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Friday, June 21, 2013

| June 21, 2013

cclogoFemale AEs Sue Clear Channel Jacksonville Charging Age and Gender Bias.  The suit against Clear Channel filed in United States District Court Middle District of Florida Jacksonville Division alleges that three account executives – Angela Myhand, Monique Blue and Jessica Downs – had accounts taken from them by management and given to Caucasian and/or male sales staffers without explanation, without hearing of complaints by clients and without receiving any discipline by management for mishandling the accounts.  The plaintiffs also alleged they were given no reason for the actions.  After contacting the EEOE, they allege listening devices were installed on their offices phones but not on telephones in other sales staffers’ offices.  The three are charging management violated Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, allege retaliation for involvement in a protected activity plus other allegations and are seeking unspecific damages plus attorneys’ fees.

americaweekendlogoEnvision Radio Networks Adds Meteorologist John Wetherbee to ‘America Weekend’ Program.  Citing the need to provide information to listeners across the nation about extreme weather, the nationally syndicated “America Weekend” program enlists the expertise of American Meteorological Society-sealed,wetherbeejohn National Weather Association-certified meteorologist and 30-year radio veteran John Wetherbee as chief stormcaster.  Envision says Wetherbee “will be keeping an eye on the skies to provide live reports on major severe weather developments and how they may impact travel, business and our nation.”  Program executive producer Kipper McGee states, “As we have learned, many significant weather events happen on weekends.  John adds a unique national perspective that is absent from most weekend news/talk programming.”  “America Weekend” airs live each Saturday and Sunday from 9:00 am to 3:00 pm ET and is hosted by Paul Harris, Turi Ryder, and other top talk talent.

nj1015nnjbaawards‘New Jersey 101.5’ Honored with Two Awards at NJBA Convention.  Townsquare Media’s WKXW, Trenton “New Jersey 101.5” was honored at this week’s New Jersey Broadcasters Association convention with “Best of” awards in two categories: 1) “Best Public Affairs” Award for the station’s monthly show “Ask the Governor.”  The award was presented to Eric Scott (left) and his team of Christopher Knight, Chris Swendeman and Matthew White; and 2) “Best Promotions” Award for the “Big Joe Jersey Talent Show.”  The award was presented to Ray Handel (right) and his team of Big Joe Henry and Dan Specht.

More Station Honors from State Broadcasters Associations.  This is the time of the year when state broadcasters associations hold their annual awards ceremonies and there are two more to report:  In Illinois, Tribune Company’s WGN, Chicago took top honors at the 2013 Illinois Broadcasters Association Silver Dome Awards, held June 19 in Peoria.  For the sixth year in a row, the IBA recognized WGN Radio as the Chicago Market Station of the Year at its annual best-in-state awards ceremony.  In addition to being named Chicago Market Station of the Year, WGN Radio also earned first placewgnlogo honors in five categories:  major market personality for Mike McConnell, best newscast for Judy Pielach, best station website for, best play-by-play team for Chicago Cubs broadcasters Pat Hughes and Keith Moreland, and best humorous commercial for “Chicago Food and Wine,” produced by Jason Skaggs.  WGN president and general manager Jimmy de Castro says, “It is a great honor to receive the award for Chicago Market Station of the Year by the Illinois Broadcasters Association.  To be recognized by our industry peers is a reflection of the tremendous talent and dedication from our staff to continue to provide the quality of programming our community expects from WGN Radio.”

wgacawardIn Georgia, Beasley Broadcast Group’s WGAC-AM/FM, Augusta, for the 12th consecutive year, was named the Georgia Association of Broadcasters “Radio Station of the Year.”  New this year is the fact that WGAC was honored in the large-market category, which includes Atlanta.  For the past eleven years, WGAC was awarded Radio Station of the Year in the medium-market category.  Pictured here are (l-r) Beasley Augusta VP/market manager Kent Dunn, news director Mary Liz Nolan, and WGAC program director Harley Drew with the “Gabby” Award.  Dunn comments on the victory, “I am extremely proud of the WGAC-AM/FM staff for bringing home our 12th consecutive Gabby for ‘Radio Station of the Year.’  This year is even more special due to the added competition of being placed in the division that includes stations in Atlanta.”

herskovitzalThe Sale Doesn’t End When the Client Signs the Contract.  According to H&H Communications president, TALKERS columnist and highly regarded industry sales maven Al Herskovitz, the subject of “making commercials work effectively so the client is more likely to renew” was one of the buzzes of conversation in the halls at the recent Talkers New York 2013.  In a column posted today (6/21) Herskovitz writes about the deadly consequences of hosts that rush through live reads, spots that are overloaded with too many words, six-minute spot sets of boring ads that seem interminable to the listener and sales reps who don’t pay attention to the process after the deal is signed.  He does, however, offer praise to those hosts who ARE doing a good job serving the advertisers and names names.  To read Herskovitz’s entire column, click here.

