Hi. I am Sandy Childs and I am asking for your vote for KPFK’s local station board. As a two decades lover of, avid listener to, and volunteer at KPFK, I have a vested, if not selfish, interest in helping keep KPFK on air. I need KPFK. It has taught me more than I learned in school, and daily keeps me better informed than any other media outlet.
I am aware of the financial straits the station is in now, and feel that in order to keep the station viable and on air we must keep our reputation for integrity, honesty in reporting, and quality programming. That is the reason people find us on the dial and keep coming back.
Austerity, or laying off paid staff and trying to run the station and programs with volunteers, as some candidates and boards have proposed, is the exact wrong direction to take us. Ask award winning professors of economics such as Paul Krugman, Richard Wolff, Joseph Stiglitz, or Robert Reich what they think about the efficacy of economic austerity for countries. It doesn’t work. It’s the same for business. And austerity did bring us WWII, in case we’ve forgotten. And it will not make KPFK strong again. We simply need to sell a great product, so that we become in demand again. And we need to promote the station.
Amateur volunteers doing programs to save the station money will simply drive more listeners to other stations and will end up costing us more than they save, as in penny wise, dollar stupid. As they say. We need to attract more money during drives and find alternative funding to cut the length and frequency of those on air drives, as well.
The volunteer programming during the last pledge drive earned the station no pledges. The programmers had agendas and causes they were passionate about, but they forgot that first you must interest your listeners. With so many choices for listeners today, we have to be good to get attention and keep it. If we present boring, droning talking heads, no matter how well meaning, the dial is turned.
I was taught that in college when I majored in journalism. First, quickly get your audience’s attention. And then keep it. And with my experience in TV production and with writing and development, I know what interests an audience and what puts it to sleep. Good intentions do not pay the bills. Cutting costs do not pay the bills. Good programming that grabs people and makes them tell their friends, pays the bills.
Even a non-profit radio station or network must be run like a business, and bottom line in any business is to bring in more money than is spent. So, the bottom line at KPFK for survival is to broadcast programming the listeners want to hear which makes them want to contribute to keep it on air.
Thank you, in advance, for your vote to help me help KPFK stay viable and on air.
In what ways are the station moving in a positive direction, that you would want to continue or perhaps improve?
KPFK’s excellent, informative strip shows produced by our talented, professional programmers are what is positive and great about the station. They are, also, its bread and butter. They need to be kept intact to keep their loyal listeners and to attract a larger audience for the station. And we need to find alternative sources of revenue in order to reduce the number and length of on air pledge drives. We need to cut shows which do not bring in money. And we need more political humor programming. In this crazy, upside down world, if we don’t laugh, we’ll cry all day. I’d like to hear more science shows, too. I miss Michio Kaku.