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Reader feedback 7.30.03

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NPR at RUR

Is WXXI the Great Satan? Of course not. Today, especially, WXXI provides a badly needed breath of liberal air for all of us drowning in the sea of Rush and cohorts. While these ideas should be heard, however, it is sad to see another unique local radio voice semi-silenced.

            In years past, I enjoyed the early morning jazz programming of community members like Fred Costello on WRUR, as well as the wonderful blues and R&B programming on Friday evenings. Now there are fewer of these singular voices and programs on the air.

            It is a shame that WRUR's student or university management couldn't have reached out to the community to find those who have something to say or play that provides a valuable alternative, instead of a re-broadcast of what is available on WXXI-AM.

            My belief is that WXXI will gradually creep further into the lifeblood and programming of WRUR until it becomes an NPR station with only some local, U of R-created content.

            Chuck Ingersoll, Fairport (Ingersoll is former program director of WCMF and WSAY. He currently hosts a weekly jazz program on WGMC.)

College sounds

Thank you, City, for your article regarding our station and WXXI ("Mixed Signals," June 25). To our listeners, I would like to add that our programming rarely resumes its previous schedule, so don't hold your collective breath.

            WRUR's student board gives little if any regards to their listenership. They need to realize the community members are the mainstay of the station, while they are here today, gone tomorrow. And they refuse to give us time to let our listeners know there is going to be a change.

            Since I first arrived at WRUR in 1995, there has been a battle between the students and community members. I am constantly told by the students (and at least one outsider) that since the station is located in a college, it should "belong" to them. They want to keep a college attitude at the station. The faculty apparently agrees with this.

            Why do students need 3,000 watts to do this (or 950, in the case of RIT)? Ten watts should be enough to cover a single campus broadcasting. No one outside a campus cares about what a bunch of college kids are doing.

            Rochester desperately needs a viable community radio station. WRUR was the last resemblance of real radio in this town. Why can't more stations realize that block programming, allowing a knowledgeable DJ to control the music, and developing listenerships of various degrees is better than presuming to know what the public wants and likes?

            Although the existing shows still keep their basic formats, there now has to be some compromising in the way of NPR programming (the news now pops up automatically and cuts off whatever show is on, virtually every hour, as opposed to the DJs controlling the AP news between shows).

            I also worry whether there will be other spots added to cut us off, be they from WXXI or WRUR. As it is, our two live experimental shows are now interrupted.

            To my friend, Forrest Cummings: I'm very sorry to see you go after almost two decades.

            And finally to WXXI's Norm Silverstein: How insulting to imply that we are short on diversity. Apparently you've never listened to WRUR in the past. I guarantee you would not find a more diverse station in town. Considering that most students play the same music (emo pop, punk/metal, hip-hop, techno), I'd say we'll be more concentrated.

            Peter Badore, Rumson Road, Greece (Badore is former jazz coordinator and host of "Other Aspects" on WRUR.)

Cleaning up

A summer street party and a celebratory parade --- how wonderful! But who is going to clean up the shocking amount of trash and broken glass on East Avenue from Prince Street to Gibbs, on the sidewalks and grass borders? I noted that the public trash can on East and Scio was overflowing all over the sidewalk on Saturday evening after the events. Obviously, it would help if there were a lot of trash receptacles along the way. The street cleaners were out afterwards, but I never saw the sidewalks and grass borders being cleaned.

            C. Gordon, East Avenue, Rochester

Summer sounds

Gorgeous evening, beautiful George Eastman House grounds, and the well-anticipated joy of a performance by Jay Ungar and Molly Mason: perfection!

            Well, not really: Nearby people seated in prime spots talked nonstop throughout the concert ("they haven't known each other that long" etc.). Changing locations simply found another set of voices.

            Hey, folks, whether you choose a concert, movie, play, or even church services, please save the chatter for before and after, or at least sit on the far fringes. Why diminish the pleasure others have in the event?

            This goes for the guy with the cell phone, too.

            Jan Hickman, Fountain Street, Rochester

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