raytomTOM RAY:  Listening to Your Syndicated Show on an Affiliate is Different than Listening in the Studio.  That’s a good piece of advice from one of the industry’s most respected engineering consultants.  In a new column posted today (6/21) by TALKERS technical editor and columnist Tom Ray, he points out that timing in the real world of an actual on-the-air radio station — in terms of commercial breaks and liners — can be a different thing than running the show in the studio or looking at its elements on paper. He says by listening to the show on an affiliate you will most likely learn something that will help you avoid all-too-common mistakes in timing that create sloppy and embarrassing audio pileups and make the show better for both you as a syndicator and the affiliate carrying your program.  To read it, click here.

allengaryliveWOOD, Grand Rapids Morning Host Gary Allen Hosts Last Show Today; Retires After 32 Years at Station.  On Thursday, Clear Channel Grand Rapids declared it “Gary Allen Day” as the legendary Grand Rapids radio personality broadcast live from the market’s Celebration Cinema North in recognition of his 32 years on the air at WOOD and his retirement from the station after today’s broadcast.  Allen announced his retirement eight months ago stating that at age 65 there are still some things he wants to do.  He tells WOOD-TV, “I want to be remembered as the guy that people woke up to on the radio in the morning, you have fun, we gave them the news, we gave them the weather, we gave them the traffic and between the group at WOOD, we gave them some laughs, too.”  Photo: WOOD-TV

Odds & Sods.  WMAL, Washington morning drive co-host Larry O’Connor is sitting in for Dial Global nationally syndicated talk host Dennis Miller on June 24 and 25…..And in another WMAL-related note, former Congressman Ernest Istook will host the 4:00 pm to 7:00 pm program tomorrow (6/22)…..Sports USA will syndicate the Little League World Series radio broadcasts again this summer.  The company will offer the US Championship Game on August 24 and the International Championship on August 25.

koznpearlmanChancellor Perlman in the House.  NRG Media’s KOZN, Omaha “1620 The Zone” hosted University of Nebraska-Lincoln Chancellor Harvey Perlman on the “Sharp & Benning in the Morning” program for a full hour on Thursday, June 20 to discuss college athletics.  Topics covered included pay for athletes, Nebraska in the Big 10 Conference, athletic department salaries and numerous others.  Pictured here are (from l-r) Gary Sharp, Perlman and Damon Benning.

NSA Surveillance Program Top News/Talk Story for Week of June 17-21.  The National Security Agency’s surveillance of phone and email activities, its ties to stopping terrorist attacks and the making public of the program by former contractor Edward Snowden were the top stories discussed on news/talk radio this week, landing the issue atop the Talkers TenTM.  Following at #2 was the “Gang of 8” amnesty deal for illegal immigrants.  At #3 was President Obama’s Berlin speech and his nukes reduction proposal broached at the G8 summit in Belfast earlier in the week.  The Talkers TenTM is a weekly chart of the top stories and people discussed on news/talk radio and is the result of ongoing research from TALKERS.  It is published every Friday at  View this week’s entire chart here.

daveramsey logoCool Assistant Engineer Job Opportunity! The Dave Ramsey Show has a really good job opportunity for an assistant engineer at the company’s headquarters in Brentwood, Tennessee.  If you have experience running a radio type console, have knowledge of ISDN Codecs, are experienced using video and video router/matrix, have knowledge of level3/Vyvx lines and have the ability to learn and take directions — then this job might be for you.  For full details about the position and its requirements/opportunities, click and then click on the Assistant Engineer.

TALKERS Weekly Affiliate Roundup.  “The Freedom Feens” featuring Michael W. Dean and Neema Vedadi and syndicated by Genesis Communications Network is added to the program schedule at KDGO, Durango, Colorado…..Good Parts Media reports the acquisition of its 100th affiliate.  The parent company of “The Hookup,” Mr. Prep and The Locker Room prep services reports it has hit this milestone in only its second year of doing business…..The national syndicated “My Cool Inventions” show with Akos Jankura and John Cremeans is added to the program schedule at WRSB, Rochester, New York and KMET, San Bernardino.

