Yellowstone Public Radio

1500 University Drive
Billings, MT 59101-0298
406.657.2941
800.441.2941
406.657.2977 FAX

YPR Bison Logo

| Home | About YPR | YPR Broadcast Area | YPR Program Guide | Online Audio | YPR News Desk |
| Support YPR | Community Events | Underwriters | Contact YPR | Links | Site Map |

LISTEN ONLINE
Windows 80k
MP3 24k
Election 2008

ypradio.org > YPR News Desk > How to Participate in Live Call-In Programs

How to Participate in Live Call-In Programs

guidelines from YPR News Director Jackie Yamanaka

 

All calls will now be screened. That means just because you've called in it doesn't guarantee you will get to ask your question or state your comment on the air.

First let me say call screening is not new. All national radio talk shows have call screeners. It's fairly new to YPR.

 

Why the change?
"Live" talk shows on public radio are a fast-paced, thoughtful, and intelligent discussion of issues for the benefit of listeners. You won't find the "Yeah, yeah. Good point, man!" call.

What YPR News is looking for from participants are unique questions, personal experiences, and sometimes opinions to advance the topic/discussion--and all in a short period of time. This doesn't sound very democratic, but without screening talk shows are disjointed and confusing radio programs.

This doesn't mean YPR News doesn't want you to call in. On the contrary, we want your input. So here are some tips to better your chances of being included in our programs:

  • Know the topic being discussed. Before we go on the air, YPR News will provide the guests and topics to be discussed. We will include, with links, all relevant information. Hosts will also state up front the topic/subject of the segment. Your "assignment" is to come up with a question/personal anecdote on that topic. If you call in and your question/comment is not applicable, YPR will have to reject your call. Don't take it personally. It just didn't fit within the parameter of the segment.
  • Be brief. You will have to state your question or comment quickly and concisely.
  • Don't use a speaker phone. The sound quality is often too poor to be understandable on the radio, especially to a listener who is tuning in on a car radio. If call on a cell phone, PLEASE not while you're diving.
  • Turn down your radio. Otherwise, there will be feedback that is broadcast over the radio.

 

How will this work?
Here is a brief rundown of what you will encounter when you call in to a YPR News-produced program:

  1. "Good evening. What is your question for (guest/topic currently under discussion)?" At this point, please be ready to articulate the question/comment you wish to make. If you are unable to to quickly get your point across, the screener will likely put you on hold to answer additional calls. Use this time to frame your question/comment.
  2. "What is your first name?" This information is required. It is not considered intrusive and if you argue with the screener about providing a first name, the screener will move on to another caller.
  3. "Where are you calling from?" Again, this information is required. Certain guests/topics may deal with a particular area, and the inclusion of your location may add to your comments. It is not considered intrusive and if you argue with the screener about providing a location, the screener will move on to another caller.
  4. Once the screener has all the information they need, you will be placed on hold. Your information is then passed to the host, who makes the final determination about your appearance on the program. Should you not make it onto the broadcast, a screener will let you know.

 

What about e-mail questions?
YPR News certainly encourages you to send your questions/comments via e-mail, either in advance of or during the the program broadcast. All participants' first names and locations must be included in the body of the e-mail to be considered for reading on the broadcast. As with phone calls, the host(s) make the final determination for inclusion on the broadcast.

 

To see how National Public Radio deals with the issue of listener participation, visit How to Get on Talk of the Nation, an article on NPR's website by former NPR OmbudsmanJeffrey Dvorkin, written in April, 2006.


| Home | About YPR | YPR Broadcast Area | YPR Program Guide | Online Audio | YPR News Desk |
| Support YPR | Community Events | Underwriters | Contact YPR | Links | Site Map |