Erick Erickson | TALKERS magazine : TALKERS magazine

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Tuesday, September 20, 2022

| September 20, 2022

Streaming Has Saved Talk Radio. Longtime radio sales professional Kathy Carr, president of the Howie Carr Radio Network, writes today in an exclusive piece for TALKERS magazine about the ways in which digital audio – streaming and podcasts – has “given talk radio life beyond what could have been imagined years ago.” She adds, “When a buyer asks me to send him a ranker, I have a pretty good idea of his age. Shouldn’t the question be: Tell me about your top five clients and how long they have been with you?  Doesn’t that more accurately show the client your success rate?” And the reason that’s a better question is because of the different ways people are accessing talk radio these days. Read her column here.

The Ramsey Show Celebrates 30th Anniversary On Air. The nationally syndicated program “The Ramsey Show” is celebrating its 30th anniversary on the radio. The program was founded by Dave Ramsey whose core message of living life debt free has “helped millions of listeners by giving practical answers to callers’ questions about money, careers, relationships and mental wellness.” Dave Ramsey, CEO of Ramsey Solutions, says, “I always want listeners to come away with a sense of power over their situation. Over three decades of taking calls, I’ve watched millions of people get out of debt, find jobs they love, have healthier marriages, become millionaires, and ultimately live better, more peaceful lives. That’s what the show is about — providing REAL hope.” See the show’s YouTube channel trailer here.

FOX News Digital Continues to Lead Multiplatform Minutes and Views. According to the most recent data from Comscore, FOX News Digital finished the August 2022 period as the top-performing news organization in the competitive set in both multiplatform minutes and multiplatform views. FOX News Digital says that this marks 18 consecutive months as the number one news brand with multiplatform minutes and three consecutive months as the leading news brand with multiplatform views. FOX News Digital closed out August reaching over 2.9 billion total multiplatform minutes – compared to CNN.com with 2.3 billion and NYTimes.com with 1.3 billion. FOX News Digital also wins in multiplatform views with 1.5 billion, compared to CNN.com’s 1.36 billion and NYTimes.com’s 1.32 billion. In the category of multiplatform unique visitors – the digital version of radio’s cume – FOX News Digital comes in third place with 77.5 billion. CNN.com wins that measurement with 116 billion followed by NYTimes.com with 83.5 billion.

Cumulus Announces Programming Promotions in Syracuse. At the Syracuse cluster, Cumulus Media announces the promotion of programming staffers to expanded roles within its four-station group. On the spoken-word side, Joe DeTomaso – program director, content production manager and midday host for alternative rock WAQX-FM “95X” – takes on programming duties for sports talk WSKO-AM “The Score 1260.” He says, “I’m excited to add ‘The Score 1260’ to my programming duties here in Syracuse. We will continue to expand our audiences on both ‘The Score 1260’ and WAQX in the digital footprint thru outstanding relevant local content.”

Tyler Polumbus Exits KKFN-FM, Denver. According to a report by KUSA-TV, Denver, Tyler Polumbus exits Bonneville’s sports talk KKFN-FM “104.3 The Fan” as his contract was not renewed. Polumbus was co-host of “The Drive” alongside with Darren “Dmac” McKee.  He tweeted, “My contract at The Fan has come to an end. Thank you to all of the listeners that made the last three years a joy. We laughed and created memories, we consoled each other through the Broncos rough years, and together we did so much good through Pedal with Polumbus to beat Ovarian Cancer. I won’t name all my colleagues that will forever be a part of my life but you guys know who you are. I love you guys.” This comes a week after evening co-host Sandy Clough retired from his full-time gig with the station after a 25-year career with “The Fan.” Clough co-hosted with Shawn Drotar, who will remain with KKFN-FM in a yet-to-be-announced capacity.

G Audio Networks Enters into Deal to Rep SPARC Media Hub. This new deal between G Audio Networks, a Gen Media Partners company, and SPARC Media Hub means G Audio Networks will offer radio stations the ability to use the SPARC Media Hub radio station workflow system on a barter basis. G Audio Networks chief development officer Rich O’Brien states, “Every day, SPARC Media Hub continues to develop its product to be the best workflow system available. Using customer feedback, researching the latest trends in media, and always thinking ‘what’s next?’ are just some of the pillars that make SPARC a leading-edge product in the industry. We’re very excited about bringing this superior product to radio stations.”

TALKERS News Notes. Nationally syndicated, Atlanta-based talk host Erick Erickson hosted Florida Governor Ron DeSantis on his program yesterday (9/19) in what was the governor’s first national radio interview in the aftermath of the transportation of migrants to Martha’s Vineyard…..Benztown + McVay Media Podcast Networks announce the release of two special episodes of the “Sound, Sobriety & Success” podcast hosted by rock journalist and former MTV host Matt Pinfield in recognition of Sobriety Awareness Month in September. The first of the two new episodes features AJ McLean, actor, dancer, and Grammy-winning singer of the Backstreet Boys. McLean shares his journey from addiction to recovery, the highlights of performing, and how getting sober has improved his music and changed his perspective. In the second new episode, Pinfield talks to Chrissy Metz, the Emmy and Golden Globe-nominated actress and singer known for her portrayal of Kate Pierce on NBC’s award-winning TV series “This is Us.”…..AdLarge announces it has entered into an ad sales partnership with Eeriecast, The Horror Podcast Network. AdLarge will oversee the management, sales, and fulfillment of the audio ad sales for the Eeriecast network dedicated to horror-themed content.

Immigration/Migrant Flights, Inflation/Financial Markets, Trump Documents Case, Midterms/2024 Presidential Race, Russia-Ukraine War, Hurricane Fiona, and COVID-19 Among Top News/Talk Stories Yesterday (9/19). The immigration problems at the U.S.-Mexico border and the transporting of migrants to Democrat-leaning cities & investigations into the legality of the moves; the stubborn rate of inflation and Wall Street’s nervousness over the looming Fed interest rate hike decision; the investigation into former President Donald Trump’s keeping classified documents at Mar-a-Lago; the November midterm elections and speculation about the nominees for the 2024 presidential race; Russia’s ongoing invasion of Ukraine; the destruction in Puerto Rico by Hurricane Fiona; and the conflicting opinions about COVID-19 by President Joe Biden and Dr. Tony Fauci were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio yesterday, according to ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.

