Tag: "sexual harassment"

Wednesday, August 22, 2018

| August 22, 2018

Report: New Allegations of Behavior Issues at CBS RADIO.  In today’s New York Post, a story by Kevin Dugan details allegations of inappropriate language on the part of WCBS-FM jock Dan Taylor in which he is accused of using racial and sexually demeaning terms in front of former producer Craig Lenti.  The allegations by Lenti are from a diary he kept of his experiences working at the station. This comes a month after sister station WFAN, New York (along with WCBS-FM now owned by Entercom) suspended midday personality Joe Benigno while it investigates allegations of sexual harassment against him made by former sales staffer Lauren Lockwood. The Post piece also notes that six former CBS RADIO staffers have contacted the paper in the last month supporting Lockwood’s claims.  The story includes a statement on behalf of Entercom by Sard Verbinnen spokeswoman Liz Zale, who says, “We are deeply offended by this mischaracterization of our culture and work environment.  This handful of allegations from former employees of CBS Radio does not reflect Entercom’s culture or work environment.”  Read the Post piece here.

Salem Host Joe Walsh Teams with WVON’s Maze Jackson for Live Event Series Titled, ‘Black and White, Uncomfortable Conversations.’ This series of live events featuring former U.S. Representative and current Salem Radio Network and Newsmax TV personality Joe Walsh and WVON, Chicago morning personality Maze Jackson is taking place at four locations around Chicagoland. It’s called “Black and White, Uncomfortable Conversations” and will “feature authentic, uncensored dialogue with respectful, no-holds barred conversation about the issues affecting black and white men and women of all ages throughout Chicago.”  Topics such as taxes, gun violence, reparations, religion, family structure, education, “and other political topics that have been hijacked by an agenda-driven media.”  Walsh adds, “The ‘Uncomfortable Conversations’ events will help us find common ground, which too many Americans have forgotten how to do.”  Jackson comments, “I’m looking forward to having some really uncomfortable conversations on race, politics, and culture with a very unlikely partner, former Congressman Joe Walsh.  I’m as pro-Black as you can be and Joe is as conservative one can be, so when we get together, fireworks will erupt.  But after we get through the bombastic words we’ll get to the core of finding solutions to benefit us all.”  The series takes place on consecutive Saturdays in September in Bolingbrook, Wauconda, Chicago’s south side, and Lake Forest, Illinois.

KSPN, Los Angeles Moves Sedano to Afternoons; Adds Travis Rodgers to Mornings. This new lineup takes effect on September 4.  Jorge Sedano, currently part of the morning show with Keyshawn Johnson and LZ Granderson, moves to the open afternoon drive slot hosting his own program from 3:30 pm to 7:00 pm.  “ESPNLA 710” is adding Travis Rodgers to the morning show for the newly renamed “The Morning Show with Keyshawn, LZ and Travis.”  The midday schedule remains the same with Stephen A. Smith from 10:00 am to 12:00 noon and the “Mason and Ireland” show from 12:00 noon to 3:30 pm.  Sedano says, “There’s not a more exciting time to be in Los Angeles covering sports.  It’s an honor to take on the task of providing the best content possible for the city’s fans.  I’m pumped to be working with a great group both behind the scenes and on the air.”

TALKERS News Notes. On today’s edition of Westwood One’s “The Savage Nation” with host Michael Savage, popular social media personalities Diamond and Silk, a.k.a. Lynnette Hardaway and Rochelle Richardson, will appear as special guests.  The African American comedy duo, whose pro-Trump social media activity on their YouTube channel “The Viewers View” has more than 180,000 subscribers.  They will also interview Savage for their upcoming documentary…..Walter M. Sterling’s “Sterling on Sunday” program – nationally syndicated by Westwood One – is celebrating its one-year anniversary in national syndication. The show – billed as a mix of lifestyle, entertainment, and social conversations – airs live from 10:00 pm to 1:00 am ET and is now heard on more than 60 affiliate stations a year after its August 19, 2017 debut…..As reported by Chicago media writer Robert Feder, former WGN-AM, Chicago sports anchor and reporter Sam Panayotovich is coming back to the Windy City airwaves on Entercom’s sports talk WSCR “The Score” with weekly appearances on the Mike Mulligan and David Haugh morning show.  Panayotovich is a host for Las Vegas-based VSiN (Vegas Stats & Information Network).  He says, “Following the betting markets really changes the way you watch sports. I can’t wait to go back home for 12 minutes every Friday.”…..NPR is launching a midterm election-focused radio show called, “The Politics Show from NPR,” featuring Scott Detrow, Tamara Keith, and Asma Khalid.  It debuts September 14 and runs through November 9.  NPR VP for programming and audience development Anya Grundmann says, “We are thrilled to be expanding our platform, particularly at a time when reliable news is vitally important.  The 2018 elections will be as consequential as any in recent memory.  This show will provide comprehensive fact-based coverage that will help voters make informed decisions at the ballot box.”…..The New York State Broadcasters Association is naming ABC’s “World News Tonight” anchor David Muir its 2018 Broadcaster of the Year.  The multiple Emmy and Edward R. Murrow award-winning journalist has been with ABC News since 2003 and served as the anchor for the overnight program “World News Now” and as a network correspondent.  On September 2, 2014 he became the sole anchor and managing editor of ABC’s “World News Tonight with David Muir.”  Muir will be honored at the New York State Leadership and Hall of Fame Luncheon on October 18 at the Javits Center in New York City at a luncheon held in conjunction with the NAB Show NY….Entercom’s news/talk KNSS, Wichita is a big winner at the Kansas Association of Broadcasters annual television and radio awards.  KNSS won first place for Complete Sportscast and for Station Website.  It grabbed second place honors for Complete Newscast.

WCBS-AM, New York Unveils New Logo and News ‘Anthem.’ The still shot above shows a scene from the recording of the new news “anthem” for Entercom’s all-news WCBS-AM, New York.  The station is introducing the new music as well as the new logo seen at bottom left of the photo.  WCBS director of news and programming Tim Scheld says the new look and feel are part of the radio station’s strategy to build a brand for the next 50 years.  He states, “2017 was all about celebrating the brand that is WCBS Newsradio 880 and 2018 was all about rethinking the brand.”  Assistant program director Alex Silverman says of the new music, “We didn’t want the traditional, in-your-face, self-important news music.  We wanted a sound that was going to communicate that we are a trusted friend.” The station says that what it got was “an anthem filled with energy, percussion, and the passion with which the news is delivered on New York’s iconic news radio station.”  Check out the story and the video of the recording of the new music here.

Paul Manafort Guilty on Eight Counts, Michael Cohen Pleads Guilty, Trump-Russian Investigation, Microsoft Finds Russian Hacking of Conservatives, Rep. Hunter Indicted on Campaign Funds Misuse, Mollie Tibbetts Case Arrest, Argento/McGowan #MeToo Issue, Western Wildfires/Air Quality, NFL Pre-season and MLB Action Among Top News/Talk Stories Yesterday (8/21). Former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort is convicted on eight counts in fraud trial; former Trump lawyer Michael Cohen pleads guilty to breaking campaign finance laws; the Robert Mueller-led investigation into possible connections between Trump campaign operatives and Russian agents; Microsoft reports discovering Russian hacking of conservative think tanks; U.S. Rep. Duncan Hunter indicted on campaign fund misuse; Iowa college student Mollie Tibbetts’ alleged killer is undocumented alien; the flap over Rose McGowan’s comments about Harvey Weintstein accuser Asia Argento’s reported payoff for having sex with a minor; the wildfires in the U.S. West and the region’s poor air quality; NFL pre-season action and the Major League Baseball playoff push were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio yesterday, according to ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.

PPM Analysis: Adult Hits. Managing editor Mike Kinosian presents a look at the performances of radio stations based on data from Nielsen Audio’s July 2018 PPM survey, today focusing on adult hits.  Some 67% of adult hits-formatted stations experienced 6+ AQH share growth from the June 2018 survey to the July survey.  Comparing ratings from July of last year to this year, about half the stations in the panel were up and the other half were down.  Five adult hits stations ranked in the top five in their respective markets with iHeartMedia’s KYOT, Phoenix; Emmis Communications’ KBPA, Austin; Midwest Communications’ WCJK, Nashville; and Entercom’s WSMW, Greensboro ranking #2 in the July 2018 PPM survey.  See the entire report here.

Friday, July 20, 2018

| July 20, 2018

Report: Silver Lake Offers $500 Million Investment in iHeartMedia. According to a report in the Wall Street Journal, private equity firm Silver Lake has offered to invest $500 million in iHeartMedia, though the piece says the company’s largest creditor group led by Franklin Mutual Advisers and Pacific Investment Management Co. has not accepted the offer.  Silver Lake’s intent is to invest prior to iHeartMedia’s emergence from Chapter 11 reorganization, expected to happen in November.  Such an investment would give iHM more cash to disperse to creditors.  The WSJ piece says Silver Lake’s investment offer is in the form of convertible preferred shares that are a hybrid instrument of debt and equity.  Convertible preferred shares usually pay interest.  They are called convertible because they include an option to convert to common equity at a specified share price.

WFAN’s Joe Benigno Returns to Air on Monday.  After the Wednesday filing of a sexual harassment/hostile work environment suit against WFAN, New York and midday sports talk personality Joe Benigno, the station tells the New York Post that the company will fight the allegations made by former WFAN sales exec Laura Lockwood and that Benigno – on vacation this week – will be back on the radio on Monday (7/23).

Star City Broadcasting Launches Lafayette, Indiana News/Talk Station. The new station emanates from WSHY-AM and is simulcast on translator W282CJ.  It’s a flip from the previous sports talk format and is being branded “The Patriot 104.3 FM.”  It will feature Premiere Networks programs Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity, Glenn Beck, as well as Westwood One’s Michael Savage.  Star City Broadcasting general manager Billy Huggins says, “This area is booming and there has been a huge demand for news and talk on the FM dial.  We will combine the power of top national talk shows, local personalities, and news from our growing TV stations to create a radio station that will most definitely be ‘The Voice of Greater Lafayette.’”  Huggins adds that the station is auditioning local voices “to make sure we cover the whole story and how it impacts Greater Lafayette.” Star City operations manager Ski Anderson comments, “Combining the resources of Star City’s four television stations and our well-established radio stations will give us a solid base to launch and grow news and talk, crystal clear on the FM dial.”

FCC Pushes Back Against Sinclair. Television operator Sinclair Broadcast Group appeared shocked by FCC Chairman Ajit Pai’s Monday (7/16) release in which he stated that he has “serious concerns” about the Sinclair-Tribune deal.  Two days later, the commission adopted a Hearing Designation Order in which the transfer applications for WGN-TV, Chicago; KDAF-TV, Dallas; and KIAH-TV, Houston will go before an administrative judge.  The commission’s concerns are outlined in the following paragraph from the Order.  “Among these applications were three that, rather than transfer broadcast television licenses in Chicago, Dallas, and Houston directly to Sinclair, proposed to transfer these licenses to other entities.  The record raises significant questions as to whether those proposed divestitures were in fact ‘sham’ transactions. By way of example, one application proposed to transfer WGN-TV in Chicago to an individual (Steven Fader) with no prior experience in broadcasting who currently serves as CEO of a company in which Sinclair’s executive chairman has a controlling interest.  Moreover, Sinclair would have owned most of WGN-TV’s assets, and pursuant to a number of agreements, would have been responsible for many aspects of the station’s operation.  Finally, Fader would have purchased WGN-TV at a price that appeared to be significantly below market value, and Sinclair would have had an option to buy back the station in the future.  Such facts raise questions about whether Sinclair was the real party in interest under Commission rules and precedents and attempted to skirt the Commission’s broadcast ownership rules.  Although these three applications were withdrawn today, material questions remain because the real party-in-interest issue in this case includes a potential element of misrepresentation or lack of candor that may suggest granting other, related applications by the same party would not be in the public interest.” This transaction would transfer ownership of news/talk WGN-AM to Sinclair, which currently owns three Seattle radio stations – talk KVI, all-news KOMO-AM/FM, and hot AC KPLZ – in addition to its television holdings.

