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Radio News for Wednesday November 26th 2008


Happy Holiday

The Full RadioNX Update Will Return on Monday. Continued Updates Over the Holiday Weekend.

Headlines:

Radio News US:

Business & Financial

Programming, Changes & Ratings

News & PR

OP/ED, Political & Feature

FCC & Legal

Public, Educational & Religious

Streaming & Tech

Radio News International:

Britain/Europe

Canada

Asia/Africa/Oceana

Trades

Radio & Records

  • Interep Shuts Its Doors Bankruptcy judge awards remaining assets to Katz for $3.6 million
  • Politicians Push For Return Of Equal Time
  • Lindemann Hands Off WLCC/Tampa To MMTC
  • Noah’s Promotion A Sheer Delight
  • Harper And Champagne Exit WBLS
  • WGN’s New Morning Host
  • WABC Lineup Update
  • Ianniello Named CBS Deputy CFO
  • WMG Digital Revenue Up 39%
  • CBS Radio Leads Ando’s October Webcast Metrics
  • Analyst: Radioland Returns To The Bad Ol’ Days
  • ‘Half Of Radio Companies Will Be Gone In 36 Months,’ Forecasts Dickey
  • McGuinn New Current PD
  • CCR Granting Xmas Wishes
  • Bubba The Love Sponge’s Radio Empire Grows
  • Chart Highlights: Beyonce Notches No. 1 ‘Single’
  • Bayliss Puts Radio Roast On Hiatus

All Access

  • Courtney Holt Named Pres. At MySpace Music
  • Report: Redstone May Not Be Able To Sell CBS
  • WCCO Asks Big Names To Take 10% Pay Cut
  • Ex-BBCer Douglas Joins Universal Music
  • CC Trust Spins Off WALC/Charleston, SC
  • KFI Dedicates Tower To Late Engineer
  • No Fraud Charges For Florida Station
  • Gene Simmons Seeks Canadian Talent
  • Human Rights Group Tells TalkSport To Reconsider Gaunt’s Firing
  • NPR Donates Space For D.C. Food Bank
  • After 13 Years, Manic Street Preacher’s Edwards Declared Dead

Radio Ink

  • Katz Media Group Adds CBS, Entercom As Court OK’s Interep Deal
  • Savage Re-Ups With Talk Radio Network
  • Mississippi Station Hit With $15K Fine
  • WSJ Radio Network Offers Holiday Series
  • Ianello Named Deputy CFO At CBS Corp.
  • Interep Back In Court Today

FMQB

  • Katz Media Group To Represent CBS Radio And Entercom
  • Warner Music Sees Q4 Profit Growth
  • Noah Sheer Promoted At IDJMG
  • Radio Is Headed For Worst Year Since 1954
  • WFBC/Greenville adds Ryan Seacrest
  • Interview with Sirius XM’s Scott Greenstein
  • Cumulus CEO warns of further economic troubles for radio

Inside Radio

  • Interep shuts its doors.
  • Katz gets CBS Radio, Entercom.
  • Report: Redstone would sell CBS.
  • Golden Mike Awards a go.
  • A tall honor for KFI’s late engineer.
  • It’s looking a lot like Christmas.
  • Food bank gets NPR space for no coin.

Radio Business Report

  • CBS and Entercom sign with Katz after bid approved
  • Prediction: Two years left for satellite radio
  • Clear Channel goes Dutch for bond buyback
  • Michael Savage reups with Talk Radio Network
  • A past Arbitron competitor’s take on the new competitor
  • Wall Street dumps Arbitron’s stock

Radio Online

  • Katz Media Group to Represent CBS Radio, Entercom
  • Savage Inks Multi-Year Deal with Talk Radio Network
  • Report: WCCO Asks Talent for Voluntary 10% Pay Cut
  • KATF-FM/Dubuque’s Mormann Killed in Auto Rollover
  • WELE/Daytona Beach Won’t Face Criminal Charges
  • Paul Allen, host of KFAN-AM/Minneapolis midday program, inks a five-year contract
  • Bonneville/St. Louis adds veteran sports broadcaster Todd Wise to the KMVN-FM
  • Talk WGN-AM/Chicago early afternoon host John Williams will move to mornings
  • Hot AC KGBY-FM (My925)/Sacramento flips to all holiday music through Christmas Day
  • Talk WABC-AM/New York ousts Bob Grant from its weekday schedule.