Friday, April 26, 2013

| April 26, 2013

infinitedial logoArbitron and Edison Research Break Out ‘Infinite Dial’ Data by P1s; Public Radio P1s Are Far More Digitally Involved Than News/Talk Aficionados.  Yesterday’s webinar for client stations of Arbitron took the data accumulated by Arbitron and Edison Research for its “Infinite Dial 2013” study and presented it from the context of P1s of 10 radio formats: rock, CHR, country, news/talk/sports, classic rock/classic hits, urban, AC, public radio and religion.  Arbitron and Edison state that the data they’ve collected can tell radio programmers something about how their P1s use digital platforms such as online radio, social media such as Twitter, their use of online video and much more.  News/talk and public radio programmers are probably very aware of how different their P1s are even though much of public radio programming these days is spoken-word.  This data shows just how different these two P1s are when it comes to digital media perceptions and usage.  Also, for this report Arbitron and Edison groups sports with news/talk and, considering how different sports talk and news/talk P1s tend to be from a purely demographic perspective, TALKERS editors can’t help but hope they will break sports and news/talk into separate formats when conducting next year’s study.  Some of the data programmers of news/talk, sports and public radio stations might find useful includes:

  • Of the format P1s who’ve listened to online radio in the past week, public radio comes in #2 with 44% reporting they’ve done so while news/talk/sports P1s are #6 with 31% doing the same.
  • News/talk/sports P1s aren’t the biggest Pandora fans relative to the other format P1s.  Just 14% of news/talk/sports fans reported listening to Pandora within the last week while 29% of public radio P1s reported the same.
  • Public radio P1s are big podcast fans with 34% reporting they’ve listened to a podcast in the past month.  That’s far and away above religious at #2 (16%) and #3 news/talk/sports (15%).
  • Public radio P1s are big tablet (iPad, etc.) fans with 42% owning one.  News/talk/sports P1s are close behind at #3 (34%).  Country fans and classic rock/classic hits and were at the bottom of this category respectively (24% and 23%).
  • News/talk/sports P1s are the least likely of all format P1s to have a social network profile – 58% claim to have one – although public radio P1s were fourth with 71% claiming to have one.
  • Not surprisingly, news/talk/sports P1s are big in-car users, ranking fourth with 92% reporting in-car listening.  Though news/talk/sports P1s aren’t the highest ranking format P1s to also use CDs or mp3 players in the car, they are fans of satellite radio with 19% (second only to rock P1s) reporting using satellite radio in the car.

Arbitron announces that early next month it will be providing separate, detailed reports for each of the formats to subscribers.  For broadcasters planning to attend the Talkers New York 2013 conference in New York City on Thursday, June 6 produced by TALKERS magazine, Arbitron director of programming services Jon Miller will present a “Special PPM Report on the State of the Spoken Word” that will include information from this study.  To register for the conference, call 413-565-5413.

wood logoGary Allen Calls it a Career at WOOD-AM/FM, Grand Rapids After 31 Years.  Saying he still has lots of things he wants to do, WOOD-AM/FM, Grand Rapids morning drive personality Gary Allen is retiring from the station on June 21 after a 31-year career at the station – the last 23 of which has been spent waking up the market.  He’s just the fourth morning host in WOOD’s 89-year history and currently the longest-running allengarymorning host in Grand Rapids radio.  Allen says, “I’ve made this decision because I still have lots of things I want to do, especially to stay active volunteering with numerous area non-profits, none of which will involve me answering to a 3:00 am alarm!  I made this decision with the pride of knowing I’ve had the great honor of informing and entertaining our West Michigan listeners for over three decades.”  Clear Channel vice president and market manager for West Michigan Tim Feagan states, “We thank Gary for his tireless service to WOOD Radio and Clear Channel Media and Entertainment.  Gary will always be a part of the Clear Channel and WOOD Radio family and you’re likely to hear him on occasion hosting special projects and programs for us on WOOD Radio.  After 32 years on the air in West Michigan we truly wish him well as he begins his very much-deserved retirement.  Gary’s the Iron Man of West Michigan radio.  He’s not only tireless in his service to our terrific WOOD listeners but he’s also been a tireless and consistent contributor to so many charities in our great community.  He’s always giving, always offering to help.  He’s got a big heart and a tiny ego, and that’s really a rarity in our business.  It’s been a real joy to work with him for many years.”

beasleyBeasley Broadcasting Reports Q1 Revenue Up 6.5%.  The company reports that’s an increase of $1.5 million in revenue for the first quarter of 2013 compared to the same quarter one year ago and that it “reflects strength in the company’s Philadelphia, Las Vegas and Fort Myers market clusters including the acquisition of KOAS-FM in Las Vegas in the 2012 third quarter.”  Speaking about the Q1 results, chairman and CEO George Beasley states, beasleygeorge“The solid first quarter revenue growth led to another period of SOI (station operating income) growth, as consolidated SOI increased 4.1% year-over-year.  First quarter SOI margins also remain healthy at 32.7% but declined slightly from last year as station operating expenses rose due to our investments in our local sales teams.  Beyond our company-wide focus on programming and ratings which serve as the foundation for the success of our on-air and digital advertising platforms, we continue to strengthen our balance sheet.  During the first quarter, we made repayments totaling $1.0 million against the credit facility, reducing total bank debt to $115.7 million at March 31, 2013, from $123.4 million at the end of last year’s first quarter.”

