Thursday roundup: WQED cuts back, Dunlop leads KCTS

By Current Staff

Pittsburgh’s WQED is cutting two positions and trimming the locally programmed classical music on its FM station, the Post-Gazette reports. Station President Deb Acklin said one employee took a buyout and the other was laid off. The decisions followed a seven-month study. “We wanted to guarantee a future for WQED-FM, and if that meant we had to make some financial adjustments, we were willing to make them, as painful as that process is,” Acklin said.

Dunlop

Dunlop

• Seattle’s KCTS has promoted Rob Dunlop to president. Dunlop had been serving on an interim basis since last September. The station’s board of directors approved the hire today. Dunlop previously worked as executive vice president and chief operating officer at Fisher Communications, responsible for leading operations and business strategy.

KCETLink is playing down a recent auditor’s report that noted a $12.5 million loss last fiscal year and a $7.4 million fall the year before for the Los Angeles pubmedia org, according to the Los Angeles Times. Spokesperson Ariel Carpenter said the auditor’s report “represents a snapshot of past performance and does not reflect our current financial health.” She said the organization has since balanced its budget, partly by layoffs.

Public media programs made a strong showing in this year’s Gracie Awards, announced this week, with more than 15 shows receiving recognition. The annual awards recognize exemplary programming created for, by and about women. Marketplace‘s “One School, One Year” project took a national award (full list of winners here); winners in the local, online and student awards included Youth Radio, PBS’s Need to Know, and the National Black Programming Consortium’s 180 Days: A Year Inside An American High School.

Unemployment benefits run out Feb. 28 for 19 staffers laid off last summer at Pacifica’s WBAI in New York, and they have yet to receive severance checks, the Village Voice reports.

NPR is hosting “Word: A Book Club of Extraordinary Women, Wine and Music,” March 6-8 at headquarters in Washington, D.C. Speakers include Susan Minot, author of Thirty Girls. The Sunday session features Rachel Martin, host of Weekend Edition Sunday, with readings by other NPR personalities. Tickets are $10.

WGBH Radio in Boston reached a 3.0 share in January, the station’s highest monthly market share ever and a 76.5 percent increase from January 2011, according to Nielsen Audio numbers released by the station. WGBH switched to a news format in December 2009. Together, WGBH Radio and WBUR captured the second-largest share for pubradio in markets across the country, behind broadcasters in Washington, D.C.

• A federal judge in Utah has imposed a preliminary injunction on streaming TV service Aereo, citing copyright infringement. The injunction blocks the startup’s effort to expand to Denver, Salt Lake City and other Western markets, Variety reports. It’s the first time a court has ruled against Aereo in the company’s already extensive legal history. The service, which allows viewers to record and watch over-the-air broadcasts via Internet, is available in major markets including New York, Boston and Atlanta. The Supreme Court will hear a case later this year brought against Aereo by commercial broadcasters, and PBS has also sought legal remedies to block the service.

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