Despite our repeated attempts to work out a plan that would have allowed
"Off The Hook" to air on September 11, it appears that the program has
been pre-empted yet again.
"Off The Hook" last aired on August 28. At that time we were told that
we were being pre-empted both on September 4th and the 11th for "special
programming." The program that aired on the 4th turned out to be
nothing more than canned music when the host of the "special" failed
to show up. We had been trying to work something out so that our
program would air on the 11th, giving us the opportunity to do something
special on the anniversary of the terrorist attacks which occurred mere
blocks from our studios.
WBAI has scheduled an 11 hour special for that day which will end with
a one hour summation scheduled for the precise time of "Off The Hook." We
had suggested airing that summation during the 11 pm slot when a
rebroadcast of the evening news is usually aired or during ANY other slot since no other program on that day had been subjected to the level of pre-emptions that we had been. As we've gotten no
response at all to repeated calls and emails, we're forced to conclude
that this won't be considered. Regardless, we are beyond the time period
where we would be able to put together the special program we were
planning. Ironically, "Off The Hook" appears to be the ONLY program
on the entire WBAI schedule that will not air in the first two weeks
This is particularly unfortunate since the events of September 11 have
been of great significance to the hacker community and to those who
take an interest in developing technology. Hackers have been designated
as the third target in the newly redesigned Federal Bureau of
Investigation. Only terrorists and spies are ranked as a higher threat
to national security. Just today, the Homeland Security advisory system
changed from "Yellow" to "Orange." On "Off The Hook," we have been
following that system since its inception, waiting for such a moment.
Unfortunately, the only time we seem to get to do special programming
on such topics is during pledge drives when the subject matter is overshadowed by the need for funds.
We don't wish to second guess programming decisions on WBAI. But to
consistently pre-empt our program, especially at such a critical time
and not even TRY to work something out where our voices could be heard,
tells us that these voices don't seem important to those running things.
While other programmers are given multiple hours each week - sometimes
each DAY - to focus on the issues that are important to them, we are
forced to get by on the one hour a week we've been given. Now it seems
that even that small amount of time is in jeopardy. This is unacceptable
to us and we know it's unacceptable - and disrespectful - to our listeners.
We apologize for your not being able to participate in what would have
been a very historic and significant occasion.
As always, we welcome your comments on the show at email@example.com.