Thursday, September 1, 2022

| September 1, 2022

KOGO, San Diego Launches ‘Slater & Lou’ Show. As part of a realignment of programming and a frequency swap in San Diego, iHeartMedia announces the launch of the new “Slater & Lou” program on news/talk KOGO-AM. Starring Mike Slater and Lou Penrose, the program will air daily from 5:00 pm to 7:00 pm beginning today (9/1). Penrose had been hosting a one-hour show on KOGO and Slater had been hosting on co-owned KGB-AM “The Patriot.” iHeartMedia says, “The duo will join forces for a fast-paced, news-driven talk program for San Diegans that will focus on the day’s top stories both local and national. Slater’s extensive knowledge of history combined with Lou’s background in politics will provide listeners with an accurate understanding of topics and the impact they may have on people’s lives.” iHeartMedia San Diego director of news and programming Brian Long says, “Mike and Lou represent a fresh approach to talk radio. Joining KOGO’s lineup on the drive home next to ‘champion of government reform’ Carl DeMaio will provide the show with a great forum to deliver their unique perspectives to the KOGO audience.”

iHeartMedia San Diego Flips Frequencies; Adjusts Programming on News/Talk and Sports Outlets. Today (9/1), the frequency swap of iHeartMedia San Diego AM stations takes effect as the sports talk format heard on KLSD-AM “XTRA 1360” moves to KGB-AM where it will become “San Diego Sports 760” and conservative news/talk “The Patriot” moves to KLSD-AM’s 1360 signal as “The Patriot 1360 AM.” iHeartMedia president San Diego/Riverside region Noreen Ippolito states, “We are committed to delivering an audio sports platform with massive reach for our listeners and partners. Our goal is to reach fans wherever they are through the iHeartRadio App, KGB-FM HD2 simulcast, and on 760 AM’s massive day and nighttime signal which can be heard all over the West Coast.” The lineup on “San Diego Sports 760” remains the same, while the show lineup on “The Patriot 1360 AM” is now all syndicated with the move of Mike Slater to KOGO as noted in the story above. Talk host Mark Larson tweets that he also moves from KGB-AM to KOGO-AM to host the 7:00 pm to 9:00 pm “KOGO at Night” program.

Salem Appoints Tara Loring Eastern Regional Digital Sales Director. Audio sales pro Tara Loring is named Eastern regional digital sales director for Salem Media Group, effective September 12. Loring most recently served with Hubbard Broadcasting as general sales manager and director of digital media for the company’s West Palm Beach cluster. Salem VP and general manager Jon Latzer says, “Tara has been an active hands-on leader in both the broadcast and digital media industries for several years and her wealth of experiences will provide tremendous growth to our digital marketing firm – Salem Surround. In Tara, we have an individual who has experience working with multiple sales staffs and managing high-performance individuals. We are thrilled that Tara is joining our growing sales and operational efforts and will lead a team who is dedicated to helping Salem and our advertisers grow and thrive.” Loring comments, “I am thrilled to be joining the Salem Media team, one that truly embraces forward-thinking initiatives to produce real results for clients and partners. A big thank you to Jon Latzer, Jamie Cohen, and Dave Santrella for welcoming me with open arms. I look forward to taking my passion for building winning teams to Salem Surround and working with Jon to help continue their incredible revenue and operational growth.”

Edison Research: Top Podcast Genre is Comedy. Based on Edison Research’s data collected continuously from Q3 2021 through Q2 2022 by surveying weekly podcast consumers ages 18 and older in the U.S., the company reveals its list of the Top Podcast Genres in the U.S. and comedy once again takes the top spot as the genre consumed by most weekly podcast listeners. Here’s the updated Top 10 Genres for Q2 2022 in full:  1) Comedy, 2) News, 3) Society and Culture, 4) True Crime, 5) Sports, 6) Business, 7) Arts, 8) TV and Film, 9) Education, and 10) Religion and Spirituality.

TALKERS News Notes. Journalist Greta Van Susteren – host of the nightly Newsmax TV program “The Record with Greta Van Susteren” – has been honored by Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, who awarded her the Order of Merit, III Degree for her in-depth and hard-hitting project, “Putin’s Atrocities: Horror in Ukraine.” Newsmax says, “Much of the mainstream media has focused on weapons and the billions in financial aid given to Ukraine by the global community to fend off Moscow’s aggression. Van Susteren’s series, though, took a different tack, exploring the savagery displayed by Putin’s forces. Intriguing segments looked at reports of POWs being tortured and executed, alleged war crimes by Moscow, and the Kremlin’s campaign of terror against Ukraine’s women and children. Van Susteren says, “I have been on the ground in Ukraine and seen this war with my own eyes. Once you see it with your own eyes, you can’t turn your back. The world needs to know what is going on… especially the atrocities. This is why I am at Newsmax — the opportunity to do these important stories with great colleagues.”…..The WSB-AM, Atlanta-based, nationally syndicated Erick Erickson show adds new affiliate stations as KJJR, Kalispell, Montana and WETR, Knoxville add the program on weekends; WMAY, Springfield, Illinois puts the show on weekday evenings; and WDBO, Orlando moves the program into the 12:00 noon to 3:00 pm daypart…..The Milwaukee Business Journal reports that Colleen Valkoun has exited her role as market president for iHeartMedia’s Milwaukee radio station operations that includes news/talk WISN, sports talkers WRNW-FM and WOKY-AM, plus four music brands. The Journal reports that Valkoun’s duties will be absorbed by iHeartMedia Area president Jeff Tyler…..Nielsen Holdings plc announces that at a court meeting and special meeting of its shareholders, its shareholders have approved the previously announced definitive agreement for Nielsen to be acquired by a private equity consortium composed of Evergreen Coast Capital Corp., an affiliate of Elliott Investment Management L.P., and Brookfield Business Partners L.P. together with institutional partners. Shareholders approved the $28.00 per share in an all-cash transaction valued at approximately $16 billion, including the assumption of debt. The transaction, which is expected to close in October 2022, remains subject to customary closing conditions. Upon closing, Nielsen will become a private company, and its shares will no longer be traded on the New York Stock Exchange.

FBI Documents Investigation, Midterms/2024 Presidential Race, Biden Philly Speech, Student Loan Forgiveness, China COVID Lockdown, Migrant Busing, Russia-Ukraine War, and Jackson Water Woes Among Top News/Talk Stories Yesterday (8/31). The FBI and Department of Justice investigation into the documents retrieved from former President Donald Trump’s residence at Mar-a-Lago; the midterm elections, Sarah Palin’s special election loss, and speculation about the nominees for the 2024 presidential race; President Joe Biden’s planned prime-time speech tonight in Philadelphia; criticism of Biden’s student loan forgiveness plan; China’s COVID lockdown of 21 million in Chengdu; Texas Governor Greg Abbott’s busing of migrants to New York, Washington, and Chicago; the ongoing Russian invasion of Ukraine and the attempt to inspect the Zaporizhzhia nuclear plant; and Jackson, Mississippi’s water system failure were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio yesterday, according to ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.  

