Two More Opinions on Pacifica

  • Two More Opinions on Pacifica
    Pacifica is the 50-year-old community radio foundation, which owns 5 stations in the US and provides alternative news programming to many more community stations across the country. If you’ve heard about Pacifica, then you’re probably already aware of the tremendous conflicts within and surrounding the network. To get a brief recent update see this entry to the mediageek newsblog from Aug. 24.

    Earlier this week journalist Marc Cooper released a scathing critique of both sides of the Pacifica battle. Cooper hosts Radio Nation, which is the radio companion to the Nation magazine, one of the longest running progressive news magazines in the US, and has been a frequent target of the Free Pacifica campaign’s rhetoric due to his moderate stance on the battle over Pacifica, and occasional words of defense for the current Pacifica regime. If nothing else, Cooper’s recent statement shows that he sees problems and misdeeds all around.

    On Monday Village Voice writer Nat Hentoff wrote a piece entitled, “WBAI = Anti-Free-Speech Radio.” The title refers to the tag-line “Free Speech Radio” which Pacifica has used at all its stations, especially during fund drives.

    In the last few weeks there have been major defections from the Pacifica national management. Most prominently, Steve Yasko, the national programming director, recently resigned–though, as Cooper dicusses, it may be for the wrong reasons–to save his own reputation rather than for the good of the network. The saga continues…

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