Jun 2, 2009

Josh Groban charms PBS staff

Sometimes working at headquarters definitely has its perks. About 100 lucky PBS staffers turned out yesterday when singer Josh Groban stopped by Arlington, Va., while in town to tape WETA pledge breaks for his new special. He chatted with employees including Betty Hickey, who said she has every one of his CDs and has been a fan "since before he was a big star." As he departed, according to one insider, Groban told the crowd, "I just want to thank you guys for all the great work you're doing." A round of applause followed him.

Soldier's story grows more complex, PBS ombudsman says

Michael Getler, PBS ombudsman, is updating his recent column investigating the background of an injured soldier, Army Sgt. Jose Pequeno, and his caregivers. They were honored in PBS's popular National Memorial Day Concert on May 24. "In the aftermath of last week's column," Getler writes, "more letters arrived and some of them continued to describe a real-life situation that is even more tense and complicated than it appeared."

Comcast strikes new deal in West Virginia

Comcast in West Virginia has reached an agreement to make the state's pubTV station available to customers there -- but despite negotiations with Gov. Joe Manchin and Sen. Jay Rockefeller (D-WV), the deal is little different from the original. Comcast will not put West Virginia PBS back on its basic and standard cable tiers, which Charleston station requested after receiving angry calls from listeners. Comcast's compromise: It agreed to provide free digital converter boxes to customers for two years instead of one. Meanwhile, in Georgia, Comcast yesterday "clarified" the channel shift of WNGH, Georgia Public TV, in Chattanooga, Tenn. Here's Current's May 20 story on the controversy.