Thursday, February 3, 2022

| February 3, 2022

WTOP, Washington’s Joel Oxley Testifies on Journalism Competition and Preservation Act. At a Senate subcommittee hearing in Washington, DC on Wednesday (2/2), numerous media executives provided testimony as the subcommittee considers the Journalism Competition and Preservation Act that “creates a four-year safe harbor from antitrust laws for print, broadcast, or digital news companies to collectively negotiate with online content distributors (e.g., social media companies) regarding the terms on which the news companies’ content may be distributed by online content distributors.” Joel Oxley, general manager of Hubbard Radio’s WTOP-FM, Washington, DC testified on behalf of the National Association of Broadcasters. He said, “Quality journalism delivered through our uniquely free service has only been made possible over many decades through advertising revenues. As you all are aware, these revenues have experienced a free-fall in recent years, due almost exclusively to the rapid, often anticompetitive, expansion of the dominant online platforms who have upended the advertising marketplace. The market power of the tech platforms undermines the online advertising model for local broadcast journalism in two important ways. First, the tech platforms’ role as content gatekeepers stifles our ability to generate user traffic. Second, anticompetitive terms of service and a ‘take it or leave it’ approach leave local broadcasters with a below-market sliver of those advertising revenues derived through their products. For local broadcasters and our viewers and listeners who rely on quality journalism, this is a real catch-22: To attract online user traffic, we must be accessible through the major platforms, yet the terms of access dictated by the online platforms devalue our product. For example, not only is WTOP not being compensated by Facebook and Google for its content, WTOP is actually paying to make sure its content is being accessed on their platforms.” He added, “The dominant online platforms have flourished, siphoning off huge amounts of advertising revenues that are the lifeblood of free, local journalism. Consider the big storm that just blew through the Northeast over the weekend – a nor’easter and blizzard conditions. Tons of work at a lot of cost and time for local broadcasters to cover it for millions of people. But not for Facebook, Google and the like. They simply take our coverage and profit from it, and virtually nothing comes back to us. But without local news, my guess is a lot of people would have not evacuated places like Cape Cod last weekend, and lives would have been risked. We just can’t have that.” You can read his complete testimony here.

Erick Erickson Show Adds New Affiliates; Reports Ratings Growth. Nationally syndicated talk radio personality Erick Erickson announces the addition of two new affiliate stations as Audacy’s KXNT, Las Vegas and Willamette Broadcasting’s KYKN, Salem, Oregon add the show to their program schedules. The show says, “In every Nielsen PPM market carrying his show, either live or delayed, Erickson is generating higher ratings than the show he replaced, including Rush Limbaugh’s show in Atlanta, Georgia on Erickson’s flagship station, WSB Radio. Erickson is also seeing robust digital growth. From June to December 2021, Erickson’s live-streaming audience increased 339% and his podcast audience grew 188%.”

Terry Foxx Named to Programming Role at Public Outlet KUT, Austin. Radio programming pro Terry Foxx is joining public radio station KUT, Austin as director of programming and audience. The organization says Foxx will oversee KUT 90.5’s on-air programming and KUT and KUTX Studios’ podcast strategy. He will collaborate with the KUT newsroom and sister station KUTX 98.9, the Austin Music Experience, on developing audience-centered engagement strategies and expanding KUT’s reach. Foxx has most recently been serving as brand manager for Radio One’s sports talk WFNZ-AM, Charlotte and sister AC WLNK-FM. KUT and KUTX general manager Debbie Hiott comments, “Terry has deep knowledge and experience when it comes to identifying and expanding audiences. He grew up in Texas, has always had family in Austin, and understands how KUT can serve our community. With those things he will help us develop and provide programming that reaches into new areas important to Central Texas.” Foxx says, “KUT has a rich heritage and is part of the fabric of Central Texas. I look forward to joining the strong team at KUT and engaging new listeners in creative ways.”

BIN: Black Information Network Names Andrea Coleman News Director; Ramses Ja to Host New Daily Podcast. News pro Andrea Coleman is promoted from news anchor to news director for iHeartMedia’s BIN: Black Information Network. In this new role, Coleman will be responsible for leading day-to-day newsroom operations, reporter and anchor development, and coordinating live news and specialty programming. She’ll be based in Atlanta, reporting to Tanita Myers, VP/news operations for the Black Information Network. Coleman joined iHeartMedia as an anchor/reporter for the Black Information Network in the summer of 2020. She says, “I welcome the opportunity to serve as news director of the Black Information Network and to continue to be a part of the dynamic team of Black professionals who have made the Network a relevant, trusted source of news and information for our community. We look forward to keeping our listeners informed and educated on all matters important to the Black experience.” BIN: Black Information Network also announces that media personality Ramses Ja is joining the Network as the host of the new daily podcast, “Our Daily Story with Ramses Ja.” The program will feature Black journalists from across America telling the most meaningful stories of the day, from their perspective. The daily talk show-style podcast will premiere later this month, with new episodes launching every weekday morning. Ja says, “I’m excited to be partnering with BIN: Black Information Network. This partnership helps show the company’s commitment to helping create a more equitable experience for Black people in this country, and the other projects we have in the works are also sure to continue that trend.” BIN: Black Information Network president Tony Coles comments, “As BIN: Black Information Network continues to grow, I am thrilled to have Ramses Ja and Andrea Coleman as part of our team. They are incredibly talented, with proven track records, and dedication to delivering significant and trusted news coverage to the Black community. I know they will contribute to the network’s mission and ongoing success.”

Newsmax Claims Big Ratings for Trump Rally Coverage. Citing Nielsen data from last weekend, Newsmax says it was the big ratings winner with its exclusive cable coverage of former President Donald Trump’s rally in Texas. Newsmax reports “some 2.9 million cable viewers tuned in to watch the event live from Conroe — and 1.1 million of them were adults ages 35-64, the demographic craved by advertisers… though Newsmax is carried in 20 million fewer homes than FOX, total audience impressions for both networks during Trump’s speech was almost at parity, both drawing around 1.4 million viewers per minute, according to Nielsen.” Newsmax points to a piece in Business Insider that said, “Newsmax’s audience skyrockets during Trump rallies that other networks, including FOX News, ignore.’” Newsmax CEO Christopher Ruddy comments, “We can’t speak to FOX News’ decisions, but we believe this rally was a significant news event that was worthy of coverage.”

