Saturday, October 10, 2009

Pledge Drive Time

The community radio station of Mendocino county has been hurt, like everything else, by the economic hard times. Headquartered in Philo, over in the same lovely Anderson Valley of the county fair, KZYX sacrificed some paid positions to make ends meet, including that of the news gal on the right side of this picture. But most of the programmers, the hosts of the various programs, are volunteers. Here, we see soul-master DJ Reed handing off the booth to gentle reggae giant Pappa John, as they pitch together for listener pledge support. I captured them last October when I volunteered to answer pledge calls.


Petrea said...

I find this poignant.

I was talking with friends yesterday about the news business and how we don't tune in anymore because we know we're only hearing what the station owners want us to hear. But having worked in radio and still having friends in the news business, I know how much the reporters still want to bring us real news and how shackled they feel (at least some of them do) by their employers.

It's unfortunate that professionals in public radio have to ask for money because we think of radio and television news as free. It isn't, we pay for it one way or another.

USelaine said...

Thanks for this, P. Our community radio station is our most immediate and comprehensive news source, so it hurt to see the news team go from two to one, just like that. One person can't cover it all, 24/7, but he gets help from a volunteer stringer or two. Our total resident population base is only around 90,000. The commercial radio stations just offer some headlines. There's still a daily paper down in Ukiah, our county seat, a twice weekly here in Willits, and a weekly over in Ft. Bragg.

I suppose we're lucky we still have KZYX at all.