Radio Daze

170 Million Americans Support Public Broadcasting

A group called 170 Million Americans, a partnership of more than 400 public television and radio stations throughout the country, has been signing up members online to endorse the institution of public broadcasting. The organizers say, “We expect the 2012 budget year to bring another hard-fought debate over the importance of public media, and we need the support and energy of every possible supporter right now.” The website also supplies visitors with the email addresses of their elected representatives in Washington, D.C., and asks that they express their opinion about the topic.

The organization states that more than half of all Americans use non-commercial public media through 368 public television stations, 934 public radio stations, hundreds of online services, education services, and in-person events and activities. In 2010, Americans rated public broadcasting as an excellent use of taxpayer dollars, second only to defense spending, and 80 percent of those polled said funding for public broadcasting is money well-spent. It enhances the quality of local community life through children’s, public affairs, music and cultural programming not often provided by other sources.

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