Sep 23, 2010

PRSS posts a new version of its "Public Radio Resource Guide"

The Public Radio Satellite System has updated its “Public Radio Resource Guide," listing everything from technology and equipment services to training, funding and underwriting, membership organizations and conferences. “There is an overwhelming volume of information online of interest to the public radio community," Pete Loewenstein, NPR v.p. for distribution, said on the Radio World website. "Our new guide is an effort to put some of this information in a format that’s easier for stations and producers to access." And it's free.

WGBH's Dot Diva hopes to increase computer geekiness in young women

 The Sept. 27 launch of Dot Diva, a new initiative co-sponsored by WGBH to get young Massachusetts women interested in computing, is already sold out. The kickoff will be at the Microsoft New England Research & Development Center in Cambridge and feature an interactive fashion show, tech music demos, an "Artbotics" art installation and local college fair. It's funded by a grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF) to increase the number of college-bound girls studying for a career in computer science. Women are still underrepresented in the field, according to WGBH. The station, along with co-sponsors ACM (the Association for Computing Machinery), NCWIT (the National Center for Women & Information Technology), conducted a national online survey of more than 1,400 college-bound high school students, ages 13-17; that research indicated a significant gender gap in attitudes toward computer science.

NETA heading for Music City USA in January

Grab your guitars, the NETA Nashville 2011 conference registration is now officially open. Once you've registered for the January event you can visit the confab's Facebook page. Not sure what that means? Then you'd better stop by the conference Social Media Help Desk while you're at the Loews Vanderbilt Hotel. That's a new kiosk that will be "staffed by friendly experts in the use of Facebook, Twitter, texting and all sorts of handheld devices, ready with advice or a helping hand." partners up for "At the Paley Center" interview show

Angela Lansbury, Jimmy Fallon, Brian Williams and Joel Grey are among celebrities set to appear on At the Paley Center, a new interview series produced by a partnership of Paley Center for Media and’s Creative News Group, the two announced Wednesday (Sept. 22). Hosted by Pat Mitchell, president of the Paley Center and past president of PBS, returns to the network as host. Each half-hour program in the six-part series features a conversation with someone who has made a significant contribution to media, particularly television. First up is actor/activist Ted Danson on Oct. 1 (above, with Mitchell; image: Michael Priest Photography). Episodes of At the Paley Center will stream online after each week’s show. News Group’s executive producer for the show is Mary Lockhart, with Stephen Segaller and Neal Shapiro as executives in charge.

Columbia U selects NPR's Siegel for John Chancellor Award

NPR's Robert Siegel, senior host of All Things Considered, will receive the 2010 John Chancellor Award for Excellence in Journalism, Columbia University announced today (Sept. 23). Siegel was chosen "in recognition of his extraordinary career at NPR where he has engaged millions of listeners with journalistic rigor and professionalism for more than 30 years," the announcement said. A nine-member committee selected Siegel for the award, which comes with a $25,000 prize. The honor will be presented Nov. 6 at a dinner at Columbia University’s Low Library in New York.

Autobiography by NPR's Michele Norris tackles tough memories

"The Grace of Silence," the new book by All Things Considered host Michele Norris, reveals painful parts of her family history, reports the Christian Science Monitor. While researching her ancestors, she discovered that soon after her father came back home to Alabama after World War II, he was grazed by a policeman's bullet. Norris said the title refers to her father's attitude after that incident. "He was part of a generation of black men and black veterans who were marginalized in the military and society and had every reason to be angry. It was easy to see how they'd become malcontents and grouse their way to their end of their lives. Instead, they decided to live these lives of utter rectitude. They set aside their personal grievances in order to help America become a better place, and that is an incredibly graceful act."

Break out those pink iPods for the NewsHour

PBS NewsHour's Jim Lehrer spoke on a panel Wednesday (Sept. 22) addressing "The Death of Old News" at the University of Nevada Las Vegas, reports the Las Vegas Sun. Lerher talked about how the program is partnering with news websites including ProPublica, GlobalPost and NPR to reach a broader audience.“I couldn’t care less if someone is watching the program on their pink iPod, just as long as they are watching,” Lerher said. The event was sponsored by the Black Mountain Institute, a center for writers and scholars at the university.

Pop star Katy Perry a little too "Hot" for Sesame Street

Katy Perry's snug-fitting gold bustier proved a bit much for her appearance on Sesame Street. Her "Hot & Cold" music video with Elmo has been pulled from an upcoming show, Us magazine reports. Sesame Workshop told the gossip mag that the decision was made following "feedback we've received" after the video went up on YouTube. It's since been removed from Sesame's YouTube channel, but is still available through Perry's channel. (Oh and by the way: Look closely and you'll see there's flesh-colored netting up to Perry's neck topped by a dainty bow.) The pop singer debuts on Sesame Street on Dec. 31.

Forget CliffsNotes, just call the pubcasting Homework Hotline

Starting Oct. 4, West Virginia students get help with their homework for free, says the Register-Herald in Beckley, W.V. The Homework Hotline show, approaching its 20th year, airs Mondays through Thursdays on West Virginia Public Broadcasting. It started out by offering assistance to students while the show was on the air. Now, teachers often later correspond with the kids by e-mail or phone to ensure everyone gets help. "The teachers that work with the show are very dedicated," said Dennis Adkins, executive director of West Virginia Public Broadcasting. "They stay and answer questions long after the cameras are turned off.” According to PBS, last year Hotline helped nearly 1,150 students who called from all over West Virginia and nearby states.

Candidate says request to alter speech for airing on WGTE showed bias

The Republican candidate for Lucas County (Ohio) auditor on Wednesday (Sept. 22) accused Toledo's WGTE-TV/Channel 30 of favoring the Democratic incumbent, according to the Toledo Blade. Gina Marie Kaczala said she was told by a WGTE production assistant that part of her two-minute campaign speech for broadcast was "inappropriate." Kaczala later discovered that the assistant's brother-in-law is on the staff of the incumbent, Anita Long. Marlon Kiser, president WGTE, denied Kaczala's charges. He said that part of her speech was negative, and the station does not allow attack statements in its candidate statement segments. Kiser told the paper that a station attorney who specializes in Federal Communications Commission regulations advised him to allow Kaczala to read the speech, which she did.