take your answer off the air...

  • HorsesAss.Org: the straight poop on WA politics & the press
    progressive brilliance from the guy who pointed out Tim Eyman's nascent horse's-assedness
  • Talker's Magazine
    The quirky talk radio trade mag. Check the Talk Radio Research Project- it's not very scientific, but places on the top 15 talkers list (scroll down to Talk Radio Audiences By Size)) are as hotly contested as Emmys (and mean just about as much).
  • The Advocate
    No, not THAT Advocate... it's the Northwest Progressive Institute's Official Blog.
  • Media Matters
    Documentation of right-wing media in video, audio and text.
  • Orcinus
    home of David Neiwert, freelance investigative journalist and author who writes extensively about far-right hate groups
  • Hominid Views
    "People, politics, science, and whatnot" Darryl is a statistician who fights imperialism with empiricism, gives good links and wry commentary.
  • Jesus' General
    An 11 on the Manly Scale of Absolute Gender, a 12 on the Heavenly Scale of the 10 Commandments and a 6 on the earthly scale of the Immaculately Groomed.
  • Howie in Seattle
    Howie Martin is the Abe Linkin' of progressive Seattle.
  • Streaming Radio Guide
    Hellishly long (5795!) list of radio streaming, steaming on the Internets.
  • The Naked Loon
    News satire -- The Onion in the Seattle petunia patch.
  • Irrational Public Radio
    "informs, challenges, soothes and/or berates, and does so with a pleasing vocal cadence and unmatched enunciation. When you listen to IPR, integrity washes over you like lava, with the pleasing familiarity of a medium-roast coffee and a sensible muffin."
  • The Maddow Blog
    Here's the hyper-interactive La Raych of MSNBC. daily show-vids, freakishly geeky research, and classy graphics.
  • Northwest Broadcasters
    The AM, FM, TV and digital broadcasters of Northwest Washington, USA and Southwest British Columbia, Canada. From Kelso, WA to the northern tip of Vancouver Island, BC - call letters, formats, slogans, networks, technical data, and transmitter maps. Plus "recent" news.
  • News Corpse
    The Internet's chronicle of media decay.
  • The Moderate Voice
    The voice of reason in the age of Obama, and the politics of the far-middle.
  • News Hounds
    Dogged dogging of Fox News by a team who seems to watch every minute of the cable channel so you don't have to.
  • HistoryLink
    Fun to read and free encyclopedia of Washington State history. Founded by the late Walt Crowley, it's an indispensable tool and entertainment source for history wonks and surfers alike.

right-wing blogs we like

  • The Reagan Wing
    Hearin lies the real heart of Washington State Republicans. Doug Parris runs this red-meat social conservative group site which bars no holds when it comes to saying who they are and who they're not; what they believe and what they don't; who their friends are and where the rest of the Republicans can go. Well-written, and flaming.
  • Orbusmax
    inexhaustible Drudgery of NW conservative news
  • The Radio Equalizer
    prolific former Seattle KVI, KIRO talk host speaks authoritatively about radio.
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« Tami kosch to KXOT | Main | Profits for non-profit radio has staff steaming at KUOW »

August 22, 2007



Dude...get on with it; the minute you become a whiner you discount yourself. Treat it as a former employer and go for it!




Hey that's 30K years for ya ramtha...

Ken V

Hmmm. Like I've never been called a whiner before. Usually by people who say 'go for it!'


There is irony here. KIRO et al crie that they can not compete with NPR. I have never understood why, unless it that KUOW has higher production costs. If what Ken says is correct, perhaps the claim is false?

Maybe KPTK should hire him and see what ti can do.


Jeff Hansen looks like a love child of Former Interior Secretary James Watts.


Sparky, Only a very sick mind would ever put the words "love child" and James Watts in a single sentence. I'm worried for you...


I could have said "Rove"


Hmm, I respect people who speak up. But, it does also usually reflect emotions . . . he may regret it. Ironic that NPR which the right labels as liberal - waaaay liberal - is being accused of impeding free speech and stinginess which I always thought was characteristic of conservatives.

Maybe Ken Tomlinson left a few clones behind. Ya think?


As a conservative (and in media) this stuff knocks me out. Liberal media is supposed to be different. I cannot believe KUOW isn't all union-ed up for all the political correctness espoused and the lip service given on the air to economic equality, civil rights, yada, yada.
That there needs to be a union over there is surprising, and that there isn't one, is even more so.
You are acting like capitalist pigs--welcome down in the trough with the rest of us. Quit acting like you don't love the swill.


It just goes to show, Banquo, you conservatives think liberal when there isn't any . . . corporations are conservative and I guess you could say you've got the proof before your very eyes. Can you see it?

It's all about the money, sir banquo.


I hate to side with a stereotypical conservative view, but if the employees aren't happy with their pay they should leave. They can't? I guess they are earning precisely what the market is paying such people these days.

Ya, it sucks but people don't get paid in proportion to how hard they work or how talented they are, they get paid in proportion to how in demand they are and the scarcity of their skill.