TALKERS News Notes. Former WIBC, Indianapolis talk host Greg Garrison has filed papers to run for prosecutor of Hamilton County, Indiana. According to the Indianapolis Star, the 74-year-old Garrison will face off against three-term Republican prosecutor D. Lee Buckinham in the primary. Garrison, who also had a long career as a personal injury lawyer, retired from his radio program in 2017. He was part of the prosecution team that helped convict boxer Mike Tyson of rape charges in 1992…..Reporter Mara Hoplamazian is named New Hampshire Public Radio’s energy and environment reporter, a role in which they will anchor NHPR’s “By Degrees” climate reporting initiative. NHPR news director Dan Barrick says, “Awareness and dialogue are the best tools we have to fight climate change. The work of journalists such as Mara are crucial not simply to inform but to create awareness of what is at risk, and what we can do together.” Hoplamazian came to NHPR as the Barbara and Dick Couch Fellow. Before joining NHPR, Hoplamazian worked as an investigative reporting intern at The Sacramento Bee and a media intern at the Smithsonian Institution.

Trump & the GOP/Midterm Elections, January 6 Investigation, Ukraine Tensions, COVID-19, Spotify’s Joe Rogan Controversy, Whoopi Goldberg Suspension, Financial Markets/Economy, CNN’s Zucker Resigns, Beijing Olympics, Winter Weather, and Washington Football Team Reveals New Name Among Top News/Talk Stories Yesterday (2/2). Former President Donald Trump’s influence within the GOP and November’s midterm elections; the investigation into the January 6 Capitol attack; diplomatic tensions between the U.S. and Russia over the latter’s military build-up at the Ukraine border; the rate of COVID-19 cases in the U.S. and abroad and mask & vaccine mandates; the controversy over artists pulling their music from Spotify because of the conspiratorial tone of “The Joe Rogan Experience” podcast; ABC is slammed for suspending Whoopi Goldberg over her holocaust comments; the world’s financial markets and concerns about the COVID-hampered U.S. economy; Jeff Zucker resigns from CNN after failing to acknowledge his romantic relationship with an employee; the political aspects of the Beijing Winter Olympics; severe winter weather affecting much of the U.S.; and reactions to the NFL’s Washington franchise revealing its new Commanders moniker were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio yesterday, according to ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.

Tuesday, November 30, 2021

| November 30, 2021

WWO: Edison’s Q3 2021 Share of Ear Study Five-Year Report Card. This week’s CUMULUS MEDIA | Westwood One Audio Active Group blog highlights some of the key findings from Edison Research’s Share of Ear study for the third quarter of 2021. Among the findings are that Pandora’s free, ad-supported service has lost half its audience over the last five years while Spotify’s similar service has stagnated. Regarding podcasting, the report indicates that “over the last several years, podcast reach and audience shares have exploded. In the last two years, podcast daily reach among persons 18-34 is up 43% and daily reach among persons 25-54 is up an eye popping 51%.” Interestingly, the study suggests that marketers and agencies overestimate the shares of Pandora and Spotify and underestimate the share of AM/FM radio due in large part to their own biases. “In August 2021, Advertiser Perceptions, the gold standard measurement firm of advertiser and agency sentiment, asked 300 media decision makers at brand and media agencies to estimate the audience shares of Pandora, Spotify, and AM/FM radio. Agencies and advertisers estimated that Pandora has a 20% share of listening. This is seven times larger than Pandora’s actual 3% audience share in Edison’s ‘Share of Ear.’ Marketers and media agencies estimate that Spotify has a 25% share of audience. That is over twelve times larger than Spotify’s actual 2% audience share. Among media agencies and brands, the perceived audience share of AM/FM radio is 28%, far smaller than the 45% share of Spotify and Pandora combined. In reality, AM/FM radio’s actual share (40%) far exceeds the 28% perception.” The report cites marketing professor Mark Ritson, who says, “There is increasing global evidence that marketers are basing their media choices on their own behavior or that stoked by the digitally obsessed marketing media, rather than actual audience data.” Edison’s latest Share of Ear data concludes that “AM/FM radio has a massive share of time spent among ad-supported platforms (75%). Podcast shares (11%) now exceed the combined share of Pandora and Spotify (10%).” See the blog here.

Sam Mayes Ousted from Tyler Media’s ‘107.7 The Franchise’ After Anti-Native American Phone Conversation. According to a report by Mediaite, KRXO-FM, Oklahoma City “107.7 The Franchise” sports talk personality Sam Mayes has been fired by Tyler Media after a five-year-old off-air phone conversation between he and another staffer was leaked. In the conversation, Mayes and Tyler Media promotions director and air personality Cara Rice discuss Native Americans’ move to get the Washington NFL franchise to drop the “Redskins” moniker and both use racist tropes. Rice was also fired. Mayes explains his part in the conversation in a tweet and admits to using poor judgement in an effort to get along and not make waves. He says, “I was legitimately curious what sparked the desire for change. My co-worker then responded with distasteful, racially charged comments that I not only did not dispute but made light of…the remarks that came next made me very uncomfortable. This recording is the perfect example of that all too often scenario that was sent to local media outlets with the intent to destroy my career. Maybe it worked. At the end of the day, that’s up to you, my followers.” He adds, “As a person of color, I know all too well how damaging hate speech can be. I also know once we know better, we can do better,” Mayes, whose career with KRXO lasted eight years, says the recording was obtained illegally.

Talk Host Wayne Allyn Root Weds Cindy Parker. Nationally syndicated USA Radio Network talk host Wayne Allyn Root married Cindy Parker in Las Vegas last week. Root tells TALKERS magazine that a number of the 200 guests present included Republican politicians and political leaders. He adds that the highlight of the evening was when former FOX News and CNN host Rita Cosby read a personal letter to the newlyweds from former President Donald J. Trump. The new Mrs. Wayne Root is on the board of many Nevada Republican organizations, including the Nevada Republican Club. Root says, “So this is REALLY a conservative talk radio wedding! Without her choosing me for a political speech, or our mutual support for President Donald Trump, or talk radio host Jerry Doyle’s memorial, or my creative talk show segment starring beautiful women for Trump…this never would have happened!”

KVOI, Tucson Adds ‘The Erick Erickson Show.’ The nationally syndicated “Erick Erickson Show” joins the program lineup at Bustos Media’s KVOI-AM, Tucson on Sunday evenings. Station operations manager Ray Ingegneri comments, “Erick knows what he believes and is willing to challenge friend and foe alike. In an increasingly homogenized political landscape, Erick’s approach is a breath of fresh air and we’re glad to have him.” Stations interested in “The Erick Erickson Show” or “The Erick Erickson Christmas Show” can contact Andrew Kalb at andrew@andrewkalb.com or 917-217-4050.