NTS Aircheck

  • Bob Grant Out At WABC/New York?
  • WGN Picks Williams
  • Clear Channel Granting Holiday Wishes
  • Greetings From Bob & Tom
  • Alan Colmes To Depart Hannity & Colmes

Urbansite

  • Arbitron – Memphis. Raleigh-Durham, Greenville-New Bern- Jacksonville
  • News – Vaughn Harper, Champaine Out At WBLS
  • Airchecks – Kode Wred WAMO 106.7 Pittsburgh
  • News – Carol O’s 10th Annual Atlanta Birthday Bash Benefit
  • Arbitron – Mike Love to ABC Network

All About Country

  • Arbitron Releases More Fall Phase I Trends Today
  • Next Weekend Is GAC’s SuperFan Weekend
  • For Blake Shelton: What A Week!
  • No 2009 Bayliss Radio Roast
  • Mindy McCready Says She’s Lived ‘Recklessly’
  • KZSN/Wichita Sponsors SafeRiders
  • KSSN/Little Rock Set For Another Big Toys Event
  • St Jude’s Thanks And Giving Features Brad Paisley & Keith Urban
  • DVR Alert! CMT Giants: Alan Jackson Premiere
  • Jo Dee Messina: 6-Months Pregnant & Ready To Run
  • We Haven’t Seen Losses Like This Since 1954
  • Judge Decides The Fate Of Katz-Interep Deal Today
  • Ken Moultrie & Mike Bettelli Form Broadcast Partners
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Radio News for Tuesday November 25th 2008


Headlines:

Radio News US:

Business & Financial

Programming, Changes & Ratings

News & PR

OP/ED, Political & Feature

FCC & Legal

Public, Educational & Religious

Streaming & Tech

Radio News International:

Britain/Europe

Canada

Asia/Africa/Oceana

Trades

Radio & Records

  • Analyst: Radioland Returns To The Bad Ol’ Days. October radio revenue off 10%
  • WMG Digital Revenue Up 39%
  • ‘Half Of Radio Companies Will Be Gone In 36 Months,’ Forecasts Dickey
  • McGuinn New Current PD
  • Bubba The Love Sponge’s Radio Empire Grows
  • Chart Highlights: Beyonce Notches No. 1 ‘Single’
  • Bayliss Puts Radio Roast On Hiatus
  • Moultrie, Bettelli Partner Up For Broadcast Partners
  • Symonds Conquers CC/Richmond
  • Kizart Departs Interep
  • Ganbarg Named Atlantic Executive VP, A&R
  • Love Joins ABC Radio Networks
  • RTNDA Wants FCC To Resist Additional Rules On Spots
  • Group Asks FCC To Ban Embedded Ads Aimed At Kids
  • Anton Named Recording Academy’s VP Of Digital Media
  • Scarborough: El Paso, Salt Lake City, Dallas, Memphis Top Texting Cities
  • Lazer Wins Counterclaim

All Access

  • WMG Q4 Revs Decline 1.5%
  • Court To Hear Katz Interep Bid Today
  • CL King Report: It’s Gonna Get Worse
  • Chapman To Exit BBC World Service
  • Clear Channel Announces Modified Dutch Auction
  • WLCC/Tampa Donated To MMTC
  • NYC Gets Dueling Christmas Stations
  • Williams Gets Morning Nod At WGN
  • Neighbors Block Construction Of New Alaska AM
  • Chuck Matthews Heads To Sandusky
  • Zac Brown Band Gets Their #1
  • Jo Dee Messina, 6 Months Pregnant, To Run 5-Mile Race
  • Paisley & Urban Join St. Jude’s ‘Thanks And Giving’ Campaign
  • Clay Walker & Band Against MS Donate To Nat’l Pediatric MS Center
  • KZSN Helps Sponsor Holiday SafeRiders Program
  • WMBA Accepting Membership Applications
  • Furr Set To Fill In At WBT
  • Elvis Premieres Britney’s New Track
  • Star 102.5 Helps Collect 95 Tons Of Food
  • Stay In Sarah Fraser’s Apt During Obama’s Inauguration …

Radio Ink

  • House Committee Head Rips FCC’s Martin
  • MPR Names McGuinn PD At The Current
  • Bubba The Love Sponge Picks Up New Markets
  • Moultrie & Bettelli Team To Launch Broadcast Partners
  • Hispanic Ad Group Still “Disappointed” With PPM
  • RAB: October revenue down 10 percent
  • Atlantic Records names Pete Ganbarg EVP/A&R
  • Cumulus CEO warns of further economic troubles for radio

