June 17, 2021
KUOW PRESS RELEASE
Seattle, WA — At KUOW, our mission is to create and serve a more informed public. We believe that strong local journalism is essential for community and democracy to thrive, and we also know that the past year has drastically shifted audience behaviors, desires, and expectations for local journalism.
It is critical that KUOW continues to innovate our programming in order to best serve the changing needs of our region and the people who live in it. Today, we are excited to announce a large-scale initiative to expand and innovate our local content offerings, including the development of a new project led by Bill Radke, new local podcast pilots, and a reimagining of our flagship local news show The Record with a new format and a new host this fall.
The goal of this initiative is to ensure that KUOW is living up to our mission and is best positioned to create content that is relevant, accessible and essential to the diverse communities of the Puget Sound region.
“This is an opportunity for KUOW to continue translating our mission, vision and values into action,” said Brendan Sweeney, KUOW director of new content and innovation. “This initiative will leverage the creativity and curiosity of our talented team of journalists. But we will also engage listeners and creators across the Puget Sound region to understand what kind of content they want and need at this critical juncture.”
NEW BILL RADKE PROJECT CONNECTING WITH LISTENERS
Starting June 28, Bill Radke will be working with KUOW’s podcast development team on a new listener engagement-focused project. The project will double-down on Bill’s strengths as a host and creator, as well as his curiosity about our region and the people who live in it. As he gets to work on this new venture, The Record team will concurrently be working on reimagining the show and will pause its Monday through Thursday production starting June 28 (more on this below). Bill Radke will continue to host Week in Review on Fridays.
“Some of my favorite moments on The Record have been talking to listeners who are trying — just like I am — to make sense of the world. I’m looking forward to connecting directly with listeners in our region and having fun together as we try to puzzle things out,” said Radke.
THE RECORD TEAM TO DEVELOP NEW SHOW
The Record debuted in the fall of 2013. Since then, our region and our community have experienced immense changes. This summer, the team behind The Record will be taking time to reimagine and retool KUOW’s flagship local news program with plans to launch a new show in the fall with a new format and host. As the team works to pilot new approaches, KUOW will be pausing The Record’s Monday – Thursday production starting June 28. In its stead, KUOW will air WBUR’s On Point at 12 p.m. Monday through Thursday. Week in Review will continue on Fridays with Bill Radke as host.
In taking time to explore new approaches to a local news program, KUOW will be evaluating how to best serve the current needs of our community and adapt to a rapidly changing media landscape.
“It’s rare to have time or space to rethink an existing program,” said Sweeney. “We want to do this right and with our audience’s input.” If you are a regular listener of The Record or if you have thoughts on what kind of show you think Seattle needs right now, we’d love to hear from you here.
PODCAST PILOTING PROJECT
Podcasts remain a crucially important channel for engaging local listeners with high-quality audio reporting and storytelling. Since 2017, KUOW has produced nine stand-alone podcasts including Primed, THE WILD with Chris Morgan, Battle Tactics for Your Sexist Workplace, and most recently, our daily news podcast Seattle Now. KUOW is excited to continue expanding our podcast platform with a new piloting pipeline for community-sourced ideas. We are looking for bold, innovative proposals on a variety of topics and all grounded in the place we call home.
If you are interested in submitting a podcast proposal to KUOW, you can learn more and get started here. Note: You do not need audio production experience to submit a podcast proposal and all creators selected for the pilot will be compensated for their work. The deadline for proposals is August 2, 2021.