Well, my first job out of high school (actually in high school) was with Eastman Kodak. George Eastman always had a reputation for paying well because he believed all people should be paid fairly and he believed his employees made his company better and made him richer.

So, I guess it isn't always demand and rarity. Sometimes it is integrity, conscience, and values.


Joanie ..

and sadly Kodak is on the rocks.


It isn't how Kodak treated their employees that caused their slippage, it was simply because they didn't keep up with the market. Yes, sadly they rested on their pre-established laurels (much like IBM did first time around) and didn't recognize that technology in their industry was passing them up. They are scrambling to catch back up but it may be too little too late.


We have to agree with you about Kodak. We watched as they refused to embrace the digital market until it was too late. Our sources tell us that the upcoming line of Kodak digital cameras are improved but they will not likely make a big dent in the consumer market.



I did not mean to suggest that Kodak's employment policy was the reason it got in trouble, rather to point out that in a capitalist system leadership decisions or events outside the company can determine the company's fate.

I am not sure Kodak should not have gone out of business as it saw the film world disappearing. Companies are an oddity. In pure capitalism mthey should disappear if their raison d etre poofs. But, they have beocme human-like entities that survive for survival's sake.

Back at the workers, I wonder if workers rather than managers might have made better decisions at Kodak? A weirdity of our corporate capitalism is that management often has no intrinsic interest in the company's long term survival. Moey is money. If closing Kodak worked for the shareholders, capitalism says close it!

Sorry to be longwinded, this would be better explored at SeattleJew,
but it has long seemed to me that worker ownership should make companies more viable since it is the workers who stand toi lose or gain the most.


KIRO employees have regretted throwing their union out. It is very hard to get recertified now. It would be interesting to see if KUOW would fight union organization like a private corporation. Sounds like they would.

Jim Solo

The unions damn near killed the Seattle papers with that goofy strike. it was a real set-back for everyone.
Still, how do you get management to listen if you have no leverage?

donna quixote

Nothing will happen because Seattle will ignore that anything could possibly be wrong with the sacred cow of their precious liberal institution, KUOW.
NPR has diversified and bent over backwards in the last 5 or so to allay accusations of bias and imbalance. KUOW has not. Where are the people of color? where are the conservatives? where are the women? they're sure as hell not in the important dayparts.
That is why it is dull as dishwater, and that is why people my age (I'm 28) do not listen.


I'm wondering if we women don't need to produce and market some programs . . . perhaps the problem is our lack of initiative in that area. I think the TV side -KCTS and PBS do a pretty good job maintaining diversity. POV, Moyers, To The Contrary, KCTS Connects, Nova, Nature, Foreign Exchange, children's programming . . .

If Vincent's take is correct, KUOW's management sounds like an old-style stuck-in-the-mud American corporation lacking innovative thinking, risk-taking and independent thinking. He does seem most critical of pay, however. Didn't say much about diversifying . . .


What this town needs is somewhere to go on the radio where it's not raving rightwingers yet not the boring wall to wall policy wonks and duffers.

How about lively discussions with people from all points of view? what a concept!

The Friday news discussion on Weakday is a circle jerk of agreeable geezers who already have msm soapboxes. Who cares what Susan Painter or Danny Westneat will add to what they have already written in the papers?

Why do I (and a whole lot of other people) read blogs? Because they are not by Joel Connelly or Joni Balter, or Knute Burger or those other smug, secure journalists on Weakday. KUOW is just an audio version of the msm status quo and ultimately it will lose out.

Now we hear they're a non-union shop who underpays the staff? Sounds like karma and the digital age has finally caught up with them.

Thanks Ken Vincent for throwing yourself in front of the bus. Maybe a reality check will help dislodge the old order (but I doubt it)


Bet they'll treat this like a "employee" problem, just like Entercom or Bonneville would. That's their excuse for not talking to the media.

It sounds like it is really much bigger problem than just Mr. Vincent being disgruntled, there are substantive questions being asked that effects the future of the station.

KUOW has been dazzled by the ratings surge in their favor because commercial news talk radio is imploding faster than they are.

They had better wake up.

sue b.

Stop! KUOW saves me every day. It is the place to go where I can be stimulated without being rankled. It is a bridge over troubled waters. I don't read the papers anymore so it is nice to hear what Susan Paynter is writing. I have listened to KUOW for 25 years. Don't pull the rug from beneath me now.


Yeah, let's not get too carried away. KUOW's news department is the best in town, and that is one place where there is diversity- lots of women and women of color. let's not forget Derek Wang- he does a great job in the very important daypart, the morning news. The rest of the day is pretty white, but you are right, it is also pretty boring. But they sound like they are changing that and maybe Ken couldn't take the changes.

Carol Edmonds

I dare KUOW to get a union. The station has no credibility for fairness if the employees have no bargaining power or negotiating possibilities. How long can they pay people the lowest wages in media by prevailing upon their youthful idealism? This is a non-profit corporation in name only, it has plenty of money which, according to Ken Vincent is held in reserves. For shame.


