Jan 5, 2006

"[W]ho wouldn't love a big, friendly, stoned (and "energetic") tree sloth and all his singing, dancing buddies?," asks Blogging Baby, in a review of the new PBS Kids show, It's a Big, Big World. A critic for the LA Times notes that series creator Mitchell Kriegman followed the Mister Rogers paradigm in casting his lead character Snook as a giant tree sloth who talks and moves slowly. But the Boston Globe's reviewer wrote that Snook is too laid back to stand out in the crowded field of beloved kids TV characters.
Slate's Andy Bowers (formerly of NPR) picks podcasts of the year, including a couple from the world of public radio.
U.K. residents (but not the rest of us) can now download 80 notable packages of news footage from the BBC archives, the AP reported. For instance, they can watch the Berlin Wall come down in Windows Media, Quicktime or MPEG-1 formats, and then edit the footage and use it for noncommercial purposes, giving credit. The few restrictions are laid out in the Creative Archive License, which requires users to share their derivative works under the same terms. Channel 4, the British Film Institute and the Open University will issue material under the same license, the BBC said. The Open News Archive was proposed in 2003 by Greg Dyke, then head of the Beeb.
WFMU's blog cites rumors that the FCC will open a five-day filing window for noncommercial educational stations within six months. But communications attorney John Crigler says a better guess would place a window later this year, after the commission has cleared a backlog of mutually exclusive proceedings.
The nation's capital will pick up a new commercial news/talk station that's described in The Washington Post as "NPR on caffeine." The Post, in fact, will program the station and previously sought a similar partnership with the city's WETA-FM.