A friend of mine recommended a news report that appeared on VICE News about the impact of defunding CPB on small rural communities.
VICE reporter Evan McMorris-Santoro traveled to Petersburg, Alaska and profiled KFSK, a public radio station that fills vital information needs in the remote area. You can see the VICE story here.
The story aired on VICE News Tonight on HBO April 10th. I particularly like the way the story highlights CPB’s support for rural stations, pointing out that they are often in Republican-leaning areas. Here is a sample:
Public radio is often associated with big-city liberalism, which makes it a constant target for defunding by Republicans, despite the fact that all public broadcasting put together represents only 0.01 percent of the federal budget. But cutting public radio could hurt the people who voted for Trump — remote, rural, largely Republican voters.
Last November voters in Petersburg overwhelmingly favored Donald Trump. However they strongly disagree that CPB should be sacked because of the ways defunding will hurt KFSK and the community.
NPR NEWS STATIONS APPEAR TO BE HOLDING LISTENERS IN MARCH PPM RATINGS
Common wisdom used to be that news listening tends to decline 10% to 15% in the months following an election. But not this year. The combination of Trumpism and splendid coverage by NPR and local stations, seems to be keeping estimated weekly listeners close to the often record levels in many markets.
Nielsen Audio data for only a few markets – including the largest ones – has been released so far. Today we are featuring March PPM estimates for the top five metro areas: New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, San Francisco and Dallas-Fort Worth.
Some of the NPR News stations with the largest number of listeners saw modest declines. For instance estimated weekly listeners to KQED, WNYC-FM, WBEZ and KPCC were 1% to 4% lower compared to the prior month. KCRW gained weekly listeners. KERA stayed the same.
In New York City, Classical WXQR saw a 13% drop in weekly listeners, the biggest one-month change in the nation’s largest market.
Weekly cumulative listeners to Classical KUSC were up 6% compared with February. Jazz KKJZ continues to show strong listening.
In Chicago, estimated weekly listeners to WDCB were down a bit but the station is still in its typical zone. Apparently Classical WFMT is currently not subscribing to Nielsen because their data was not available for February and March.
In the Bay Area, four of the five noncoms for which we have data, were down a bit. KALW saw some decent gains in weekly listeners over the past few months but now it has returned to its typical performance – weak.
Triple A KKXT in Dallas had a 14% increase in weekly listeners compared with February. EMF’s KYDA saw a nice increase in weekly listeners to its satellite-delivered Air1 format.