Another so-called “black radio” station pulls the plug

WMCS in Milwaukee won’t be carrying Al Sharpton (and indicted attorney Warren Ballentine) any more. The station is currently stunting with Elvis music. The station owner says the station has been losing money for years.

Just as the prices of radio stations started to crumble, the FCC went way outside its mandate and made a rule that a company can’t advertise on radio using an agency and tell them “I don’t want my ads running on so-called black and/or Spanish language radio”. One of the two national rep firms immediately declared bankruptcy – the other is owned by Clear Channel which operates a number of Spanish language and black music formatted stations.

The FCC rule is based on the assumption that black format = black owners, and the rule would force evil racist white corporations to advertise on Al Sharpton’s stations. What it has done is chased national advertisers away from all radio.

Partly in response, radio advertisers put pressure to make radio ratings more reliable. The PPM device from Arbitron listen to what the person is listening to, not the station they want to “vote” for and claim they listen to 16 hours a day. With accurate ratings, the ad rates so called “black radio” could charge vaporized.

Damn that Rush Limbaugh for destroying radio!

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28 Responses to Another so-called “black radio” station pulls the plug

  1. CC1s121LrBGT says:

    Wow. Sounds like the anti-redlining rule that many believe led to all the mortgage fraud and our current recession/depression.

    Always seemed “interesting” that it was illegal for lenders to redline but politicians do it routinely after each census.

  2. Nidster says:

    I remember the good ‘old’ days when all sorts of new talk show hosts were popping up almost daily (slight exaggeration) and Rush’s response was, “Jump in folks, the water’s just fine.” Then over the next several years almost everyone proclaimed Rush the “Godfather” of talk radio. So, the question is, did Rush buy the FCC and start issuing orders?

    • Art Stone says:

      Well, almost.

      When he started syndication in the 1980s, one radio owner could only own 20 AM and 20 FM stations in the entire country, and no more than one of each in a market. That made it fairly hard to create a nationwide network. ABC radio was the initial backbone and as people began to notice Rush, he picked up affiliates basically one at a time.

      Then in 1996, President Clinton pushed through the Telecommunications reform act of 1996, vastly deregulating Radio and phone serve as it was recognized the Internet was about to change everything. The national cap was removed completely and owners could own up to 8 radio stations in a market, depending on the number of stations.

      In the resulting merger orgy, mom and pop radio stations gladly turned over the keys to Clear Channel, Cumulus, Citadel and a few others. Clear Channel wound up with about 1200 stations (out of a total of about 14,000)

      Rush is the king of talk radio because his listeners buy things. There are around 250 markets measured by Arbitron and around another 250 small towns with enough population in one place to support a station. There are a bit over 500 Rush affiliates. There literally isn’t a place in America you can’t hear Rush at Noon ET. He has the clout to control what advertisements are carried locally, forces stations to play the Saturday show and the Morning 1 minute bits, and carry the show live for three hours. You don’t want the deal? There are four other stations in town waiting in line to take your place.

  3. Nidster says:

    So, I always suspected Rush and the Clintons had sort of a symbiotic relationship…they worked well together. Anyway, have the Clintons become as wealthy as Rush, yet?

    • Art Stone says:

      I’m a cell in the Rush Limbaugh memory division. You are exactly right even if you didn’t actually mean it.

      I very clearly remember Rush promoting the Democratic Leadership Council. A then unknown governor of Arkansas was leading a Southern revolution that was going to try to wrest control of the Democratic Party from the extreme left wing factions. He certainly spent a lot of his energy making fun of the “little general” H. Ross Perot “they’re coming to take me away, ha ha”.

      Who was the Republican candidate in 1992? No looking at Google.

      In the last few weeks, people are starting to talk again about Randy Weaver and Ruby Ridge. Many people have the inaccurate impression that Ruby Ridge was Clinton’s doing. It happened at the end of August 1992, two months before the election.

      • Nidster says:

        Good to know your memory ‘cells’ are working and keeping us on track with history.

        Thanks for the info!!!

        • Nidster says:

          Ooops, did not address your trivia question: In 1992 the ‘sorry ass’ R, was GHW ‘da Spook’ Bush….versus Dukakis (another loser ‘ MA governor.) So, we elect someone from a family who helped finance the Nazis. Good grief folks, are we ever gonna get a real American elected as POTUS?

