Sunday, January 18, 2009

Radio - Clear Channel's firing squad


As Barack Obama is sworn in as the 44th President of the United States on Tuesday, Clear Channel ‘s market managers will be terminating an estimated one-thousand radio division employees as ordered by its politburo, the private equity firms of Bain Capital and Thomas H. Lee.
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Reason for termination? Being on the payroll.
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These trigger-happy Clear Channel chicken you-know-whats intentionally planned their massacre to occur while media are occupied with Obama’s inauguration.

After numerous setbacks and disputes, Clear Channel was acquired and privatized on July 30, 2008 for $17.9 billion. Bain and Lee - held up without a gun.
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It’s now evident that the Clear Channel carnage will extend well beyond their U.S. radio division.
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Last Friday, the New York Post reported that Clear Channel was eliminating a total $400 million in costs and their butchery would expand to other divisions worldwide.
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Today, Clear Channel has 30,000 global employees. After Tuesday? A whole lot less.
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In advance of the massacre, Clear Channel filled some open programming positions by doubling-up existing program directors’ duties and its Katz Media Group, now the sole national radio rep in the U.S., thinned their herd by 122.
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Though they never denied budget cuts, Bain and Lee claim the moribund economy forced them to expedite the kill.

"Nothing about our plans have changed except for the speed and timing of them," a Clear Channel spinmeister source told the Post. "There's no doubt we are in a horrible advertising environment, and we can't just sit there and take it."

Clear Channel management rule #73 – Always blame something else for your own blunders.

Why would anyone ever even insinuate the likelihood of Pater Lowry Mays and his sons of privilege, masters Mark and Randall, turning in their private jets to fly – ugh – commercial?

Even by the post-deregulation standards, Clear Channel is setting the pace for other chains to follow - or not, as the case may be.
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I’ll be curious to see if Clear Channel's severance lives up to their promises to the Security and Exchange Commission.
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If you’re a Clear Channel employee, you should know that the SEC filing from May 21, 2007 says that anyone who is “…actively employed at the time the merger is completed, and involuntary terminated without cause during the following one-year period is eligible for the benefits..” For the record, they are “Less than 6 months - 1 month of Base pay; At least 6 months but less than one year - 3 months of Base pay; One to less than three years - 6 months of Base pay, and Three years or more -- 9 months of Base pay.
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“Base pay’ means, in the case of a full time employee, the employee’s applicable base benefit rate in effect at the time of termination or, in the case of a part time employee, the employee’s average base wages over the immediately preceding twelve week period.”

It also means that if you’re a Clear Channel employee that survives Tuesday’s purge but get fired on or after July 30, 2009, “nobody’ll owe you nothin’.”
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Clear Channel maintains a “Know the Facts” page on its corporate website. It reads, “Clear Channel Radio is not operated according to any political agenda or ideology. Local managers make their own decisions about programming and community events. Clear Channel Radio employs approximately 250 local General Managers, 750 local Sales Managers, and 900 local Program Directors. Managers are measured on their ability to drive listenership by intimately understanding what audiences want to hear and delivering that.”
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Will that page be revised by Wednesday morning? Just asking.
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I’ll be hearing from many of you on Tuesday and Wednesday.

Here are some words of caution. Please don’t send or forward any e-mails from your workplace. They can easily be traced. Expect the Clear Channel cybercops to be on red alert this week. Though Clear Channel management are ordered not to put anything in writing or e-mail regarding separation deals, there’s always a manager or two that’ll screw up. If you have something you wish to share, cut and paste and send from a private account.
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If you hide a recording device or wear a wire – again – forward audio files from personal accounts.

Anything I receive, print, audio, or photo, for that matter, will remain confidential unless you indicate otherwise.

Instead of putting their employees through a week and a day of irresolution, they should’ve done their dirty deeds done dirt cheap a week ago.

They'll be plenty of ex-employees dropping dimes incognito. Inaugural or not, Bain, Lee, and C.C. will not be able to squelch this one.

I combed the net but couldn’t find an accurate tally of how many Clear Channel employees have been terminated over the past decade but you can bet it’s into the thousands.

There is, of course, one inevitable consequence, which Clear Channel refuses to recognize. Clear Channel is the perfect example of imperial overstretch and it’s foreordained to collapse.
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The Bain and Lee predators must realize by now that Lowry, Mark and Randall Mays formed the quicksand beneath their feet.
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C.C. = Clear Channel and Circuit City. What’s the dif?

You see, Clear Channel has no problem with the word fired if the word you’re is in front of it. They will have a problem when the word fire is followed by sale.

