Monday, April 07, 2008

How disappointed I am

How disappointed I am! [In] your on-air fundraising campaign, I believe it was Friday morn. you were running an NPR story about an Iranian animated movie. Midway the story, you broke to live fundraising! I was a bit annoyed but decided it must have been a technical error. But on the way home the very same day--you did it again! This time interrupting Stefan Fatsis's story about his baseball glove. Shameful!!!!

I have never known WMUB to resort to such tactics in the past--why in the world would you do such a thing to your loyal listeners? Please, if you want us to continue contributing, don't DO such crummy and disrepectful things to your listeners!

--name withheld by request

[General Manager Cleve Callison replies:

You're quite right that it is not our intention to interrupt stories in progress, though it has been known to happen. And I'm aware of a 3rd instance during the drive that you did not mention. We do try to be as careful as we can to leave the network when we have a "cutaway" -- a point at which we could get in or out without disruption. Sometimes the networks don't provide one; sometimes they don't accurately tell us when those points will be; but I believe the majority of the ones here are due to human error on our end -- i.e. we meant to catch the break but our reaction times were too slow yet we needed the "pitch" time to meet our goals.

I make no apologies for using program time to generate pledges. Anyone who thinks that pledges will come in without our doing so is welcome to come listen to our silent telephones when NPR stories air. But we can, and should, do better about when to pre-empt stories and how to do it in a thoughtful way. Thank you for keeping us on our toes.]


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