Pacifica in Exile is an independent publication that documents and records the activities of the Pacifica Radio Foundation, the founder of listener-sponsored noncommercial radio in the United States and the current license-holder for five public stations: KPFK in Los Angeles/Santa Barbara, WBAI in New York/New Jersey, WPFW in Washington DC, KPFT in Houston and KPFA in Berkeley/Oakland/San Francisco. Pacifica also distributes programs to 200+ affiliated stations and maintains a historical audio archive.
Pacifica in Exile tracks the democratic governance experiment that began in Pacifica Radio in 2002, when a three year rebellion by staffers and some listeners in the network’s signal areas resulted in an intervention by the California Attorney General and the replacement of the organization’s structure and board. Pacifica’s democratically elected boards are open to anyone who can convince 15 other members to sign in support of them, donate $25 a year and win a local election that uses an STV proportional voting system.
Pacifica has been struggling to keep up with massive changes in the media landscape with it’s boards composed of ordinary folks and has suffered a significant decline in financial support (more than 25% since 2007), managerial and executive instability, and local and national boards that have largely deteriorated into factional turf battles for control of program slots and the hiring/firing of personnel.
Pacifica in Exile draws upon significant hands-on experience with Pacifica, including paid and volunteer positions as well as governance experience to tell the tale starting from the board coup of March of 2014 to the current day. We include as much back-up documentation and organizational history as possible and verification of any statements included in the blog, if not provided in the text on the website, is available upon request to journalists or engaged listener-members of the radio stations.
Please note that Pacifica in Exile started this freestanding site in July of 2015, so earlier posts may contain links that no longer work. We will be slowly trying to reset all of those older links as we can, but the task is a vast one. All posts as of July 2015 will have functional links. All linked information is available on the site or our document and audio archives, so please write to us at firstname.lastname@example.org with any requests for an updated link.
We’re very glad to have you here reading. Community media is important to us and we want a strongly positive outcome for this internally and externally challenged organization. Your attention and involvement is key to that good outcome.