170 Million Americans for Public Broadcasting
WQED has joined with public television and radio stations across the country in an unprecedented effort to harness the enthusiasm of the 170 million Americans who watch, listen to or use the services and programming of public service media each month.
Consortium Unveils “170 Million Americans for Public Broadcasting” Campaign
WQED Joins Effort to Harness Grassroots Enthusiasm for Public Media in the Wake of Three Bills Introduced in the U. S. House of Representatives to Cut or Eliminate Funding
PITTSBURGH -- WQED has joined with public television and radio stations across the country in an unprecedented effort to harness the enthusiasm of the 170 million Americans who watch, listen to or use the services and programming of public service media each month. The centerpiece of the campaign is a web site – 170MillionAmericans.org – that represents the beginning of a grassroots effort to engage the support and energy of listeners and viewers in local communities across the country.
The 170 Million Americans campaign was founded on the belief that now, more than ever, our country needs a strong public media system as a source of non-partisan news, local cultural programming and non-commercial educational programs. Public funding ensures that public service media will continue to enhance the quality of life of our local communities through its offerings of children’s programming, news and public affairs, music and culture, and more.
WQED plans to promote the campaign effort to members, the general public, underwriters and the foundation community in its four-state viewing area of 1.17 million households and its worldwide audience on wqed.org by urging supporters to join the campaign at 170MillionAmericans.org.
“2011 will be the year when a vigorous debate over the importance of public service media will occur,” says Deborah L. Acklin, President and Chief Executive Officer of WQED, “and we’re proud to be a driver in this coordinated grassroots efforts to harness the support and energy of every supporter of public service media in America.”
“Federal funding to public broadcasting is under threat, and it represents about 12% of our operating budget – about $1.5 million. Operating funding from the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania was drastically reduced in 2009 and totally eliminated in 2010. Individual contributions have always been our major source of funding, and that individual support is more important than ever.”
“Taxpayers spend an average 11 cents a month for the very best education, culture and news programs that comes into their homes through WQED. There is no ticket to buy and no admission to pay. Now is not the time to cut programming or WQED from the public service media landscape. Public television started in Pittsburgh and it must continue as a resource for this community.”
It is clear that public service media is used by the American public.
• 121.9 million people watch public television
• 64.7 million listen to public radio
• 34 million log onto public broadcasting websites
• 49.3 million crossover between television, radio and online
Source: 170Million Americans for Public Broadcasting http://www.170millionamericans.org/numbers
For more information about efforts locally and nationwide, contact George Hazimanolis, Senior Director of Corporate Communications at WQED email@example.com/ 412-622-1366, Bill Gray at American Public Media firstname.lastname@example.org / 651-290-1543 or Stacey Karp at the Association of Public Television Stations email@example.com / 202-654-4222
WQED Pittsburgh, honored with the 2007 and 2006 Mid-Atlantic Emmy® Award for Station Excellence, was founded in 1954 as the nation’s first community-supported broadcaster. The people of WQED create, produce and distribute quality programs, products and services to engage, inform, educate and entertain the public within their community and around the world. WQED Pittsburgh is one of the first broadcasters in the country to be fully high-definition (HD) in its studio and field production capabilities. It is the parent company of WQED-TV (PBS); WQED: The Neighborhood Channel; WQED: The Create Channel; WQEX-TV (A ShopNBC affiliate); Classical WQED-FM 89.3/Pittsburgh; Classical WQEJ-FM 89.7/Johnstown; local and national television and radio productions; WQED Interactive (www.wqed.org); and The WQED Education Department.
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