166 comments:

ex-CC employee said...

To bring back a phrase from an earlier time:

The whole world's watching!
The whole world's watching!
The whole world's watching!
The whole world's watching!

A lot of people are losing their jobs because of the economy. Most of Clear Channel's employees have lost their job because of the company's ineptness.

Anonymous said...

The weakness of the programming that's to follow is highly exploitable. It's time for competitors to go for it and pick up a lot of new audience and revenue.

Anonymous said...

Bain and Lee are up the creek without a paddle with this deal. Even when they split the stations up and sell them in parcels they will be lucky to get a fraction of what they paid for them. Projected revenue? Hand it to the Mays family. A clan of Texans took those New England Yankee WASPs for one hell of a ride they won't forget for a long time to come. Yee Hah.

Anonymous said...

Obama will fix everything!

Anonymous said...

Some say CC will keep the best sales reps and compensate them wilth accounts of the sales rep leaving with the pink slip.

Doesn't match with what one of the manager had to said while having some drinks after office hours at Green Iguana over on Westshore Blvd recently.

The theory is to let go the reps with most billing and have the managers take those accounts as House Accounts, this way not having to pay for the commission. More work for managers; that's for sure so they aren't thrilled, but it's all about saving money.

And for those who thought it was the rookies who will be let go, you are into a big surprise.

Many agencies dislike the fact of dealing with several reps anyway, so here you go. A managef will handle your particular account for the cluster. That will seem to work just fine and Clear Channel keeps the commission.

So, all of those years of building a relationship between sales rep and client/agency, will all go down the toilet.

Anonymous said...

I'm hearing the same. Seasoned sales people are a liability. Hearing that talent may be spared until next month and a ceiling may be put on AM drive/PM drive if local. Emphasis on v.t., syndication. Who knows for sure until Tues. Clear Channel bastards.

Anonymous said...

The mistake Bain and Lee are making with Clear Channel is operating it with retail outlet logistics. The AEs selling radio today are doing so using their relationships not the ratings. Breaking out a book would be deadly for some of us especially dealing with long term clients who remember radio when it actually had decent TSL and AQH. They are on a road to disaster. I doubt the Mays family cares. They will get their money and let Bain and Lee sink.

Anonymous said...

Come on over to our place, and bring your accounts with you!

Anonymous said...

What's happening to the outdoor division? Are they cutting too?

Anonymous said...

My MM said this one is sales driven. Jocks, office will come soon. This is not the only 'downsize' to occur. No date on the next one. Maybe another major holiday or long weekend?

Anonymous said...

I am hearing the same thing. I don't want to say who. I got a call over the weekend from a m.m. who left the CC some time ago but still stays in contact w/ those he knows who are still there. True this is mostly sales driven w/ some talent & back office. There will be a second in spring and a major reorg in late summer. Just a rumor. If it becomes fact I will continue to share this good source w/ you , John.

Anonymous said...

CCU's WLW has had its hissomatic IBLOCK/IBOC exciter off for about a week, now - hope that Bain-Lee will turn off all of CCU's hissers!
Should save a bundle!

Transistor Radio said...

Bain-Lee is going to cut 1500 people mostly from sales. The sales people left will be given accounts of those AE's who didn't make it. It's a joke, CC pays the lowest commissions and their clones plus the idiots across the street will follow their lead. It's like I'm an idiot and you're an idiot too..

AE's who’re left will be given these great and wonderful accounts, plus their budgets will then be raised even higher. Some might think the sales people will make more money, but it’s more work for less pay. If AE's don't hit budgets, now raised even higher they’ll be paid lowered commissions. It’s a management screw job. Many accounts don't return because it was the relationship that sold them in the first place. Once the relationship goes the accounts are gone too. But the salespeople are stuck with the accounts history that they didn’t create. It's no joke, Clear Channel is just cutting cost to sales and spinning their web of hype and lies. Cutting local talent for national programming is the same.

You bet management will be next. With less sales people who needs all those managers..
And you can double bet Clear Channel’s clones and the idiots across the street will follow their strategy.

I’m an idiot and you’re an idiot too, being an idiot counts for membership.

Didn’t we already learn this doesn’t work?

First the idiots said sell combos..
That didn’t work as the sellers were divided. If you were stuck selling stations that sucked you were screwed.

Then they said, sell your stations plus..
The internet..
NTR…
Build relationships..
None of it works, because sales folks can only focus on one thing at a time..
Oh sure.. fire the reps with the most accounts and relationships..
And give the accounts to managers??? Mmm that won’t work either..

