Jan 13, 2011

NPR emerges as powerhouse for music sales

National Public Radio has become an "incredibly effective" outlet for music promoters, according to the Hollywood Reporter, in a feature that doesn't dwell on the distinctions between public radio stations like Santa Monica's KCRW, music features presented on NPR's national programs, and NPR Music, the website that features exclusive preview streams of new releases. "NPR moves more albums and downloads proportionately than the commercial big boys, yet labels spend millions trying to penetrate those markets," Shirley Halperin reports. "Call it 'Yindie Rock,' as in yuppie indie rock, modern music for boomers with loads of disposable income."

CJR unveils its News Frontier Database, with information on 50 digital journalism sites

The Columbia Journalism Review has launched the News Frontier Database with profiles of an initial 50 prominent digital news sites. The database "is a searchable, living, and ongoing documentation of digital news outlets across the country," the industry mag said. "Featuring originally reported profiles and extensive data sets on each outlet, the NFDB is a tool for those who study or pursue online journalism, a window into that world for the uninitiated, and, like any journalistic product, a means by which to shed light on an important topic." CJR aims to make the database "the most comprehensive resource of its kind."

Dues review committee still considering system input, Kerger says

The recommendations of the PBS membership dues review committee are not a done deal, PBS President Paula Kerger told NETA attendees in Nashville. "It's not a case of the train has left the station and is gone." And Kerger noted that PBS and the committee are aware of concerns in the system, particularly regarding the older population figures used in the dues formula. The committee is meeting Friday (Jan. 14) in Washington, D.C. to examine the station feedback, and there will be another opportunity for comment as the process moves ahead. And whatever is decided, she added, will be phased in over a number of years to minimize the effect on stations.

CPB President Pat Harrison also addressed the breakfast crowd. Particularly in these time of devisive, often overheated political discussion, pubcasting offers "content that inspires and does not incite ... that informs but does not propogandize ... where people of goodwill can come together to discuss and debate."

And new APTS President Pat Butler girded the audience for the upcoming challenges on Capitol Hill as both parties "look at every option of reducing the cost of government," including pubcasting. Butler also mentioned that APTS is talking with the Department of Labor to explore how public TV might assist the country in the area of employment.

Today at NETA is brought to you by the letter "P"

The NETA crowd at the national confab in Nashville is joking that the top pubcasting orgs collectively known in the system as the G4 – CPB, PBS, APTS and NPR – are slowly morphing into the P4: Leaders Pat Harrison, Paula Kerger, Pat Butler ... oh, wait, Vivian Schiller needs to get onboard with this.

Elvis Mitchell joins Movieline

Elvis Mitchell, host of the KCRW pubradio program The Treatment, has landed a film reviewing gig at the Movieline website after mysteriously departing Roger Ebert Presents At the Movies. When Movieline issued its press release Wednesday (Jan. 12), Ebert Tweeted: "Must every story about Elvis mention our TV show? We like him, we admire him, and there's no big story about how we didn't come to agreement." Oops. Sorry Roger.

House Commerce chair says spectrum legislation "likely" will include auction

House Energy and Commerce Committee Chairman Fred Upton (R-Mich.) said Wednesday (Jan. 12) said he sees freeing up spectrum a "priority," and any legislation will "likely include voluntary incentive auctions," which will require Congress to authorize paying broadcasters to give up their spectrum. Also on Wednesday, FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski said at the Brookings Institution that he was hopeful, but not sure, Congress would approve that authority.