FMQB

  • No Bayliss Radio Roast In 2009
  • RTNDA To FCC: Don’t Tighten The Sponsorship Rules
  • Stedman Named PD Of WMXJ/Miami
  • Analyst: 2008 May Be Radio’s Worst Year Since ’54
  • Dickey: ‘Big Shakeout’ On The Way
  • FCC Extends Filing Deadlines For FM Digital Upgrade
  • Bubba Adds Four New Markets
  • Station Contest Leads To Lawsuit

Inside Radio

  • Consultant: Make radio like Wal-Mart.
  • How sweet it is: Radio boosts Hershey’s.
  • Interep-Katz deal goes to court.
  • Bayliss Radio Roast goes on hiatus.
  • October closes down 10%.
  • Bubba’s Sirius future in doubt.
  • Tops for texting: El Paso.
  • Look who’s on the loose — again.

Radio Business Report

  • Prediction: Two years left for satellite radio
  • A past Arbitron competitor’s take on the new competitor
  • Wall Street dumps Arbitron’s stock
  • Bayliss takes a break
  • This may be one for the history books
  • The silver lining in bleak October
  • Bubba the Love Sponge adds four

Radio Online

  • Adelstein Says FCC Has ‘Clear Authority’ to Probe PPM
  • Bill Stedman Returns to WMXJ (Majic 102.7)/Miami as PD
  • CBS Corporation Ups Joseph Ianniello to Deputy CFO
  • ABC Names Love Director/Programming for Baisden Show
  • Symonds Joins CC/Richmond as OM, WTVR (Lite FM) PD
  • Report: Dickey Says Radio Industry Heads for a Shakeout
  • RTNDA Asks FCC to Maintain Current Sponsorship Rules
  • Bill Crawford of AC KCST-FM/Florence, OR, is out
  • Country KRST-FM/Albuquerque afternoon host Ann Perkins exits

NTS Aircheck

  • Don Imus sidekick/newsman Charles McCord
  • Glen Gardner and Tim Morrissey are on the beach after the cutback express rolled through WTDY/Madison
  • Mike Love is named Director/Programming and Distribution For ABC Radio Networks’

Urbansite

  • Mike Love to ABC Network
  • Arbitron – New Orleans, Richmond, Jacksonville and Baton Rouge
  • News – Lew Dickey, Jr. “Radio Industry Heads For Shakeout”

All About Country

  • Jo Dee Messina: 6-Months Pregnant & Ready To Run
  • We Haven’t Seen Losses Like This Since 1954
  • Tim & Faith and Keith & Nicole Are Country’s ‘Power Couples’
  • Jimmy Wayne Honored By His Native North Carolina
  • Judge Decides The Fate Of Katz-Interep Deal Today
  • Saturday Night In Hollywood It Was The New Music Awards
  • Trace Adkins X Releases Today
  • CMT Compresses & Ejects Top People In Restructuring Move
  • Shane Allen Moves To Management
  • Clay Walker’s BAMS Give $100,000 To National Pediatric MS Center
  • Eddie Haskell Is Back On-The-Air
  • Emerson Drive’s David Pinchette Now A Daddy
  • Charlie Cook Is New Host For USRN’s The Road
  • Big D & Bubba Now On 50-Stations
  • Ken Moultrie & Mike Bettelli Form Broadcast Partners
  • Mark Chesnutt’s Guitar Player Injures Hand
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Radio News for Monday November 24th 2008


Headlines:

Radio News US:

Business & Financial

Programming, Changes & Ratings

News & PR

OP/ED, Political & Feature

FCC & Legal

Public, Educational & Religious

Streaming & Tech

Radio News International:

Britain/Europe

Canada

Asia/Africa

Trades

Radio & Records

  • The Public Interest. With entertainment & information, community service remains vital calling card for stations across all formats & group owners of all sizes
  • Martin Blasted For Not Responding To Hill Plea
  • Pickens’ Plan Packs Q3 Radio Revenues
  • B96/Chicago Morning Show Departs
  • Conyers Moves Performance Royalties, IP Issues To Full Judiciary Committee
  • AHAA Expresses Frustration With Arbitron
  • FCC Continues Fight For Jackson ‘Wardrobe’ Fine
  • Obama Cuts Radio Ad In Senate Run
  • Judd No Longer Running With Atlanta’s ‘Bull’
  • Charlamagne Joins ‘Dirt Law Radio’
  • Beaten Hispanic Host To Return To Station
  • Gehron, Cantillo Exit Harpo
  • Canadian Government Boots Decisions Back To CRTC
  • ‘Infinite Mind’ Host Under Investigation
  • WQKC Splits, Dissolves
  • Rampage Downsized At KXTE