TALKERS 2018: Full Speed Ahead! Convention Videos All Posted.  Videos covering the entire nine-hour agenda of the recent TALKERS convention held on June 8 in New York City – from the opening breakfast to closing cocktail reception award ceremonies – are now posted here at Talkers.com.  Seventy-one industry luminaries spoke at the 21st annual installment of the talk media industry’s longest-running and most important national convention.  The videos – 19 in all – will remain posted for the rest of 2018 on a convenient page sponsored by Comrex Corp and are available for unlimited free viewing by TALKERS readers.  To see any or all of the speeches, workshops, panels, and presentations at this tremendously successful gathering, please click here.

Trump-Putin Meeting Top News/Talk Story for Week of July 16-20.  The Helsinki meeting between President Trump and Russia’s Vladimir Putin was the most-talked-about story on news/talk radio during the week, landing atop the Talkers TenTM.  At #2 this week was the Trump-Russia investigation and the related request by Russia to interrogate former Russia Ambassador Michael McFaul and financier Bill Bowder.  Coming in at #3 was the case of alleged Russian spy Maria Butina, followed by the fallout from President Trump’s recent NATO meeting at #4.  The Talkers TenTM is a weekly chart of the top stories and people discussed on news/talk radio during the week and is the result of ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.  It is published every Friday at Talkers.com. View this week’s entire chart here.

Adrian Cronauer Passes at 79.  The man whose military radio show entertaining the troops in Vietnam was loosely adapted into the movie Good Morning Vietnam– Adrian Cronauer – died on Wednesday at age 79.  Robin Williams’ portrayal of Cronauer got him an Academy Award nomination.  The real Cronauer had broadcasting in his blood.  After his military service, he worked in New York doing voice work for radio and TV.  He programmed a TV station and managed a radio station.  Later in life, he would again serve his country as a confidential advisor to the Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense (DASD) from 2001 through 2009.  He represented the POW/MIA Office at meetings within the Office of the Secretary of Defense and at various outside functions, including liaison with the leadership of veterans’ service organizations as well as family and activist groups.

Ralph Nader Is This Week’s Guest on Harrison Podcast. Iconic political activist, consumer advocate and five-time presidential candidate Ralph Nader is this week’s guest on the award-winning PodcastOne series “The Michael Harrison Interview.” Nader – a Princeton and Harvard graduate – came to prominence in the mid-1960s with the publication of his book, Unsafe at Any Speed (Grossman Publishers, 1965), a critique of the safety record of American automobile manufacturers in general, and particularly the first-generation Chevrolet Corvair. In 1999, a New York University panel of journalists ranked Unsafe at Any Speed 38th among the top 100 pieces of journalism of the 20th century. Nader makes a case that news/talk radio – both commercial and public – no longer offers the American listener the level of ideological diversity that it did in years gone by before going in a “corporatist” direction. This has led him to launch a show of his own, “The Ralph Nader Radio Hour,” a weekly talk show broadcast on the Pacifica Radio Network, and available as a podcast on iTunes. Nader is joined by comedic co-hosts Steve Skrovan and David Feldman for what is described as a lively, informative hour of interviews with some of the nation’s most influential movers and shakers plus thought-provoking discussions of the week’s news. Harrison and Nader, whose friendship goes back about 30 years, gently spar – agreeing and disagreeing on a number of issues, including whether or not Nader’s refusal to withdraw from the historic 2000 presidential race prevented Al Gore from winning that election. A number of progressive media gatekeepers have held that against Nader for the past 18 years. Upon posting this interview, Harrison states, “Ralph Nader is one of the most influential Americans of the past century and has a voice that still deserves to be heard. His radio show on Pacifica is an excellent vehicle not only for his ongoing commentary but also as an alternative platform for provocative guests not often heard by the American public in today’s flash headlines-oriented media environment.” To listen to the podcast in its entirety, please click here or click on the player box marked “The Michael Harrison Interview” located in the right-hand column on every page of Talkers.com.

Music Radio News and Career Moves. At country KGGO, Los Angeles, Amy Mangola-Soler exits the morning show where she’d been serving as a cast member alongside Graham Bunn and David Bugenske.  She’d been with the Mt. Wilson Broadcasters station since 2015…..iHeartMedia Las Vegas announces that Las Vegas radio personality Mark DiCiero joins the company to host weekend shows on adult contemporary KSNE “Sunny 106.5.”  He’d been a radio personality in the market for the past 18 years as co-host of the “Mark and Mercedes in the Morning” program on Entercom’s crosstown hot AC KMXB “Mix 94.1.”  KSNE program director Chris Pickett says, “Mark is a well-known and beloved personality here in Las Vegas.  He has developed a genuine bond with the market and we’re happy that our listeners can connect with him on the Valley’s most popular radio station.”…..The Premiere Networks-syndicated Bobby Bones morning show is being added to the program schedule at Community First Broadcasting’s country KKIA, Ida Grove, Iowa “The Moose.”  The show replaces “The Fish Tank” with host Matt Fisher.

PPM Analysis: Alternative. Managing editor Mike Kinosian presents a report on the performances of radio stations based on data from Nielsen Audio’s June 2018 PPM survey, today focusing on alternative rock.  June was pretty good to alternative stations in PPM markets with 54% seeing their 6+ AQH rise.  Comparing June 2017 numbers to June 2018, 48% of alt rock stations enjoyed an increase AQH. Houston is the only market in which an alternative station ranks in the top five, with iHeartMedia’s KTBZ, Houston “94.5 The Buzz”  occupying the #5 spot with a 6+ weekly AQH share of 5.0%. See the whole report here.

Thursday, July 19, 2018

| July 19, 2018

WEEI, Boston to Flip Midday and Afternoon Programs.  Beginning August 13, the “OMF” Show featuring Glenn Ordway, Lou Merloni, and Christian Fauria takes over the afternoon drive daypart and the “Dale & Keefe” show with Dale Arnold and Rich Keefe slides to middays. The change was announced on the “Kirk & Callahan” morning program today (7/19).  This is a return to afternoons for Glenn Ordway who for years reigned as ringmaster of “The Big Show” in PM drive.  But competition from new rival WBZ-FM upset that show’s dominance and Ordway was let go in 2013 and was replaced by Mike Salk.  WEEI re-hired Ordway two-and-a-half years later to work the midday show.  Since then, the OMF program has steadily gained ground in the Boston ratings.  “OMF” will compete with WBZ-FM’s “Felger & Mazz” program, which was the highest-rated show in afternoons, racking up a 14.7 share (Men 25-54) in Nielsen’s June PPM survey.  The “Dale & Keefe” show earned a 6.8 share going against “Felger & Mazz.”

WFAN’s Joe Benigno Accused of Sexual Harassment. In a suit filed in New York State Court in Brooklyn, WFAN, New York midday personality Joe Benigno is accused by former sales staffer Lauren Lockwood of sexual harassment.  The allegation is part of a larger, $5 million suit against CBS RADIO (now owned by Entercom), sales execs Sean Argaman and Mark Zukerman, and other unidentified staffers for creating a hostile work environment based on sex, discrimination based on sex, retaliation, and more.  The complaint reads like a lurid expose of a workplace dominated by men behaving badly.  Lockwood – who worked in sales at WFAN for 11 years – alleges that Benigno tried to coerce her into having a “threesome” with him and his wife.  Additionally, she says he engaged in a two-year affair with a female subordinate.  Her complaint paints a picture of a workplace where drinking on the job took place, prostitutes were acquired for clients, and potential clients were entertained at strip clubs.  She alleges the station’s executives tolerated a workplace that subjected her to sexual harassment.  Entercom tells the New York Post it can’t comment on pending litigation but that it will “defend the company vigorously.”

WBZ-FM, Boston Midday Show to Simulcast on NBC Sports Boston. The simulcast of the midday “Zolak and Bertrand” show on NBC Sports Boston is now the second show based at Beasley Media Group’s sports talker WBZ-FM “98.5 The Sports Hub” to air on the New England cable sports channel. The “Felger & Mazz” PM drive show (co-hosted by Michael Felger and Tony Massarotti) has been simulcast there since 2010.  The Zolak and Bertrand show – featuring former Patriots quarterback Scott Zolak (left) and Marc Bertrand (right) – airs from 10:00 am to 2:00 pm and will be available via NBC Sports Boston, nbcsportsboston.com and on the NBC Sports app as well as the 98.5 Sports Hub app and 985thesportshub.com, effective July 23.  Beasley Boston VP and market manager Mary Menna says, “We are thrilled to extend the Felger and Mazz simulcast partnership with NBC Sports Boston and to include our top-rated midday show so Boston fans can not only hear, but see the fun that this team has together in our new state-of-the-art studios.”

PPM Analysis: Public Radio News/Talk. Managing editor Mike Kinosian presents a report on the performances of radio stations based on data from Nielsen Audio’s June 2018 PPM survey, today focusing on public radio news/talk.  Overall, public radio news/talk stations were down from the May survey to the June survey with 51% of stations seeing dips in weekly 6+ AQH share. Comparing numbers from a year ago, almost half the stations on the panel were up year-over-year and almost half were down.  Three public radio news/talk stations ranked #1 (6+) in their respective markets: KQED was #1 in both the San Francisco and adjacent San Jose markets.  KOPB, Portland and WUNC, Raleigh also were #1. See Kinosian’s entire report here.

TALKERS News Notes. The Las Vegas Review-Journal is reporting that sports media icon Brent Musberger has agreed to a three-year deal to serve as the radio play-by-play voice of the NFL’s Raiders, who are moving from Oakland to Las Vegas for the 2020 season. Musberger is the managing editor at Las Vegas-based VSiN (Vegas Sports Information Network).  He retired from ABC Sports and ESPN in January to join VSiN…..U.S. Rep. Jason Lewis (R-MN) is in a battle for re-election with challenger Democrat Angie Craig (whom he beat by 1.8% two years ago) and his radio past is playing a role in the campaign.  The former Minnesota and nationally syndicated talk radio personality’s musings about women and political correctness were the focus of a CNN report that Craig and Lewis’ opponents are trying to use against him in the campaign.  Lewis’ campaign manager Becky Alery tells the Star-Tribune, “This has all been litigated before, and as Rep. Lewis has said time and time again, it was his job to be provocative while on the radio.”…..The terms of the settlement are sealed, but the agreement between plaintiff Jennifer Neill and defendants WMGK, Philadelphia morning host John DeBella and Beasley Media Group has been approved by the court.  Neill was suing the defendants claiming a pattern of sexual harassment on the part of DeBella.  Neill served as a traffic reporter on DeBella’s program.  She alleged some 30 incidents of harassment, including unwanted physical contact…..Envision Networks’ “American Biker Minute” is added to the programming at Southern Stone Communications-owned WRTT-FM, Huntsville, Alabama.  The 60-second feature is hosted by bike enthusiast Jeff Ryan.

