Georgia State University President Mark Becker sat down with the students and leadership of Album 88 (WRAS-FM/88.5) this morning to discuss the outcry over the student-run radio station’s daytime takeover by Georgia Public Broadcasting (GPB).
GSU posted this statement from Becker: “We had a highly positive and productive meeting and agreed to work with them to explore options. We are committed to addressing the concerns that have been expressed so we can move forward together to pursue what is best for Georgia State and our community.”
During a press conference following the meeting, outgoing Album 88 general manager Anastasia Zimitravich said the meeting was productive and she felt more optimistic moving forward. Whether Album 88 can stave off a complete June 2 daytime takeover is still unclear while it continues dialogue with the university and GPB.
Under the deal, Album 88’s 100,000 watt signal would be used to air public radio programming from 5 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily, relegating students to the evening and overnight hours.
She said Becker told the students that his primary motivation for the GPB contract was the more expansive television opportunities for the school, since part of the deal with GPB would be use of their studios by students.
“We’re hoping for less GPB programming on air and hopeful that we will be in more contact regarding contract changes,” she said. “Our main goal will be to keep the programming the way it is now.”
There was also discussion of Album 88 becoming more like Seattle’s alternative-indie rock station KEXP-FM, which is operated by the University of Washington with the support of NPR and the non-profit Experience Music Project. Disc jockeys, including students from UoW, program the station. KEXP also has a robust online streaming component, which Album 88 said it would like to replicate.