Cumulus Media Presenting at Two Investor Conferences. There are two investors conferences this week in which Cumulus Media president and CEO Mary G. Berner and EVP/CFO Frank Lopez-Balboa will participate. Tomorrow (12/1), the 5th Annual Virtual Wells Fargo TMT Summit happens and the two will present during the Fireside Chat at 10:40 am ET. On Thursday (12/2), Bank of America Securities 2021 Leveraged Finance Conference takes place and Cumulus will present at 7:30 am ET. It will be livestreamed and available on-demand within 24 hours. Management will also be hosting one-on-one investor meetings during both conferences.

Broadcasters Foundation of America Asks for Help on Giving Tuesday. Today is Giving Tuesday, the international day of giving, and the Broadcasters Foundation of America asks that you think of them on this day of philanthropy. For over 70 years, the Broadcasters Foundation has provided medical aid and disaster relief to broadcasters and their families across the United States. This year, the Foundation will give away more than $1.8 million in monthly and emergency grants. Your gift will help them reach every broadcaster in need. One broadcaster says, “We would be lost without the generosity of the Broadcasters Foundation of America. Because of your support, chronic illness has not taken everything from me. From the bottom of our hearts, thank you!” On behalf of everyone at the Broadcasters Foundation of America, thank you and have a safe and happy holiday season. Donate here.

COVID-19 Omicron Variant, Financial Markets, Supply Chain/Inflation, China’s Military Aggression, January 6 Investigation, Chris Cuomo Investigation, SCOTUS Abortion Case, Jussie Smollett Trial, and Ghislaine Maxwell Trial Among Top News/Talk Stories Yesterday (11/29). The Omicron coronavirus variant and concerns about its ability to evade vaccines; the news of the new coronavirus variant hits the world’s financial markets as Dow futures sink again; the effects of the global supply chain problems and soaring retail prices and fuel costs; the U.S.’s response to China’s military aggression toward Taiwan; the investigation into the January 6 Capitol attack; CNN’s probe into personality Chris Cuomo’s connection to Andrew Cuomo’s alleged sexual improprieties; the Supreme Court prepares to hear arguments over Mississippi’s anti-abortion policy that could affect Roe v Wade; the trial of actor Jussie Smollett who is accused of staging an assault on himself; and the trial of Ghislaine Maxwell, accused of assisting Jeffrey Epstein in procuring underaged girls for sex were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio yesterday, according to ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.

Friday, November 19, 2021

| November 19, 2021

NOW POSTED: This Weekend’s Installment of “The Michael Harrison Wrap: An Overview of the National Conversation.” The latest installment of the one-hour weekend special, “The Michael Harrison Wrap,” that looks back each week at the hottest topics discussed in American talk media per the research of TALKERS magazine, is now posted. This new episode titled “Biden Passed Gas” looks back at this past week of 11/15 – 11/19. The program features guests (in order of appearance): Kevin Casey, executive editor, TALKERS; Dave Ramsey, talk show host/CEO, Ramsey Solutions; Lars Larson, talk show host, Compass Media Networks; Harry Hurley, talk show host, WPG, Atlantic City; and Sean Spicer, talk show host, NewsmaxTV. The show airs each week on its flagship, WONK-FM, Washington, DC, Friday evenings at 6:00 pm ET. It also airs throughout the weekend on WTIC, Hartford; KSCO, Santa Cruz, CA; KDFD, Denver; KFNX, Phoenix; KTLK-FM, St. Louis; WPG, Atlantic City, NJ; SuperTalk 99.7 WTN, Nashville; WVLY, Wheeling, WV; WTRW-FM, Scranton/Wilkes Barre, PA; WVOX, Westchester, NY; KBDT, Dallas; KQSP, Minneapolis; KBKW, Aberdeen, WA; WGDJ, Albany, NY; WJFN-FM, Richmond, VA; WZFG, Fargo; KTGO, Tioga, ND; KWAM, Memphis; K-NEWS, San Luis Obispo; WGMD, Rehoboth Beach, DE; WCHM, Clarkesville, GA; WPHM, Port Huron, MI; KSYL, Alexandria, LA; KTOE, Mankato, MN; WCED, DuBois, PA; K-NEWS 101.3, Owensboro, KY; WWTK, Sebring, FL; WSAR-AM/FM, Fall River, MA; WIZM-AM/FM, La Crosse, WI; WMVA, Martinsville, VA; KQEN, Roseburg, OR; the Virginia Talk Radio Network; CRN Digital Talk Radio Network; the iHeart Podcast Network; Pioneer Valley Radio, Springfield, MA; Podcast Radio, UK and many more. To listen to this week’s episode, please click here. To view the latest TALKERS magazine topic research, please click here. “The Michael Harrison Wrap” is now available in syndication via Talk Media Network to stations across America on a market exclusive basis. For affiliation information, please click here or call 616-884-8616.

Salem Los Angeles Re-Ups Horn In AM Drive. A new contract agreement between Jennifer Horn and Salem Media Group will keep Horn as co-host of “The Morning Answer” on Los Angeles news/talk KRLA “AM 870 The Answer.” Horn and Grant Stinchfield co-host the 6:00 am – 9:00 am show, which is simulcast in the Inland Empire (Riverside-San Bernardino-Ontario) on Salem’s KTIE “AM 590 The Answer.” Salem vice president of spoken word Phil Boyce remarks, “Waking up Los Angeles is one of the most important jobs in radio – Jen and Grant have figured out the formula. They always have a smile, but can deliver the day’s top news with a dose of reality. Salem is very proud to showcase these hosts.” KRLA & KTIE program director Chuck Tyler notes, “Jen and Grant are the most talented team I have ever had the privilege of working with. They have the rare ability to cover and comment on serious issues, while having some fun at the same time.” Horn adds, “Once in a career you get a golden opportunity and this is it. It has been the ultimate honor working with Salem and our local team to develop a morning show that is making incredible strides in the Los Angeles market. Grant Stinchfield  is the ultimate professional. He brings a background in journalism, a unique perspective, and sense of humor. It’s been so much fun to partner and build chemistry with him.” Newsmax host Stinchfield came aboard to join Horn on KRLA & KTIE six months ago (5/18).

 

Lieberman Lands In The IE as iHM’s Senior VP/Sales. Three-year Townsquare Media Tri-Cities, Washington market president Ryan Lieberman is named senior vice president of sales for iHeartMedia’s five-station cluster in Southern California’s Inland Empire (Riverside-San Bernardino-Ontario). Lieberman – whose appointment is effective immediately – spent almost two decades with CBS Radio (now Audacy) in both Los Angeles and Chicago. iHeartMedia San Diego, Riverside-San Bernardino-Ontario president Melissa Forrest states, “We look forward to having Ryan on board. His knowledge, leadership, and passion will be a tremendous addition to the region and to our team.” Lieberman adds, “I am thrilled to return to Southern California as part of the iHeartMedia family by joining the Riverside team. Having spent the better part of my career competing against iHeartMedia, and being envious of how their teams execute marketing solutions for their clients, I’m excited to lend my expertise to an already high-functioning team.” News/talk KFOO “1440 AM Black Information Network” and sports talk KPWK “AM 1350 Fox Sports” are among iHeartMedia’s Inland Empire outlets, as are rhythmic CHR KGGI; rock KTMQ; and alternative KMYT.