TALKERS Continues Posting Videos Today of the Recent TALKERS 2018: Full Speed Ahead! Convention – Today’s Post: Award Presentation for “Lifetime Achievement.”  Today (7/19), TALKERS magazine concludes posting individual events from the recent TALKERS 2018: Full Speed Ahead! convention held in New York City on June 8.  Each business day, another session or activity has been posted in the order that they originally took place. Today’s 17th and final installment is of the presentation of the TALKERS Lifetime Achievement Award by publisher, Michael Harrison to Vuolo Video Air-Chex CEO, Art Vuolo at the event’s closing cocktail reception.  Already posted: the panel discussion titled “The Talk Rumble.”  It is moderated by Westwood One host Jim Bohannon; introduced by WABC, New York host, Curtis Sliwa; and featuring panelists WPHT, Philadelphia host, Dom GiordanoWYD Media host, Thom HartmannDC Radio Company executive director, Victoria JonesUSA Radio Network host, Wayne Allyn RootFox News Radio host, Todd Starnes; and WOLB, Baltimore host, Larry Young; the panel discussion titled “Programming News/Talk Radio.”  It is moderated by TALKERS managing editor Mike Kinosian; introduced by KFBK/KSTE, Sacramento PD, Bill White; and featuring panelists CFRB, Toronto PD and Bell Media national news/talk format head, Mike BendixeniHeartMedia national brand coordinator, news/talk/sports programming and director of AM programming Miami/Fort Lauderdale, Grace Blazer; WOR, New York assistant PD, Scott Lakefield; WBAL, Baltimore PD, Scott Masteller; and WABC, New York PD, Craig Schwalb; the panel discussion titled, “Talk Media: The Big Picture.”  It is moderated by ABC News Radio VP/GM, Steve Jones; introduced by “The Cats Roundtable” host, John Catsimatidis; and featuring panelists iHeartMedia SVP news/talk/sports programming Chris BerryBeasley Media Group EVP programming, Justin ChaseWeiss Agency EVP, Heather CohenCumulus Media EVP content & programming Mike McVay; and Premiere Networks president, Julie Talbott.  Already posted: the panel discussion titled “Hosting a Talk Show in 2018.”  It is moderated by Cumulus Media VP of news/talk and PD of WMAL, Washington, DC, Bill Hess; introduced by iHeartMedia VP programming/national news/talk brand coordinator and PD KOA, Denver, Greg Foster; and featuring panelists Howie Carr Radio Network host, Howie Carr; WPGG, Atlantic City host, Harry HurleyFox News Radio/Fox News Channel host, Brian KilmeadeWestwood One host Chris PlanteTalk Media Network host Tom Sullivan; WPRO, Providence host, Dan Yorke; and KTSA, San Antonio host, Jack Riccardi; the panel discussion titled “Attracting Younger Demos to Talk Radio.”  It is moderated by Mike “Bax” Baxendale, morning co-host, WAQY-FM (Rock 102), Springfield, MA; introduced by WPHT, Philadelphia host Rich Zeoli; and featuring panelists Armstrong & Getty Show co-hosts Jack Armstrong and Joe Getty; WRKO, Boston PD, Michael Czarnecki; WRHU-FM/WRHU.org, Hofstra University OM, John T. Mullen; WABC, New York host Sid Rosenberg; and Compass MediaNetworks/Newsmax host, Todd Schnitt;  a video of the donation given by WPGG, Atlantic City morning host Harry Hurley to the Broadcasters Foundation of America and accepted by its president Jim Thompson;  convention luncheon greetings by WNYM “970 AM The Answer,” New York morning host Joe Piscopo with an introduction by Salem SVP Phil Boyce along with the posthumous presentation of the “Humanitarian of the Year” award to the late Texas and Ohio radio talk show host Matt Patrick by Michael Harrison with an acceptance by his widow and show producer, Paula Ryan;  the panel discussion titled “Adding the Video Component to Talk Radio” moderated by Livestream head of news, Clayton Rose and featuring panelists Krantz Media Group CEO, Gary Krantz and KTRS, St Louis host, McGraw Milhaven; the panel discussion titled “Generating Talk Radio Revenue in 2018” moderated by TALKERS VP/executive editor, Kevin Casey; introduced by Crossover Media Group managing member, Ron Hartenbaum; and featuring panelists Asa RX host, AsaBold Gold Media Group CEO, Vince BenedettoHowie Carr Radio Network president, Kathy CarrWestwood One president, Suzanne Grimes; WBAL, Baltimore president/GM, Cary Pahigian; and KSCO/KOMY, Santa Cruz owner, Michael Zwerling;  the special presentation by Amplifi Media CEO, Steven Goldstein titled “Radio Broadcasters and Smart Speakers with an introduction by GCN personality, Dr. Daliah Wachs ;  a special presentation by PodcastOne chairman and CEO, Norm Pattiz titled “Radio Broadcasters and Podcasting” with an introduction by Voice of America and National Public Radio anchor/reporter, Lori Lundin;  a special presentation by WFAN personality, Mike Francesa titled “Sports Talk’s Role in Media and Popular Culture” with an introduction by author and former radio producer, Bernadette Duncan;  Salem SVP, Phil Boyce’s address titled “What Has Donald Trump Done to Talk Radio?”; the fireside chat between TALKERS publisher, Michael Harrison and Beasley Media Group CEO, Caroline Beasley including Harrison’s presentation of the 2018 “Woman of the Year” award to Beasley; Harrison’s fireside chat with FOX News Radio/FOX News Channel mega-star, Brian Kilmeade with an introduction by Westwood One syndicated host, Walter Sterling and special remarks by Sean Hannity; opening remarks by the convention’s co-emcees, TalkersRadio GM, David Bernstein and Good Day Networks/DJV Show CEO/host, Doug Stephan; KGO, San Francisco host, Ethan Bearman delivering the event’s welcoming remarks and Pioneer Valley Radio GM/host, Brad Shepard introduction of Bearman; and the presentation of the Gene Burns Memorial Award for Freedom of Speech (“Freedom of Speech Award”) by TALKERS managing editor, Mike Kinosian to SiriusXM Satellite Radio host, book publisher, Hunter College professor, and former New York Daily News/Pulitzer prize-winning journalist, Karen Hunter.  To view the page, please click here.

Trump-Putin Meeting Aftermath, Trump-Russia Investigation/Russia’s Interrogation Request, Alleged Russian Spy Case, California Break-Up Question, Israel Passes ‘Nation-State’ Law, Facebook’s Conspiracy Theory Policy, Google’s EU Fine, and Hader Tweets Controversy/MLB All-Star Game Among Top News/Talk Stories Yesterday (7/19). The effects of President Trump’s Helsinki meeting with Russia’s Vladimir Putin; the investigation into possible connections between Trump campaign operatives and Russia agents and the related request by Putin to interrogate U.S. officials; the case of alleged Russian spy Maria Butina and her relationship with GOP consultant Paul Erickson; the question of splitting California into three states fails to make the ballot; Israel’s passage of the controversial “nation-state” law; Mark Zuckerberg’s explanation of Facebook’s conspiracy theory policies; Google is fined $5 billion by the European Union; and Brewers pitcher Josh Hader suffers fallout from past racist and homophobic tweets, tied with the MLB All-Star Game were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio yesterday, according to ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.

Philly Station Deals Announced: Beasley Acquires Country WXTU-FM from Entercom; Jerry Lee Sells Hot AC WBEB-FM to Entercom.  Philadelphia-based Entercom is paying $57.5 million cash to Jerry Lee LLC for hot AC WBEB-FM “101 More FM” and it is divesting of country WXTU.  Beasley Media Group is paying Entercom $38 million for that station.  Beasley says, “Excluding one-time transaction costs, the acquisition of WXTU-FM is expected to be immediately accretive to Beasley’s free cash flow without materially altering the company’s leverage.  Beasley intends to fund the acquisition through borrowings under its credit facility and cash generated from operations.”  Beasley formerly owned WXTU and launched the country format on the signal in 1983.  Beasley CEO Caroline Beasley says, “Our acquisition of WXTU-FM represents a strategically and financially compelling growth opportunity for our shareholders and further enhances our revenue and competitive position with a strong cluster of five FM and two AM stations in a key, top-10 market.  Importantly, the addition of WXTU-FM is consistent with Beasley’s disciplined approach to growing our platform by executing accretive transactions that deliver valuable synergies and the potential for SOI margin improvement, all with a limited impact to our leverage.”  Speaking about the acquisition of WBEB, Entercom CEO David Field says, “We are very pleased to add the legendary WBEB, one of the country’s most recognized and awarded stations, to our group.  It is a terrific addition to our lineup that will enhance our ability to serve our listeners, customers and the community.  I tip my cap to Jerry Lee, one of the industry pioneers and a visionary leader who built ‘B101’ into such a special station and has done so much for radio over the decades.  We are saddened to say goodbye to our colleagues at WXTU but know that they will be in great hands.”  Beasley begins operating WXTU under an LMA on July 23.

Tuesday, February 20, 2018

| February 20, 2018

Brian Wilson New Morning Host at WWTN-FM, Nashville.  His exit from on-air work with Cumulus Media was short-lived as former WMAL-AM/FM, Washington personality Brian Wilson is named the host of the morning show on the company’s WWTN-FM, Nashville “SuperTalk 99.7.”   Wilson left his co-host role at WMAL in May of 2017.  WWTN program director Dan Mandis says, “Brian has spent decades telling stories, whether covering the White House in Washington, DC or local stories from America’s heartland and he’s seen it all.  As Brian has been covering ‘Nashville’s Morning News’ on WWTN, listeners have already been responding to his perspective and insights.  I’m thrilled that he’s committed to moving to Nashville and hosting ‘Nashville’s Morning News’ full time.  He’s a great addition to an already outstanding radio station.”  Wilson previously served as a senior correspondent and anchor for the FOX News Channel.  He also co-anchored the Emmy Award-winning “FOX 5 Morning News” on WTTG-TV, Washington.

Philly Radio Legend John DeBella Accused of Sexual Harassment.  Longtime Philadelphia morning radio personality John DeBella is being accused of sexual harassment and groping by former traffic reporter and show cast member Jennifer Neill.  Numerous Philadelphia media outlets are reporting the story. DeBella hosts the morning show at Beasley Media Group’s classic rock WMGK.  Neill filed a suit in federal court alleging that over the course of her employment with WMGK that started in 2002, DeBella engaged in approximately 30 acts of unwanted sexual advancements.  According to the complaint, those incidents include physical groping and verbal requests for oral sex.  The account in the PhillyVoice states that Neill filed complaints with the Pennsylvania Human Relations Commission and the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission on September 19, 2016.  “After filing the complaints, management told Neill she could continue working with DeBella or take a leave of absence, the lawsuit claims.  She returned to work for one day before taking a leave of absence.  Management also launched a six-week-long investigation into the situation, according to the lawsuit.  As part of that investigation, DeBella allegedly dismissed his conduct as ‘jokes’ and ‘mutual.’”

WECK, Buffalo Hires Local News Pro. The Radio One Buffalo-owned station is broadcasting a nostalgia/full service format and announces that it is bringing aboard native broadcaster and journalist Steve Cichon to serve as news director, effective February 26.  Cichon will be part of the morning drive “WECK Coffee Club” program with co-hosts Tom Donahue and Gail Ann Huber.  Cichon began his career at crosstown WBEN in 1993.  He’s also served with WIVB-TV/WNLO-TV and WNSA/Empire Sports Network.  Radio One Buffalo president and CEO Buddy Shula says, “We’re very fortunate to have a well-known and respected journalist like Steve at WECK.  He’s a true Buffalonian who is woven into the fabric of our community – and he’s an excellent broadcaster.”  The station simulcasts on WECK-AM and W275BB at 102.9 FM.

