David Dye announced to listeners of WXPN on Monday that he is retiring as full-time role as host and producer of World Cafe as of Friday, March 31, 2017. Dye will continue in a part-time capacity as a regular contributor to the program.
Dye has been host of World Cafe since its launch on October 14, 1991. WXPN will honor Dye and World Café’s first 25 years of musical discovery with special events in March and the establishment of World Cafe Next Fund. WXPN, the producer of World Café, will pay tribute to Dye with two celebratory concerts scheduled for March 3 and 4, 2017 at World Cafe Live in Philadelphia.
Dye talked about the change in a press release:
“For years I have had the opportunity to sit in the same room talking with the likes of Leonard Cohen, Joni Mitchell, Herbie Hancock and thousands of others. Our 25th anniversary seems like the perfect juncture to get off the treadmill of daily radio and see what is next.”
WXPN GM Roger LeMay praised Dye:
“It’s impossible to measure the impact that David Dye has had on artists and audiences with World Café.
WXPN says a new host of World Café will be determined after the first of the year.
CPB BOARD MEMBER: TIE STATION FUNDING TO PROGRAMMING THAT REFLECTS “A COMPLETE PROFILE OF AMERICANS”
Howard Husock, a member of the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB) Board of Directors, wrote in an op-ed for the conservative publication National Review [link] that NPR should provide more coverage of “red state” America. Huscock’s opinion piece was published a week before the November 8th election.
Huscock seems to be advocating that CPB become a referee of “ideological boundaries.” This is a change from the founding principle of CPB, that it be a “heat-shield,” protecting public TV and radio from the control of elected officials and government bureaucrats. Huscock focuses on the viability of CPB’s federal funding citing what he sees as NPR's coverage of only a part of America:
They also have reason to be concerned because they, as taxpayers, are media investors. Each year, the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, of whose board of directors I’m a member, distributes a $445 million federal appropriation to “public media,” including, directly and indirectly, to National Public Radio.
Indeed, its popularity divides roughly along red-state/blue-state and economic lines. Notably, of the ten highest-rated NPR stations, according to publicly available ratings data, only one, Raleigh-Durham, is located below the Mason-Dixon line; none can be found in a clearly red state.
[P]ublic-radio programming — whose mission must be an overall informed citizenry — attracts only a small slice of the body politic: Seventy percent of listeners are college graduates; listeners are 74 percent more likely than average to earn more than $100,000 in household income.
TAKE HUSCOCK’S OPINIONS SERIOUSLY
Howard Husock is NOT a right-wing tea bagger. Howard He is vice president for policy research at the Manhattan Institute, where he is also director of its Social Entrepreneurship Initiative. Husock was nominated for the Corporation for Public Broadcasting Board of Directors by President Barack Obama in June 2013 and confirmed by the Senate in August 2013.
Husock knows the public media world first-hand. He is a former broadcast journalist and documentary filmmaker whose work at WGBH in Boston won a National News and Public Affairs Emmy award and was a fellow at the Hauser Center on Nonprofit Organizations.
From 1987 through 2006, Husock was a public policy director at the Harvard Kennedy School of Government and he was a fellow at the Hauser Center on Nonprofit Organizations. His writing has been published in The Wall Street Journal, National Affairs, Forbes.com, The New York Times Magazine, and The Washington Post.
HUSCOCK PRAISES NPR NEWS BUT SAYS IT NEEDS TO REACH A WIDER AUDIENCE
Huscock acknowledges NPR’s success:
As a news source, public radio is public broadcasting’s most important component. Indeed, NPR is, in many ways, among today’s most wide-reaching and robust “fact-based” news-gathering organizations. [NPR] draws on 17 international and 16 domestic bureaus. Weekly listenership totals some 36 million. And those who do listen to it, largely trust it: Pew has found NPR-listeners are three times as likely to trust the network as non-listeners.
That overall favorable view, however, masks a significant problem:
[NPR’s] popularity divides roughly along red-state/blue-state and economic lines. Expanding the range of its popularity should be a prime NPR goal… as an indicator that it has the trust of the American public at large as a steward of public funds.
This is not a call for NPR or its local affiliates to add more commentators of various political stripes. There is plenty of political commentary available on cable news and talk radio.
In increasingly scarce supply, however, is high-quality, reporting-based local journalism — and public radio is actually in good position to win audience trust by providing more of it.
NPR…in Washington can begin to serve a wider audience by including in its own programming more original journalism bubbling up from its affiliates.
Huscock provides examples of what he wants to hear:
Stories told empathetically and contextually, drawing on local concerns, can add greatly to the national dialogue. Think of the out-of-work coal miner whose situation makes clear the tradeoffs involved with changing energy policy; the mega-church that mounts efforts to help promote marriage — and doesn’t just oppose gay marriage.
Perhaps he’d like a “fair-and-balanced” discussion on evolution versus creationism.