Occupy Radio

A view from across the Potomac


So, the radio bloodbath continues. I’m sure this is just the first wave of cuts.

We’ve seen this movie before.

You gotta love how The Evil Empire spins it: “We’re making these changes to improve the quality of what we provide to each of our local communities,” a company spokesperson told Inside Radio. “There will be more localization, not less.”

Improve quality? If you mean the “Premium Choice” voice jock is better than the average person you could hire in, say, Bismarck — ok, I’ll give you that one.

But we all know that “Premium Choice” person is a liner card-reading generic “personality” who will be talking about music news and Hollywood gossip. The kind of content you can find on, oh, say…TMZ, or a thousand other websites.

More localization? Really?? Exactly how will having less staff and piping in syndicated programming be MORE local? I’m willing to be educated by these higher powers.

If they have found some magic formula for turning generic, one-size-fits-all-markets programming into a MORE localized product — I want to hear how. That would be a truly amazing accomplishment.

Yet, all this PR drivel passes by unchallenged. Worse, I think these people actually believe it.

This is cost-cutting, pure and simple!

It will not improve their ability to serve their city of license…remember that? They have to say what they say so the FCC doesn’t actually look at what’s happening. These words are meant to protect the license.

Sadly, because radio is less important than it ever was, most local communities won’t raise a word or even care too much. They will get the essential information — and local connections — they need from other sources: social media, their phone, TV, text, emails.

This will not cause them to “heart” radio.

It is just another example of how radio, an entertainment and information platform, will continue to lose relevance.

Arbitron and Edison and all the rest can continue to talk about how many people still listen to the radio. How all generations still spend a lot of time with the medium. What they don’t say is that while people may be listening, they don’t really care all that much.

Wonder if anyone will ever start an “Occupy Radio” movement…?



I’m proud to share my site with today’s guest blogger, Steve Allan. Steve is a multiple Marconi Award-winning programmer of once great stations, such as WODS and WBIG. He is President of Social Marketing firm, SMTHREE, and can be reached at 248-808-4132.

You can also follow Steve on his Facebook page.