TALKERS News Notes.  Nationally syndicated talk host Walter Sterling announces the launch of his new podcast called, “Old Dad Secrets.”  Sterling tells TALKERS magazine, “I have created an authentic, original podcast that is not an edit of my Westwood One network show.”  He says a new episode drops every Wednesday.  “I am in fact the oldest Dad in three different public schools.  My basic position with the schools is, ‘Screw you with your stupid rules.’  I get to live out my revenge fantasies against dumb school rules.  What are they going to do me?  I’m too old to mess with.  Plus, I reveal secrets from my decades in business.  I share the challenges and success of running a successful consulting business that has worked up-close in the C-suite at NBC, ABC, CBS, RKO, Sirius, Conde Nast, National Geographic, AMC Theatres and the top investment banks in the world.  The business books have it ALL wrong, let me tell you stories that will shock even you.”  It’s available at iTunes.  Check it out here…..CBS Sports Radio and SiriusXM have struck a deal to make the radio network’s lineup available on the satellite radio service on its own channel, beginning tomorrow (2/21).  The full CBS Sports Radio slate includes: Jim Rome, Tiki Barber, Brandon Tierney, Scott Ferrall, Amy Lawrence, Damon Amendolara, Bill Reiter, Taz and Marc Malusis, among others…..Hillsdale College has a booth on media row at this year’s Conservative Political Action Conference at Gaylord National Resort & Convention Center in National Harbor, Maryland starting tomorrow (2/21).  During the conference, Hillsdale students will conduct two-to-three-minute interviews with the speakers, personalities, and other CPAC attendees and will make those available for stations to upload and use in their broadcasts.  The FTP site from which to get the audio is here.  It will be updated every two hours throughout the day…..PodcastOne chairman Norm Pattiz made the grade in the Los Angeles Times.  In the paper, he’s pictured wildly gesturing at Cleveland Cavaliers superstar LeBron James at the NBA All-Star game as he lobbies James from his courtside seats to join the Los Angeles Lakers.  At the game on Sunday, Pattiz spent time hanging out with PodcastOne Sportsnet podcasters and partners, including Hall of Famer Shaquille O’Neal, sports personality and actor Rob Riggle, sportscasters Rich Eisen and Suzy Shuster, longtime NBA photographer Andrew D. Bernstein and Lakers owner Jeanie Buss.  See the LA Times story here.

Florida School Massacre Aftermath, Russian Election Meddling, Trump-Russia Investigation, Israel-Iran Tensions, Syrian Civil War Heats Up, Black Panther Film, and PyeongChang Winter Olympics Among Top News/Talk Stories Yesterday (2/19).  The aftermath of the Florida school massacre, including protests, gun control measures, and FBI failures; the mounting evidence that Russia has been and still is attempting to meddle in U.S. elections; the investigation into possible connections between the Trump campaign and Russian agents; tensions between Iran and Israel increase over evidence implicating Iran in providing weapons to the Palestinians; reports of a Syrian government attack on a Damascus suburb; the weekend success of the Black Panther film; and the PyeongChang Winter Olympics were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio yesterday, according to ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.

Chatting it Up with the President.  TALKERS publisher Michael Harrison (right) is pictured engaged in a conversation with President Trump (left) Sunday night (2/18) at a special Presidents Day Weekend dinner at the Trump International Golf Club in West Palm Beach, Florida.  Harrison and his wife Bernadette Duncan were the guests of Newsmax CEO Christopher Ruddy, a personal friend of the Trump family.  Trump was joined at the dinner by First Lady Melania Trump and his children Tiffany Trump and Donald Trump Jr. as well as select friends and White House Chief of Staff John Kelly.  Harrison reported back to TALKERS, “Trump was basically in a solemn mood, the weight of the Parkland shooting was obviously on his mind and the breaking story about the Russian election meddling operation was swirling in the air.  However, a lot of the conversation was purely social.  It was interesting seeing the President – amazingly relaxed and informal – among personal friends, associates and family…away from the press.  Up close, he has a snarky sense of humor, like a Millennial, that rivals the best of his comedic media critics.”  Harrison added, “It is clear that Chris Ruddy and Newsmax are held in extremely high regard by this administration.  If you recall, Newsmax was one of the earliest supporters of Trump.  They even ran a cover story speculating on the prospect of a Trump GOP candidacy more than a year before he announced his intentions to run.”

Music Radio News and Career Moves. Hartford, Connecticut radio personality David Fisch is named morning drive host at iHeartMedia’s adult hits WHCN “The River 105.9.”  Fisch is well known in the market for his work as morning drive co-host and APD at Red Wolf Broadcasting’s crosstown alternative WMRQ “Radio 104.”  iHeartMedia Hartford SVP of programming Dave Symonds states, “After a long national search to find the perfect host for ‘The River’ morning show, he’s right here in Hartford.  Fisch has years of experience entertaining the Hartford audience and being completely engaged in the local community.”  During his career Fisch has also served as the producer for “The Herd with Colin Cowherd” when it was on ESPN Radio…..Programming pro Lee Cagle is the new operations manager for SummitMedia’s four-station Louisville cluster that includes country WQNU “Q-103.1,” classic country WRKA “The Hawk 103.9 FM,” adult contemporary WVEZ “Play 106.9 FM,” and classic rock WSFR “Eagle 107.7.”   SummitMedia Louisville president Todd Pitt comments, “We chose Lee due to his extensive experience in New Orleans; Redding, California; Memphis; and Atlanta.  He is the right person to guide our four stations to their fullest potential.”…..On-air pro Kristy Knight is being named the new midday personality and APD at Cox Media Group’s adult contemporary WWRM, Tampa “Magic 94.9.”  She makes the move from iHeartMedia’s crosstown hot AC WTMX “Mix 100.7” where she’s been hosting the evening show.  WWRM programmer John Larson says, “We are so thrilled to have Kristy join our ‘Magic’ team.  Her experience and well-known name in the Tampa Bay market, along with her stellar reputation, will be an incredible addition to our ‘Magic’ team.”…..Advanced Media Partners announces it has hired Noah Sherwood to assume the program director and morning drive co-host role at triple A WWCT, Peoria.  He’d most recently been operations manager at Cumulus Media’s crosstown country WFYR and CHR WZPW.  About his new gig, Sherwood says, “The timing for this opportunity is incredible, joining Advanced Media Partners and programing WWCT is a huge blessing!  My wife and I really enjoy living in Central Illinois and are very excited to continue raising our family here.”  He takes over for Marc Alghini, who exited the station last month.

The Law Behind the Matt Lauer Firing

| November 30, 2017

By Steven J.J. Weisman
TALKERS
Legal Editor

 

BOSTON — The watershed moment in the history of sexual harassment that started with the rapid downfall of Harvey Weinstein has claimed another victim in Matt Lauer, although let’s be clear, Matt Lauer is not the victim in this case, it is the women whom he is alleged to have harassed over a long period of time who are the real victims.

Many of us were startled to learn early Wednesday morning that NBC had terminated the contract of longtime “Today” show host Matt Lauer.  The termination followed close on the heels of an allegation of sexual harassment that was brought by another NBC employee against Lauer. The female NBC employee, along with her lawyer Ari Wilkenfeld, met with NBC’s human resources and legal department Monday night for several hours to discuss the allegations.

Read More

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

| April 19, 2017

FOX Confirms: Bill O’Reilly Leaves FNC.  It’s been confirmed in an internal memo to staff that Fox News Channel parent company 21st Century Fox and Bill O’Reilly have agreed to part company.  21st Century Fox co-chairmen Lachlan and James Murdoch and News Corp. chief Rupert Murdoch wrote in the memo, in part, “After a thoughtful and careful review of allegations against him, the Company and Bill O’Reilly have agreed that Mr. O’Reilly will not return to the Fox News Channel.  This follows an extensive review done in collaboration with outside counsel.  By ratings standards, Bill O’Reilly is one of the most accomplished TV personalities in the history of cable news.  In fact, his success by any measure is indisputable.  Fox has demonstrated again and again the strength of its bench.  We have full confidence that the network will continue to be a powerhouse in cable news.  Lastly, and most importantly, we want to underscore our consistent commitment to fostering a work environment built on the values of trust and respect.”

WTIC, Hartford Names Todd Feinburg PM Drive Host. Hartford news/talker WTIC returns to issues talk in the afternoons as CBS RADIO announces “the next era of afternoon drive on WTIC-AM NewsTalk1080” with the launch of “Afternoons with Todd Feinburg,” beginning April 24.  The 3:00 pm to 6:00 pm show had been a sports talk program for the past two years featuring Joe D’Ambrosio and Andy Gresh.  CBS RADIO Hartford operations manager Steve Salhany states, “Todd is a familiar voice on ‘NewsTalk 1080,’ having filled in on the station across the schedule, so we are excited to officially welcome him to the WTIC family.  Our listeners enjoyed Todd’s fresh perspective and energizing personality and now they will get to tune-in to him every weekday afternoon.”  Feinburg’s talk host career has led him to gigs in Boston, Providence, New Hampshire and Connecticut.  For five years, he co-hosted the morning show on WRKO, Boston.  Feinburg states, “Filling in for Jim [Vicevich] and Ray [Dunaway], I have had a chance to learn for myself what a special station WTIC is, what a wonderful audience it has, and what a central role it plays in the political culture of the state.  I can’t wait to get started!”

TALKERS News Notes.  Tampa Bay Buccaneers radio play-by-play will continue to be based at iHeartMedia Tampa Bay as the two sides agree to a multi-year renewal.  iHeartMedia says that this year, the team’s games will be heard over the air on rock WXTB “98Rock” as well as online at Buccaneers.com and on the Buccaneers mobile app…..At this year’s NAB Show in Las Vegas (4/22-27), Wheatstone will be featuring on-air radio pro Kaden experimenting with its new VoxPro 7 recorder/editor for live radio.  Wheatstone says Kaden will “demonstrate the latest VoxPro features and his rapid editing abilities.”  Kaden comments, “If you do this for a while, you get very fast.  When I’m on-air, my eyes are on the screen and my fingers do all the work, making the call as tight and entertaining as possible.  In my opinion, it’s the easiest and fastest editor, anywhere.  I wouldn’t be able to do a full show without a VoxPro.”  Wheatstone will also have booth at the TALKERS 2017: A New Era conference in New York City on Friday, June 2.  See more about the TALKERS conference here…..E.W. Scripps and Milwaukee Business Journal expand their multi-media partnership to include Scripps’ television outlet WTMJ-TV “TODAY’S TMJ4.”  The Milwaukee Business Journal has an existing content partnership with WTMJ Radio, on which the publication’s reporters can be heard regularly.  WTMJ and WKTI VP and general manager Tom Langmyer says, “This partnership demonstrates the unique power of Scripps in Milwaukee.  The opportunity to feature content on radio, TV, digital and print better serves and informs the community.”…..Public news/talk station WBUR announces that its “On Point with Tom Ashbrook” program has been added to the programming schedule at NPR member stations WHYY, Philadelphia and KALW, San Francisco.  On a related note, the program is on a national tour called “Listening to America” and is broadcasting from Wisconsin Public Radio tomorrow (4/20).

Trump ‘Armada’ Controversy/North Korea Threats, Georgia House Race, Deadly Fresno Shootings, Erdogan Power Increases in Turkey, FOX News Channel’s O’Reilly Situation, and MLB, NBA, and NHL Action Among Top News/Talk Stories Yesterday (4/18). Ongoing concerns over North Korea’s nuclear program and the controversy over the misinformation about the whereabouts of U.S. Navy ships; the hotly contested race for Georgia’s 6th Congressional District seat; police suggest a hate crime in the shooting deaths of three white men by a black man in Fresno; Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s contested national vote that gives him much more power and questions about President Donald Trump’s call to congratulate him; speculation about the fate of FOX News Channel’s Bill O’Reilly in the wake of exploding sexual harassment allegations; and MLB, NBA and NHL action were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio yesterday, according to ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.

