This American Life to Self-Distribute, Partner with PRX to Deliver Episodes


Ira visits the PRX office in 2010 (click to enlarge)

It’s an exciting day for public radio and independent distribution. This American Life will self-distribute starting July 1 and use PRX to deliver the show to stations.

This partnership will expand our relationship with This American Life; for several years we have handled iTunes distribution and developed mobile apps for iOS and Android in close collaboration with Ira Glass and his team.

PRX is constantly improving the ways we help producers — from the smallest to the biggest — take control of their own distribution for broadcast, web and now mobile. Since 2003, we have built up public radio’s largest story marketplace at PRX.org, helped develop new programs like The Moth Radio Hour, cast a wide net for new voices with the Public Radio Talent Quest, and introduced new distribution models like our podcast network Radiotopia.

We are grateful for the trust This American Life has in PRX, and blushing a bit from Ira’s generous quote in the press release (but not too much to repost it here):

“We’re excited and proud to be partners now with PRX,” said Glass. “They’ve been a huge innovative force in public radio, inventing technologies and projects to get people on the air who’d have a much harder time without them. They’re mission-driven, they’re super-capable and apparently they’re pretty good with computers.”

The over 500 stations carrying This American Life will get programs delivered weekly via PRX’s SubAuto (subscription automation) service, already in use by dozens of programs for The WFMT Radio Network, The Moth Radio Hour, and many others. PRX will also handle This American Life‘s carriage billing (stations do not need to be PRX members to subscribe to the show, please head to prx.org/thisamericanlife to get FAQ and how-tos, and contact us with any setup questions).

We are thrilled to be joining This American Life on this next leg of their journey. Stay tuned with us on Twitter for more updates.

Official press release is below.

________________________________________________________________________________________
PRESS RELEASE

This American Life Moves to Self-Distribute Program
Partners with PRX to Deliver Episodes to Public Radio Stations

May 28, 2014 – Chicago.

Starting July 1, 2014, Chicago Public Media and Ira Glass will start independently distributing the public radio show This American Life to over 500 public radio stations. Episodes will be delivered to radio stations by PRX, The Public Radio Exchange. Since 1997, the show has been distributed by Public Radio International.

“We’re excited and proud to be partners now with PRX,” said Glass. “They’ve been a huge innovative force in public radio, inventing technologies and projects to get people on the air who’d have a much harder time without them. They’re mission-driven, they’re super-capable and apparently they’re pretty good with computers.”

“We are huge fans of This American Life and are thrilled to support their move to self- distribution on our platform,” said Jake Shapiro, CEO of PRX. “We’ve had the privilege of working closely with Ira and team to develop This American Life’s successful mobile apps, and are honored to expand our partnership to the flagship broadcast.”

This American Life will take over other operations that were previously handled by PRI, including selling underwriting and marketing the show to stations. The marketing and station relations work will return to Marge Ostroushko, who did the job back before This American Life began distribution with PRI.

This American Life, produced by Chicago Public Media and hosted by Ira Glass, is heard weekly by 2.2 million people over the radio. Most weeks it’s also the number one podcast on iTunes, with over a million downloads per episode. It went on the air in 1995 and has won every major American award for broadcast and journalistic excellence.

PRX, first launched in 2003, is an independent nonprofit public media company, harnessing technology to bring compelling stories to millions of people. PRX.org operates public radio’s largest content marketplace, offering thousands of audio stories for broadcast and digital use, including The Moth Radio Hour. PRX features the best new stories on a 24/7 channel called PRX Remix, and recently launched the podcast network Radiotopia. PRX also develops apps for public media, including Public Radio Player, Radiolab, This American Life, and KCRW Music Mine. PRX is a recent recipient of both Peabody and Webby Awards, and received the 2008 MacArthur Foundation Award for Creative and Effective Institutions.

contact: press@thislife.org

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