 

iHeart Pledges To Create 180 Jobs in Downtown Nashville. The iHeartMedia commitment would generate 180 jobs in downtown Nashville over the next five years. While the company’s “Music City” radio stations (news/talk WLAC “Talk Radio 98.3 & 1510”; Black Information Network affiliate WNRQ-HD2; classic rock WNRQ-FM; CHR WRVW; urban contemporary WUBT; and country WSIX) are housed in a separate Music Row facility, the new jobs will be based in the company’s 40,000 square-foot downtown facility, which opened last year. As first reported by the Nashville Business Journal, the Tennessee Funding Board, “unanimously approved a $1.25 million grant to iHeartMedia [yesterday, 11/18]. The company was finalizing a lease as the COVID-19 pandemic erupted in early-2020.” At the time, iHM was billing the downtown location as a “second headquarters” for its digital division. The state grant reportedly equals 44% of the $2.85 million that iHeartMedia is spending on its Nashville expansion. Per the NBJ article and state records, “The grant will be used for building retrofit, fixture improvements, lease payments, and tenant improvements. A headcount did not become public until Wednesday’s meeting of the Funding Board.” State records indicate that the 180 jobs will pay an average of $51.82 an hour.

Report: WarnerMedia Planning An Audience-Measurement Data Operation. While this would be for television, Variety reports that WarnerMedia is directly targeting Nielsen Holdings, which – of course – has had a stranglehold on the TV ratings business for decades. According to Variety, WarnerMedia is talking to as many as 15 different measurement vendors with expectations it can test possibilities in next year’s first quarter. WarnerMedia data/research chief Andrea Zapata opines to Variety, “There has got to be a better alternative in measurement solutions.” At the same time though, she comments, “Nielsen is definitely a part of our business as usual and can earn a place in our future.” As the James Aycock-written Variety article mentions, “Nielsen has taken a number of hits from its media partners, particularly complaints of mismeasurement during the COVID-19 pandemic that culminated in losing its MRC accreditation.”

Today’s Homeowner Media Acquires On The House Media. After a 35-year home improvement media career, James and Morris Carey (The Carey Brothers, pictured at the right) are retiring to focus on their family remodeling business, and have sold their On The House Media to Today’s Homeowner Media. The final installment of “On The House with the Carey Brothers,” will air on its 100+ affiliates Christmas Day (12/25). Then one week later (1/1/2022), Today’s Homeowner Media will take ownership of On The House Media’s website, digital content, and social channels. Today’s Homeowner Media president/host Danny Lipford comments, “I’m both happy and sad about James and Morris’ decision to hang up their headphones and step down from their 35-year home improvement media career. They are legends in the business and will be missed. I’m glad they’ve enjoyed such a successful run, and grateful that I’m able to carry on their media tradition and legacy. Today’s Homeowner looks forward to featuring their articles, videos, and, hopefully, airing on the many radio stations they’ve earned during their career.” James Carey notes, “Morris and I have been moved by the tremendous outpouring that we have received since announcing our retirement. The positive comments, and expression of gratitude and support have been overwhelming and heartening.” Morris Carey adds, “Danny [Lipford] is a warm, pleasant and knowledgeable guy. I can’t think of anyone to whom I would rather pass on the torch.” Currently in its 13th year, the weekly, two-hour “Today’s Homeowner” is hosted by Lipford and author Joe Truini; it has 320 affiliates.

TALKERS News Notes. Recent Comscore data details continued growth of Newsmax’s online properties, including Newsmax.com. According to Comscore, Newsmax is now the #2 conservative news brand online, behind Fox News. Newsmax reports that its online increase mirrors “tremendous audience growth.” Meanwhile – per Nielsen – Newsmax TV is the fourth-highest-rated cable news channel … Syndicated host Erick Erickson’s annual three-hour “Erick Erickson Christmas Show” combines Erickson’s theological background; conversations about Christmas; and Christmas music. “Christmas is the perfect time to focus on the big picture and not the daily news headlines,” he comments. “[Our] Christmas show is designed so everyone can come together, exhale after a crazy year, and focus on the holidays.” Cox Media Group news/talk WSB-AM & WSBB-FM “Atlanta’s News & Talk” is the flagship for “The Erick Erickson Christmas Show,” which is available on a first come/first served basis. It can be broadcast anytime from 6:00 am -12:00 midnight on (Friday) December 24 and (Saturday) December 25 … The five-station Cox Media Group Tampa cluster – which includes news/talk WHPT “102.5 The Bone” – is teaming with Metropolitan Ministries today (Friday, 11/19) to host “Feed The Bay.” All five CMG Tampa outlets are encouraging listeners to donate food items to Metropolitan Ministries’ donation location. Cox Media Group Tampa vice president and market manager Keith Lawless notes, “This is the ninth consecutive year that Cox Media Group Tampa has been a partner with Metropolitan Ministries for the holidays. We are starting to get back to normal, but there is still a tremendous need to feed those in our community.”

U.S. Podcast Report. Top network reports are ranked by average weekly downloads and average weekly users in accordance with v2.1 of the IAB Podcast technical guidelines. They are measured by Triton’s Podcast Metrics and cover the reporting period of October 4 – October 31 (2021). Stitcher Media remained first on the top networks report with 39.5 million average weekly downloads/10.7 million average weekly users. It was followed by NPR with 32.3 million average weekly downloads/7.2 million average weekly users. Coming in third was Audacy with 31.8 million average weekly downloads/10.2 million average weekly users. Among the top twenty networks, new podcast network ViacomCBS ranked ninth in average weekly downloads/tenth in average weekly users. New shows debuting this period include “The Daily Show With Trevor Noah: Ears Edition” (ViacomCBS); “Over My Dead Body” (Wondery); “Fantasy Football Today” (Viacom CBS); and “The Way I Heard It with Mike Rowe” (Audioboom). Full results of the U.S. Podcast Report can be seen at https://www.tritondigital.com/resources/podcast-reports.