 

 

Music Radio News and Career Moves. Country radio programmer John Shomby adds program director duties for Cumulus Media’s WKDF, Nashville “NASH FM 103.3” to his responsibilities.  Shomby also serves as NASH director of programming, a position he’s held for the past year-and-a-half.  Charlie Cook is the VP/country music for Cumulus and he comments, “John has done a superb job of managing the launch of morning show ‘Ty, Kelly and Chuck’ on the NASH brand, as well as overseeing the nationally syndicated shows ‘NASH Nights Live’ and ‘The Blair Garner Show.’  This new position is a logical next step as we continue to grow our country platform.”…..iHeartMedia announces the promotion of Russell Rush to program director for CHR KXXM, San Antonio “Mix 96.1.”  Rush continues hosting his afternoon air shift.  iHeartMedia Central Texas Region president Matt Martin says, “Russell embodies the CHR lifestyle and is tuned into the San Antonio market.  It’s hard to imagine anyone more passionate about this station and its listeners!”…..Hubbard Radio Seattle adds the USRN-syndicated Billy Madison show to its morning drive daypart on rock KVRQ “ROCK 98.9.”   Hubbard Radio VP/market manager Marc Kaye says, “The first time I met Billy, Derek and Nard, I knew the Billy Madison show was going to be a part of ‘Rock 98.9’ and a huge part indeed.”…..iHeartMedia appoints Brittany Tully program director for country WYNK, Baton Rouge.  Regional SVP for programming Bob Murphy states, “Brittany is a South Louisiana native who understands the community, its listeners, the media market and the uniqueness of the brand.  I’m excited to bring her leadership and passion to our team.”…..CBS RADIO’s “SPF” (“SUN.POOL.FUN.”) event has expanded to two music-filled nights with Linkin Park kicking off the festivities on Friday, May 19 at The Chelsea inside The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas.  The following night, the party moves poolside when DNCE, Hailee Steinfeld, Jason Derulo, Niall Horan and Post Malone perform at Boulevard Pool inside The Cosmopolitan.

 

 

Round One of March PPM Ratings Released. The first of four rounds of ratings information from Nielsen Audio’s March 2017 PPM survey has been released for 12 markets, including: New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, San Francisco, Dallas, Houston, Atlanta, Philadelphia, Nassau-Suffolk (Long Island), Riverside, San Jose, and Middlesex-Somerset-Union (New Jersey). Nielsen’s March 2017 survey period covered March 2 – 29. View all the 6+ numbers from subscribing stations here.  Meanwhile, TALKERS managing editor Mike Kinosian provides his “Takeaways” from these 12 PPM markets below.

TWELVE TAKEAWAYS

1) New York – A combined +1.3 since “Holiday” 2016 (4.6 – 5.1 – 5.5 – 5.9, 6+), iHeartMedia CHR WHTZ “Z-100” climbs from third to a second-place tie. It is locked there with CBS Radio classic hits-oldies WCBS-FM “101.1 New York’s Greatest Hits” (5.9 -.2, 6+). Up seven-tenths in February (5.4 – 6.1, 6+), WCBS-FM advanced from fourth to second. Within 5.3 – 5.9 range (6+) the previous seven sweeps prior to February, “101.1 New York’s Greatest Hits” boasted its best 6+-showing since July 2016, when it reached 6.2. As for “Z-100,” its competitor, CBS Radio’s WBMP “92.3 Amp,” is again at #19 and without an increase for the seventh successive sweep for a cumulative -.9 (3.1 – 2.8 – 2.6 – 2.6 – 2.4 – 2.3 – 2.2 – 2.2, 6+). The rhythmic CHR format in the top market picks up one-half share as iHeartMedia’s WKTU regains the two-tenths it lost in February (4.1 – 3.9 – 4.1, unchanged at #8, 6+), while Emmis’ WHQT “Hot 97” adds three-tenths to February’s +.4 (2.9 – 3.3 – 3.6, tenth to ninth, 6+). Off one-half share in “Holiday” 2016, WKTU was +.6 in January. In the intramural all-news contest, WINS (unchanged at #4) registers its third straight gain for a collective +1.4 (4.4 – 5.2 – 5.4 – 5.8, 6+), while co-owned WCBS-AM is up or flat for the third consecutive time for a +.4 (2.4 – 2.7 – 2.8 – 2.8, 6+), but backslides from #13 to #14. Flat at #9, iHeartMedia urban contemporary WWPR “Power 105.1” is frozen on 3.6 for the third successive sweep. Although #1 for the ninth straight time, co-owned adult contemporary WLTW “106.7 Lite FM” drops nine-tenths (7.1 – 6.2, 6+). This is the weakest 6+-performance for “Lite” since a 6.1 last August. Down three-tenths to 2.9 (6+), CBS Radio hot AC WNEW-FM “Fresh 102.7” (flat at #11) has its consecutive string of up or flat monthlies (which produced a +.9) end at four (2.3 – 2.6 – 2.6 – 3.1 – 3.2, 6+). Meanwhile, Cumulus Media’s similarly-formatted WPLJ drops one-tenth in back-to-back sweeps (2.6 – 2.5 – 2.4, #16 to #17). After three straight uptrends resulting in a +1.3 (4.5 – 4.6 – 5.5 – 5.8, 6+), Spanish Broadcasting System Spanish tropical WSKQ “Mega 97.9” is off by seven-tenths in back-to-back monthlies (5.1 – 4.4, 6+) and slips from sixth to seventh.

2) Los Angeles – For the second time in the last three ratings periods, CBS Radio smooth AC KTWV (up seven-tenths from February) crosses the five-share threshold (5.0 – 4.8 – 5.5, 6+), progressing from a third-place tie to second. “The Wave” is just two-tenths behind the market pacesetter – iHeartMedia hot AC KBIG “My-FM,” which improves by one-half share (5.2 – 5.7, 6+). February’s one-tenth gain (5.1 – 5.2, 6+) was sufficient for “My-FM” to depart the runner-up slot it held the previous three sweeps and take over at #1, dislodging its adult contemporary sibling KOST, which had been on top in each of the last 16 ratings periods. Off by nearly 60% since the “Holiday” report, “Coast 103.5” – which carries on at #5 – has its third straight decline (10.7 – 5.2 – 4.6 – 4.4, 6+) after three straight gains accounting for a combined +5.3 (5.4 – 5.5 – 6.4 – 10.7, 6+). Increasing by three-tenths is the market’s (6+) CHR share, with KOST sibling KIIS “Kiss FM” up one-tenth (4.8 – 4.9, steady at #3, 6+) and CBS Radio’s KAMP “Amp” +.2 (2.6, #16 to #14, 6+). The gain of two-tenths by “Amp” curtails six successive down or flat trends that accounted for a -1.1 (3.5 – 3.0 – 3.0 – 3.0 – 2.9 – 2.6 – 2.4, 6+). There is virtually zero (6+) February – March movement in the alternative format in the City of Angels, as iHeartMedia’s KYSR “ALT 98.7 – LA’s New Alternative” drops one-tenth (3.2 – 3.1, 6+) but actually moves from #11 to #10. At the same time, CBS Radio-owned KROQ (#20 to #19) is up or flat for the third consecutive monthly for a +.3 in that period (1.8 – 2.0 – 2.1 – 2.1). Unlisted in January, Univision Radio regional Mexican KSCA returned in February by logging a 3.4 (6+), but “Zona Mx 101.9” regresses by six-tenths to 2.8 and departs the top ten (#9 to #12). Its 3.2 (6+) in “Holiday” 2016 put it in a three-way tie at #7. Flat at #11, Spanish adult hits cluster-mate KRCD “Recuerdo 103.9” has been the model of consistency over the last ten ratings periods (3.2 – 3.3 – 3.2 – 3.3 – 3.3 – 3.3 – 3.2 – 3.2 – 3.2 – 3.0, 6+).

3) Chicago – The steady climb continues for Hubbard adult contemporary WSHE, which is up for the third straight time for a combined +.8 (2.4 – 2.8 – 3.1 – 3.2, 6+) to bump up from ninth to eighth. At this time last year, WSHE was at #15 (2.6, 6+). When WSHE added three-tenths in February to 3.1 (6+), it ended 34 straight monthlies of the station being within 2.0 – 2.9 range (6+). Carrying on at #4, Tribune Media Company heritage news/talk WGN is without a decrease for the third straight time for a collective gain of one-half share (3.7 – 4.0 – 4.2 – 4.2, 6+). It is tied with iHeartMedia CHR WKSC “103.5 Kiss FM – Chicago’s #1 Hit Music Station,” making it three consecutive sweeps with a gain for a cumulative +.7 (3.5 – 3.7 – 3.9 – 4.2, 6+). Conversely, after four successive up or flat trends that netted one-half share (3.0 – 3.0 – 3.1 – 3.5 – 3.5, 6+), CBS Radio’s similarly-formatted WBBM-FM “Chicago’s B-96” is off by three-tenths to 3.2 (6+), slipping from seventh to eighth. In a three-way tie at #12, WLUP “97.9 The Loop – Chicago’s Classic Rock” is without a decrease for the fourth successive sweep (2.3 – 2.3 – 2.5 – 2.7 – 2.7, 6+) for a collective +.4, while co-owned WKQX is up or flat for the fifth straight ratings period (2.1 – 2.2 – 2.3 – 2.5 – 2.5 – 2.5, 6+), yet actually falls from #17 to #19. While flat at #24, Spanish Broadcasting System regional Mexican WLEY-FM “La Ley 107.9” is nonetheless up or flat for the seventh consecutive time (1.2 – 1.3 – 1.3 – 1.5 – 1.6 – 1.8 – 1.9 – 1.9, 6+). Albeit down four-tenths to 5.6, its lowest 6+-share since last July (also 5.6), iHeartMedia urban AC WVAZ “V-103 Today’s R&B and Throwbacks” repeats at #1. Fifteen (15) Chicago outlets from #10 through #24 are separated by just one-share. Within that congestion are the market’s two country rivals – CBS Radio-owned WUSN “US-99.5” (2.7 – 2.6, -.1, flat at #15, 6+) and iHeartMedia’s WEBG “Big 95.5,” unchanged at #21 with a 2.2 (6+) for the third successive sweep. Both made identical 1.9 – 2.2 (+.3, 6+) moves in January, putting them in a tie at #20. In the Windy City’s hot AC contest, Hubbard’s WTMX “Mix 101.9” drops one-tenth (4.9 – 4.8, 6+), while iHeartMedia-owned WLIT “93.9 My-FM” picks up one-tenth (3.6 – 3.7, 6+); “Mix” and “My-FM” remain at #3 and #6, respectively. For the third straight month, Window to the World Communications’ WFMT “Chicago’s Classical Experience” (1.8, #22, “Holiday” 2016, 6+) is unlisted.

