Urbin Report

Thursday, December 18, 2003

Breaking News Fails to Please Some Listeners

By Jeffrey A. Dvorkin
Ombudsman
National Public Radio

This may be the column where I differ with the concerns of some listeners.

'Where's My Vivaldi?'

The announcement of the capture of Saddam Hussein by U.S. forces pushed NPR into its "news special" mode. But some listeners found this important news story an intrusion on their usually predictable Sunday morning. Listener Siochain Hall writes:

Are we, as listeners, again to be inundated with numbing news of Saddam Hussein's capture? Will we be flogged with the dastardly deeds of the dictator 24/7, so that we listeners can turn off the NPR radio station altogether till the frenzy wanes?
After all, who wants to listen to a story about how a bunch of capitalist mercenaries oppress a poor helpless socialist savior? (Can I switch off the sarcasm mode now?)

-- Les