Randi Rhodes leaves syndication

Today is the last day Randi Rhodes will be heard on Premiere radio. Randi wound up working for the “evil” Clear Channel after the failure of Air America and the “progressive” Novo M network in Phoenix.

Coinciding with her leaving, Clear Channel station KKZN-AM in Denver is dropping progressive talk. It is being replaced with a very weak lineup – the centerpiece of which is Dave Ramsey and Clark Howard.

This month’s news talk ratings are close to catastrophically bad. TRN is just barely clinging on – most of the Rusty Humphries affiliates have now left after six months of no Rusty.

I don’t view the failure of progressive radio as a good thing. I did not like listening to it, but at least you knew what people were thinking. The winding down of progressive talk will just make conservative talk that much more shrill and uninteresting to the 90% of people that don’t currently listen to it.

Mostly unrelated, Clear Channel is party to a three way deal, acquiring 29 unremarkable stations from Qantum for two stations on Long Island that have been languishing in a divestiture trust for 5 years. None of this is a sign of a healthy industry.

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8 Responses to Randi Rhodes leaves syndication

  1. Art Stone says:

    Randi pointed out was that Rush Limbaugh is #39th in the Los Angeles ratings. She left out that KEIB-AM is the former KTLK-AM which had even lower ratings when it was Progressive talk. She also isn’t mentioning that she works for the same syndicator as Rush

  2. CC1s121LrBGT says:

    Interesting interview this morning regarding radio and streaming. Bottom line is that artists get paid for streams but not over-the-air broadcasts… therefore the content industry wants to leave AM/FM radio behind and is pushing for bundling with the Internet providers to collect a few dollars per month so you can stream any audio you want.

    As Jimmy Iovine (Apple takeover target) says, the content providers (including rock stars) want to know who is listening to them and how often… and also what else they are listening too.. This is big data.

    There is the interview from this morning with Tommy Silverman… worth a listen to understand the business incentives, motivations, and strategy:

    http://www.businessweek.com/videos/2014-05-16/streaming-is-savior-of-music-business-silverman

    • Art Stone says:

      Radio seems to have chosen this as the hill they want to die on. Many still live in the 1960s when teenagers heard music on the radio and went to the record store to buy a piece of plastic, which sent the money to the record labels who kept most of the money. This left record labels with lots of cash to buy drugs, prostitutes and spread cash around to get air play. The quality of the music was secondary.

      None of that business model is left. SoundExchange’s biggest problem has been to track down 100s of thousands of obscure artists and their descendants to give them money they never expected to earn – many had signed away their rights to their record labels. Those checks and the unwillingness of radio to pay on a level playing field with SiriusXM is rapidly going o make radio “the enemy” for music performers. Clear Channel has partly capitulated, and iHeartRadio is an important part of that strategy. Cumulus is betting on Country Music.

      The former Arbitron is having massive layoffs now that it was acquired by Nielsen. If you have 100% knowledge of the audience streaming radio, that gives advertisers a warmer feeling that there is a real audience listening “over the air”. This month’s PPM ratings show a lot of violent changes. Some of it was that the winter temporarily listening to news stations – but my sense is Nielson stopped the fudging of numbers Arbitron felt it needed to do to promote radio to advertisers. When you buy radio ads and nobody reacts, you begin to doubt there is anyone listening.

  3. Nidster says:

    Off-topic, but the death of radio is not the only game in town. Obama said a couple months ago that his sanctions against the Ruskies, “Could Also Be Disruptive To The Global Economy.” And, now DemonCrat Nancy Pelosi is calling on the far left University of Berkeley idiots to rise up on their haunches and become disruptive. Just as they have been indoctrinated to be by the ungrateful, spoiled brats a.k.a. the far left University of Berkeley idiot professors.

    As an example of the idiots being elected to Congress and elevated to positions of high power, who among us can detect the error in Pelsosi’s statement? “Our Founders created a democracy, a government of the many, not a government of the money, so let’s be disruptors.”

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