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Friday Feedback

Friday Feedback for October 18, 2013


Listener 910-777-XXXX said:

You need to stop claiming you don't run commercials. You most emphatically do run commercials, constantly. You simply insult the intelligence of your listeners by calling them euphemisms instead of commercials. Don't do that.

Well, perception is reality, of course, but this listener may be interested in knowing how FCC regulations distinguish commercials from the kind of messages we air, called UCAs, or Underwriting Credit Announcements. UCAs may not mention pricing information, and they may not contain calls to action. They may mention products or services provided as well as years in business. The grey areas are slogans and descriptions, which are OK if they identify but not promote. We have many conversations about what we can and should allow on the air. We’ve had a recent case where a potential underwriter wanted a message that sounded like a commercial to us, we wouldn’t accept those terms and they decided not to go with the contract. But the main way you can tell the difference is to find a commercial station and listen to it for a while. Thanks for writing.

C.R. Drake posted the following on our website:

I heard someone call in a pledge this morning and they included the comment "I love Scott Simon but you could lose Car Talk". I just want to let you know that I have enjoyed NPR for 35 years, and Car Talk is my FAVORITE show. To each his own, but I thought you should know my whole family LOVES Car Talk.

We do always get a passel of comments about the station during a pledge drive, like the one that ended this week. Here is a sample of a few of them:

Anonymous wrote:

I was wondering if any of the NPR gurus can explain something. Why do we donors wait so long to pledge during the pledge drive. If logic ruled we would all call on the first day, make our pledge and get back to regular programming. Instead, we the donating public wait and wait dragging the thing out. P.S. I donated on Wednesday in the closing hours so I’m part of the phenomenon that I don’t understand.

It’s a great question, and one that has baffled me and plenty of others. Every station I’ve ever seen or heard about that does week-long drives sees essentially the same phenomenon, even if they front-load the early days with sweepstakes. There are even listeners who won’t pledge until after the goal is met. I don’t mind listeners saying “I wish I had pledged earlier” but I never want them to say, “I wish I had waited to make my pledge.” Like Anonymous I don’t understand the procrastination, but it is a reality we deal with.

Other comments:

Anne Randal of Wilmington said:

I rely on WHQR for my local, state, national and international news. To be honest, I would prefer all day news programs but I know the classical music is beloved by most of the community.

Tony Rivenbark of Wilmington said:

More Dolphins!

Lois M Johnson of Jacksonville said:

I count it a privilege to live close enough to Wilmington to share in the culture of the city, made known to me by WHQR radio. (It is a pleasure to listen even during pledge week - the staff is so jovial).

Mary Lou Shaw of Wilmington said:

WHQR saves my sanity every day, and I listen to it religiously all day--it is the only station I have on my radio, and I would be devastated without it.

Beth Crookham of Wilmington said:

Rob Zapple, you are absolutely contagious! You and WHQR are true community treasures.

We’d love to hear from you on Friday Feedback. You can always leave a message via email to feedback@WHQR.org. Our Feedback Phone is 910-292-WHQR. That’s 292-9477. And thanks for your feedback.