All Access

  • A Big Night For Chris Brown At The AMAs
  • Lew Dickey Jr. Says ‘Big Shakeout’ Coming
  • Stupak Fed Up With FCC Stalling
  • Station Sued In Rape Case
  • Obama Considering Two Black Women For FCC
  • Obama Cuts Radio Spot For Georgia Senate Runoff
  • Judge Tells Station To Stop Saying It’s Number One
  • Management Shuffle At WNCU/Durham
  • Reports Point Fingers In BBC Prank Call Controversy
  • Spencer Splits From I-100
  • Travis Barker Sues Over Plane Crash
  • Bowe Joins Strauss Media Strategies
  • Germain Fills In At KGO
  • Stiles To Fill In At WGST
  • Detroit Throws A GNR Listening Party
  • Condolences To Gary Spears

Radio Ink

  • RAB: Radio Revenues Down 9 Percent In Q3
  • AHAA: Arbitron ‘Indifferent’ To PPM Concerns
  • WOLS/Charlotte Sets Move To Regional Mexican
  • Citadel/Providence Signs For Nielsen’s SpotScan
  • IAB: Online Revenue Growth Slows In ’08
  • Janet Jackson Case Headed To Supreme Court?
  • Can Radio Stay Relevant In A New Media World?
  • Gehron To Leave Harpo Radio

FMQB

  • FCC Takes Janet Jackson Case To Supreme Court
  • Galaxy, GAP West Lock In With Eastlan
  • WBUZ/Nashville PD Troy Hanson promoted to OM of Cromwell’s Nashville cluster
  • Bubba The Love Sponge news coming Monday
  • Satellite Radio Will Crash Within Two Years
  • Automakers curtail ad dollars
  • iBiquity’s Bob Struble on tech innovation

Inside Radio

  • Buyers still come to networks.
  • Network pond gets more fishermen.
  • Radio pacing to five-year low.
  • Off-air remains a growth story.
  • Interep faces eviction.
  • Judge tells station: You’re not #1.

Radio Business Report

  • Prediction: Two years left for satellite radio
  • A past Arbitron competitor’s take on the new competitor
  • Wall Street dumps Arbitron’s stock
  • Clear Channel still pushing for bigger local cap
  • WLS-AM re-signs Don Wade & Roma
  • A pink-slip Christmas to come?
  • Beaten host recovering
  • Radio’s Q3 local down 10%; Nat. down 12%
  • Accessibility standards for HD radios
  • Nielsen radio ratings service begins test next month
  • CW crowns “America’s Next Top Model”

Radio Online

  • Q3 Radio Revs Fall 9%, Off-Air Continues Steady Growth
  • AHAA Says Arbitron ‘Indifferent’ to PPM Concerns
  • WOLS/Charlotte Set for Regional Mexican Under LMA
  • Eddie & Jobo Exit Mornings at WBBM-FM (B96)/Chicago
  • Bush, FCC Ask Supreme Court to Review Jackson Case
  • Report: WXLC-FM/Waukegan Sued in Date Rape Case
  • Cledus T. Judd exits mornings at Clear Channel’s Country WUBL-FM
  • Keith Kramer joins News/Talk WMAY-AM/Springfield, IL
  • KXTE-FM (X-treme Radio)/Las Vegas afternoon personality Greg Rampage is out
  • Sports simulcast partners WQKC-AM & WQKC-FM (The Ticket)/Louisville go their separate ways

NTS Aircheck

  • Find The “Good News” Stories: That’s the advice of Bonneville and WTOP/Washington
  • Gehron, Cantillo Exit Harpo
  • WABC/New York host Curtis Sliwa is officially given a national rollout

Urbansite

  • New Releases – Kanye West “808s & Heartbreak”
  • New Releases – New Luda – “Theater Of The Mind”
  • News – M.C. Breed Has Died
  • News – Charlamagne Tha God Joins Dirt Law Radio
  • Arbitron – Kansas City, Indianapolis and Birmingham
  • Insite – Following Obama – Will Hillary Be Secretary of State
  • Airchecks – Sheldon Moore II – Looking for Full Time or Part Time On-Air