Next will be sell HD too… LMAO..

Anonymous said...

DelCollinao did his own take on it by reading from the Bain Bible. B-L clearly do not know how to run radio. Hogan is clearly the loyal dog that will fetch whatever is thrown at him without question. The Mays family gets their payoff. In acquiring CC Bain-Lee inherited some of the dumbest short sighted national programmers and paid them big bucks to stay. We have all tried to make some kind of sense with the B-L acquisition as in maybe we are missing something? But we are not missing a thing. This is dumbness personified.

Anonymous said...

John, You are right on time with your comparison of Clear Channel and Circuit City.

This is from today's USA Today:

>>>As the second-largest electronics retailer after Best Buy (BBY), Circuit City was once well-positioned. But most experts point to the chain's 2007 layoff of thousands of its highest-paid — and most experienced — sales clerks as the start of its rapid descent. Many went to Best Buy, which consistently ranked higher in customer service scores in recent years. <<<

Sounds a lot like what Clear Channel is about to do to its sales people and jox.

>>>"Circuit City miscalculated when they decided that price was the ultimate factor in customers' choice of electronics retailers," says Robert Richardson, president of Associates Interactive, which specializes in retail training programs. "As a result, they suffered immensely … and ultimately became vulnerable to multiple category retailers and wholesale clubs with better prices, as well as competitors that offered better-trained associates."<<<

Clear Channel could not care less about its listeners much like Circuit City and their customers. Clear Channel will be a second-rate also-ran company leaving itself vulnerable for well managed radio stations. There may be very few of those right now but I agree with you that the fire sales will happen and professional owners and operators will surface and resurface.

Anonymous said...

As Gorman has said in this blog in the past - there are no good guys.
On one side you have Bain Capital and Thomas H. Lee, the private equity groups and the banks that backed them and on the other side, the Mays Family who concocted this deal by taking advantage of Bain Captial and Thomas H. Lee's greed.
Bain and Lee will do what the Mays family was not able to do. Ruin the company. The Mays family retires wealthy and Lowry and Mark and Randy will name buildings and schools after themselves but will have the respect of no one. What a legacy, Lowry.
The victims are the Clear Channel employees that stuck by that company and kept it afloat.

Anonymous said...

who gets it worse? those that get whacked tomorrow or those who get whacked when bain - lee will not be required to offer that severance package? how much do you want to wager that there will be a massive firing at cc this summer when they can toss everyone 2 weeks and 'be gone'?

Anonymous said...

I hope I get the axe tomorrow. I need a 9 month vacation from this shit hole. They whacked the PD last year and put one of the OM's boys in charge who proceeded to take our consistant #1 ratings and flush them down the toilet. This place sucks. I don't want to be left behind to kiss ass after I clean up the washrooms.

Anonymous said...

Imagine this: you go to a doctor and he tells you that your son has a small tumor on his thigh. It's cancer. The doc amputates the leg to stop it from killing him. It's immensely painful to watch your son struggle to go through this. Tragic that because of a small cancer, his whole leg is lost. So much good is lost to treat the bad. So, do you blame the doctor for the loss of your son's leg? Or do you thank him for saving his life?

Clear Channel has a problem that's akin to a cancer. The economy has severely impacted ad spending, and the company is unable to bring in enough money to pay all its obligations. That's the disease. To cure itself, it has to cut expenses. And that means firing people. Many good people will lose their jobs to preserve the company. And it is a shame. But in the end, it's a matter of survival.

Don't misunderstand what's happening here. Clear Channel is not cutting because it has screwed up. It makes its share of mistakes, but that isn't the problem. The company is a victim of an economic recession the likes of which no one reading this blog has ever seen first hand. The pain from that is being felt everywhere and Clear Channel is no exception.

To those facing layoffs this week, you have my sympathy. It will be hard. But it is necessary. No one in management at Clear Channel would lay off a single solitary person if it were not.

Anonymous said...

I disagree with your "cancer analogy." The stations I'm with make a profit. A very nice profit. We were doing 45% net, but that has dropped to 33% due to the economy I guess. Apparently 33% is not enough. Not enough because most if not all of that profit goes to pay off the unbelievable price B&L paid for these properties.

Anonymous said...

I'm afraid I have to take issue with the cancer analogy also. Radio is being buried under a mountain of new and improved content delivery options. It is declining anyway. The current economic recession only hastens the inevitable end of radio as a business and distribution model. If there is an analogy to disease, it's that radio is terminally ill and many in the business seem to still be in the denial stage.

