April 9, 2013

Board of Directors Meeting Minutes
April 9, 2013 | Called to Order: 11:03 AM EDT

Board Members Present: Regina Dean, Tom Hunt, Christina Kuzmych, Paul Maassen, Karen Olstad, Dan Skinner Guests: None

I. Super Regional–Going on as planned. November 12-14. 

The meeting will be held in D.C. at the Gaylord about a 10-15 minute bus ride to NPR. NPR will pick up the cost of busses. Cost will be reasonable for DC (approximately $220/night). AREPs meeting will be held in conjunction with Super Regional. Schedule is still in planning. Hold the Date info will be going to stations soon.

II. Update on PRRO meeting with Joyce Mac and Bob Kempff about NPR Digital

a. Q. What is the status of NPR Digital within NPR Structure? A. The three year plan leads to positive cash flow in 2015. And is on track. At that point, the question will go to managers to decide whether it should continue. Almost all stations are using some of NPR Digital’s services. There is a survey coming out to gauge stations’ satisfaction with services.
b. Q. Customer service is an issue for some stations. Stations need quicker response. A. Bob Kempff was surprised to hear this, will look into it.
c. Q. Is it possible to increase space on the home page? A. Bob will look into it.
d. Q. Is it time for another series of fly-ins? A. Probably not fly-ins, but series of conference calls and/or webinars to get input.
e. Q. Why are not all the tools/capabilities on npr.org not available for stations.? A. Issue is that one size doesn’t always fit all when designing tools for stations.

III. Update on PRRO meeting with Joyce Mac and Kinsey Wilson about the TOTN announcement and aftermath.

Joyce and Kinsey met with PRRO Presidents to discuss how events unfolded. It didn’t go the way they had planned because news travels so quickly with social media and story was leaked. The board thinks that NPR should have been prepared for and planned for leaks. PRROs conveyed stations’ frustration with timing and how it was communicated especially for stations that were fundraising. We hope that there are lessons learned so communication is more effective in the future. Karen noted that the press release implied that Here & Now would replace TOTN in stations’ schedules and that Science Friday would continue to be broadcast. Board members would like to remind NPR that they need to be aware and include in their communication that programming decisions are made by individual stations. Karen also reported that this information had been conveyed to the NPR’s Ombudsman’s Office and was acknowledged and corrected. Board members were also frustrated that talking points for stations were not available at same time the announcement was made rather than hours later.

Meeting Adjourned at 12:13 ET

Respectfully submitted,
Karen Olstad

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