Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Making Sausage at NPR, well actuallly TOTN

NPR's Ombudsman stepped outside her comfort zone and did a little behind-the-scenes documentary about the daily routine of Neal Conan and the staff who do the daily talk show "Talk of the Nation."

We found the slide show quite interesting and thought we would share it with you (it's just over 7 minutes long): http://www.npr.org/blogs/ombudsman/2010/12/27/132105689/audio-gallery-behind-the-scenes-at-talk-of-the-nation?sc=nl&cc=omb-20101222

Friday, December 10, 2010

Things you don't think about until the e-mail

Maintaining satellites in geostationary orbit so we can all enjoy the radio programming is only "easy" if everything goes right... It's made more difficult when we think of the thousands of little bits of debris flying around at over 22,000 miles per hour (small screws become devastating bullets). That reality was brought home to me with the memo I recently received from the Public Radio Satellite System--PRSS, the organization charged with keeping the programming flowing...

"Intelsat, the owner of the Galaxy 16 Satellite from which the PRSS transmits, has advised us that the potential exists for a service interruption later this month.

Galaxy 16’s sister satellite - Galaxy 15 - has been slowly drifting eastward since it stopped responding to earth station commands in early April. It is expected to enter or “fly-by” Galaxy 16’s orbital position on or about December 26. Intelsat has informed us that because Galaxy 15’s transmission system remains fully functional, there is a possibility that it could interfere with transmissions from Galaxy 16. However, Intelsat has further informed us that since losing control of Galaxy 15 the satellite has passed through the orbital positions of several other satellites without causing any service disruptions."

I read that as: "Houston, there might be a problem, but just keep carrying on, and you'll know if there is a real problem when your signal disappears; then you can panic."

So we'll wait to see if anything happens, but it gives me pause at the amazing chain delivering the national signal almost instantly to all affiliates. I thought you might appreciate the momentary feeling of awe too.

Oh, and Happy Holidays! May you avoid all potential catastrophic failure.

Friday, September 17, 2010

Bonus Article for the "The Voice"

Many of you already have received our latest quarterly newsletter called, "The Voice." In the rush to get out the newsletter crammed with information, one article was missed in the final printing. Here's that article from WVPE Program Director, Lee Burdorf who wrote:

WVPE gets its audience measurements from Arbitron, the leading radio research organization, which samples hundreds of Michiana residents for three months twice each year. For the fall 2009 survey, we were pleased to achieve 24th best share in the nation – WVPE’s total audience compared as a percentage to the total audience in the market listening to radio.

The spring 2010 ratings brought an even nicer surprise. The Arbitron surveys show 83,800 people listened to WVPE each week in the rating period – April-June. We haven’t had ratings that high since 2004 when it was almost 75,000; last spring it was 58,400. The average listening audience for any given quarter hour in spring 2010 was 5,100. The previous high was 3,400.

The station became the #1 Michiana radio station Saturdays from 8am-3pm. And our #1 show, Wait Wait Don’t Tell Me can boast a weekly audience of nearly 22,000 people.

While we anticipate the signal increase will keep these fabulous numbers in future Arbitron surveys, we hope many of these new listeners will see value in pledging support to keep the programming coming their way.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Changes to the 3rd City

At the top of every hour WVPE says the legal ID. After we say "Elkhart/South Bend," we then say, "Your NPR Station for [insert rotating city name here]."

The 'rotating city name' list is all cities in our listening area who have at least 3 active members. We periodically update the list to match our current membership records; we updated the list this past week.

Unfortunately, the towns of Ligonier, Mill Creek, Topeka, & Union Mills in Indiana, PLUS Paw Paw & Vicksburg in Michigan fell out of the WVPE rotation as some members did not renew.

Because of the signal expansion, the towns of Akron, Albion, Claypool, Logansport, Star City & Winamac in Indiana, PLUS Coloma, Harbert, Lawton & Union Pier in Michigan were added to our rotation.

Congratulations to the new communities. We'd love to add more cities. If you do not hear your town in our rotation, encourage your neighbors to become members. [AH]

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Elkhart Featured in NPR stories

Recently NPR did a special feature on Elkhart, Indiana titled: Elkhart's Quest: Rebuilding A Midwest Economy. It was a 3-part series with stories looking at electric cars, band instruments, and Elkhart as future vacation destination.

In case you missed them, here they are:

Elkhart's Quest: Rebuilding A Midwest Economy