Anonymous said...

>> Clear Channel is not cutting because it has screwed up. <<

That is correct. The economy screwed Clear Channel up who would rather screw you. I feel that they wanted to wait until after 7/31/09 to layoff everyone they had planned on getting rid of because that's the expiration date of the SEC obligatory severance packages. They have to take some action now, however, because the economy is much worse than planned. If you're a CC apologist, think what will happen to YOU when you are terminated AFTER 7/31 and you get NO severance package.

Anonymous said...

Here is what I have. Staff meeting at 11. Interesting timing. From what I hear there will be some individual meetings before hand with those who are getting fired.

Everyone on pins and needles. What a way to live. No one feels immune.

Anonymous said...

The rumors may say sales is getting the brunt but around here (rather not say) we hear its going to be jocks and traffic too. We are a major northesast market. Don't want to say anymore.

Anonymous said...

Those who have been affected by the changes in the radio industry over the past decade as a result of the Telecommunications Bill and the lax response from the FCC on license matters should begin tomorrow by writing congresspeople, the FCC, your local newspapers and magazines to investigate the damage done by companies like Clear Channel, CBS Radio, Citadel and others to not only those in their chosen profession but to those who listen and depend on local media for news, information, and entertaintment. Change has come and it is time for America to take back its country including the media which it - NOT CLEAR CHANNEL, CBS OR CITADEL owns!

Anonymous said...

Mandatory meeting. Lots of worried faces. This is what happens when a company announces layoffs and then makes everyone wait a week to find out who gets fired. Russian roulette. John, your USSR analogy about Clear Channel was perfect.

Anonymous said...

We are just being told about a meeting now.

Anonymous said...

I heard Trivisonno is getting the boot.

Bubba's Ghost said...

Tampa CC: Gabe Hobbs R.I.P. Senior VP news-talk.

Anonymous said...

WGST in Atlanta reporting in: PD Randy Bloomquist - gone! More coming. Don't reprint email.

Anonymous said...

Not Triv. Some of his people maybeon TAM. Brian & Joe rumor @MIX. Lanigan staff@MJI. Sales.

Anonymous said...

TAM Cleveland - Ray Davis unconfirmed

Anonymous said...

Good Luck Jack, Tedd & Sharon...970 WFLA Tampa.

Anonymous said...

Cleveland
WGAR - Jim Mantel's on-air partner Michele Maloney.

WTAM - Bob Frantz's producer.

Anonymous said...

Cleveland - Clear Channel - newer sales hires - gone.

your fans said...

Good luck, Michelle. You will be back at a station where talent is respected.

Anonymous said...

I live about a mile as the crow flies from CC HQ in Cincinnati, and while I understand the ax won't be falling 'til around 4pm, I can already hear the screams!

Anonymous said...

Funny...you hated CC when it was a public company. And now you hate it as a private company. Let's face it...it doesn't matter who owns them, how it's run, what they do, or what happens: You hate them, you never will accept them as radio owners, and anything they do is bad. And you'll have your disciples who will follow, nod their heads, and agree. Kool Aid is a wonderful thing. Father cares. father cares.

Anonymous said...

Actually Mr. Know-it-All what is "Hated" is big corporate thugs who play games with peoples lives!

Lassiter was right!

CHASE

Van Zandt said...

As Barack Obama delivers his inaugural address, Clear Channel fired Louis Kaplan, programming market operations manager for the Ft. Meyers cluster.

Anonymous said...

>> Funny...you hated CC when it was a public company. And now you hate it as a private company. Let's face it...it doesn't matter who owns them, how it's run, what they do, or what happens: You hate them, you never will accept them as radio owners, and anything they do is bad. <<

You'll hate them too when you're fired after 7/31 and they don't give you any severance.

Anonymous said...

Must be one of Lowrys boys counting his cash with utter disdain for mankind. They teach you that in business school...right boys?

Anonymous said...

Washington, D.C - GONE are GSM, 4 local sales mgrs., newer sales hires. Will try and get more.

Anonymous said...

Ben Johnson/WTVN Columbus, Ohio host/producer RIP.

Reach out for him: BJJohnso@hotmail.com

Anonymous said...

UNCONFIRMED - 16 casualties in Greenville-Spartanburg, SC Cluster. On-air, production, sales.

Mister Tipmeister said...

Lou Kaplan will end up with Randy.

Anonymous said...

More Atlanta CC cluster - Imaging Director Adam Schneider - gone.

Anonymous said...

