybody But NPR
The NPR Pledge Drive Fuss


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4:08 AM  

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