4) San Francisco – Similar genres happen to be clumped together at the top of March’s Bay Area ratings board, as Northern California Public Broadcasting’s news/talk KQED-FM (7.7 – 7.3, -.4, 6+) and CBS Radio all-news KCBS-AM (6.8 – 6.2, -.6, 6+) repeat at #1 and #2, respectively. Adult contemporary facilities then take over, with Entercom’s KOIT-FM “96.5 Better Music for a Better Workday” up three-tenths (4.9 – 5.2, 6+) and iHeartMedia-owned KISQ “98.1 The Breeze” down one-tenth (4.5 – 4.4, 6+), maintaining their #3 and #4 slots. They are followed by two hot AC rivals – iHeartMedia’s KIOI “Star 101.3” (3.7 – 4.1, +.4, seventh to fifth, 6+) and CBS Radio-owned KLLC “Alice @ 97.3” (3.8 – 3.9, +.1, fifth to sixth). A pair of contemporary hit radio facilities round out the top eight: CBS Radio-owned KMVQ “99.7 New Hit Music Now” (flat at 3.8, fifth to seventh, 6+) and iHeartMedia’s KYLD “Wild 94.9 – The Bay’s #1 Hit Music Station” (3.5 – 3.4, -.1, unchanged at #8, 6+). Prior to a +.2 in February, KMVQ was without an increase the previous four sweeps for a combined -.6 (4.2 – 4.1 – 4.1 – 3.7 – 3.6). Trending 1.7 – 1.8 – 1.7 – 1.8 (6+), Entercom’s KGMZ “95.7 The Game” enters the top twenty in a three-way tie at #19. Meanwhile, flat at #9, Cumulus Media’s KNBR “The Sports Leader” is off by two-tenths to 3.0 (6+), thus ending its 3.5 – 3.2 – 3.5 – 3.2 pattern (6+). Co-owned news/talk KGO (steady at #14) has its third straight increase for a cumulative +.7 (1.8 – 2.1 – 2.4 – 2.5, 6+). It is tied with iHeartMedia’s KOSF “103.7 – 80s Music for San Francisco,” which posts its third consecutive gain as well (2.1 – 2.3 – 2.4 – 2.5, 6+). Even though the net loss is just three-tenths, Cumulus Media classic rock KSAN “107.7 The Bone Rocks” nevertheless is without a gain for the fifth successive sweep (2.4 – 2.2 – 2.1 – 2.1 – 2.1 – 2.1, 6+), but stays at #18. After four straight up or flat sweeps (1.5 – 1.5 – 1.6 – 1.8 – 1.9, 6+), CBS Radio’s KITS “Live 105 – The Bay Area’s Alternative” slips by two-tenths to 1.7 (6+) and drops out of the top twenty (#20 to #22).

5) Dallas – Locked on 2.8 (6+) in January and February, iHeartMedia adult contemporary KDGE “Star 102.1” improves by one-half share to 3.3 (6+), jumping from #16 to #10. The station jettisoned its alternative format and “Edge” identity in mid-November (2016) in favor of all-Christmas music (and eventually its current adult contemporary format). “Star 102.1” more than doubled December’s 3.3 to 7.7 in “Holiday” 2016, rocketing from tenth all the way to first. As recently as November 2016, KDGE was at #21. This marks the fifth successive ratings period in which Service Broadcasting urban contemporary KKDA-FM is either up or flat for a combined +.8 (2.4 – 2.6 – 2.6 – 2.8 – 3.2 – 3.2, 6+); “K-104” inches up from #12 to #11. In a similar vein, Radio One rhythmic CHR KBFB “97.9 The Beat” (flat at #13) is without a decline for the fourth straight time for a net gain of one-half share (2.4 – 2.5 – 2.8 – 2.9 – 2.9, 6+). The combination of a two-tenths loss by February’s frontrunner – Cumulus Media-owned country KPLX “The Wolf” (6.2 – 6.0, 6+) – and a four-tenths pickup by iHeartMedia CHR KHKS “106.1 Kiss-FM” (5.6 – 6.0, second in February, 6+) results in a first-place tie. KPLX sibling, similarly-formatted KSCS “New Country 96.3,” is without a decrease for the fourth successive sweep (3.2 – 3.4 – 3.6 – 4.3 – 4.3, 6+) for a collective +1.1 and remains in fifth-place. After five consecutive down or flat trends that produced a cumulative -2.3 (3.7 – 3.2 – 2.9 – 2.4 – 2.4 – 1.4, 6+), CBS Radio sports outlet KRLD-FM “The Fan” adds one-tenth to 1.5 (6+), climbing from #28 to #27. Long an adult contemporary powerhouse, co-owned KVIL “Amp 103.7” has transitioned in recent years to hot AC and most recently to CHR. Down six-tenths (2.9 – 2.3, 6+), “Amp” skids from #13 to #18, while its former format foe – iHeartMedia hot AC KDMX “Now 102.9” – drops three-tenths (4.1 – 3.8, 6+) to slip from seventh to eighth. In three consecutive decreases (6.8 – 5.2 – 4.8 – 4.7, 6+), CBS Radio classic hits-oldies KLUV is -2.1 as it drops from third to fourth. Meanwhile, Univision Radio regional Mexican KLNO “Que Buena 94.1” (unchanged at #6) is -1.4 over five successive sweeps without an increase (5.3 – 4.7 – 4.4 – 4.4 – 4.2 – 3.9, 6+). Having posted a 0.5 (6+) in January and February, Southwestern Adventist University contemporary Christian KJRN “88.3 The Journey” disappears from print.

6) Houston – Not only does Cox Media Group-owned country KKBQ boast top honors for loftiest 6+ February 2017 to March 2017 increase by any station in the 12 PPM-markets whose data was released on Tuesday (4.2 – 5.8, +1.6, 6+), “The New 93-Q” rockets ten rankers (#12 to #2). It is the strongest 6+-showing for KKBQ since last July’s 5.9 (6+). Up a combined full-share in back-to-back monthlies (6.9 – 7.2 – 7.9, 6+), Radio One-owned urban AC KMJQ “Majic 102.1 The People’s Station” repeats at #1. Going back to November, “Majic 102.1” was trending 7.1 – 6.9 – 7.0 – 6.9 (6+). Despite being up or flat for the sixth straight time for a net gain of +2.2 (2.6 – 2.7 – 2.7 – 3.1 – 3.5 – 4.6 – 4.8, 6+), CBS Radio’s adult hits “95.7 The Spot” actually backslides from sixth to seventh. KKHH transitioned from CHR on 12/30/2016. Following three straight negative trends that yielded a combined -1.5 (8.0 – 7.4 – 6.7 – 6.5, 6+), KLTN brought back 60% of that deficit in January (+.9), jumping from third to first. It was a very quick stay in the penthouse though for the Univision Radio regional Mexican outlet, which surrendered -1.3 in February (7.4 – 6.1, 6+) and fell to third. Now, KLTN drops one-half share to 5.6, its lowest 6+-showing since last April’s 5.4, and slides to fifth. Noncommercial contemporary Christian KSBJ “God Listens,” which improved by one full-share in January to 5.9, its strongest 6+-share in more than four years (6.0, November 2012), forfeited half of it in February (-.5, 6+) and drops another half-share in March (5.9 – 5.4 – 4.9, 6+), falling from fourth to sixth. In addition to KLTN and KSBJ, iHeartMedia alternative KTBZ “94.5 The Buzz” (4.5 – 4.0, #7 to #11, 6+) and news/talk sibling KTRH (4.4 – 3.9, #9 to #12, 6+) sputter by one-half share as well. Owing to a +.3 to 3.1 (6+), Univision Radio Spanish adult hits KOVE (unchanged at #16) applies the brakes to three straight downward trends that accounted for a combined -1.1 (3.9 – 3.7 – 3.4 – 2.8, 6+).

7) Atlanta – Registering its ninth consecutive monthly without a decrease for a combined +1.9 (2.9 – 3.2 – 3.7 – 3.8 – 3.8 – 4.1 – 4.3 – 4.5 – 4.7 – 4.8, 6+), Radio One urban AC WAMJ “Majic The Real Sound of Atlanta” progresses from seventh to sixth. Unlisted in January, Atlanta Public Schools’ WABE “90.1 Where ATL Meets NPR” (2.9, #15, “Holiday” 2016, 6+) returned in February at #15 (3.0, 6+) and the news/talk outlet registers a +.8 in March to 3.8 (#12, 6+). In addition to WABE, Cox Media Group classic hits-oldies WSRV “97.1 The River” improves by eight-tenths as well and posts its third straight increase for a collective +1.5 (4.4 – 4.6 – 5.1 – 5.9, 6+) to advance from fifth to third. Notching half-share increases are Salem Media Group contemporary Christian WFSH “104.7 The Fish” (4.9 – 5.4, sixth to fifth, 6+) and iHeartMedia country WUBL “94.9 The Bull” (#16 to #14, 6+), up for the third consecutive time for a collective +.8 (2.6 – 2.8 – 2.9 – 3.4, 6+). Notwithstanding being a combined -1.2 in consecutive sweeps (10.7 – 9.9 – 9.5, 6+), Cox Media Group news/talk WSB-AM is #1 for the fifteenth straight ratings period. Prior to March, its most recent trends are -2.3 (“Holiday” 2016); +2.8 (January); and -.8 (February). January’s 10.7 represents the station’s best-ever (6+) performance, eclipsing the 10.2 in December 2016. After improving by one-half share in February (4.8 – 5.3, 6+), co-owned adult contemporary WSB-FM “B-98.5” forfeits all of it plus two-tenths (4.6, -.7, 6+) to slip from fourth to seventh. In advance of February’s +.5, WSB-FM was consistently within 4.4 – 4.9 territory (6+) the previous 12 ratings periods; “B-98.5” had its best 6+-showing in one year (5.5, February 2016, 6+).

8) Philadelphia – Off by a collective one-half share as a result of three straight negative trends (7.0 – 6.8 – 6.7 – 6.5, 6+), iHeartMedia urban AC WDAS-FM “Philly’s Best R&B and Throwbacks” (steady at #3) picks up four-tenths to 6.9 (6+). At the same time, Radio One’s similarly-programmed WRNB “100.3 R&B + Old School” drops three-tenths (3.7 – 3.4, 6+), but stays at #13. Over the course of the last seven ratings periods, iHeartMedia urban contemporary WUSL “Power 99” (#9 to a three-way tie at #8) has been the definition of steadiness (4.1 – 4.0 – 4.0 – 4.0 – 4.1 – 4.2 – 4.1, 6+). In print in only the last four sweeps (2.1 – 2.1 – 2.7 – 2.4, 6+), Educational Media Foundation contemporary Christian WKVP “K-LOVE” dials up a +.6 to 3.0, climbing from #17 to #16. Recapturing all but one-tenth of February’ -.6, Beasley Media Group’s WPEN-FM “97.5 The Fanatic” (2.5 – 1.9 – 2.4, 6+) climbs from #20 to #18. “The Fanatic” added one-half share in January to end three straight negative trends (2.5 – 2.4 – 2.2 – 2.0, 6+). Meanwhile, cross-town format rival – CBS Radio’s WIP – picks up two-tenths to 4.1 (6+), thus halting at five a consecutive string of downward or flat trends that yielded a cumulative -1.1 (5.0 – 4.9 – 4.3 – 4.0 – 4.0 – 3.9, 6+); WIP moves from #12 back to the top ten (a three-way tie at #8). On the heels of registering a +1.3 in January and a one-half share gain in February, classic hits-oldies sibling WOGL is flat (5.5 – 6.8 – 7.3 – 7.3, 6+), yet manages to push forward from second to first. There, it displaces Jerry Lee Radio adult contemporary WBEB “Today’s 101 More FM” (7.9 – 7.0, -.9, first to second, 6+), which had been on top the past seven sweeps. “More FM” was +6.8 in “Holiday” 2016 but eroded by ten (10) full-shares in January (17.9 – 7.9, 6+). Following a collective gain of eight-tenths (6.8 – 7.4 – 7.6, August – September – October, 6+), WBEB dropped one-tenth in November, only to post a +3.6 in December. The culprit for one-third of WBEB’s -.9 would appear to be CBS Radio’s WTDY “Today’s 96.5” (#15 to #16, 6+), which picks up three-tenths and notches its third straight (modest) gain for a collective +.5 (2.5 – 2.6 – 2.7 – 3.0, 6+). It flipped to adult contemporary from CHR (WZMP “Amp”) the day after the “Holiday” 2016 ratings period ended (1/5). Up a combined +1.1 since the “Holiday” report (2.9 – 3.9 – 4.0, 6+), co-owned news/talk WPHT regresses by one-half share to 3.5 (6+) and departs the top ten (#10 to #12).