WASHINGTON DC- Bryce Johnson producer of Brian & Jenni morning show on the all new WMZQ.

Colin Campbell GSM of DC101

Anonymous said...

Scott Lindy will handle both WGST and WUBL (The BULL).

Anonymous said...

Chicago WNUA AM drive producer Bob Kessler is out. AsstPD/MD/midday Rick O'Dell is out.

Anonymous said...

Total Traffic producer Brian deMasi /Total Traffic NYC

Anonymous said...

KLOU/St. Louis PD John Matthews
reach out pvt. email johnmatthews1079@yahoo.com. He had a feeling about it.

Anonymous said...

Clear Channel/Atlanta imaging dir. director Adam Schneider adam961@gmail.com

Anonymous said...

Dave Osborne, Portland , OR on-line CC cluster. He was With CC for 13 years. Also did web work for Z100 NY and KIIS LA

Reach out superdaveosborne@gmail.com or 503-244-8274.

Philly Phreeze said...

Mornings are deadly at Q102 in Philadelphia. Diego Ramos, morning co-host was fired. He survived the last Clear Channel massacre that claimed Chris Booker. Diego's e-mail is diegoatq@aol.com.

Anonymous said...

CC/Syracuse: 7 sellers fired. Last promotions manager fired. PD of sports/talk station (and only live host) fired. Several PT'ers fired. Thread at syracuse.com/forums/tv

Anonymous said...

There is a gigantic irony in all of this. Less than an hour after Barack Obama said, "the selflessness of workers who would rather cut their hours than see a friend lose their job" in his inaugural speech, Clear Channels highest paid employee, Rush Limbaugh, was mocking that speech passage on his radio show.

Karma.

Anonymous said...

R Dub!, PD of Hot 92.3/L.A. He's okay. Knew it was coming. Moving to Brazil.

JSF said...

John Sterling, GSM Clear Channel/Fresno. js101991@aol.com or 559-246-6562.

Anonymous said...

Cleveland...20+ GONE including Michele Maloney and counting! Two top sales people from WGAR and WTAM gone too! Sad sad day....

Bad Year said...

Clear Channel Akron/Canton, OH - Four off-air, sales and support.

Anonymous said...

Heard that Cleveland only did sales and parttime today w/ Prog, Admin and Eng to come at a future date. Who knows? Big numbers.

Anonymous said...

Dallas Mix 102.9: Tony Zazza, mornings and Lisa Thomas, midday.

Reach out to them

Lisa: marylisathomas1986@yahoo.com.

Zazza:tony.zazza@verizon.net or 214-448-1029.

Anonymous said...

"Reach out to them Lisa: marylisathomas1986@yahoo.com."

I'de do more than that, if she's hot! LOL!

Anonymous said...

Detroit WMXD Jamillah Muhammad, PD

Anonymous said...

"Anonymous said... Total Traffic producer Brian deMasi /Total Traffic NYC"

"Microsoft sticks with analog"

"The company's MSN Direct was developing a new traffic and local information service using HD Radio signals. But after two years of investigating how HD Radio could be tapped, Microsoft decides to stick with its current analog system instead of converting to an HD Radio data service."

http://tinyurl.com/8unwdu

Is that because Microsoft dumped HD Radio, iBiquity, and CCU? LOL!

Anonymous said...

"to investigate the damage done by companies like Clear Channel, CBS Radio, Citadel and others to not only those in their chosen profession but to those who listen and depend on local media for"

What about those scammers at iBiquity? Struble gave $2000 to Rep. Dingell last year as he was investigating the FCC. Struble also gave thousands to the CEA, who voted in favor of the 10db power increase for FM-HD. I'de say, let the FBI, DOJ, SEC, FEC investigate Stuble/iBiquity!

Anonymous said...

I hope Randy Michaels is proud of himself. He will go down in history as the person that did the double duty of destroying terrestrial radio and helping to bankrupt a chain of newspapers.
GFY, Randy. Scumbag. You set the stage and left others to pick up your crap.

Anonymous said...

"Funny...you hated CC when it was a public company. And now you hate it as a private company. Let's face it...it doesn't matter who owns them, how it's run, what they do, or what happens: You hate them, you never will accept them as radio owners, and anything they do is bad. And you'll have your disciples who will follow, nod their heads, and agree. Kool Aid is a wonderful thing. Father cares. father cares."

Fuck you! Clear Channel was the first to start jamming the smaller broadcasters with IBOC!

Anonymous said...

One of Lowrys boys speaks up from hiding...again.

Anonymous said...

