Any one who doubts public radio’s domination of podcast listening should look at the monthly Podcast Industry Audience Rankings from Podtrac [link].
Podtrac is a for-profit company that has been providing podcast measurement and advertising services since 2005.
Before we go any further, I need to point out that I am not an expert on podcast methodology. Nor am I personally connected with Podtrac. So I am presenting these metrics “as is” and will let you draw your own conclusions.
Podtrac began publishing a chart showing the top 10 podcast publishers earlier this year. SPARK! created a chart (on the right) to compare results for July and August.
During the one month period examined, all of the podcasts in the top ten added new Monthly Unique Listeners. The biggest gains were by The Moth, up 14% from July to August.
Six of the top ten Publishers on the chart are public media organizations. Noncom organizations claim around 78% of the Monthly Unique Listeners for Publishers in the top ten.
WGBH & WCRB SURVIVE LICENSE CHALLENGE AS FCC REFRAINS FROM PROGRAMMING DISPUTES
Recently the FCC approved renewal of WGBH’s license to broadcast despite a challenge by Classical music fans protesting the station’s 2009 decision to dump Classical and switch to all news.
After hearing the protests, the FCC reasserted its policy of letting market forces decided programming disputes.
The Commission adopted this policy in the 1970s because of a dispute between the owners of WNCN, New York, and the WNCN Listeners Guild.
In 1974 WNCN ended many years of broadcasting Classical music and flipped to an Album Rock format. We recently reported on the WNCN case [link].
The WGBH/WCRB situation is similar to the WNCN protest. In Boston, the Committee for Community Access (CCA), a group of former WGBH listeners, filed a petition to deny the renewal of WGBH and WCRB’s licenses. CCA’s petition was in response to WGBH’s change to all news and the perceived demotion of Classical music to less-powerful WCRB in 2009.
According to CCA’s Petition to Deny, WGBH’s programming decisions meant the “near-total expungement of music from the airwaves…therefore limited format diversity in the Boston area.
CCA asked the FCC to “hold public radio licensees to a higher standard than commercial licensees” when it comes to adequately serving the listening public with diverse format options. The CCA also asked that the FCC reconsider precedents stabled in the WNCN case.
The FCC didn’t buy CCA’s objections. The FCC repeated that they do not get involved with the regulation of programming.
GENERAL MANAGER GIG OPEN IN A PLACE THAT IS CLOSE TO PARADISE
Every once in a while I see a job opening that under different circumstances I would apply for. Such is the case with the GM gig at KZYX [link] in in Northern California.
KZYX is located in Philo, California, a remote agricultural area near (as the crow flies) Ukiah. This is a lush semi-wooded land that produces wine, vegetables and an herb that some people smoke or eat for medicinal purposes.
|VINEYARD CNEAR PHILO, CALIFORNIA|
KZYX covers almost all of Mendocino County and surrounding areas with two full-time signals and a bunch of translators. In a number of places, KZYX is the only radio source for NPR News. The FY 2016 revenue for KZYX was around $541,000.
Mendocino County Public Broadcasting, the licensee of KZYX, is now looking for an Executive Director/General Manager. It is a full-time position. For a detailed job description and more information, contact Diane Hering, Interim General Manager at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 707-895-2324. The deadline to apply: October 15th, 2016.