Fwd: [CommunitiesUnited] WYOU TV Needs Your Help
- ---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Barbara Smith <barbara@...>
Date: Sun, Nov 1, 2009 at 11:41 AM
Subject: [CommunitiesUnited] WYOU TV Needs Your Help
To: CU <CommunitiesUnited@yahoogroups.com>
WYOU TV has local Spanish language programming on Friday and Saturday
nights. Is there any other source for that in Madison?
WYOU offers the award-winning national news program "Democracy Now" as
well as some other high quality news programs like Grit TV and
documentaries. It also offers unique local programs, including
interviews with community elders, and discussion of local civic issues.
Recently there has been a whole series on WYOU on Regional
Transportation Authority (RTA) issues. WYOU filmed lots of footage at
the Aug. 31st "Ride the Drive" event (disclosure: I was filmed at a
"Peak Oil" booth there), bringing word of many community groups to cable
viewers in our area.
WYOU is a community treasure. Don't let it sink!
Please contact your Alder today, to ask them to restore the $70,000 cut
to WYOU. With the demise of our newspapers nationally and locally,
independent media is more important than ever. The City Council will
vote on funding in early November.
Please contact your Alder today to support WYOU.The Time is Now!
WYOU is about to lose $70,000 of funding from the city of Madison, unless we get the City Council to restore it.
The most immediate step you can take is to write a paragraph or two to the Madison newspapers expressing your support of WYOU. We need to build a groundswell of support for the station over the next week before the public hearing start.
You also should as many of the following as you can:
Contact your alder to ask that funding be restored.
You can find your alder at: http://www.cityofmadison.com/Council/findAddress.cfm
Come to the Madison City Council meeting Tuesday, November 3rd at 6:30 PM.
Come to the Madison City Council meeting Tuesday, November 10th at 5:30 PM.
Attend to register your support in favor of maintaining WYOU’s funding at the current level.
You can simply appear in the audience and sign your support, or you can speak for a few minutes directly to the City Council to share why you feel Public Access TV should be preserved.
Please wear a WYOU T-shirt if you have one.
Directions for speaking and registering support for an issue before the council are explained at: http://www.cityofmadison.com/Council/Register.cfm
This is an “all hands on deck” moment, and we hope to see you there.
The funding cut proposed by the Mayor was determined before the current WYOU leadership was in place, and over this past year, the new station leadership has improved station operations on many levels, and increased the fundraising amount by over 1,000%. We have tremendous momentum right now and it would be a shame to have the plug pulled just as we are hitting our stride, which the Mayor’s budget cut would do.
Thank you for your support.
WYOU Key MessagesWYOU strengthens our democracy. Literally anyone can walk in and get expert training on professional video cameras, editing systems and live broadcast equipment. Hundreds of people, from young children to retired people, from virtually every nationality around the globe, and from every income bracket, are taught by the WYOU staff and given the opportunity to tell their stories to the world. Is there any place else in Madison that comes anywhere close to providing this same service?
Many WYOU alumni have gone on to start media production companies in Dane County , thereby creating jobs for the community. All from training received at WYOU.
With continued consolidation of commercial broadcast media and rapidly diminishing print media, public access to the national conversation is diminishing. Our mission is to stimulate and facilitate community use of the public access station for the development of local television programming, and give an opportunity for anyone to contribute to our national discourse.
Starting at the end of 2008, WYOU has had new leadership, and during this last year, station operations have been improved on many levels. New community outreach efforts have taken place with the business and nonprofit communities, all with great success in a short time span. New fundraising initiatives have generated over 1,000% increase over the previous year’s fundraising, which is phenomenal given the current economic environment.
During 2009, WYOU partnered with several leading Madison businesses to begin reliably streaming WYOU programming 24/7. This allows call-in shows to take calls and develop viewership from all over the world, thereby giving Madison a platform to promote itself worldwide.
WYOU is not funded by “taxpayer money.” WYOU is funded through memberships, teaching fees, fundraising (which has been increased over 1,000% since the new leadership has been in place in 2009), and PEG fees, which stands for Public, Education, and Government. PEG funding amounts to approximately 63 cents on each cable subscribers bill, and WYOU receives a very small fraction of that 63 cents.
Since the Mayor has changed the use of PEG funding from the original intent, we’re asking the City Alders to change it back to the original intent. The budget cut “agreement” was made before the current WYOU leadership was in place.
There is legislation proposed on the state and national levels to main PEG funding as it has traditionally been. If the WYOU funding cut that Mayor is proposing happens, the station is unlikely to survive, and will cease providing the education and opportunities that WYOU gives to anyone in the Madison area.