Greg Saber, long time newsman for WTAM and the CC cluster is among those let go in Cleveland.

Anonymous said...

"If they aren't in this meeting they are no longer with the company. If you are here, you still have a job".

I don't want to say what manager said that in the most insincere way possible but that is the way it was handled at our cluster.

They are incapable of doing anything with class.

Anonymous said...

Speaking as a former CC employee and wife of a husband who is also an ex-CC employee, as of this a.m.... In the NYC market alone over 60 sales jobs have been eliminated and in Houston, more than 40 people let go... I think we're talking about several thousand people losing their job today - not just the thousand you mentioned.

Your article was great - thank you for covering this snake-like-move that CC has pulled and trying to keep it top-of-mind in one way or another to the nation.

For all the families affected, this doesn't deserve to slide under any radar. The commitment my husband showed to this company is astounding to me, especially when I look at what is happening to him right now.

It's all enough to make a person sick.

Anonymous said...

body count = 1865

Anonymous said...

corporate message:

"Everyone, As I’ve mentioned previously, we are facing an unprecedented time of distress in the general economy – and the ripple effects have hit some of our largest customers hard. Today, we had the unpleasant task of bringing our Outdoor and Radio businesses’ staffing in line with these challenging economic conditions. In doing so, we enter 2009 as a solid company and in the most competitive position possible. We have thought carefully and at some length about the steps we need to take as a company to succeed during this unprecedented downturn. As a result, we have eliminated approximately 1,850 positions across Corporate, Outdoor and Radio. While a significant portion of these positions represent a realignment in our sales departments, the positions span all departments and represent approximately 9% of the total Clear Channel Communications workforce. One of the things that has kept Clear Channel strong throughout our history is a willingness to deal with difficult situations in an immediate way – to make the tough decisions today in order to secure a strong future. It is this trait that has gone furthest in enabling us to weather many difficult downturns in our 37-year history. It always requires clarity, collaboration and courage. Please know that these have been difficult decisions – yet necessary ones. We will miss those who are departing – even as we renew our shared commitment to success among all of us who will stay. Everyone in our investor group, on the Board, and in the executive leadership team remains bullish about the long-term growth prospects for Clear Channel. We continue to believe that the Outdoor and Radio businesses offer excellent opportunities. We need to remain highly entrepreneurial and innovative. We also need to remain focused and compassionate. If we continue to manage our business carefully, and invest with discipline in the right strategic opportunities, we will navigate this downturn effectively and emerge even stronger and better positioned when things improve. "

Bullet said...

Mark Mays sat right down and wrote his staff a letter and made believe he was sincere.

Everyone,


As I've mentioned previously, we are facing an unprecedented time of distress in the general economy -- and the ripple effects have hit some of our largest customers hard.


Today, we had the unpleasant task of bringing our Outdoor and Radio businesses' staffing in line with these challenging economic conditions. In doing so, we enter 2009 as a solid company and in the most competitive position possible.


We have thought carefully and at some length about the steps we need to take as a company to succeed during this unprecedented downturn. As a result, we have eliminated approximately 1,850 positions across Corporate, Outdoor and Radio. While a significant portion of these positions represent realignment in our sales departments, the positions span all departments and represent approximately 9% of the total Clear Channel Communications workforce.


One of the things that has kept Clear Channel strong throughout our history is a willingness to deal with difficult situations in an immediate way -- to make the tough decisions today in order to secure a strong future. It is this trait that has gone furthest in enabling us to weather many difficult downturns in our 37-year history. It always requires clarity, collaboration and courage.


Please know that these have been difficult decisions -- yet necessary ones. We will miss those who are departing -- even as we renew our shared commitment to success among all of us who will stay.


Everyone in our investor group, on the Board, and in the executive leadership team remains bullish about the long-term growth prospects for Clear Channel. We continue to believe that the Outdoor and Radio businesses offer excellent opportunities.


We need to remain highly entrepreneurial and innovative. We also need to remain focused and compassionate. If we continue to manage our business carefully, and invest with discipline in the right strategic opportunities, we will navigate this downturn effectively and emerge even stronger and better positioned when things improve.


Starting now, it is our ability to bring creative thinking to the current business climate - to focus on the benefits we deliver for customers - to show extreme focus and commitment -- that will create results.


Clear Channel Communications has more resources than any of our peers. The tools are here. The support is here. It's time to use them to create lasting competitive advantage for our customers -- and for our company.


Please know that we continue to be extraordinarily appreciative of all of the passion and hard work that each of you continues to commit to this phenomenal business. We will get through this together.


