Dear KUNC and The Colorado Sound listeners, users, and supporters,
Twitter has labeled NPR’s (National Public Radio) official Twitter account as “government-funded media” after identifying the account as “state-run media” in previous days. These designations are usually given to government-controlled media outlets, which is inaccurate when referring to NPR. This morning, NPR decided to pause posting on all 52 of their Twitter feeds.
After much consideration and discussion with our content leaders, KUNC, and our music service, The Colorado Sound will pause posting to our Twitter accounts as of this afternoon. I believe in the sanctity of our constitutional guarantee of a free press that we are not beholden to our government in any way in publishing what we do. It is why I have dedicated my career to public media. Unbiased, truthful, fact-based reporting and service to the community are at the heart of what we do. The fact that we are not beholden to any funding or influence from any person, corporation, foundation, government agency, or otherwise is the reason we exist. We are accountable to one group of people and one group only: you, the public.
To clarify our relationship with NPR, I offer the following:
NPR is a nonprofit media organization that produces and distributes news and cultural programming to a network of over 1,000 public media organizations in the United States. While NPR provides programming to these stations, each station is independently owned and operated and has 100% editorial control over its programming. Stations and their staff do not work for NPR; NPR is a content creation and distribution organization where we purchase most of our non-local programming.
NPR is not our sole source for content; we also purchase and/or license content from other distributors such as PRX (This American Life, The World, Latino USA), American Public Media (Marketplace, On Point, and the BBC World Service), as well as others. Of course, we also create our own local news and programming with our staff and partners here in Northern Colorado and are dedicated to serving our community with local news and culture.
The U.S. government does not directly fund NPR. However, NPR does receive some funding from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB), a nonprofit corporation created by Congress in 1967 to promote public broadcasting. In fact, we adhere to the act that was the purpose behind creating the CPB: to create a more informed and enlightened public. President Lyndon B. Johnson signed the act into law that year and described its purpose:
“It announces to the world that our nation wants more than just material wealth; our nation wants more than a ‘chicken in every pot.’ We in America have an appetite for excellence, too. While we work every day to produce new goods and to create new wealth, we want most of all to enrich man’s spirit. That is the purpose of this act.”
Community Radio for Northern Colorado (CRNC), the parent company of KUNC and The Colorado Sound, also receives a small amount of funding from the CPB in relation to our overall budget to honor the act of providing free news, arts and culture, and community information to all people in our service areas.
CRNC seeks to diversify our revenue streams which helps to ensure that our organization is not obligated to any one interest. Below is a chart outlining our revenue sources for our fiscal year 2022, October 1, 2021 – September 30, 2022.
Accountability, truth, fairness, increasing civic participation for democracy, and bearing witness to history, are the journalistic and community principles that KUNC & The Colorado Sound stand on, and in honoring that to the letter, we wish wholeheartedly to engage with you all on our many other platforms found here and here.
Please email me with any questions or concerns at email@example.com.
President & CEO
April 12th, 2023