Jun 8, 2012

Fred Rogers goes viral with "Garden of Your Mind" video remix

An Auto-Tuned video of pubcasting icon Fred Rogers is going viral, with more than 700,000 views as of Friday (June 8) afternoon. The three-minute video was remixed by Symphony of Science's John Boswell for PBS Digital Studios. "When we discovered video mash-up artist John D. Boswell, aka melodysheep, on YouTube," the studio said in a statement, "we immediately wanted to work together. Turns out that he is a huge Mister Rogers Neighborhood fan, and was thrilled at the chance to pay tribute to one of our heroes." It's the first in a series of PBS icon remixes.

UPDATE: Here's how the launch and reaction unfolded, via Storify from PBS. As of Saturday morning (June 9), YouTube hits were up to 1.8 million.

"Live from Lincoln Center" creator retiring after more than 30 years

John Goberman, who created Live From Lincoln Center more than three decades ago, is departing as executive producer on June 30 after more than 200 live national telecasts.The series continues in its 37th season on PBS this fall.

Goberman was cited by Symphony Magazine as one of the 50 most important individuals making a difference in American music. He pioneered the video and audio technology by which concerts, opera, ballets and plays could be telecast during live performances without disruption of performers and audiences. His television work has garnered 13 national Emmy Awards, three Peabody Awards and the first Television Critics Circle Award for Achievement in Music.

Goberman also created the concept of “Symphonic Cinema,” in which orchestral scores are performed live to the films for which they were originally commissioned. After departing Lincoln Center Goberman will focus on those events, as well as staging concert galas and video presentations across the country.

"Click and Clack" announce retirement

The hosts of Car Talk, the popular pubradio show celebrating its 25th season this fall, are retiring, they announced to listeners today (June 8). Tom and Ray Magliozzi, aka Click and Clack the Tappet Brothers, actually started the show 10 years earlier at WBUR in Boston. Tom is 74 years old, Ray is 63.

An NPR press release said that they will not tape new shows but their weekly call-in series will continue to be distributed from their archives of 1,200 shows beginning in October. The two will continue to write their twice-weekly "Dear Tom and Ray" column.

Car Talk evolved out of what was supposed to be a call-in show with a panel of mechanics, according to a June 1995 story in Current. The WBUR volunteer/producer called the brothers to sit on the panel and Tom agreed, thinking that it would generate business for the pair's fledgling garage. As it turned out, Tom was the only one of six mechanics who showed up. "It was a wild success," said Ray, "two or three people called in." The producer, who soon left the show, asked the brothers to do it every week. "And we figured 'What the hell!'," Ray said.

UPDATE: KQED has Storyfied fan reaction to the announcement.

Small and indie TV stations protesting FCC bid to end analog viewability rule

A group of more than 200 TV stations is protesting the FCC's proposal to end the viewability rule in December 2013, reports Multichannel News.

In September 2007, in anticipation of the digital transition, the FCC decided that cable operators would be required to convert digital signals to analog so must-carry channels could still be viewed by households with analog television sets. The FCC now wants to sunset that requirement, citing the availability of free or low-cost converter boxes.

But Independent Voices for Local Television, representing smaller and independent TV stations, say that 12.6 million households of more than 34 million viewers don’t have any digital TV sets. "Many millions more have analog sets in their bedrooms, even if they have one digital set in the living room," the group says on its website. "If the FCC shifts the burden to consumers, these cable viewers will lose access unless they lease new equipment."

"Voices for Local TV will have to talk fast," Multichannel News notes: The FCC's proposed order needs to be voted on by June 12 or the rule sunsets immediately.