We're in this together. We have the best team. And we all have important work to do.


As we head into the New Year, I know we will meet the oncoming challenges with focus, determination and grace.


Please let me or your management team know if you have any questions.


With Regards,

Mark Mays

Ian Hunter said...

They let one of their top sales people go in Cleveland. Her name is Kelly Marlier and she was the top biller for news-talk WTAM (AM)which is the number one Arbitron rated and number one billing station in Cleveland. It goes to show you that making too much money is just as bad as not billing enough.

Anonymous said...

Local Tampa CC AM station running a spot all day for "CST School of Broadcasting" where one of the lines is oh so appropriate:

"Everything you hear, there is so much more going on behind the scenes."

Josef Stalin said...

Wait just a minute here. Everyone is putting Clear Channel down for their massive firing. So they bought too many stations and paid too much for them. Honest mistake. What you are not telling people, Gorman, is how generous Clear Channel was. On top of providing terminated employees with the severance you mentioned EVERYONE WHO WAS FIRED IS QUALIFIED FOR A TEMPORARY FREE SUBSCRIPTION TO INSIDE RADIO which is owned by Clear Channel. Using your USSR analogy that is like being sent to Siberia but given a free temporary subscription to the state controlled Pravda newspaper. These people have NO CLASS.

Anonymous said...

KBIG/LA PD Dave Denes gone

Maze said...

Mark Mays: I didn't like the way he did the sports so I had Wally Pasacrita fired at WOAI and KTKR in San Antonio

Anonymous said...

Charlotte - The Beat goes on without its PD Rob Wagman and WIBT Promo Dir. Sarah Lee Owensbey's name was also on the thumb drive

Foghorn Leghorn said...

You foolish whiners. You got it bad? Look at Warner Brothers.

Warner Bros. Cuts Nearly 800 Jobs
Associated Press,
LOS ANGELES (AP) — Time Warner Inc.'s Warner Bros. Entertainment movie studio said Tuesday it is eliminating nearly 800 jobs, or 10 percent of its global work force, and is examining further cost reductions.

The cuts come after the studio posted a 9 percent drop in third-quarter revenue to $2.88 billion, despite the success of the summer blockbuster, "The Dark Knight." Earlier this month, parent Time Warner said it will post a loss for the full year due to a $25 billion write-down of its assets in cable, magazines and Internet, caused in part by the advertising slowdown.

Story continues after the ad

"Despite the fact that the company performed solidly in 2008, this decision reflects changes necessary for stability and growth going forward," the studio's top executives, Chief Executive Barry Meyer and President Alan Horn, told employees in an e-mail Tuesday morning.

"Shifting consumer demand and the overall state of the economy have affected companies around the world, and Warner Bros. is not immune," they said.

Most of the jobs will come out of the studio's headquarters in Burbank, Calif., through a mix of layoffs, the elimination of open positions and outsourcing, said spokesman Scott Rowe.

About 300 jobs in information technology and accounting are being outsourced through French company Capgemini and some of the jobs will move to India and Poland. About 100 of those back office positions will be offered to current employees who will continue to be based in Burbank.

Some 300 other people will be laid off and 200 open positions will not be filled.

Warner Bros. said the subsequent cost savings will be substantial but didn't elaborate. But executives suggested further cuts might be in the offing, noting "We will also continue to review our global operations to make sure we're operating as efficiently and effectively as possible."

No decision has been made about the studio's international operations.

Time Warner shares were down 61 cents, or 6.4 percent, at $9.01 on Tuesday afternoon.

Dunn Willon said...

Mark Mays, you have got to be kidding. You really didn't release that memo did you? It is the one of the most insulting pieces of garbage I have ever read. You and B&L got yourself into this jam, and this is how you respond?

I only wish everyone with the company had the financial security to simply say, "Screw You - this is not how I want to be treated, see ya."

Anonymous said...

Disaster in Denver:
KBPI -Double A Montell - bye bye
KTCL - Boney Clouse

Anonymous said...

Jenni Buzzkill Huss, WEBN-FM "Dawn Patrol" member for more than four years, tells he she lost her job this morning. Her blog has been removed from the station site. News reporter Perry Schiable also tells me she was let go today. Tommy Lueggers, who did production and some sports updates at WCKY-AM Homer 1530 also lost his job today.

U-No-Hoo said...

John, You used to consult our station WCZX in Poughkeepsie. You were the best to work with. I am checking in with our updates at Clear Channel where I (still) work now.

