For Release April 5, 1999
FAIR's extensive research into the mass
media has led us to see the connection between unaccountable corporate
structures at news outlets and declining commitment to the public interest.
While FAIR considers Pacifica
to be one of the most important independent media outlets in the country, we feel the need to express our belief that Pacifica should have open and accountable management processes. Indeed, as a community radio network,
Pacifica owes it to the public to be far more open and accountable than corporate, mainstream media outlets.
We are particularly concerned about the
departure from KPFA of Nicole Sawaya, a station manager who was highly
regarded by station staff, volunteers and listeners. Pacifica's executive
director says that the decision is an "internal management decision." In
view of the unique and participatory role that Pacifica stations have played
in the community, we think Pacifica has not adequately explained its decision.
We urge Pacifica to reconsider the move not to renew Sawaya's contract.
In addition, we question Pacifica's order to KPFA reporters not cover this
decision -- a
decision that has led to public debate and protest.
Contact: Steve Rendall :SRendall@fair.org