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Playlist: News Station Picks for March '10

Compiled By: PRX Curators

 Credit: <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/26334329@N02/3733827840/">Kristen Holden</a>
Image by: Kristen Holden 
Curated Playlist

Here are March picks for news stations from PRX News Format Curator Naomi Starobin.

What Naomi listens for in news programming.

This month, I looked at recent submissions to PRX for some solid pieces that would appeal to many listeners. Take a listen!

Madoff Whistle-Blower: ‘No One Would Listen’

From Curt Nickisch | 13:13

A solid, easy-to-follow explanation of the discovery of Bernard Madoff's Ponzi scheme, focusing on the man who played a big role in the exposure of the scam, Harry Markopolos. It's by Curt Nickisch, business and technology reporter at WBUR in Boston, and frequent contributor on NPR. We hear from Markopolos, coworkers and a victim of the Ponzi scheme, who thanks Markopolos for his dogged and often frustrating attempts to get the SEC to investigate Madoff.

This would be good to air when the subject of Madoff hits the news, or another Ponzi scheme is revealed, or anytime you want your listeners to have a deeper understanding of just what took place.

0226_markopolos-revisited-book-sm_small Harry Markopolos, the man who tried futilely for 10 years to expose Bernard Madoff the largest Ponzi scheme in history, has written a book about his failed crusade.

“No One Would Listen: A True Financial Thriller” is being released March 2, 2010.  Markopolos is heading out on a national media tour to promote it.  He'll be on “The Daily Show with Jon Stewart,” the “Today” show, and a bunch of others.  Audible is making the first chapter of the audio book available as a free download.

But before the book tour, Curt Nickisch got the first radio interview with Markopolos, talked to people who knew him, and produced this story about the man who’s still coming to terms with the fact he’d always been right about Madoff, but it didn’t do any good.

Madoff became a national symbol for Wall Street greed. Markopolos, an ordinary-seeming if quirky finance whiz, has been harder to peg.  The story examines, just why was he the only one to figure it out? Why did he alone try so hard for years to expose the scam? Why didn’t anybody listen?

Addicted to Junk

From Mwende Hahesy | 05:53

Independent reporter/producer Mwende Hahesy brings us this look at what happens to the stuff sitting in storage units that gets auctioned when the bills don't get paid for the unit. It's fun to hear for its voyeuristic feel. We can't get into these units legally, but when it's auctioned off, we get a view. We also get a look at a guy who goes to the auctions and checks out peoples' stuff.

01well You can get a real thrill from an unexpected find.  Some people get hooked on that feeling and look in unexpected places to keep it going. Reporter Mwende Hahesy introduces us to a man who finds his thrills at storage unit auctions.  This piece was created for the podcast B-side Radio and debuted October 23rd, 2009

How to Endure Winter

From Suzanne Pekow | 04:46

Whether winter is in full force where you are, or it's a place where snow is only seen on TV, this is a treat for your listeners. They can take heart and listen to the people who cheerfully spend time outside in the winter. We hear the crunch of the winter runners' footfalls and the snowshoer explain how the cold and dark of winter works for her. Suzanne Pekow, an independent reporter/producer in Minneapolis, is the reporter. She checks in with people who love being outside in the winter and an endocrinologist who encourages people to be more active. Part of the story is in the first person; as the story progresses, we see Pekow slowly learn how to enjoy the winter.

Img_2241_small I decided to go on a little quest to try to find people who could teach me how to not just endure, but enjoy bein active outside in the winter. Minnesota can get downright nasty for several months of the year, and I wanted to know how to avoid the urge to hibernate during the entire season. I met up with some very cheerful outdoor enthusiasts and a specialist on "non-exercise activity thermogenesis" (NEAT) at the Mayo Clinic, who all teach me that the key to being active in the winter is to ... be active in the winter.

Power of Half

From Philip Graitcer | 03:34

This is a thought-provoking piece on one family's attempt to make a difference. Nicely paced in the telling, this is by
Philip Graitcer, independent reporter/producer out of Atlanta. In it, we hear what starts off as a spark of an idea by a teen in the family and evolves into a substantial and meaningful act of charity the whole family agrees to.

Salwens_at_new_house_small It sounded like a downsizing plan.

The Salwen family downsized - moving from a 7-bedroom mansion into a smaller house and giving the proceeds to charity. But they say they traded stuff for togetherness

Couple Argues About the Environment

From Avishay Artsy | 02:35

This is a narrator-less exchange between a wife and husband. They differ on just how they should run their household to conserve energy and recycle. Not snarky, just straight-ahead as they discuss their "issues" with each others' habits. This would work well paired with something about the environment or even something about relationships.

Default-piece-image-1 Therapists are reporting a rise in couples arguing about environmental issues like recycling, energy consumption and air travel. Avishay Artsy spoke to a New Hampshire couple that has their own share of eco-disputes.