More readers join public radio bandwagon
WSCL and WSDL, our local public radio stations, are about to be significantly and substantively changed in ways that would be detrimental to Delmarva communities if a consultant's recommendations were to be adopted as proposed. We oppose the proposed changes in programming. The consultant has recommended that WSCL be changed from its current locally-oriented classical music format to one of piped-in classical music programming. The local focus apparently would be lost.
WSDL, similarly, would be modified to lose local focus in exchange for an adult music programming format. Public radio, as provided by the stations' current formats, not only promotes lower Delaware and Maryland concerts, art exhibits and charitable events, but also alerts residents and year-round visitors to approaching severe weather, school and road closures and other emergency information.
In addition, there are many educational programs, in-depth analyses on family and community issues and environmental concerns together with interviews with prominent local and national leaders. These are some of the features that presumably would be eliminated if the proposed program format were adopted and implemented.
The problem with the consultant's report is the apparent total focus on the bottom line, as important as that obviously is, to the exclusion of consideration of the local impact of the stations, the laid off staff and the diminished cultural exposure in Delmarva communities. We do not pretend to have all the answers to the difficult financial circumstances facing the stations.
But we, like many other listeners of WSCL and WSDL, believe adoption of the consultant's recommendations without significant modification would be a big step backward in local radio programming and contrary to the interests of Delmarva listeners.
Barbara and Dick Warden