          And, I was also just thinking of Ruby Ridge today, and Waco, where all the children were burned alive. Waco was on Janet Reno’s watch, ’cause there is inside info that Bill ‘da Sexual Predator’ was AWOL and on the prowl during those events.

          Anyway, this is becoming way too weird for someone like me to absorb!!! Lots of ‘high strangeness’ ahead.

          Something Big is Coming, on or around, the Spring Equinox.

        • Art Stone says:

          I know exactly when I decided I was not going to vote a second time for GHWB. The Court TV cable channel was new and carried the Simi Valley Rodney King trial live. I was in my first retirement and watched the trial, not just the 30 second summary on the nightly news with the worst two seconds looped over and over to incite anger.

          A big part in the events that night was a jurisdictional squabble. The first officer intervening was a female California Highway Patrol officer. She pulled out her gun. LAPD policy and training is you never pull the gun out of the holster unless you intend to shoot with the intent to kill. Warning shots only happen in Hollywood.

          They interpreted her actions that she was about to kill Rodney King and the LAPD pushed her aside and took over the situation. LAPD has a strict escalation of force that prohibits using more force than necessary to get compliance. The more King resisted, the more that justified use of more force. That’s the law. Many black Americans consider it not acceptable for a white policeman to ever hit a black man – that is not the law.

          The Simi Valley jury followed the facts and the law as presented to them. The moment the verdict of not guilty was read, George Bush came on national TV to announce that the jury had acted stupidly and the Federal Government would retry the police officers on Federal Civil rights charges. George Bush didn’t watch the trial and was not concerned with the facts.

          There was one baton hit that seemed inappropriate where an officer appears to hit King after he stops resisting – but there is no audio and the video is taken from a distance.

          The members of the Simi Valley jury gave their time and were at considerable risk of retalliation for their verdict. To have the President then declare the jury wrong signalled the Communisty that it was time to riot, causing 53 deaths and 1000s of injuries. He projected weakness and undermined the jury system and law enforcement.

        • Art Stone says:

          At the time, I gave GHWB the benefit of the doubt, that there must be information he had that caused the US to launch the first war against Iraq. The slant drilling by the Kuwaitis seemed wrong and I didn’t have much sympathy for the Kuwaiti royal family.

          But again, after committing our military assets and pushing the Iraqi troops out of Kuwait, as soon as the pictures of the “highway of death” appeared on CNN, Barbara Bush turned to him and declared this was a bad thing, and the war ended with the job undone. The world watched as we pulled our punches when we had Saddam with no alternatives but surrender. Schwarzkopf gave the Iraqi military permission to fly helicopters, which they then used to exterminate the people in Southern Iraq who we had incited to try to overthrow Saddam. This left the job unfinished for another decade. Don’t start a war you aren’t prepared to finish.

          • CC1s121LrBGT says:

            I concur with most of what you wrote but it is actually worse. The above led to bases in Saudi Arabia that inspired Obama bin Laden to strike us multiple times leading to 9-11.

            I was actually opposed to the first Gulf war, but in favor of the second one because the first one had not really ended. Additionally, I was against the Afghanistan war – if we could find bin Laden in Pakistan, why didn’t we find him in Afghanistan in a similar manner without the war.

            So, I have looked far and wide and have found virtually no one that shared all three of those positions on the wars: against the first in Iraq, against the first in Afghanistan, but in favor of the second one in Iraq…. it’s a lonely club. 🙂

  4. Nidster says:

    Right, regardless of the idea that it is the Democ-‘Rats’ or the Republic-‘Rats’ running the show, the bottom-line is that productive Americans (the working poor) are being led around by the nose to vote a certain way. Sorta like the cattle with rings in their noses, to be controlled by their handlers (the Media) who are also being controlled.

    The curious part for me is the re-election of POTUS. Whose re-election goes ‘against the grain’ of the the ‘traditional trends’. Something much bigger is afoot and it should be watched very carefully.

  5. Art Stone says:

    I realized I was thinking of April Glaspie 😉 Should I still google Ms Gillespie?

  6. lasong says:

    That’s great the marketplace has spoken. There should be no “black” radio, nor white or anything else unless it is a foreign language and even that can be divisive. I can understand left or right wing for the political hardcore but something that’s informative or entertaining is what people want from radio in the first place not the warped monstrosity it has become.

  7. Art Stone says:

    WZTI is the new call sign so people forget the old format – station has switched to Frank Sinatra nostalgia / standards.

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