Sunday, April 1, 2012

Reasons to change the Station

Like everyone I only listen to a few radio stations, now mostly over the Internet (Radium is a cool app for this), dedending on the time of the day and the day of the week. I listen to the NPR station in Seattle (KUOW) on Saturday mornings and afternoons into the evening, and occasionally during the week for the news and a few talks shows, mostly Fresh Air on WHYY on their second station, but not much else.

I also listen to our local NPR station (KPLU) on Saturday and Sunday nights for the Blues show 6PM to midnight, really great stuff. After that I only listen when I want music or sound and not something in my iTunes library, meaning the BBC London and VOA English for news or KMTT (alternative) and KIng FM (classic) for music. All in all on average 2-3 hours a day.

But one thing which will always and quickly get me to change the station. Yes, you guessed it, pledge drives. I really hate them because you can be a member, especially paying your dues without being prompted over the air or call at the beginning of the drive, and you still have to listen to their drivel, yes drivel, about pledging to help support the station.

I won't argue I really like NPR. I think they should be funded more from federal monies in and for the public interest. They provide programs you won't get let alone hear on commercial stations, from the news to the talk shows, but mostly shows like Car Talk, Wait, Wait..., and an icon show, A Prairie Home Companion. That's worth my money.

I don't watch PBS stations anymore mostly because the management the Seattle station drove it into the financial ground which took years to get on the road back but they still air a lot of shows which leaves you wandering who's running the station. The Seattle-Tacoma area has two PBS stations which combined don't make one decent one, long past the time they should have merged.

That said, I just don't like the pledge drives, so when it starts for the week or so, I simply switch stations for the week or move to the programs on the Internet. There isn't any national shows the stations air you can't get the live stream or the replay from the show's Website. It's the new world of radio, you don't have to actually listen to a station, just the show.

So I don't have to listen to the drivel about money, the quality of the programming, and the benefits to your family for just the small donation of your membership. I get it and I get the need, I just don't want to listen to it or hear it repeated ad naseum, to which I'll start listening again when the pledge drive is over.

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