All About Country

  • Do Your Station ‘Promos’ Kick Butt?
  • How’s Your Stations Budget Squeeze?
  • Zac Brown Band Claims 3rd Week @ # 1!
  • Report: Tennessee Could Be Hit With a 7.7 Magnitude Earthquake
  • John Gehron Exits Harpo Radio
  • Julie Ingram Climbs Charts with Third Single from KEEP ON BELIEVIN’
  • Gaylord CFO Kloeppel Upped To President
  • Three Years and Counting
  • Dierks Bentley at WO Smith School
  • No “DWTS’ For Hough Next Season
  • DVR Alert: Tim McGraw Hosts SNL
  • It’s All Over For Cledus At Atlanta’s Bull
  • Dow Gains–Radio Stocks Continue To Lose Ground
  • The AllAboutCountry Vent Sction
  • 6 Markets Get Phase I Returns Today
  • Birch: How Tough Is Competition With Arbitron
  • Will Smith Walks The Red Carpet At Denver Premiere Of Seven Pounds
  • Rick Huckaby Gets Television Face Time
  • Larry The Cable Guy Holiday Special Debuts Tonight
  • Small Market Ratings Battle Lines Are Drawn
  • Do You Have Any Solutions?
  • Mark Wills Tasers KNIX Barrel Boy
  • Richie Fields’ Video Takes #1 On Ya’llWire
  • The Gatlins Sing National Anthem For Cowboys Vs 49ers Sunday
  • John Stephan Scores With Good At Startin’ Fires
  • Arbitron Stock Loses 25% Yesterday–New 8-Year Low
  • WKSF/Asheville Raises $10K For Kids
  • Taylor Swift Dominates Album Sales Last Week
  • Rebel Hearts Scores Video On Music Mix USA
  • Taylor Swift Gets Cover Of Women’s Health Mag
  • Charlie Daniels Signs Autographs Prior To Christmas For Kids Show
  • Is Clear Channel Behind Twin Cities Tower Fight?
  • Blake Shelton Named One Of People’s Sexiest Men Alive

The Fairness Doctrine is Inherently Wrong


I remember listening intently to John McCain addressing the movers and shakers of the talk radio industry a few years ago, at the Radio and Records Talk Radio Convention. McCain was introduced and interviewed by Peter Jennings as, “The man who should be the next President of the United States.” McCain took the podium to a roaring chorus of applause from talk’s top programmers and heads of corporate groups. The Senator adjusted the mic, smiled politely and spent the next half-hour telling the political talk elect how consolidation of programming and over saturation of their network talking-heads was a blight on the estate and would eventually lead to talk radio’s downfall. When Mr. McCain was finished, you could have heard a pin drop. He had stood in front of the most powerful men (and yes, they are almost exclusively men) in radio broadcasting, and read them the riot act. I gained a newfound respect for the Senator from Arizona. Here was a man honest enough to tell a room full of broadcasting’s elite political powerbrokers exactly what was on his mind, political capitol be damned. I thought to myself, “I would vote for this man.”

Things didn’t quite shake out for Senator McCain in the election, and now we’re ready for new blood to take the helm in Washington. The country seems to be teetering on the brink of near economic meltdown and we’re entrenched in two wars, yet one of the biggest issues amongst talk programmers and on political talk radio airwaves is the possible reinstatement of the Fairness Doctrine by Congress and the new Obama Administration. The Fairness Doctrine, repealed by Ronald Regan in the ’80s, essentially called for broadcasters to air all “contrasting” opinions. Without going into a lot of Washingtonian verbiage, if you have a right or left-leaning talk host, the legislation calls for you to “give” equal airtime to the opposing point of view.

Following the repeal of the Fairness Doctrine, talk radio flourished on the AM dial. In many ways, it was the salvation of AM radio. AM was dying on the vine in the ’80s, with the move of virtually all music programming to AM’s younger FM sibling. Talk radio exploded without the constraint of Washington’s oversight of broadcast content. Hosts like Rush Limbaugh took hold like wildfire and spread across the AM dial from coast to coast. It was just the shot in the arm that heritage and big-stick AM’s needed, and fit right in line with corporate consolidation of the radio industry, spearheaded by the big-business overtures of Regan and Clinton.

