Post by Guest for now on Jul 17, 2008 15:29:29 GMT -7
This could have gone "inside the metro" I guess as KCPW-FM 88.3 and 105.3 is airing the program from 5 to 6 am [previously 5 to 7].
Anyway, NPR is pulling the plug on the Bryant Park Project, apparently due to an aggressive management change in the organization and a downturn in underwriting - the network could no longer subsidize the project. A lot of smaller public radio programs have been biting the dust lately - Justice Talking (an excellent program), Humankind, The Infinite Mind, Fair Game with Faith Salie as well as some music formats - jazz, especially; but classical is not immune. Obviously eclectic music programming is seen as a negative too - KRCL's recent changes.
Unfortunately, this has caused KCPW to look bad with "schedule changes" that aren't really up to them. They seem to receive a lot of harsh comments on their site lately related to all of this mess.
Regardless, this brings the question, "is public radio recruiting new listeners?"
New listeners? That's a tough question, but a really good one. My gut instinct tells me a few, but not as many as their losing. Young people don't tend to be very interested in talk in general, in my experience, and that's NPR's bread and butter. I'd be curious to see a breakdown by age of the "average" NPR listener. I'd guess they tend to be older, probably mostly 35+ and a significant number 49+. 18-24 is probably pretty low. 25-34 gets a little better, then increases from there.
The problem is that more and more, children are being raised to not think too critically. The just don't care as much about better understanding things that are going on in the world. If you don't have that, deep NPR programming isn't going to mean much. Musically, NPR is relegated to niche programming for the most part, since it isn't as commercially viable as CHR, AC, rock, etc. That's a built-in handicap.
I wonder if a commercial genre that's similar to NPR is overdue. If you look at TV, a lot of PBS-like programming is finding a home on commercial cable networks. I wonder if a similar transition is going to happen in radio. A lot of people are saying that AM & FM are going to have to adapt to survive in the new media world. Music is moving more and more toward downloads and internet streams, so what will replace it? Maybe highbrow talk? Sure there's talk on commercial AM and FM right now, but it's almost always partisan, usually conservative. Why not try something commercial and neutral?