Weisman: Jemele Hill and the First Amendment. TALKERS magazine legal editor Steven J.J. Weisman writes today about the Jemele Hill controversy and how her Tweet calling President Trump a white supremacist has some calling for her firing. Weisman says that freedom of speech relative to one’s status as an employee is not as “free” as some people would like to think. Also, he addresses the charges that ESPN is hypocritical for not firing Hill after firing MLB great Curt Schilling for political rhetoric. Read his column here.
KVET, Austin Talk Host Sean Adams Dies at 46. KVET-AM, Austin “1300 The Zone” sports talk host Sean Adams died yesterday after suffering a heart attack in Round Rock, Texas. Adams was co-host of “The Bottom Line” show with Chip Brown that airs in morning drive. Adams worked in sports media in the market for years, also having served at former sports talker KZNX-AM and ESPN’s Longhorn Network. He wrote two motivational books: Sports for Life: Daily Sports Themes for Life Success, and It’s Okay to be Crazy. He leaves behind his wife Karen and a son and daughter. Brown posted a tribute to Adams at the station’s website here.
Leslie Marshall Show Ends AM/FM Availability, Remains Digital Program. Progressive talk radio personality Leslie Marshall is putting the wraps on her program’s AM/FM platform and will focus fully on being an Internet program. WYM Media Management informed affiliate stations that the “The Leslie Marshall Show” is joining Internet platform Progressive Voices, effective October 2. WYM says that Marshall made this decision “with a heavy heart,” but was moved to her decision because listeners are “accessing her program online more and more.”
Gow Media Moving the KGOW-AM, Houston Sports Talk Format. The sports talk format that Gow Media has been airing on KGOW-AM, Houston (branded “SB Nation Radio 1560 AM”) is moving to the FM band beginning on October 1. CultureMap.com reports that the format is being re-branded “SportsMap 94.1 FM” and will air on translator K231CN, Houston, fed by KFNC-FM, Houston’s HD2 channel. The report says that KFNC-FM afternoon personality Fred Faour will become editor-in-chief of SportsMap.com. Air talent on “SportsMap 94.1 FM” will include Charlie Pallilo, Nate Griffin, Patrick Creighton, Barry Warner, Sean Salisbury, Brian Barrett, and Robin Carlin. Gow will lease KGOW-AM to Latino Broadcasting Corp.
TALKERS News Notes. The Cleveland Indians and iHeartMedia agree to a contract extension for the company’s news/talk WTAM and rock WMMS in Cleveland to air the club’s games through at least 2023. As has been the case, WTAM serves as the flagship and WMMS simulcasts most of the games…..The talk is off iHeartMedia’s Phoenix news/talk KOY-AM “KFYI2” (and its translator K229DB) and regional Mexican takes over as “El Patron.”…..This November (11/2), the New Jersey Broadcasters Association is marking its 70th anniversary with a special Awards Banquet and Gala at the Tropicana Resort and Casino in Atlantic City. The event will salute “Broadcast’s Heritage and Enduring Impact on Society.” Ben Ferencz – the only surviving Nuremberg prosecutor – will be honored with the Howard L. Green Humanitarian of the Year Award. Inducted into the NJBA Hall of Fame at the same time will be: “Imus in the Morning” personality Bernard McGuirk, NJ101.5 hosts Dennis Malloy and Judi Franco of the “Dennis and Judi Show,” WSUS, Franklin, New Jersey morning host Steve Andrews, Press Communications CFO Rich Morena, and Connoisseur Media CEO Jeff Warshaw.
Trump Administration DACA Policy Top News/Talk Story for Week of September 11-15. Whether or not President Trump wants to reverse the Obama Administration’s Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals or is willing to alter the program in some way was the most-talked-about story on news/talk radio this week, landing atop the Talkers TenTM. At # 2 this week was the aftermath of Hurricanes Irma and Harvey. Coming in at #3 is Hillary Clinton’s What Happened book and her media tour, followed by the Trump Administration’s tax code overhaul plan 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 the entire chart here.
Music Radio News and Career Moves. KQHN, Shreveport, Louisiana flips from CHR to hot AC as Cumulus Media announces the station has re-branded as “The All New Q97.3.” The programming on the station is as follows: “The Bert Show” in mornings and “The Shawn Dion Show” in afternoon drive. Westwood One’s Adam Bomb program assumes the evening daypart…..CBS RADIO promotes Poet Taylor from weekend jock to host of the midday show on hip hop WPGC, Washington. Taylor’s radio experience includes her start at Baltimore’s hip hop WERQ and serving as executive producer on WPGC’s “Joe Clair Morning Show.” Most recently, she was segment producer for WJLA-TV’s “Good Morning Washington.”…..Programmer Chris Shebel announces via Facebook that he’ll leave iHeartMedia’s Portland, Oregon cluster when his contract expires at the end of this year. Shebel has been programming adult contemporary KKCW “K103” and classic hits KLTH “Eagle 106.7.” He says he’s exiting the radio business and moving to Palm Springs, California…..As part of Beasley Media Group’s on-going “Community of Caring Initiative,” adult contemporary WJBR, Wilmington, Delaware recently partnered with The Kenny Family Foundation and Shoprite to match food donations for hurricane relief pound for pound. The station collected more than 12,500 pounds of food during a recent on-site collection event. As a result, WJBR will be sending more than 25,000 pounds of food donations to Feeding Texas via the Food Bank of Delaware…..Adams Radio Group brings sales pro John Ludwig aboard as senior account manager for its Salisbury-Ocean City, Maryland station group. Ludwig was most recently a sales consultant for Entercom’s Portland, Oregon operations.
PPM Analysis: Rock. Managing editor Mike Kinosian presents the third of four analyses of the performances of stations based on data from Nielsen Audio’s August 2017 PPM survey, today focusing on rock. Overall, rock-formatted stations have performed well in Nielsen’s PPM markets, recently. Kinosian reports that just over half of the rock stations in his sample saw their 6+ ratings rise from July 2017 to August 2017 (52%), versus the 42% that were down. The remaining 6% of the sample was flat. Comparing August 2016 numbers to the August 2017 report, “roughly six of 10 facilities on our eligible rock sample improve year-to-year (61%), while 39% decline.” There were seven rock stations that ranked in the top five in their respective markets in the August 2017 survey. Although none ranked #1, there were three that ranked #2: iHeartMedia’s WDVE, Pittsburgh and WHJY, Providence; plus Saga Communications’ WNOR, Norfolk, Virginia. See the full report here.