Ira Glass: No deal yet for ‘American Life’

Ira Glass

Ira Glass

Contrary to my report here Saturday, Ira Glass says he doesn’t have a deal with Public Radio Exchange to distribute “This American Life,” his popular weekly radio program.

“We haven’t begun negotiations with PRX or anyone else to distribute the program,” Glass told me in a statement Monday, adding that he has “no idea what terms PRX would offer and [that] there are lots of other options.”

Glass, the host and executive producer of “This American Life,” is seeking a new distribution plan for the show, which is severing ties after 17 years with Public Radio International, as of July 1.

My earlier story, attributed to unnamed sources, noted that PRX already distributes Greg Kot and Jim DeRogatis’s “Sound Opinions” (also produced by Chicago Public Media WBEZ FM 91.5), and that the board of directors of PRX includes Torey Malatia, former president and CEO of Chicago Public Media and the man Glass frequently credits with co-creating “This American Life.”

I regret and apologize for the error.

Here is the full text of Glass’ statement to me:

I was surprised to see your article saying This American Life has landed a new distributor since we haven’t begun negotiations with PRX or anyone else to distribute the program. I have no idea what terms PRX would offer and there are lots of other options.  We’re about to begin a round of talking to possible distributors.

There’s also the option of self-distribution, which is attractive. The show was self-distributed by WBEZ for its first year. 

I honestly have no idea who would’ve suggested that a deal with PRX is wrapped up. Very weird.