KQED Lets Listeners “Turn Pledge Off” With Pledge-Free Stream

-- Innovative service back by popular demand --

    “Finally, KQED in northern California has come up with a solution” –The Atlantic

    “At last, you can avoid the public radio pledge drive” –CNET

    “KQED is offering quite the thank-you gift to listeners” –Current.org

August 24, 2011, San Francisco --- Fundraising drives are critical for the success of listener-supported radio, but KQED recognizes that interruptions to favorite programming can become tiresome after loyal listeners have already pledged their support. With this in mind, KQED is proud to once again offer its audience an innovative thank-you gift: the Pledge-Free Stream.

KQED made history in April when it rolled out this alternative to the classic pledge drive. The Pledge-Free Stream was the first of its kind, the first attempt by any public media station to offer audiences the satisfaction of giving without pledge break interruptions. In a survey sent to donors for the first Pledge-Free Stream, more than 98 percent of users asked KQED to bring it back. Tomorrow, the service will again be made available for the upcoming September fundraiser. By donating $45 before September 8 and choosing the Pledge-Free Stream thank-you gift, members will be able to listen to KQED Public Radio on their computers or smartphones without pledge break interruptions for the duration of the drive.

“The Pledge-Free Stream is a great solution for KQED supporters who know exactly what they want – great content without fundraising interruptions,” stated Donald Derheim, chief operating officer and executive vice president. “KQED strives to create the best public radio experience possible for our listeners, and we’ll continue to explore those alternative funding models that work for our audiences.”

The Pledge-Free Stream continues a history of innovation from KQED. Serving the technologically progressiveNorthern California audience, KQED has itself long been recognized as a leader in the public media system. The station's inventive fundraising techniques, dating back to the 1950s – notably, the concept of audience memberships, pledge nights, and televised auctions – became the national fundraising standard early on in the public broadcasting industry.

*The details


The Pledge-Free Stream is an alternate, second live stream of KQED Public Radio, the most-listened-to radio station in the Bay Area, that carries all regular KQED radio programming, including live news reports (except for traffic updates). The Pledge-Free Stream will be hosted live by a second team of on-air announcers, who will work out of a separate studio. The stream will omit all fundraising breaks. The Pledge-Free Stream will be accessible through compatible Web browsers on a computer, smartphone, or tablet, on up to four browsers, through the end of the September 2011 Fundraiser. For more information and technical requirements, visit kqed.org/pfs.

About KQED

KQED (kqed.org) has served Northern California for more than 50 years and is affiliated with NPR and PBS. KQED owns and operates public television stations KQED 9 (San Francisco/Bay Area), KQED Plus (San Jose/Bay Area), and KQET 25 (Watsonville/Monterey); KQED Public Radio (88.5FM San Francisco and 89.3FM Sacramento); the interactive platforms kqed.org and KQEDnews.org; and KQED Education. KQED Public Television, one of the nation's most-watched public television stations, is the producer of local and national series such as QUEST; Check, Please! Bay Area; This Week in Northern California; Truly CA; and Essential Pépin.  KQED's digital television channels include 9HD, KQED Life, KQED World, KQED Kids, and KQED V-me, and are available 24/7 on Comcast.  KQED Public Radio, home of Forum with Michael Krasny and The California Report, is one of the most-listened-to public radio stations in the nation with an award-winning news and public affairs program service delivering more than eighteen local newscasts daily.  KQED Interactive provides KQED’s cross-platform news service, KQEDnews.org, as well as offers several popular local blogs, video and audio podcasts, and a live radio stream at kqed.org. KQED Education brings the impact of KQED to thousands of teachers, students, parents, and the general public through workshops, community screenings, and multimedia resources.


Media Contact: Meredith Gandy

415.553.2116 / mgandy@kqed.org