It was reported that there will soon be a password restricted Staff-only section of wbai.org.
The Public Affairs Director appealed for producers to send her info on programs to update our public issues file. She pointed out that programs that get preempted a lot have a hard time raising money. The December mini-thon goal was to get as many pledges as possible. Management hoped to get about $75,000, in the end this ‘thon got over 1,000 pledges and the tally was about $48,000.
The Arts Director reported that she was a bit bothered by the idea of premiums counting more than the radio programs that pitch them. She said that it was very hard to predict which premiums will do well. One producer complained that her tally numbers were not recorded correctly.
The Premiums Department reported that WBAI has pitched more than 2,000 premiums in less than two years! The Fall ‘thon alone had 180 premiums, only about 30 of which were from producers. One producer said, “If we're so great why can't we make our own premiums?” The problem of producers not knowing when they're on during a ‘thon was brought up. The need for more pre-planning was voiced, when the Fall ‘thon began only the first 3 days were planned out. The iGM said that she'd like to have everything all planned out two weeks before a ‘thon begins but not everyone cooperates. The iGM pointed out that other Pacifica stations get fulfillment rates of 85% to 95%, but WBAI struggles to get 74%. A producer said there appears to be a science to picking premiums, but no one at WBAI knows that science. We just guess, and guess in the middle of the ‘thon.
When one producer said that we needed a PD who plans out the ‘thons a certain viper tongued faction operative got very vocal about claiming that there are a lot of people at WBAI who get paid and don't pull their own weight.
Some problems at the transmitter, caused by Verizon, have been rectified. The digital cart machine should be in Master Control real soon now. The delay device has been installed in Master Control and should help to keep callers from saying naughty words on the air. It was pointed out that this will not help much when producers air pre-recorded material which violates F.C.C. rules. The iGM pointed out that F.C.C. fines can wipe out our budget in a blink. I made my usual speech about
|how Staff need training about the F.C.C. rules.
Pacifica Web Master Pete Korakis announced that our archives were live and all producers were encouraged to put short descriptions of their programs in the archives.
The iGM reported that at the end of FY05 we had about 17,700 members but as of this meeting we had 18,173 members. The iGM has been working with major donors and has gotten about $35,000 in grants. She's looking for more grant money to spur development. There will be ads going into magazines, which is something the faction has condemned in the past. The iGM confirmed that there are no more layoffs planned.
Delegates' Meeting &
The Delegates' meeting was about that bylaws amendment. I said the bylaws required the vote by the Delegates to be “within the same calendar month” as the PNB vote. The PNB had voted in October and this was November so it was not the same calendar month. The Chair ruled we could vote anyway, the bylaws amendment received 9 votes in favor. The Chair declared it passed, but I objected that the bylaws require a majority of all Delegates to vote in favor of a bylaws amendment, meaning 13 in favor. After some confusion the Chair's faction leader told her that this was correct and the meeting ended. This amendment never got the approval of 3 LSBs so it failed completely.
The LSB meeting began with disputes over the agenda. Faction members didn't want to discuss fund raising as we'd previously agreed, and one put on the agenda another personal attack on the LSB member who'd been the subject of a lengthy on-air attack by the PD on August 21, during Wake Up Call. In the end it all got on the agenda.
The LSB went into a Committee of the Whole to discuss fund raising and finances. We discovered that the faction's new line is that WBAI never lost 4,000 subscribers in FY05, it's just a bookkeeping error, and we've probably only lost 2,000 subscribers, or about 10% of the subscriber base.
The Chair of the Management Evaluation Committee apologized to Shawn Rhodes for not allow-
Page Three of this newsletter