“I Hope Broadcasters Heed Your Comments”
March 13, 2012

Those hopeful words were offered by ‘Radio’s Best Friend’ Art Vuolo in response to our OpEd in yesterday’s (3/12) edition of NTS MediaOnline Today, in which we urged industry leaders and News/Talk/Sports radio professionals to speak up on behalf of the medium in the wake of the Rush Limbaugh/Sandra Fluke controversy. Adding his voice to the conversation, longtime radio veteran and RCS VP/Marketing Dwight Douglas emailed to say, “Owners and managers must understand that when they fear reaction, they fear success. Rush got a billion dollars of marketing in the last few weeks, and not all of it will hurt him. He may have to navigate the capitalist system a bit differently for awhile, but he must remain in character.” Recalling that it’s been years since Howard Stern’s infamous barrier-breaking battles with the FCC Douglas continues, “Radio will overcome this latest misstep. Don Imus is working and people are listening, Howard Stern makes more money than the President, and Rush Limbaugh — love him, or hate him — has a place at the Talk radio table. He just has to lay off the sauerkraut.”

We’ve received MANY more responses to our commentary and we’ll continue to offer your reader feedback on this issue throughout the week right here in NTS MediaOnline Today. You’re welcome to email your comments to us anytime HERE.

Is Premiere Memo A “License To Chill?”
March 13, 2012

In the wake of all the current Talk radio controversy, Premiere Networks has given it’s News/Talk affiliates what Jimmy Buffet might call a ‘license to chill.’ Premiere issued a memo to traffic managers yesterday (3/12) reporting that the network is “suspending the requirement to run barter spots” for the next two weeks. The move will effectively keep spots purchased by network advertisers who do not buy specific programs out of any environment that might be considered controversial — which, of course, includes Limbaugh’s syndicated daily program. And while a statement released by the network characterized the memo as “part of Premiere’s overall strategy to update our processes and services to better meet our clients needs,” Limbaugh spokesperson Brian Glicklich offered some additional clarification, emphasizing that Premiere’s announcement “does not involve the cancellation of any advertising, local or national, purchased within The Rush Limbaugh Show.”

Curtis Media Group Makes NC Changes
March 13, 2012

Curtis Media Group has pulled the plug on Greensboro FM talker WZTK, citing soft ad revenues and new competition for the move. A statement posted on the station’s website reads in part: “While FM Talk 101.1 was successful by any number of standards, the advertising slowdown of the last four years—combined with the entry of new Talk radio competitors—made a business model we created in 2003 no longer sustainable.” Meanwhile, CMG also rebrands WPTF/Raleigh as NewsRadio 680, featuring locally anchored news blocks all day with the exception of the independently syndicated Dave Ramsey Show. A number of shows formerly heard on WPTF and WZTK — including locals Brad Krantz and Britt Whitmire – are now heard on co-owned WSJS/Greensboro, as well as on newly rebranded WKIX/Raleigh which dropped Oldies to become the new TalkRadio 850.

Talk Media News Notes
March 13, 2012

Red Zebra Broadcasting Sports/Talker WTEM/Washington and 15-year station veteran Doc Walker renew their vows as ‘The Doc’ signs on to be part of a new PM drive show that will debut on March 26th. Walker will also serve as a member of the Washington Redskins Radio Network’s broadcast team … Talk Radio On TV: Independently syndicated talker Leslie Marshall appears tonight at 9pm (ET) on FOX News Channel’s Hannity as a member of host Sean Hannity’s ‘Great American Panel’ … The Huffington Post cites a Reuters report that longtime Talk radio and TV legend Larry King will host a new interview program on a developing Internet TV venture being backed by billionaire Mexican media mogul Carlos Slim. Read the report HERE “Let the madness begin!” So says Dial Global VP/Sports Sales & Marketing Michael Schreck as he notes today’s tip-off of the network’s 67-game coverage of the 2012 NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament is airing on more than 500 radio stations nationwide, as well as — for the first time — via the Slacker Radio mobile platform. Additionally, DG is providing coverage to satcaster Sirius XM.

Now And Then …
March 13, 2012

KDKA/Pittsburgh host Larry Richert is pictured above during a visit with Lucy Treccase, a 106-year-old listener living at Concordia Lutheran Ministries in Cabot, PA. Larry presented a special plaque to Lucy commemorating her status as a bonafide charter listener to the now CBS Radio-owned News/Talker, having heard KDKA’s historic “world’s first broadcast” of the Harding-Cox presidential election results back on November 2, 1920.