“KUSF sale completed, FCC probe ends.” By Vivian Ho. San Francisco Chronicle. June 8, 2012. The multimillion dollar sale of the University of San Francisco-owned classical music radio channel was finalized after more than a year of discussion when all parties in the transaction agreed to pay $50,000 each to end a Federal Communications Commission investigation, officials announced Thursday. KUSF can now transfer its broadcast license to the nonprofit Classical Public Radio Network, a classical music station operated by the University of Southern California. The sale was announced in January 2011, with KDFC, the Bay Area’s only classical music station, moving up the FM dial to 90.3 and booting out KUSF’s student radio programming. The student radio station retained use of the KUSF letters, but is now only accessible online. FCC officials said that the transaction violated the commission’s rules that forbid noncommercial educational radio stations from selling programming time for profit. FCC Media Bureau Chief William Lake said in a statement that this $3.75 million sale would allow Classical Public Radio Network to provide all of KDFC’s programming “in return for a monthly payment that exceeded the station’s expenses.” USF and CPRN’s $50,000 “voluntary contribution” to the U.S. Treasury ends the FCC probe. Though the station will be owned by Classical Public Radio Network, which is owned by the USC, the Bay Area will still have access to its programming at its 90.3 frequency, as well as to its relationship with the San Francisco Opera and San Francisco Symphony. KDFC has been running programming at 90.3 since the sale announcement in January 2011. Many listeners were angered by the sale announcement and departure of KUSF from the airwaves, a move that ended 33 years of locally selected music and community programming. Some of those listeners issued a statement Thursday saying they would appeal the FCC’s approval of the sale.
“CNC Suspending Publication.” By James O’Shea. Chicago News Co-op (chicagonewscoop.org). June 10th, 2012 (February 21, 2012). To our readers: As you might have heard or read by now, the Chicago News Cooperative is suspending its contributions to the Midwest pages of the New York Times and its website effective February 26 so we can reassess our operations and determine if there is a more sustainable path to the future. Effective next Sunday, the Times pages produced by the CNC will no longer appear in the Friday and Sunday editions of the newspaper and its website. Obviously I’ve taken this step with much pride and regret – pride in the excellent journalism produced by the CNC staff over the past two and one-half years and regret that I could not raise the resources we needed to continue our current level of operations. As the CNC’s editor and CEO, I take full responsibility for this situation. Unlike similar start-up efforts like the Texas Tribune in Austin, the Bay Citizen inSan Francisco and ProPublica in New York, we never recruited the kind of seven figure donations from people of means concerned about the declining quality of news coverage around the country. As a result, CNC never raised the resources to make investments in the business side of our operation that would have generated the revenue we needed to achieve our original goal – a self-sustaining news operation within 5 years. CNC always has been an experiment in trying to figure out a way to finance accountability journalism, the kind of reporting that many news organizations are abandoning as they struggle with a deteriorating business model and financial problems. This is a very difficult problem especially in major cities and carries ominous implications for a democracy. An organization dedicated to public service journalism is an indispensible civic asset, and we remain committed to finding some possible answers. In the coming days and weeks, we will be examining our potential to see if we can identify an alternative path and preserve some of the journalistic assets we have developed. Continued support is welcome and would help us figure out the best path for CNC.