9) Long Island – Nowhere nearly as pronounced as the situation in San Francisco (see above), there are several Nassau-Suffolk (Long Island) instances of tight format races. For example, finishing at eighth and ninth, respectively, are CBS Radio news siblings WINS (flat at 3.9, 6+) and WCBS-AM (3.8 – 3.5, -.3, 6+). Without a decrease for seven successive sweeps for a net gain of +1.6 (2.9 – 3.2 – 3.7 – 3.7 – 3.7 – 4.0 – 4.2 – 4.5, 6+), WINS floundered by one full-share in “Holiday” 2016 but recaptured all but one-tenth in January. Separated by two-tenths are two news/talk outlets – Cumulus Media’s WABC (2.8 – 3.0, +.2, #14 to #12, 6+) and iHeartMedia-owned WOR (3.1 – 2.8, -.3, #10 to #13, 6+). WOR was off by one-half share in February, returning January’s +.5 (3.1 – 3.6 – 3.1, 6+). Tied at 2.2 (#20, 6+) meanwhile are hot AC rivals, CBS Radio’s WNEW-FM “Fresh 102.7” (-.1, #21 in February, 6+) and Cumulus Media’s WPLJ (-.4, #15 in February, 6+). Having registered 11 successive sweeps at #1 in the Long Island report, iHeartMedia New York City CHR WHTZ “Z-100” spiraled by -1.5 in “Holiday” 2016 (6.6 – 5.1, 6+), sliding to third. It then gained eight-tenths to 5.9 (6+) in January 2017 to reappear at #1; repeated at #1 in February – albeit flat at 5.9; and remains at #1 with a +.2 to 6.1 (6+). A full-share loss (5.2 – 4.2, 6+) causes Connoisseur Media hot AC WALK-FM “Real Variety 97.5” to spiral from fourth to seventh. After posting four straight Long Island increases for a collective +1.5 (3.8 – 4.6 – 4.8 – 5.0 – 5.3, 6+), CBS Radio classic hits-oldies WCBS-FM “101.1 New York’s Greatest Hits” (steady in the runner-up slot) falters by four-tenths to 4.9 (6+). This marks the 28th straight sweep that Emmis rhythmic CHR WQHT “Hot 97” (#15 to #16) is in 2.0 – 2.9 range (2.6 – 2.5, -.1, 6+).

10) Riverside – While Univision Radio regional Mexican KSCA dips by six-tenths in Los Angeles (see above), “Zona Mx 101.9” ironically improves by that exact margin (4.6 – 5.2, +.6, 6+) in the Inland Empire of Riverside-San Bernardino-Ontario to advance from fourth to second. Having lost one-half share in January 2017, LC Media’s urban-rhythmic oldies KQIE “Old School 104.7” recaptured six-tenths in February and tacks on an additional one-half share in March (2.7 – 2.2 – 2.8 – 3.3, 6+), inching up from eighth to seventh. This is the strongest 6+-performance for “Old School 104.7” since last June (also 3.3, 6+). Although unchanged at #13, KATY picks up two-tenths to 1.0 (6+), the first time the All-Pro adult contemporary has crossed the one-share level (6+) since December 2015’s 1.1. Following five consecutive sweeps without a decrease for a collective +2.2 (7.2 – 7.5 – 7.5 – 8.3 – 8.7 – 9.4, 6+), Entravision Spanish adult hits KLYY “Jose” lost two-tenths in February (6+) and now sputters by an additional six-tenths (9.2 – 8.6, 6+), but is #1 for the seventeenth consecutive ratings period. Logging a 5.7 (6+) in three of the last five survey periods, iHeartMedia rhythmic CHR KGGI slumps by eight-tenths (5.4 – 4.6, 6+) to slip from third to fourth. In the runner-up slot is Anaheim Broadcasting classic hits-oldies outlet KOLA (5.6 – 5.2, -.4, 6+). The -.4 is more than slightly noteworthy, in that, it ends at five KOLA’s string of consecutive fluctuations by one-half share (7.1 – 6.6 – 6.1 – 5.6 – 6.1 – 5.6, 6+) for a collective -1.5. At #2 six straight times before dropping to third in “Holiday” 2016, KOLA is at #2 for the third successive sweep. Prior to November, KOLA was up or flat the previous six times for a net gain of +2.2 (4.9 – 4.9 – 5.6 – 6.5 – 6.8 – 6.9 – 7.1, 6+).

11) San Jose – After notching a +.8 in February (2.4 – 3.2, 6+), iHeartMedia-owned adult contemporary KISQ piles on nine-tenths more to 4.1 as “98.1 The Breeze” vaults into the top ten (#14 to #8, 6+). Unlisted in San Jose since posting a 5.1 (6+) in the “Holiday” 2015 report, KQED returned in January by recording a 6.9 (6+) to finish at #1. The Northern California Public Broadcasting facility repeated in the top spot with a +.7 to 7.6 (6+) in February, and while off by one-tenth in March (7.5, 6+), it continues to stay on top. A combined +1.9 in January and February (2.9 – 3.8 – 4.8, 6+), Entercom-owned KUFX “98.5 The South Bay’s Classic Rock” surrenders -1.2 to 3.6, plummeting from fourth to tenth. Its -1.2 is the largest 6+ February 2017 to March 2017 decline by any station in the 12 PPM-markets whose data was released on Tuesday. In “Holiday” 2016, “The South Bay’s Classic Rock” was -1.0; February’s 4.8 is its best 6+-showing since last July (4.8 as well). Although steady at #3, this represents the third straight drop for Univision Radio Spanish adult hits KBRG “100.3 Mas Variedad” (5.4 – 5.3 – 5.1 – 4.5, 6+) for a collective -.9 and first time it has been under a five-share since December 2014 (4.6, 6+). With a -.2 to 2.1 (6+), Spanish Broadcasting System regional Mexican KRZZ not only has its consecutive streak of upward moves – which netted a +1.3 – stop at three (1.0 – 1.5 – 1.8 – 2.3, 6+), “93.3 La Raza” departs the top twenty (#17 to #21). Having been within 3.0 – 3.9 range (6+) the past 19 sweeps, iHeartMedia CHR KYLD “WiLD 94.9 The Bay’s #1 Hit Music Station” dips by two-tenths (3.1 – 2.9, 6+), falling from #15 to #17.

12) Middlesex – The rollercoaster ride continues for Univision Radio’s Spanish tropical WXNY. Following three straight gains netting seven-tenths (2.8 – 2.9 – 3.1 – 3.5, 6+), “X-96.3” was -.9 in “Holiday” 2016; erased that with a +1.0 in January 2017; slipped by -.6 in February; and is +.5 in March (3.5 – 2.6 – 3.6 – 3.0 – 3.5, 6+); WXNY moves from a five-way logjam at #13 to #10. Via three straight gains (2.4 – 2.7 – 3.6 – 3.9, 6+), Emmis rhythmic CHR WQHT “Hot 97” is a collective +1.5 and elevates from eighth to seventh. Its format rival – iHeartMedia’s WKTU (#18 – #17) – is up or flat for the fourth consecutive ratings period netting a +.6 (2.2 – 2.2 – 2.7 – 2.8 – 2.8, 6+) in that period. Despite a loss of one-half share (7.9 – 7.4, 6+), Townsquare Media news/talk WKXW is #1 for the third straight sweep. As a result of hanging out a “Holiday” 2016 – January 2017 increase of one-full-share (6.8 – 7.8, 6+), “New Jersey 101.5” returned to #1 following one turn in the runner-up slot. Prior to “Holiday” 2016 (when it was -.7, 6+), “New Jersey 101.5” spent 12 consecutive ratings periods on top. Down a combined one-share in October and November (8.2 – 7.6 – 7.2, 6+), WKXW picked up three-tenths in December. Just as it did in January, WHTZ “Z-100” registered a one-half share gain in February (4.9 – 5.4, 6+), but the iHeartMedia New York City CHR relinquishes nine-tenths (4.5, 6+), falling from fourth to sixth. Flat at #10, CBS Radio’s similarly-programmed WBMP “Amp” is without an increase for the seventh straight time and has lost one full-share in that stretch (4.5 – 4.3 – 4.0 – 3.9 – 3.8 – 3.7 – 3.5 – 3.5, 6+).

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

| August 23, 2016

Former Fox News Personality Andrea Tantaros Sues Fox News.  News/talk media personality Andrea Tantaros has filed a suit in New York State Supreme Court in Manhattan against her former employer Fox News for sexual harassment, according to a story in The New York Times.  Tantaros also hosted a nationally syndicatedtantarosandrea talk radio show for Talk Radio Network in 2013.  In her complaint, Tantaros accuses former Fox News chief Roger Ailes – among other executives – of sexual harassment and alleges she was pulled from her host position on “The Five” after rebuffing advances by Ailes and demoted to a midday show.  Fox News is not commenting on the suit. However, Tantaros recently left the network after a contract dispute ignited by what Fox alleged was Tantaros’ publication of a book without seeking permission.  The Times piece reports that a Fox lawyer said Tantaros made up the harassment allegations to gain leverage during the contract dispute while Tantaros’ lawyer says Tantaros was offered a seven-figure sum to renounce the claims against Ailes.

Nielsen Pulls 35 Households from Los Angeles PPM Panel.  Citing “irregular compliance patterns,” Nielsen Audio has made it known that has dismissed 35 households from the Los Angeles PPM panel.  Nielsen is not going into much detail other than to say that its review team discovered that its quality standards were not nielsen logoadhered to.  Nielsen says the irregularities were noticed among households in question in the first two weeks of the Los Angeles August 2016 survey and that those households were removed for weeks three and four of the survey.  As a result, Nielsen is reviewing the data for the Los Angeles surveys to determine if any previous months had been affected.  The company is also looking at other PPM markets to see if similar irregularities occurred.  Meanwhile, Nielsen says its control system did its job is discovering the problems but will continue to review ways to prevent recurrence of these irregularities.  It’s not believed that any media households were involved.  It was two years ago that a KSCA, Los Angeles staffer was fired after it had been determined the station had made contact with a panelist and ratings had to be reissued.

WTBC, Tuscaloosa Talk Host John Fisher Jr. Arrested on Meth Trafficking Charges.  Attorney and talk show host John Fisher Jr. has been arrested – along with alleged accomplice Christopher Shane Rushing – on fisherjohnjrcharges of trafficking in methamphetamine, according to AL.com.  The report states authorities apprehended Fisher and Rushing after receiving tips about a meth lab.  Raw Story reports that Fisher is host of an eponymous political talk show on Townsquare Media’s WTBC, Tuscaloosa.  WTBC is a country outlet branded “Catfish Country.”  TALKERS’ calls to WTBC to confirm the status of his program have been unsuccessful.  The webpage for the johnfishershow.com has been suspended.

