Monday, March 19, 2007

Morning Edition competition?

NPR's "Morning Edition" soon may not be the only public radio choice in the morning.

New York's WNYC is teaming up with Public Radio International to produce a national morning radio program that will compete with National Public Radio’s long-running and popular "Morning Edition."

The program, as yet unnamed, will also include assistance from BBC World Service, the New York Times and Boston public radio station WGBH. BBC correspondents and reporters and critics for The New York Times will contribute on-air reports for the live news program and take part in what is expected to be its more informal, conversational format.

Creators say the new morning program will depart from the pre-recorded interviews and long features approach long employed by "Morning Edition," and will be a bit more free-wheeling and personality-oriented.

But the new PRI/WNYC endeavor will have more competition to contend with. NPR itself announced in January it's intent to develop an alternative to "Morning Edition" aimed at a younger audience (25-44). That program, also unnamed, is to begin in the fall and promises many of the same elements as the new WNYC program, including more integration with a companion Web site. The new NPR show's co-host will be Luke Burbank, an NPR reporter who had served as an interim host on the network's humorous quiz show, “Wait, Wait ... Don’t Tell Me!”

"Morning Edition" is one of the most popular morning radio shows in the country, with 13.2 million listeners. The show is widespread and often a staple on public radio stations, sometimes airing on competing stations in a market. Obviously, this leaves an opening for other morning show options.

The PRI/NPR show will debut by early next year.

See also: A press release regarding the PRI/WNYC show.


Anonymous said...

If WNYC is targeting a younger audience for the new show, they are stupid to put the new show on AM and keep Morning Edition on FM.
That said, let's hope PRI gives NPR a real run for their money in morning drive. They deserve a comeupance after their treatment of Bob Edwards and their gouging of "member stations."
Maybe after this, people will realize NPR is not public radio - just as they are coming to realize AAR is not progressive talk.

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