Vincent says KUOW pays "industry-median salaries", not "the lowest wages in media".

Carol Edmonds

Clarifier: That's median for the public radio industry, not the whole media. I've been in both. There is a lower scale for public media, which is OK in general, but public radio in Seattle has super community support, they can afford to pay people what they are worth. Organize people! it is your right.


The best reporting on KUOW and Ken Vincent's resignation is in The Stranger: http://www.thestranger.com/seattle/Content?oid=297396s.

If their account is accurate, KV's salary was around $50K (plus U of Washington employee benefits), which is far from poverty wages. It's low compared to the big-name personalities on commercial radio, but a lot more than your average talk-show screener/producer on KIRO or KVI, or KOMO newsreader.

But compared with other successful major-market public radio stations (like WBUR in Boston, and KQED in San Francisco among others), KUOW is apparently not paying as much for similar jobs. And
KUOW is sitting on a multi-million-dollar "reserve fund," rather than investing in current staff.

Union Yes

I'm smirking a little because wages have been an issue for years but no one wanted a union. It's ironic that the so called liberals (in management) vote for the right people, take mass transportation, pity the poor can't even talk a good game when it comes to paying THEIR employees well. They take the philosophy that if people aren't leaving why give them raises?

Since there is no social contract, that's why you need a union.

NPR Geek

KUOW made a $2.5m profit last year...so what's the need for their semi-annual beg-a-thons, where the inference is they're going "tit's up" if we don't give...what a crock.

 Wendy k

I was approached about the KXOT position (in the KUOW building) that Tami eventually accepted. They told me it paid about $40K. YOU try to rent an appartment, pay for a car (or bus pass), bills etc. in Seattle on that. Those are 1983 wages!!! An INSULT!!!


The U dub sits on some of the most expensive real estate in downtown Seattle. Like Ma Bell they are a cheap mother.


Hey geek: the need for more money is in the dna of corporations.

And Wendy: $40,000 is more than most teachers make. We're supposed to teach for "love." I've always heard you're supposed to work in radio because it's a "glamour" job.

I'd prefer not to work for "love." But, I do it. Are you still in radio?


Say BM, I lurk around here to get the inside poop on talk radio... So how's come I read about the KV deal here two days after the local rags have it up??


Furthermore; What's Dori's big announcement gonna' be tomorrow?


He's Pregnant

blathering michael

sometimes they beat us to the goods. shit happens. I'll try live up to your expectations...


Hey Sparky, you might want to ask coiler what sex Dori is before making more of a fool of yourself.


Steven, it ruins the joke if I have to explain it to you...nevermind.


nevets, come back to bed, dear.


Dori's big anouncement? Probably that five year Seahawks anouncing thing. Wooowoowoo!



The only tie between UW and KUOW are the letter K and O.


The stench of entitlement is strong here, the idea that talent should come with a big monetary reward just because it's talent. Even the fanciest water is still water.

Anyone who sets out in life to make riches by talking into a microphone should realize that the act of "talking" is by itself unproductive, and that the one thing people are willing to exchange for money is productivity. What does a radio host application say? Lifting requirement: fingers?

They should be happy making what little they do in exchange for talking into a microphone. Some of us have to scrap plaq off of people's teeth all day long, or stock shelves in grocery stores just as people walk up and take things off of them again.


As a long time public radio employee, I've worked for no money, then some money, and finally a little bit of money.

The bottom line is after more than a decade in the business, I still live paycheck to paycheck… And not because I can't budget.

Very few people get rich working for public radio and still fewer manage to make a real living wage. We do it for the love of the medium. For the freedom to do real stories instead of the 1-minute car crash crap you have to grind out at commercial stations.

The sense of entitlement is strong here seattlejew?

You think my job is easy? You think we just "talk" for a living?

Really, you have no idea.


Sorry seattlejew. My comments were directed at Andrew.


Been there at KUOW. Hansen and Roth (the GM) have no connection or rapport with news/talk staff. They occasionally issue edicts, but mostly hole up in offices, talk to each other, and stare at ratings graphs.
earlybird is right on the point.


This is sadly a perfect cautionary tale about the hubris of public broadcasting management. As a 20 year vet of the field, I've seen the rise of management - most of whom excelled in their various public media silos (programming, fundraising, etc.) - only to be made managers. And a majority of those appointed in that manner will always suck - you know, rise to the level of your incompetence.

But the management bloat in public radio is amazing - everything is managed TO DEATH, and it sounds like KUOW is no exception.

Finally - not paying your talent well is a crime, and yet it's par for the course for public radio. My theory is that managment in the industry is ego-driven, and the brains behind all of the decsion making and program sculpting, "so why should those hard-to-handle hosts get all the money?" The answer is because in personality driven radio, listeners flock to the product, not to the management behind the product. ANd when listeners come to listen, they become members and pay the salaries of everyone at the station, and so-on...

If public radio (and TV) managers ever stop taking themselves so seriously, the external on-air product and the internal station machinations will become harmonious. Don't hold your breath.

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