Friday Feedback for August 15, 2014
Ronald Cohen wrote:
I fail to understand why scarce resources are expended on a call-in show that is delayed broadcast and whose topicality is stale by the time it is aired. [Tuesday’s Diane Rehm] broadcast was about Iraq and the Maliki crisis, some of which had become out dated by 3 PM.
Mr. Cohen has identified a problem that does concern us. In the next few weeks you’ll be hearing more about our response to this concern. Stay tuned.
Mary Virginia Swain wrote about this week’s new local talk show CoastLine, on downtown Wilmington development:
Excellent topic and great discussion today! Hats off to Rachel Lewis Hillburn and WHQR on Coastline! She really does a great job with the show.
Thanks, Mary Virginia.
CoastLine has as its mission
to establish a talk show that promotes civil discourse, fosters sincere appreciation of differing points of view, and deepens listener understanding of community issues.
The point about civil discourse is my topic today. A good example of the challenge and the problems can be found in listener feedback on our website to last week’s CoastLine show on sea level rise.
We do want CoastLine to be interactive. We want participation. We believe that robust discussion of ideas serves an important role in our democracy, and we want to be right in the middle of that conversation. The online robust discussion on this CoastLine was confined almost entirely to two people, identifying themselves as Mike Voiland and “energyexpert”, who traded assertions along with accusations and criticisms of each other for the remainder of the thread.
I imagine that anyone reading these exchanges, as I did, will form their own conclusions as to who got the better of the argument. And you may find yourself tiring of the argument long before it ends.
We do moderate the comments on our web stories. As most online publications have discovered, this is a necessity in this day of rampant internet trolling. The sea level rise reaction is an example of a robust discussion that almost, but never quite, crossed the line into inappropriateness. Some readers will have tired of the discussion long before the two parties wore each other out and said their parting shots.
But it’s all part of our effort to initiate genuine discussion and reflection on critical ideas facing our local region. We hope to be expanding CoastLine’s reach in the weeks to come, and the more thoughtful people participate, the better. Stay tuned.