Oct 6, 2011

BBC to shed 2,000 jobs

The BBC Trust, in consultation with BBC management, today (Oct. 6) announced proposals including cutting some 2,000 jobs from across the network to save nearly $2 billion annually by 2016-17. The changes "follow a review last year of the future strategy for the BBC," the Trust said in a statement, "which culminated in Trust approval for four new strategic priorities for the corporation — distinctiveness, value for money, serving all audiences and openness and transparency. The proposals have been shaped by these priorities."

BBC Director General Mark Thompson said the changes would lead to "a smaller, radically reshaped BBC."

Attention RSSers: Breaking news

Don't miss Current's story on Independent Public Media, a new consortium of five nonprofits headed by public media activist John Schwartz that is aiming to purchase and help revitalize financially at-risk public TV stations. Schwartz, who helped found WYBE in Philadelpha, KBDI in Denver and WYEP in Pittsburgh, is heading up the initiative, along with Ken Devine, former v.p. of media operations and chief information officer of New York's WNET.

New PIN collaborations editor is Pulitzer Prize winner

Pulitzer Prize winner Jacqui Banaszynski will lead reporting efforts as collaborations editor for American Public Media's Public Insight Network, it announced today (Oct. 6). Banaszynski holds the Knight Chair in Editing at the University of Missouri. As a reporter for the St. Paul Pioneer Press, she won the 1988 Pulitzer Prize for feature writing for “AIDS in the Heartland,” an intimate look at the life and death of a Minnesota farm couple. She's also a a former editor for The Seattle Times and The Oregonian in Portland.

Banaszynski will work to expand PIN's editorial team, as well as use the network in her journalism classes to establish a partnership between APM, the University of Missouri’s journalism school and the Donald W. Reynolds Journalism Institute at the university.

WBFO listeners want new owner to enhance local music, news programming

During an Oct. 4 public meeting on the pending sale of university-owned WBFO-FM to WNED, listeners called for preservation of weekend music programs and local coverage, according to the Buffalo News and ArtVoice, an alt-weekly that questions whether Buffalo will be well-served by the sale of the city's flagship NPR station on 88.7.

WNED, a public TV and radio operation owned by community licensee Western New York Public Broadcasting Association, plans to tailor WBFO's appeal to Canadian audiences, a service strategy that has been very successful for its public TV station.

The Buffalo News estimated that 80 people attended the session in WNED's studios in downtown Buffalo "with the enthusiasm so great for local public broadcasting that the scheduled 60-minute session ran more than 80 minutes." Many attendees called for an end to rebroadcasts of talk shows, and for more time slots devoted to local music and news.