Thursday, January 03, 2008


KKCR - crisis and opportunity

by Larry Geller

There's a great comment over at KauaiEclectic. Please read the whole thing, but I'll steal just the first part:

In the Chinese written language, the word for crisis is written with two kanji characters.....danger and opportunity. I believe we have an opportunity here.

You've seen that before, and I think there's a lot of wisdom in it. KKCR listeners may have an opportunity, if they feel strongly about it, as the writer of the above comment does (read it to see).

Visit Joan Conrow's blog above for the KKCR discussion and much more.

Let me use WBAI as an example, because it was my local radio station when we lived in New York. [I still listen, via the web. It's not like any station we have here. I can't find the reference, but I think they have around 32 local producers. It's more like our public access TV channels in that respect, but more structured. Programs are podcast automatically, so you can subscribe and listen to your favorites any time on an iPod, for example, without sitting glued to the loudspeaker.]

First, I need to say that there is no way that I can convey the turmoil that engulfed the Pacifica Foundation stations and involved their huge listener base back in North America. The struggles resulted in station governance by the present local boards. This short blurb from the WBAI website is vastly understated:


It seems, from what I can read coming out of Kauai, that accusations of racism and bias are involved in the current dispute. Back over at WBAI, the local board has formed a Committee of Inclusion, described briefly here:


My point is that the Pacifica local boards are real. They take on real issues. At WBAI, their board actually meets, posts its activities on the web, and fully involves listeners:


Imagine how radio and television could be different in Hawaii if our non-commercial stations had listener participation on governing boards. Most will take your money, but of course you don't have any real say over what they do with it.

KKCR is a Kauai station, so I don't mean to push my own views (Haven't they had enough of Oahu folks interfering?). I did want to offer my own experience, though, since the entire Pacifica struggle took place far away and may not have been reported very much in Hawaii. Except perhaps on KKCR.

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