IBA, Vipology Sign Multiyear Extension. The pact with the Independent Broadcasters Association retains Vipology as IBA’s exclusive digital consultant and partner. In its first year, Vipology created the IBA’s member site; scheduled/moderated over 60 info-webinars; and handled IBA’s national contesting. Independent Broadcasters Association chief executive officer Ron Stone comments, “There would be no IBA without Vipology’s vision, technology, and execution. I’m thrilled to continue to have Vipology on-board to advise and provide the best digital products and services.” Vipology chief executive officer Chris Peaslee notes, “We are thrilled to continue to work with the IBA; dedicated to the digital success of the IBA and its members; and offering the latest digital solutions at the industry’s lowest prices. We’re proud to be standing side-by-side with  Ron [Stone] and IBA members.” The IBA was established last year (July 2020) to serve the needs of independent radio stations and groups across the country; it represents a membership base of 1,500 stations.

California Combo Rebrands From VPR To KVPR. As of this past Wednesday (11/17), Valley Public Radio (NPR affiliate) news/talk-classical KVPR, Fresno and KPRX, Bakersfield rebrands from “VPR” to “KVPR” and has a new logo. A driving force for the switch was a conflict with Vermont Public Radio, which uses the “VPR” name, as well. KVPR president and general manager Joe Moore states that, “Over the years, we’ve gone by so many different names – ‘KVPR,’ ‘FM-89,’ ‘VPR,’ ‘KPRX,’ ‘Valley Public Radio,’ and ‘NPR.’ It has led to clutter, and at times confusion. As more and more users access our content online, ‘FM-89’ has proven to be less than adequate as a name for the station. There are multiple ‘FM-89s’ across the country, and the term isn’t really relevant for non-broadcast content.” The rebranding includes a renaming of its Audiophile Magazine to the KVPR Magazine.

Friday, September 17, 2021

| September 17, 2021

NOW POSTED: This Weekend’s Installment of “The Michael Harrison Wrap: An Overview of the National Conversation.” The latest installment of the one-hour weekend special, “The Michael Harrison Wrap,” that looks back each week at the hottest topics discussed in American talk media per the research of TALKERS magazine, is now posted. This new episode titled, “East Side, West Side,” looks back at this past week of 9/13 – 9/17. The program features guests (in order of appearance): Kevin Casey, executive editor, TALKERS magazine; Erick Erickson, talk show host, WSB, Atlanta; Jimmy Failla, talk show host, FOX News RadioRudy Giuliani, talk show host, WABC, New York/former Mayor of New York City; and Victoria Jones, executive director, DC Radio Company. The show airs each week on its flagship, WONK-FM, Washington, DC, Friday evenings at 6:00 pm ET. It also airs throughout the weekend on WTIC, Hartford; KSCO, Santa Cruz, CA; KDFD, Denver; KFNX, Phoenix; KTLK-FM, St. Louis; WPG, Atlantic City, NJ; WVLY, Wheeling, WV; WTRW-FM, Scranton/Wilkes Barre, PA; WVOX, Westchester, NY; KBDT, Dallas; KQSP, Minneapolis; KBKW, Aberdeen, WA; WGDJ, Albany, NY;  WJFN-FM, Richmond, VA; WZFG, Fargo; KTGO, Tioga, ND; KWAM, Memphis; K-NEWS, San Luis Obispo; WGMD, Rehoboth Beach, DE; WCHM, Clarkesville, GA;  WPHM, Port Huron, MI; KSYL, Alexandria, LA; KTOE, Mankato, MN; WCED, DuBois, PA; K-NEWS 101.3, Owensboro, KY; WWTK, Sebring, FL; WSAR-AM/FM, Fall River, MA; WIZM-AM/FM, La Crosse, WI; WMVA, Martinsville, VA; KQEN, Roseburg, OR; the Virginia Talk Radio NetworkCRN Digital Talk Radio Network; the iHeart Podcast NetworkPioneer Valley Radio, Springfield, MA; Podcast Radio, UK and many more.  To listen to this week’s episode, please click here. To view the latest TALKERS magazine topic research, please click here.  “The Michael Harrison Wrap” is now available in syndication via Talk Media Network to stations across America on a market exclusive basis. For affiliation information, please click here or call 616-884-8616.

Be the Best Talent Coach: Maximize Potential. Radio consultant Jon Quick says that many programmers just don’t do it, “though it’s the most important part of their role, or at least it used to be. Coaching talent for great preparation, powerful execution, compelling communication, audience retention, and better relating to the listener is something many PDs say they just don’t have the time for. Programmers are often so caught up in corporate matters or minutiae that they really don’t have the time by the end of the day.” He adds that “surprisingly, many programmers and personalities believe coaching is beneath them or they don’t know how to coach, because many PDs never actually learned how to do it.” Read his advice here.

WBZ-AM, Boston Celebrates Centennial on Sunday (9/19). Boston all-news outlet WBZ-AM “NewsRadio” is celebrating its 100th anniversary on Sunday (9/19). The iHeartMedia station says it will cap its celebration with a day of vignettes spanning memorable moments from its first 100 years. iHeartMedia Boston market president Alan Chartrand says, “For a station to broadcast for 100 years is nothing short of amazing. Listeners and advertisers consistently utilize this heritage brand as evidenced by WBZ’s continued ratings and revenue success. People lean into objective news sources to remain informed and none has been more dependable than WBZ NewsRadio.” iHeartMedia Boston VP of news, talk & sports Rob Sanchez says, “‘WBZ NewsRadio’ is defined by our strong, unmistakable presence in the communities we serve. As the media landscape continues to evolve, our reach has only increased as WBZ listeners have adopted streaming on smart devices and the iHeartRadio app.” The station also received an official commemoration letter from President Joe Biden, who wrote, “I send my warmest greetings to ‘WBZ NewsRadio’ as you celebrate your 100th anniversary. As one of America’s oldest radio stations, ‘WBZ NewsRadio’ has kept generations of listeners informed with the latest stories and breaking news. Radio has long been an important aspect of American life – narrating the triumphs and tragedies that have defined America – as well as the day-to-day news that keeps listeners engaged with their communities. Over the decades, radio stations like ‘WBZ NewsRadio’ have been on the forefront of journalism, providing entertainment and valuable information to the people who tune in throughout the day.”

