Mar 28, 2011

Ken Burns, Lynn Novick working on major Vietnam series for PBS

PBS today (March 28) announced that documentarians Ken Burns and Lynn Novick will produce and direct a 10- to 12-hour series about the Vietnam War, to be aired on PBS in 2016. Burns said the series "will shed light both on the history of the war, and on our inability to find common ground about it." The project will also include a website, a  multi-platform educational initiative, community engagement grants for station outreach and a companion book to be published by Alfred A. Knopf. In an interview with Current in October 2009, when Burns was just beginning research on the project, he termed it "a major, major history" of the conflict in Southeast Asia.

South Carolina ETV educating all-new pubcasting commission

New South Carolina ETV President Linda O’Bryon (formerly of KQED and Nightly Business Report) tells the Anderson Independent Mail that she's simultaneously working to develop ETV’s revenue base and content initiatives as well as educate the state's entirely new public broadcasting commission on the value of the network.

South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley recently announced the replacement of every member of the ETV Commission. The move came after her State of the State speech, during which she also urged lawmakers to cut all funding to the network, about $9.6 million.

The paper notes that the network has earned $10 million for the state from a 30-year, $142 million spectrum lease to two national companies inked in 2009.

KPCC trying techniques "rarely employed" in pubradio to double audience

Bloomberg Businessweek is reporting that Southern California Public Radio executives are using business tactics "rarely employed in the tame world of local public radio to create a megastation they hope will one day beam its signal from Santa Barbara to San Diego." SCPR's stations currently reach 14 million listeners, but its board hopes to nearly double that to 25 million. "If we can buy a station, we will," says Gordon Crawford, chairman of SCPR's board of directors. "Where we can't, we'll build translators to boost our signal. This is a new business model for public radio." KPCC was a struggling Pasadena City College station a decade ago, the story notes; now, its 24 directors include "such media heavy hitters" as Jarl Mohn, former chief executive officer of E! Entertainment Television; Fox Sports TV Chairman David Hill; and Louise Bryson, a former Lifetime Movie Network executive.