Radio royalty backers were hoping the Government Accountability Office (GAO) would come up with some sort of smoking gun, but a just-released report looking at how stations used their airwaves to slam the royalty proposal appears to be without any bullets. Now royalty backers are renewing their push at the FCC.
The evolution of Los Angeles’ KFWB from news-talk to all-sports as “The Beast 980” will be completed on Monday. “The Beast” looks to differentiate itself from Clear Channel’s rival “Fox Sports 570” KLAC with a mix of local and syndicated programming. That includes going local in morning drive with a show hosted by former L.A. Clippers star Marques Johnson and veteran radio personality Jeanne Zelasko. MORE
After 27 years of waking up Phoenix, “Newstalk 550” KFYI’s Barry Young will hit the snooze button in November. Young, who started on KFYI on April 27, 1987 as an on-air talent and program director, will put in his final day as a full-time show host November 7. The iHeartMedia station will stage a Barry Young Celebrity Roast for listeners, friends, co-workers and clients in late October. MORE
San Diego’s booming nightlife has made it an EDM hotspot. Responding to the market’s dance appetite, Lincoln Financial Media has introduced Glow, an HD Radio side channel and online stream devoted to “Everything Dance.” The launch has Calvin Harris, Tiesto and Avicii playing in primetime on the HD3 channel of modern rock KBZT (94.9) and at GlowSanDiego.com. MORE
With a $66.5 million deal, Dean Goodman’s Digity Media has closed on a 48-station, four-market buyout of nearly all of Three Eagles Communications. Adding clusters in Iowa, Minnesota, Nebraska and South Dakota gives the fast growing company a portfolio on par with the industry’s fifth-largest broadcaster, Entercom. MORE
What has Rush Limbaugh tweeting for the first time since May 2013? A fresh effort targeting advertisers that buy time on his radio show. Limbaugh’s fighting a petition drive organized by the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee over comments on his show about rape. MORE
Just 1.7% of Americans’ time spent listening to audio goes to a podcast. But podcast consumers spend a disproportionate amount of their audio time with the medium. Among the podcast listening subset, one-quarter (25.9%) of their audio time goes to on-demand audio, newly-released Edison Research data shows. MORE
The array of apps offering personalized music seems to grow almost weekly. But talk radio is under-served for the growing number of consumers who use a smartphone as their primary gateway to information and entertainment. Silicon Valley startup the Giant Pixel aims to change that with the formal launch of Antenna Radio for devices that run Apple’s iOS. MORE
Companies like Cumulus Media, CBS and iHeartMedia may capture more headlines, but radio remains a business of small businesses. Called before the House Small Business Committee in Washington yesterday, FCC chair Tom Wheeler said his own experience creating startups has taught him that small business is a “24/7 activity and living on the edge.” MORE
Congress dived deep into the weeds of FCC operations yesterday during an oversight hearing that brought managing director Jon Wilkins and inspector general David Hunt to Capitol Hill. Under the guise of reforming the agency’s procedures, Wilkins told Congress that work is progressing on improving the FCC’s website to make it more user-friendly. MORE
With yesterday’s launch of “Alt AZ 93-3,” Hubbard Broadcasting has moved KDKB out of the narrow middle position it occupied between classic rock sister KSLX-FM (100.7) and active rock KUPD (97.9). the new station replaces the rock format that aired on KDKB for more than four decades and returns modern rock to a full signal in market No. 14.MORE
In the latest sign that slow-to-arrive political advertising is beginning to appear, a $1 million coast-to-coast ad buy from the Democrats targeting African Americans has arrived at radio. The ads will air on national programs, including shows hosted by Tom Joyner, D.L. Hughley and Al Sharpton. The spots feature President Obama and don’t back any specific candidate, but rather urge people to show up on Election Day.
BizTalkRadio president Jeff Weber exits the syndicator where he’s spent the past 12 years in a variety of roles. Weber is joining the radio automation company Synchronicity in a consulting role assisting in the day-to-day operations of the company. He’s also going to consult Forte Family Broadcasting, a Connecticut-based radio company. He’ll continue to be based in Delray Beach, FL. MORE
The National Programming Platforms and Strategic Services division at iHeartMedia grows by one as San Francisco programmer Cat Collins joins the team. He’ll also continue to serve as brand manager for the company’s rhythmic CHR stations. Collins most recently programmed rhythmic “Wild 94.9” KYLD and AC “Star 101.3” KIOI in San Francisco. A new PD will be hired for those stations. Collins will work with stations around the country. NPP president Tom Poleman says “Cat’s impressive ratings track record makes him the ideal choice for this role.
The switch of Clear Channel to iHeartMedia is designed in part to modernize the company’s brand and appeal to advertisers and investors. In the first day of trading under the “IHRT” ticker, the stock price was unchanged. It’s a name change that has roots dating back nearly a decade. Clear Channel first registered the iHeartMedia website in early 2005. It followed that up by registering the iHeartRadio website in 2007 and then securing its trademark in 2009.
The member institutions of the Big West Conference — Cal Poly, CSUN, Long Beach State, UC Riverside and UC Santa Barbara — will be under the Learfield Sports umbrella. A new five-year agreement will see Learfield serve as its dedicated sponsorship sales partner. Learfield already holds Big West multimedia play-by-play rights, including for radio. MORE
WAIT! Let me take a #selfie! - Point-to-Point Marketing launched a $10,000 “Selfie” campaign last week. They will award three prizes in October: $5,000, $3,000, and $2,000. This isn’t credit toward marketing campaigns, it is actual cash. We caught up with Tim Bronsil, President, and Tim Satterfield, VP/Digital, to find out why now. Read this week's BLUE PAGE >>