‘NPR News Now,’ ‘Crime Junkie,’ and ‘Ben Shapiro Show’ Top Podcasts for August According to Triton Digital. The August 2021 U.S. Podcast Report from Triton Digital ranks the top 100 podcasts based on average weekly downloads and NPR’s “NPR News Now,” AdLarge/cabana’s “Crime Junkie,” and Cumulus Podcast Network’s “The Ben Shapiro Show” were the top three U.S. podcasts, respectively. Other programs from radio-affiliated podcast divisions that made the chart include: “The Dan Bongino Show” (#8, Cumulus Podcast Network), “Pod Save America” (#12, Audacy Podcast Network), “FOX News Radio Newscast” (#13, FOX News Podcasts), and “The Charlie Kirk Show” (#15, Salem Podcast Network). See more, including the report’s ranking of the top 15 podcast networks (based on average weekly downloads) here.

iHeartMedia’s Panama City News/Talker Announces New Frequencies. Panama City, Florida news/talk outlet WFLA has new dial positions. iHeartMedia says that “FOX Sports NewsRadio WFLA” changes dial positions and rebrands to the new “96.3-102.5 WFLA Panama City’s Talk Radio,” effective immediately. The station’s signal emanates from WPAP-HD2 and is heard on translators W242BF at 96.3 FM and W273DU at 102.5 FM. The station’s lineup includes: “The Morning Show with Preston Scott,” “The Glenn Beck Program”, “The Schnitt Show”, “The Joe Pags Show,” “The Jesse Kelly Show,” and “The Clay Travis & Buck Sexton Show.” iHeartMedia SVP of programming John Lund comments, “We are excited to continue providing Panama City with the quality news and information that they have come to expect from the WFLA brand. Now it’s available on two broadcast signals and in HD, rather than just one.”

NAB Produces PSAs Promoting the Importance of Local Broadcast Journalism. The National Association of Broadcasters unveils new spots designed to underscore the importance of fact-based broadcast radio and television journalism “at a time when misinformation is running rampant on social media. The new spots highlight the work of broadcasters to deliver trusted, reliable coverage of the local, national and global events that affect our lives.” NAB president and CEO Gordon Smith adds, “At a time when misinformation and disinformation are all too common online, the local journalism broadcasters provide is more important than ever – we deliver the facts Americans need to know without fear or favor. We want to remind the public and our nation’s leaders about the indispensable role broadcasters play in our local communities every day as the most trusted source of news.” Stations can download the spots here. The NAB says, “The new spots were created in response to research showing the business practices of big tech companies prevent local stations from recouping their investment in local journalism, as these platforms exert enormous influence over what online content is eligible to be monetized. At the same time, the tech giants are contributing to the spread of misinformation as their algorithms favor controversial content over high-quality journalism, the study shows. The new ‘We Are Broadcasters’ spots seek to remind policymakers and the public that TV and radio stations invest significant resources in local journalism for their communities, whether they are shining a light on corruption or preparing the public for a weather emergency.”

October 5 Announced as Date for Virtual Gracie Awards. The Alliance for Women in Media Foundation will hold the 46th Annual Gracie Awards program virtually on Tuesday, October 5, at 7:00 pm ET at @AllWomenInMedia on Facebook. Hosted by actress and comedian Lauren Ash, the annual gala will feature performances by GRAMMY-nominated singer-songwriter Jewel and GRAMMY award-winning American Gospel Singer CeCe Winans, honoring this year’s award winner’s whose work continues to influence and further the achievements of all women in media. This year’s awards coincide with AWM’s 70th anniversary, which includes the launch of a VOICES OF COURAGE digital tapestry, a commemorative logo and a social media campaign using #VoicesOfCourage and #70YearsOfCourage. Since its inception in 1951, AWM, originally known as American Women in Radio and Television (AWRT), has been committed to inspiring, educating, celebrating accomplishments and expanding networks of women across all segments of media. AWMF president Becky Brooks says, “Lauren’s comedic spirit and incredibly talented performers will create a Gracies to remember…and worthy of our 70th anniversary celebration. We will inspire and entertain our friends, fans, and followers with this year’s virtual event, and look forward to raising a glass together, in person next year to celebrate the accomplishments of women in media.”

TALKERS News Notes. Chicago news/talker WLS-AM is adding a travel show to its weekend program schedule. The Cumulus Media station debuts “Let’s Go with Catie Keogh” Sunday at 7:00 pm. Keogh is an Emmy Award-winning host and executive producer who is also a digital contributor for Travel + Leisure Magazine and National Geographic Magazine. Keogh says, “I am so excited to be back on WLS with my new show, ‘Let’s Go with Catie Keogh.’ My show is a place to escape, a place to learn and a place to dream about your next travel adventure around the globe and close to home. I am looking forward to sharing Chicago’s best-kept secrets again, too!”…..According to data from Comscore, FOX News Digital earned the top spot in both multiplatform minutes and multiplatform views in August, reaching nearly 1.8 billion multiplatform views and approximately 3.7 billion multiplatform minutes. FOX News says that breaking news coverage surrounding the fall of Afghanistan to the Taliban, led by FOX News Channel’s national security correspondent Jennifer Griffin and foreign correspondent Trey Yingst, helped drive FOX News Digital to its second-best month of the year, following January 2021…..Audacy’s C13Features announces that critically acclaimed, Emmy-nominated actress Kate Mara and SAG Award-nominated actor Adam Scott have signed on to star in the psychological thriller, “Ghostwriter,” that is currently finalizing all production plans and will debut worldwide on Monday, December 6. C13Features partnered with Best Case Studios on the project and Cadence13 chief content officer Chris Corcoran says, “Kate Mara and Adam Scott are incredible actors whose abilities and voices make them the perfect fit for this multi-layered thriller. C13Features is looking for the best material, with ambitious expectations and vision, with the high-quality content and production of this feature, and with Kate and Adam leading the way, we believe that ‘Ghostwriter’ will leave listeners on the edge of their seats.”

COVID-19 Boosters, Vaccines, Masks & Mandates Top News/Talk Story for Week of September 13-17. The rate of COVID-19 cases in the U.S., debate over COVID-19 boosters, and vaccine & mask mandates combined as the most-talked-about story on news/talk radio this week, landing atop the Talkers TenTM. At #2 this week was the California recall election that was won by Governor Gavin Newsom, followed by the January 6 Commission investigation into the attack on the Capitol tied with Saturday’s “Justice for J6” rally in Washington. 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. See this week’s complete chart here.

95.5 WSB, Atlanta Seeks Assistant PD. Atlanta news/talk outlet WSB-AM/WSBB-FM “95.5 WSB” has an opportunity for an assistant program director. The station says, “95.5 WSB, one of the most successful and respected news & talk radio brands in the country, is looking for an assistant program director. This person assists the director of branding and programming in executing the 95.5 WSB programming and news strategy to include managing and developing news & talk talent, hosts, producers, the operations team, imaging producers, as well as coordinating strategic goals and input with the news director, manager of traffic operations, and digital content lead. This role requires a strong balance of strong people skills, initiative, creativity, and strategic and tactical command; it includes handling of assigned administrative duties, personnel management, coordination of schedules, and promotions (sales and marketing).” See more about this position and apply here.