Eric Lauer Named WKTI, Milwaukee GSM.  Milwaukee native Eric Lauer returns to Brew Town to serve as general sales manager for country WKTI.  In addition to that role, Lauer will also serve as national sales lauerericmanager for WKTI, news/talk WTMJ and the company’s sports properties.  Lauer comes to the E.W. Scripps stations from his current role with Cox Media Group as general sales manager for the company’s six Jacksonville stations and CODAN Internet Marketing.  Vice president and general manager Tom Langmyer says, “The growth of WKTI has taken us to the next level – creating a need for its own sales leadership.  The restructuring of management roles at Milwaukee’s radio operations will provide stronger focus on each of our properties, which includes Jason Bjorson’s assumption of full sales leadership in his role as GSM of WTMJ and sports sales.”  Lauer begins in Milwaukee on September 26.

Broadcasters Foundation of America Assists Broadcasters Affected by Louisiana Floods and California Wildfires.  The Broadcasters Foundation of America is moving swiftly to provide emergency grants to broadcasters whose lives and property have been severely damaged by the floods in Louisiana and the bfoa logowildfires in California. The Emergency and Disaster Grant Program features an abbreviated vetting process that gets emergency funds to victims within a week.  To be eligible, applicants must have worked in radio or television broadcasting and be facing extreme financial hardship due to a natural or environmental disaster.  BFoA chairman Dan Mason says, “It’s imperative that we get these emergency funds into the hands of broadcasters within days.  The Broadcasters Foundation has a track record of moving quickly and nimbly in emergencies, while thoroughly screening the abridged applications for need.”  In the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, the Foundation acted speedily to award $250,000 in one-time emergency grants of $1,000 each to 250 broadcasters.  The Foundation also moved quickly following the tornadoes in Joplin, Missouri and Hurricane Sandy in the New York area.  The Broadcasters Foundation contacted the Louisiana and California Broadcasters Associations last week to distribute emergency grant application information among its members.   Emergency grants already have been awarded to broadcasters in Louisiana from Cumulus Media, Guaranty Broadcasting, Nexstar Broadcasting, Raycom Media, Townsquare Media, and others.  Requests for aid from Louisiana flood victims are coming in almost hourly, and the Foundation is reviewing completed applications immediately to rapidly deliver emergency grants to those who are approved.  For more information and to make a donation to the BFoA, visit www.broadcastersfoundation.org, or call 212-373-8250.

Beth Neuhoff to Receive 2016 MIW Trailblazer Award.  The recipient of this year’s 2016 MIW Trailblazer honor from the Mentoring and Inspiring Women in Radio group is Neuhoff Communications neuhoffbethpresident and chief executive officer Beth Neuhoff.  She will receive the 8th annual MIW Radio Group Frances Preston Trailblazer Award on Wednesday, September 21 during the 2016 Radio Show Wednesday Headliner: ‘Cutting Edge Trends in Marketing, featuring Dave Ramsey and John Rich.’  MIW Radio Group spokesperson Kay Olin states, “Beth Neuhoff is an accomplished broadcaster who blazes new trails and heights in everything she touches.  Beth has been a passionate and enthusiastic ambassador for Radio and especially women throughout her career.  She sets a tremendous example for all women in broadcasting through her bold decision-making and inspiring leadership.  Beth is intelligent, caring, approachable and the natural choice to be honored as our 2016 MIW Trailblazer.”

Odds & Sods. In the recently awarded Kansas Association of Broadcasters awards, Alpha Media Topeka was honored with a number of accolades, including First Place finishes for: Complete Sportscast by WIBW-AM’s Jake Lebahn, News Feature by WIBW-AM’s Ryan Ogle, and Station Website by WIBW-AM’s Dave Navarro and Carol Gallmeyer.  Market manager Larry Riggins commented on the announcement, “We are exceptionally proud of our staff members and departments for this high honor.  We have a great reputation as a radio group because of our staff and ability to represent the station at a statewide level sets us apart.”…..Sinclair Broadcast Group’s news/talk KVI, Seattle drew several hundred people to a listener appreciation party held at the FlyinglarsSoviet16 Heritage Collection at Paine Field in Everett, Washington.  This museum is the private collection of Microsoft billionaire Paul Allen and includes a couple of dozen rare warbirds, a V2 rocket from WWII and some tanks and tracked vehicles from the U.S. and half a dozen other countries.   KXL, Portland-based talk host Lars Larson is heard on the station and appeared at the listener party.  He’s pictured here (at left) with fellow KVI personalities John Carlson (right) and Kirby Wilbur (center).  Larson tells TALKERS magazine, “What I love about this is it’s a picture of three conservative talkers, standing in front of a missile built by a now-failed Communist country [USSR], owned by an American capitalist and available for a free people to enjoy as a museum piece (as communism is for everyone but Bernie Sanders).”

The Presidential Race, More Hillary Clinton Emails Found, Ryan Lochte Scandal, ObamaCare Exchange Troubles, Judge Halts Trans Bathroom Policy, and MLB Action Among Top News/Talk Stories Yesterday (8/22).  The activities of presidential candidates Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton; the FBI finds 15,000 more emails from Hillary Clinton’s private server that were not turned over; the behavior of U.S. swimmer Ryan Lochte and the image of U.S. Olympic athletes; troubles for ObamaCare as numerous insurers back out of some exchanges; a federal judge puts injunction on Obama Administration’s transgender bathroom policy for schools; and Major League Baseball action were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio yesterday, according to ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

| January 7, 2014

cainepaulCEO Caine Set to Depart WestwoodOne.  As WestwoodOne becomes a fully integrated Cumulus Media division, chief executive officer Paul Caine will leave later this month. According to Cumulus chief executive officer Lew Dickey, “Paul is an extremely talented media executive and did an excellent job of guiding WestwoodOne during a period of change.  He positioned the company for future growth and played an instrumental role in driving awestwoodone logo constructive transaction, which delivered value for his shareholders.  We look forward to working with Paul in the next chapter of his impressive career.”  Caine is “so proud of the team we’ve built and what we’ve accomplished” at the company.  “In such a short time, we have proven the power of sound and its impact on the future of the audio industry,” he remarks.  “I am confident that this great momentum will continue under Cumulus and the strong talent and leadership of Lew Dickey.”  Less than one year ago (April 2013), Caine was announced as chief executive officer of Dial Global (now WestwoodOne) and as a member of the company’s board of directors.  He previously spent nearly 25 years at Time Inc., where he led the development of digital formats.

cookehollandNew Media Expo and CES Update.  “If I were Howard Stern I would go to a subscription podcasting model.”  Those were the words of Courtside Entertainment Group and PodcastOne CEO Norm Pattiz speaking at yesterday morning’s keynote address at 2014 New Media Expo (formerly Blogworld).  Media consultant Holland Cooke is in Las Vegas reporting for TALKERS magazine and he has more from Pattiz.  Also check out his notes from the first day of the 2014 International Consumer Electronics Show where he reports back on the new technology that is relevant to the radio and content business.  Check it out here.

paulsenrouhierGrant Paulsen and Danny Rouhier Host Middays on WJFK-FM, Washington.  Speculation that Don Geronimo would re-surface during the day on CBS RADIO’s sports talk WJFK-FM, Washington “106.7 The Fan” have been squelched as the station debuted its new midday show co-hosted by Grant Paulsen and Danny Rouhier (Geronimo remains with the station hosting the evening show).  Rouhier had been working with Holden Kushner during the 10:00 am to 2:00 pm slot previously.  Kushner remains with the station hosting weekends and participating in the station’s Washington Nationals coverage.  Paulsen has been serving as the station’s Redskins beat reporter for the past four years.

deptrojohnWPRO, Providence Talk Host John DePetro Returns to Air; Critics Remain Steadfast.  Providence talk show host John DePetro – host of the late morning show on Cumulus Media’s WPRO, Providence – returned to the air on Monday after being off for the month of December.  DePetro and local union leader Maureen Martin – chairwoman of the anti-DePetro organization For Our Daughers RI – appear fated to continue their battle over DePetro’s employment with the station.  DePetro recently rankled Martin and other Rhode Island union members after he referred to some of them as “parasites,” “cockroaches,” “hags” and “whores” during a rant about their participation in a protest.  DePetro apologized for his choice of words but Martin is not backing off her campaign to oust DePetro from his position via boycott of the station’s advertisers and a petition drive.  The latest news in the skirmish is Martin publicly claiming DePetro was accused of sexual assault in 2013.  The Providence Journal-operated PolitiFact.com reports that it researched the matter to discover DePetro was accused of sexual harassment in 2012.  After connecting with Martin, PolitiFact.com reports the organization changed the date – from 2013 to 2012 – on its petition but has not altered the accusation to harassment.  Although harassment is a civil matter and assault is a felony, Martin insists to PolitiFact.com that an unwanted sexual advance is assault, according to the U.S. Department of Justice – which the news organization disputes.  Regardless, DePetro appears ready for battle, addressing the issue upon his return Monday saying, “Politicians and unions should not interfere and try to silence public opinion.  Period.  That’s it…They want to silence the people.  The last time I checked, this is still America.”

comrexComrex Names Raul Hun Latin America Sales Manager.  Comrex Corporation announces the appointment of Raul Hun to manage Latin America sales for the company.  Hun, a native of Panama, brings over 15 years of experience in providing studio and transmission solutions to broadcasters throughout Central and South America.  He most recently worked for the Telos Alliance and Broadcast Electronics.  Comrex director of sales Chris Crump comments, “Raul is one of the most well-liked gentlemen in our industry and we are thrilled to have him on our team.  The great work that Jim Godfrey has done for us in the region will certainly be strengthened by the strong dealer and customer relationships that Raul has developed over the years in Latin America.”

deanmichaelwReview: The Audio Technica AT2005USB Microphone.  Whether you record podcasts or take your talk show on the road (or both!), a good portable USB mic is a very handy thing.  Talk show host Michael W. Dean offers this thorough review of the Audio Technica AT2005USB mic.  He writes, “This would be a great mic for hosts who travel a lot, and don’t want to bring a mixer and a whole bag of gear or an engineer.  It’s a regular-sized dynamic mic that sounds fairly amazing.  It has a built-in USB interface, and comes with a nifty collapsible tripod table stand and a USB cable.  You could fit that all in a netbook case with a small laptop.”  For the entire review, pics and a sound sample, click here.

summersrichOdds & Sods.  Rich Summers is the new operations manager for Townsquare Media’s news/talk KIDO, Boise and its sister sports talk station KFXD “Sports Radio 630 The Fan.”  Summers joined the station group as program director of country KAWO…..At Yahoo! Sports Radio, there’s been a lineup change: “Hit ‘Em Up with Geoff Ketchum” moves to the 2:00 pm to 4:00 pm ET slot and a new afternoon drive program, “Prime Cut featuring Sean Salisbury and John Granato,” launches in the 4:00 pm to 8:00 pm ET timeslot…..In addition to yesterday’s news that the Clear Channel Media + Entertainment digital audio platform iHeartRadio will be available on some new car entertainment and information systems, the company is promoting the service will soon be available on Qualcomm’s multi-media AllPlay smart media platform, the new AT&T Drive auto platform and others.  The announcement was made at day one of the 2014 International Consumer Electronics Show.

MSNBC-Romney Controversy, Winter Cold Snap/Global Warming, Kerry’s Iran-Syria Solution, Colorado Pot Law Effects, Chicago Gun Ban Overturned, and SCOTUS Utah Gay Marriage Ruling Among Top News/Talk Stories Yesterday (1/6).  MSNBC’s forced apology after a program aired in which comedians made fun of Mitt Romney’s adopted, African-American grandson; the bitter winter weather affecting much of the United States and the controversy over its cause; criticism over John Kerry’s reaching out to Iran in an effort to solve the civil unrest in Syria; the effects of the new marijuana laws in Colorado; the overturning of Chicago’s ban on the purchase and sale of guns in the city; and the Supreme Court’s overturning of Utah’s gay marriage law were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio yesterday, according to ongoing research from TALKERS.