Frequently Asked Questions
What is WDET?
WDET is the non-commercial listener-supported public radio station licensed to Wayne State University in order to serve the Southeast Michigan region. Broadcasting from its on-campus location in Detroit, WDET maintains its own staff of news and music producers and produces its own local and regional programming. In addition, WDET is a member of the National Public Radio network and broadcasts NPR features.
What is the mission of WDET?
The mission is to reflect the intellectual and cultural diversity of Southern Michigan by serving listeners, voters and residents with free, unique and valuable audio programming that enriches, informs, educates, and entertains our audiences.
As a community nonprofit, what services does WDET provide to the community?
On the “terrestrial” radio station and in global audio service streaming on the internet, WDET provides programming free to the public and free of commercial interruption 24 hours per day, 7 days per week, 52 weeks per year. WDET functions as an important regional journalism outlet, delivering news and information, and also as a cultural partner, showcasing a wide range of music including serving as one of the region’s top showcases of local musical artists.
Does WDET receive public funding or support from the University?
WDET receives financial support from Wayne State University in addition to office and studio space on the campus. WDET receives no funding from the State of Michigan or the City of Detroit.
Are individual donors like me important in keeping WDET on the air?
Nearly 50% of annual expenses are met by the generous gifts from loyal WDET members. Individual listeners and donors are the most important ingredient in WDET’s success, independence and impact.
What impact will my gift have at WDET?
Your annual gift keeps the lights on, powers the computers and broadcast feeds, pays the salaries for over 30 staff members. Your gift enables reporters, engineers, digital producers, announcers and support staff to plan and execute news and music programming on the air and on the web 24 hours per day. In addition, your gift makes WDET' local journalism possible and pays for national and international programming from National Public Radio and other prestigious sources.
Can I designate my gift to a special program or project?
Gifts up to $9,999 go toward WDET’s annual operations and cannot be further designated. Gifts of $10,000 and up can be restricted at the donor’s request. If you wish to begin a conversation with a gifts officer about a possible restricted gift, please call Meg Callow at 313-577-4031.
What is the relationship between donors, both corporate and individuals and the feature stories that WDET chooses to air?
By policy, WDET maintains a “firewall” that separates its underwriting and fund-raising functions from its journalism and programming functions. When news stories involving underwriters or donors do occur, an internal policy process is set in motion to guarantee that the news will be reported fairly and completely. WDET Public Radio’s major support and partner relationships will always be disclosed when these are relevant to broadcast content.
How can I be sure that WDET will use my money effectively?
WDET follows the rigorous Wayne State University policies and procedures in its financial management and is supported in this process by University finance officers as well as community volunteers who contribute their expertise and advice to the station’s governance practices. In addition, independent auditors annually review the station’s operations and financials.
Is my donation to WDET tax deductible?
Yes. As provided by law, your gift may be deductible if you itemize your Federal taxes and may also qualify for the Michigan Tax Credit. Please be sure to decline any thank-you gifts or services if you wish your entire gift to be eligible for such a deduction and look a mailed tax receipt two weeks after your gift is processed.
Can I pay my pledge in installments?
We are happy to set up installment payments, as well as to accept payments by credit card, or gifts of appreciated securities. Many donors join our Sustainer Program, setting up an automatic payment at convenient intervals. If you wish to begin a confidential conversation with a gifts officer about the most convenient way for you to handle a pledge to WDET, please call Lea Thomas at 313-577-4226.
Does WDET accept planned gifts or bequests?
We encourage every member and listener to consider making a meaningful gift to WDET as part of estate planning. For most members, a bequest or planned gift can offer significant tax advantages as well as the satisfaction of helping WDET Public Radio to remain strong and independent into the future. You can also explore annuity gifts that will guarantee a set level of annual income to you and your spouse, no matter how the markets perform and no matter low long you both may live. If you wish to begin a confidential conversation with Meg Callow, our Major Gift Officer about a possible bequest or planned gift click here to send her an e-mail message or call her directly at 313.577.4031.
Does WDET have a permanent endowment?
No. At present, WDET has access to only the most modest of cash reserves and must raise every dollar of annual operating expense in full every year. The building of cash reserves for the station is cited as a long range goal in our current plan.
Who can I contact with questions or to explore making a gift to WDET?
Lea Thomas, our Membership Manager, will welcome your inquiries, answer any questions you may have and help with your gift decision. Send her an email or telephone her at 313.577.4226.
What are the top future priorities that have emerged from WDET’s long range planning process to date?
In addition to the short-term goal of building sustainable annual income for the station, three over-arching goals are being explored for the future.
To build upon the current leadership role in local and regional news by expanding the journalism team to enable locally-produced and expanded local news and information programming with higher citizen engagement,
To further enhance arts and cultural coverage by seeking new and innovative partnerships with local artists and cultural organizations and by supporting the small cultural nonprofits who contribute so much to our region,
To invest in digital infrastructure by expanding and enhancing the station’s internet-based services including more online music and more on-demand programming.
With your help, these new future initiatives can strengthen WDET’s community impact and provide greater service to its listeners.
I contributed during an on-air campaign and selected a premium, but haven't received it yet?
