Friday Feedback for January 13, 2012
Thank you to the members of the Thursday Morning Music Club. They invited me to speak to them yesterday. They had some very nice comments about the station and some very interesting questions.
Listener Owen Jones wrote:
You may wish to announce the new Classical Music Station in Wilmington to your viewers. Since its beginning, I no longer have a need to listen to your radio station. Now you can really increase your anti-Republican Party messages through your news, editorials, and shows.
Sal, who describes himself as a regular listener, called to take issue with a speaker on this past weekend's This American Life who recounted the plight of child workers in China.
[AUDIO CLIP – SAL] I disagree with him to a great extent … These young people, they're doing a good thing there by working, absolutely. He's wrong. I'm sorry. I know I'm right, he's wrong. There's no child abuse really going on, when you compare [it] to child abuse that goes on here in this country. ... What we need are kids working here at 10, 11, 12 years old -- you know, basic, simple jobs … First of all, it would set 'em straight on how to work. And that there is work and there's a way to earn money. And this could all be done, you know, respectably and successfully.
Listener Darren Whitt called about the Magnolia Fatback Hour with John Fonvielle. He says:
It’s the best hour on WHQR… I would also like to see Smooth Landings go back to being selections from all the WHQR staff, as it used to be. It creates more diversity.
Jacqueline Karch wrote:
I miss The Bob Edwards Show. [And] I still miss the second hour of Talk of the Nation.
Lu Bivins wrote:
I was really disappointed this morning that Bob Edwards Weekend was replaced with Fresh Air. Bob Edwards Weekend is my all time favorite NPR program. His interviews are insightful, informative and very entertaining.
Listener Anne wrote:
I read the list of new shows. Please tell me you are not getting rid of the Thistle and Shamrock. I love that program.
I won’t repeat here the comments about the station budget and programming impact from last week’s Feedback, but I did write to Anne and suggest she give the new program Celtic Connections a listen. She wrote back:
I listened to a little of [it] Friday, and while any celtic music is better than no celtic music, Thistle and Shamrock is so much higher in quality with fine musicians and excellent themes.
Listener Robert left this comment:
I have enjoyed Fresh Air with Terry Gross for many years. For some reason, you have stopped announcing the content of it as you introduce Smooth Landings, even though you have resumed mentioning that Fresh Air "is coming up" at 7 p.m. Because you don't tell me what Fresh Air is offering, I have now formed the habit of jumping ahead, learning the content on-line, and then listening to Fresh Air on-line if the subject is something I'm interested in. This is easier for me, but why have you chosen to risk sending listeners away from your own programming? It's a mystery.
Finally, Theresa wrote:
I listen to WHQR every day and it truly bothers me that [reporters] always refers to President Obama as "Mr. Obama". He is our president and should be referred to by his title. To me personally, it's a little offensive. Otherwise, I … I do enjoy listening to your station.
In reply, NPR has had many questions about this, and addressed it at their Ombudsman's blog. As do many other news organizations, NPR refers to "President Obama" or "Barack Obama" on first reference, and "Mr. Obama" thereafter. All other politicians and public figures are typically referred to by last name only, without Mr., Mrs. or Ms. Here's NPR's official statement from Ron Elving, senior supervising editor of NPR's Washington desk:
NPR has used Mister as the alternative term of respect on second (and subsequent) references to the president of the United States for decades ...I personally have been Washington editor for three presidents and we have done it consistently through this time.
We’d love to hear from you on Friday Feedback, for your questions and comments, likes and dislikes about any aspect of the station. We’re on Facebook and Twitter. You can also send us feedback with an email message. And we have a new number for our Feedback line: 910-292-WHQR (9477). And thanks for your feedback.