NPR CEO Vivian Schiller resigned today, effective immediately. It follows a gotcha video by a right-wing provocateur with a former NPR fund-raiser. With public broadcasting under fire in Congress, the timing was not good.
The salvation for public broadcasting — radio and TV — will be in their deep fan bases for local affiliates. Or fans must hope there are deep fan bases for local affiliates and that they will be politically helpful. Public radio is widely derided by conservatives, mainly on account of national programs. Public TV outlets seem to catch a little less heat, Bill Moyers excepted. But that may be a conclusion drawn only from my own perspective.
Speaking of my perspective, I got the following e-mail yesterday related to a coming show on AETN (I'm guessing it's related to fund-raising efforts, a necessary evil unfortunately.) Read on at your own risk, but put that coffee cup down first to avoid blowout.
From a publicist, emphasis supplied:
I know you get a lot of pitches, but this one might be a new breed crossing your desk. I represent Brenda Watson and Renew Life. Renew is the leading manufacturer of Probiotics, Fiber and Cleansing Products. Brenda is super gregarious, has written 7 books (New York Times Best Sellers), and currently stars in a PBS special. She’ll be in Little Rock for a PBS on-air fundraiser next Wednesday, March 16. Her PBS show will air numerous times in Little Rock over the next few months.
Here is truly the interesting part: Brenda is one of the leading experts in taking a good “poop.” Seriously. And she can be super funny and appropriate — at the same time — during an interview.
We’d love for you guys to interview her. Tell your readers about the PBS special. Share her story. And as I mentioned, she can be funny and educational at the same time.
This is not a joke. She'll be "live" in the AETN studio next week.