10:09am

Thu February 2, 2012
inTune Station Blog

From the Desk of President Neil Best: Feb 2012

Dear Friends,

Last Friday evening I was watching Colorado State of Mind on RMPBS (Channel 6). The topic was “Election Coverage.” One of the guests, longtime Denver Post political editor and columnist Fred Brown, was talking about media coverage of the elections. He suggested, “The general public gravitates to sources they already agree with rather than go to ones that might challenge them. They are looking for affirmation, not information.”

That comment struck me as being at the core of what makes public radio and public television so different. The way that public media is funded has significant advantages. Of course I am not speaking of the actual on-air fundraising. We understand it is not anyone’s favorite time to listen. But I am speaking of the democratization that listener support creates.

With stringent limits on time during commercial television news programs, there is rarely the opportunity to peel back layers beyond the sound bite stage of most issues, not just election coverage. In the world of cable television, there are calculated decisions to create editorial leanings that generate content aimed at a specific audience based on commercial purposes. In other words “news programs” that offer affirmation of a perspective rather than information.

On the other hand, in public broadcasting we derive our support from a broad constituency. I would also note our profit motive is different than commercial media. Don’t get me wrong, it is our goal every year to make a profit. The difference is what is done with that profit. At KUNC a profit means we are able to increase the quality of what we do to serve the audience.

In recent years we have been profitable. What has that meant? A number of things that you both see and hear:

  • Significant upgrades to our website, www.kunc.org
  • Addition of The World, bringing the editorial capacity of the BBC and a wide variety of international perspectives to your listening experience
  • Improved signal from our main transmitter on Buckhorn Mountain
  • Addition of station signals KENC-Estes Park (90.7), KVNC-Minturn/Vail (90.7), and KMPB-Breckenridge (88.7)
  • Additional translators in Boulder (102.7), Golden (91.7), Grand County (91.9) and Morgan County (96.7)
  • Capital coverage from Denver with Bente Birkeland
  • Addition of three reporting positions to the KUNC newsroom

Taken together these improvements, along with many others, allow us to be a better service to the listening audience.

Most importantly, we continue to be in a better position to be a critical source for information, in Colorado, in the United States, and around the world. Not affirmation, but information.

Thanks for your part in making it possible.

Warm Regards,

Neil
President & CEO
neil.best@kunc.org