The repeal of the Fairness Doctrine in the ’80s wasn’t just the right thing for the business climate; it was the right thing for America. In this reporter’s opinion, the government has no business poking its fingers in the freedom of the press – any press, especially when the freedom to express political opinion is concerned. If Congress or the Executive Branch decides it is within their rights to have oversight and control of media content, this oversight should also include restrictions on print, television, and new media. Why stop with radio? Invoke regulation of print media and new rules regarding op-ed and political endorsements. Rein in Internet political discourse. Impose new limitations on political content for broadcast TV and the networks. Why even stop with political content? Let Washington oversee decisions on all media content. Even though the Fairness Doctrine may have a name that invokes high-browed principals like “fair-play” and “balance,” broadcasters and citizens must do their own due diligence to make doubly sure they are not being swept into the treacherous waters of OrwellianNew Speak.”

Make no mistake, the Fairness Doctrine hasn’t been bandied about by Nancy Pelosi, John Kerry, Jeff Bingaman and other Democratic advocates to return fairness and balance to the airwaves; it is a political tool wielded entirely for the purpose of surgically removing the Democratic Party’s loudest and harshest critics. The Democrats are tired of the daily melee voiced by Limbaugh, Hannity and the other critics of the left on the public airwaves. But this “Fairness” sword cuts both ways: Oversight of the AM radio’s right-wing political monoliths also means oversight of NPR, Air America and independent “progressive” talk outlets.

The Fairness Doctrine isn’t the first American go-round for more government oversight and control of a politically “hostile” media. Even in America’s infancy, our nation’s second President, John Adams, signed into law the controversial “Aliens and Sedition Act.” The law sought to wrestle control over the powerful party-run newspaper’s dissenting opinions, muzzle Adam’s political opponents and deport hostile “aliens,” who the President and the Federalists believed were insurgents in their undeclared war with France. The “Aliens and Sedition Act” is still a historical blight on the administration of one of the most intellectual, respected and balanced founding fathers of the American democratic experiment. Silencing or curbing the press, for dissenting political opinion, domestic security or even “indecency,” should always be viewed with grave suspicion.

As sure as I am in my heart of hearts that a return of the Fairness Doctrine is wrong for America, I also have a still-small place in my heart that believes it might just be what talk radio needs to kick-start its programming and business model. Talk radio, and the entire radio industry, finds itself in a completely different environment from the ’80s and ‘90s. Traditional media in general is facing a competitive onslaught from the Internet and emerging technologies that aims to rewrite how America gets it’s news, opinion and entertainment. Ad dollars are quickly spreading from traditional media to new media and soon to future technology mediums such as wide area wifi broadcasting, a near certainty with the FCC opening up the White Space spectrum. Commercial broadcasters are faced with the need to evolve their product as content providers for new media and/or concentrate on their strengths as local broadcasters instead of existing as merely affiliates in the network supply chain.

There are voices in both media and politics that see the fervor over the reinstatement of the Fairness Doctrine as pure vaporware and FUD. Broadcasters are simply playing a game of chicken little, making much ado over faint whispers from a few outspoken members of Congress. Surely the Fairness Doctrine will never again see the light of day! These levelheaded unbelievers may be correct in their assumption that the Fairness Doctrine will never return. Don’t be fooled, something is coming. We may never see a return of the “old” Fairness Doctrine, but new regulations for quotas on local and network content, equal time for dissenting opinions, minority ownership and content are as sure as the sunrise. The writing is on the wall.

The Internet intrusion into listenership and ad dollars has been a blow to broadcasters. Now the economy is taking its toll on revenue, jobs, and as a result, on the creation of new and compelling content which is sorely needed to return listeners to radio. Radio needed to be proactive as content producers with the frontal assault of the Internet and New Media. Instead we withdrew, consolidated and hid behind our fifth-estate walls. Radio’s consolidated double-digit growth shrank, along with its status as a Wall Street darling. The new recession should lead to new innovation; instead radio withdraws once again, with more reductions, consolidation and contractions.

If the market can’t force radio to change and reinvigorate its product, Washington unwittingly can. The government imposition of the Fairness Doctrine is in no way a stimulus plan for radio, but the oversight might just steer broadcasters onto a new course they’ve been afraid to plot for themselves, navigating back to more local content, talent and diversity. I can still hear Senator McCain’s prophetic words on the pitfalls of consolidation ringing in my ears. Maybe the unbridled free rein and lack of corporate oversight of big business really did get us into this mess. It’s just a shame Congress has to trample on the Constitution to “fix” it. Quoting President Adams, “A mob is no less a mob because they are with you.”