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KBOO responds to listeners

Connie

katie read

9 a.m.

Andrew Stelzer has been sitting in front of a computer screen for nearly six hours at KBOO (90.7 FM), a nonprofit radio station based in Southeast Portland.

Stelzer, a station volunteer, has been ferreting out news items about the war with Iraq from both mainstream and obscure Web sites for Free Speech Radio News, a syndicated news program broadcast over 170 alternative radio stations worldwide.

'The public wants information that they can't get from the mainstream media,' he says. 'There aren't many uncensored or noncorporate news outlets out there anymore.'

When the conflict began Wednesday, KBOO scrapped its regular programming in favor of news and call-in shows devoted to the conflict. Volunteer program engineers have dropped by to feed phone calls into the cramped studios, where hosts such as activist attorney Alan Graf have fielded them.

Catherine Komp, an interim news director, says the station 'is playing it by ear right now. We may continue pre-empting programming for days, or at least for as long as people want to talk.'