kxtg logoOdds & Sods.  There are some sports play-by-play affiliations to report as Alpha Broadcasting’s sports talk KXTG-AM, Portland announces a multi-year extension to continue airing Oregon Ducks football and Men’s basketball on the station…..Oakland Raiders football moves from CBS Radio’s alternative KITS, San Francisco “Live 105” to Entercom’s sports talk KGMZ, San Francisco “95.7 The Game.”  On days when there are conflicts with Oakland A’s baseball, Raiders games will air on sister classic rock “K-Fox” simulcast KUFX and KUZX…..NBC Sports Radio afternoon drive hosts Donovan McNabb and Mark Malone got a chance to speak on their program with NFL commissioner Roger Goodell prior to last night’s first round of the NFL Draft.  The duo broadcast their nationally syndicated program from New York’s Radio City Music Hall.

schultzedEd Schultz Weekend Program to Debut on MSNBC May 11.  The Los Angeles Times’ Show Tracker column indicates the weekend gig that was planned for MSNBC talent Ed Schultz – who gave up his weeknight prime time show at the end of March – will hit the air the weekend of May 11.  When the announcement was first made that Schultz would be changing his role at the cable news/talk network, it was believed the show would begin airing in early April.  Now, it appears the delay is over and “Ed heads” will get their fix in a couple of weekends.

riverageraldoCumulus New York to Produce Second Annual Job Fair; Geraldo to Broadcast Live.  This will be the second year in a row that Cumulus Media’s New York City radio stations have collaborated to present the “Putting America Back to Work” job fair at the city’s Jacob Javitts Center.  This year’s event will take place on Tuesday, May 7 and will feature news/talk WABC, hot AC WPLJ and country WNSH “Nash FM 94.7.”  During the event WABC’s Geraldo Rivera will broadcast his program live from the Javitts Center from 11:00 am to 3:00 pm.

katzWCAPJeff Katz Launches Daily Commentary.  Dubbed, “The Katz Commentary,” talk radio pro Jeff Katz begins distributing his daily, 60-second product on Monday, April 29.  Katz, a three-time Associated Press award-winning broadcaster will contribute a daily commentary for the legendary New England station WCAP-AM 980 which is licensed to the Boston suburb of Lowell.  “The Katz Commentary” will air in both morning drive and afternoon drive.  Katz states, “I am thrilled to be able to offer my opinions once again on a daily basis to the people of New England.  WCAP is one of the great heritage stations in America and I am honored that they have decided to add my unique perspective to their great station.  While ‘The Katz Commentary’ will certainly address the issues of the day, I will also add in some thoughts and perspectives in the areas of positive psychology and self-growth.  ‘The Katz Commentary’ can best be described as, ‘Not Left, Not Right, Just Real.’”  Katz (l) is pictured here with WCAP, Lowell owner Sam Poulten (r).

ramseydaveTALKERS Weekly Affiliate Roundup.  Dave Ramsey becomes part of the lineup at Clear Channel’s WGST-AM, Atlanta as the company returns the station to a news/talk format.  Ramsey will air live during the 2:00 pm to 6:00 pm ET time slot…..“Free Talk Live” featuring Ian Freeman and Mark Edge is added to the program schedule at WHBY, Green Bay; WWNS, Statesboro, Georgia; WOEN, Olean, New York; KXTL, Butte, Montana; and WRTA, Altoona, Pennsylvania…..ESPN Radio‘s Mike & Mike are added to the program schedule at WRNN, Myrtle Beach, South Carolina…..The Money Pit Home Improvement Show adds the following affiliate stations:  WICO, Salisbury, Maryland; WATX-AM/FM, Cookeville, Tennessee; WRJM, Charleston, Illinois; WCAP, Lowell, Massachusetts; and KIXZ, Amarillo, Texas.

The Boston Marathon Bombing Aftermath Remains the Top News/Talk Story for the Week.  Sitting at #1 atop the Talkers TenTM for the second straight week is the aftermath of the Boston Marathon bombing; at #2 is the closely tied immigration reform legislation.  At #3 is gun control proposals followed by the sequester effects and airline delays at #4.  The Talkers TenTM is a weekly chart of the most-talked-about stories and people on news/talk during the week and is the result of ongoing research from TALKERS.  This week’s entire chart can be viewed here.