Premiums are sent out soon after payment is received to cover the cost of the item and shipping. Please allow 4-6 weeks delivery. For Sustaining Members, this is typically 2-3 months.
Was my payment received?
Check payments are processed everyday (M-F). Gifts made online by credit card are processed immediately. Please check your bank or card provider statement. If you think there has been an error, or for any question - Please call Member Services at 313-577-4550.
During the on-air pledge drive I gave my credit card number--why am I receiving a pledge reminder bill?
If WDET was unable to receive an authorization code when processing your contribution, you will not see a deduction. Please call (313) 577-4550 to update or confirm your card information.
I haven't yet received a tax receipt for my contribution. When can I expect it?
Tax receipts for contributions made to WDET are processed at Wayne State University's Fund Office and mailed in January. If you still haven't received your tax receipt, or you need a tax receipt during the year, please contact Member Services by phone at (313) 577-4550 or by email at email@example.com.
How can I change my membership information?
You can change your information by calling the Membership line at (313) 577-4550, or by emailing Lea Thomas at firstname.lastname@example.org.
How long does it take for my credit card charges to begin?
The first charge will go through as soon as you make your gift.
How can I increase my installment amount?
You can upgrade your Sustaining Membership financial commitment at any time through this form.
Do I still qualify to receive a thank-you gift?
Yes! Each year on your anniversary date, you’re welcome to select one of the WDET thank you gifts according to your current giving level. Just call 313-577-4550 and let us know what you'd like!
What if I have questions about my credit card statement?
If you have any questions regarding your statement, call WDET Membership Services at 313.577.4550 immediately. We will work with you to correct any problems and answer your questions.
Is my contribution tax-deductible?
Yes! You will receive a tax receipt from Wayne State University every January stating your total contributions from the previous year, less the fair market value of any thank you gifts you received during the calendar year.
How do I stop my automatic transfers if necessary?
To stop your Sustaining Membership, simply call WDET Membership Services at 313-577-4550, or send us a request in writing.
If you have further questions about becoming a Sustaining Member, contact WDET Membership Services at 313-577-4550 or send an email to memberservices(at)wdet(dot)org.
Having trouble using our web site?
To start, make sure your browser and OS are up to date with the latest security updates, patches, and security settings. An out of date browser can and will prevent streaming media. Spyware, spam, trojans and viruses could prevent you from accessing our audio. Make sure you have the latest Media Codecs and updates for any player that you use. Be sure that you don't have a firewall or other security software that's blocking streaming. Some ISP's, like Comcast or AT&T, are known for throttling bandwith when it comes to streaming.
I click on the "Listen Live" button, but nothing happens.
The new live player runs in a pop-up window. If you have any form of Flashblock software installed or a pop-up blocker, make sure that you approve running of flash on our site and make an exception for allowing pop-ups. Also, be sure your browser is running in its most current, updated version.
If your memory or cache file folders are full, you may experience audio streaming errors. Try emptying your Temporary Internet cache folder, and any additional temporary files, such as the contents of the recycling bin. You might also try to restart or reboot your computer to free up more of the system memory.
If you're still having trouble accessing our live stream player, you can connect to the MP3 stream directly here.
What ways can I stream on my mobile device?
- WDET's Online Player: Stream WDET and Alpha through your internet browser using our online player. Launch »
- WDET Mobile App: For the best listening experience on an iPhone or Android phone download our mobile app available on the AppStore (Apple) or Google Play (Android). If you are having issues with WDET's mobile app, contact us at email@example.com.
- OnDemand: Listen to previous segments and shows on Soundcloud.
- Apple Music: WDET is now available in the new Apple Music platform. Launch WDET in iTunes »
Where can I find the direct links to your streams?
- If you are streaming on an iPhone or iPad use the following links: WDET | ALPHA
- If you are streaming on an Android phone or tablet on a 4G network use the following links: WDET | ALPHA
- If you are streaming on an Android phone or tablet using WiFi use the following links: WDET | ALPHA
- For MP3 Streams use the following links: WDET | ALPHA
The comments on a post won't load.
Clear your browsing history and your cache to ensure that data or past log-in information is not kept in your browser files.
The audio sounds choppy, or cuts out and rebuffers frequently.
Buffering occurs when your computer is not receiving data fast enough; the buffering, or cutting out, occurs when the player tries to catch up. It may be caused by Internet congestion or insufficient bandwidth, possibly due to other bandwidth intensive activities (ie. other streaming, numerous downloads). Closing some other windows and applications may help.
The Live player loads, but no audio is playing.
The stream may be temporarily off line. Please try again later.
You also may experience periodic outages in our stream as we comply with Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) rules.
I'm having difficulties making an online pledge.
Contact our Membership Director, Lea Thomas, directly at firstname.lastname@example.org or 313.577.4550.
If you continue to experience difficulties with our website, send an email to email@example.com. Be sure to include the following information:
What type of computer are you using?
What browser (Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, Safari, Internet Explorer?) do you use to connect to the Internet? What version of the browser do you have?
What type of Internet Connection do you have (DSL, Cable, T1, 3G)?