We lost our GSM James Brady, three hardworking salespeople and Rich McClane who did promotions.

Will you please buy a radio station in this market and make it fun again. Also do you ever talk to Harry Gregor?

U-No-Hoo said...

John, You used to consult our station WCZX in Poughkeepsie. You were the best to work with. I am checking in with our updates at Clear Channel where I (still) work now.

We lost our GSM James Brady, three hardworking salespeople and Rich McClane who did promotions.

Will you please buy a radio station in this market and make it fun again. Also do you ever talk to Harry Gregor?

Anonymous said...

Chaz Kelley our PD/ and AM driver at WKCI in New Haven was let go. vero221@hotmail.com..

Anonymous said...

I have not heard anything about Boston yet. In our Manchester cluster we lost John Pullo who was promotion/marketing director.

Anonymous said...

Miami Beat Vic Lambert out. He was with Y100 and Mega before the Beat. Whole career w/CC.

Anonymous said...

Got a bunch here.
Diego Ramos mornings Q102/Phila.
Ryan Kennedy, Promo/Mkt for WRDX/WDSD/WWTX/WILM/WDOV
Tyler Reese WMAD/Madison

Anonymous said...

KKSF/San Francisco PD Ken Jones

Anonymous said...

Trivisonno just said on WTAM that FIFTY "friends" were let go at Clear Channel Cleveland.

Anonymous said...

CC Austin....Not hit too bad except the promotions department was decimated...mostly part time positions gone. Otherwise, KVET Morning News anchor Michelle Roebuck, sports sales manager Lance Clawson, and promotions director Marie Hopkins. Could be more but the 2pm "you're all okay" meeting looked pretty full....

Fact Checker said...

Anyone with a contract was not let go today. That was the rule from Clear Channel corporate. Managers knew about that months in advance and were told by San Antonio to lock up anyone they wanted to keep with a contract. The rule was when the orders come down they must be adhered to. Managers DID have input on sales firings but not programming.

Mike Kidney said...

MIX 106.5 Cleveland Brian and Joe were spared (contract). Producer Brigette Dineen got it.

Anonymous said...

Sam's out in Akron.Sam Pietrangello (sp?) did promo/mkt for cluster.

Anonymous said...

Anyone know about the firings at Clear Channel Outdoor and overseas?

Larry Tisch said...

I can see Dandy Dan Mason rubbing his hands together with the anticipation of being able to fire another 20 or 30 more people and looking like a hero compared to Mark Mays. The fact is that CBS owns far fewer stations and has already fired over 700 people this year which makes CBS RADIO even worse than Clear Channel when it comes to terminating employees.

Anonymous said...

Anyone know about WFLA & WDAE TAMPA?

Anonymous said...

'Anyone with a contract was not let go today. That was the rule from Clear Channel corporate. Managers knew about that months in advance and were told by San Antonio to lock up anyone they wanted to keep with a contract. The rule was when the orders come down they must be adhered to. Managers DID have input on sales firings but not programming.'

To Fact Checker:
My husband was a manager and under contract and he was let go today, without any prior notice.

Anonymous said...

I just looked at today's Inside Radio where they completely understated the Clear Channel firings. Oh, don't you just love the free subsciption? This is a classless company. They will fail. President Obama, please direct your new FCC Commissioner to go after these bastards for all the rules and laws broken under Lowry Mays's buddy George W. Bush's administration - and NO I AM NOT A LIBERAL. BUT I AM A REALIST!

Anonymous said...

I just read the comment about the manager getting fired. The managers were told that their subordinates would not be touched if they were under contract in this round. I am sure that the same rule did not apply if they wanted to get rid of an actual manager. I feel sorry for your husband losing his job. No one should have to lose employment because of the ineptness of their employers. I am afraid we are seeing this in all walks of life. I hope your husband finds a job with a real broadcasting company and not a bunch of private equity slime.

Anonymous said...

a lot of the people let go in cleveland were part time, too. that 40 plus figure is accurate. i would like to know if the part timers let go here and at other cc clusters were counted in the total. i believe only the full timers were counted. if that is the case the actual number could be much higher than what clear channel claims.

Hockeytown Fan said...

Everyone fired at WDFN/Detroit. WXYT is okay if you like baseball, basketball or football. They ignore the Red Wings. Screw you, Clear Channel.

Anonymous said...

Bob McCurdy, co-president for radio sales at Clear Channel, New York, part of Clear Channel Communications, was named president at Katz Marketing Solutions, a new unit of the Katz Media Group division of Clear Channel Communications. The other co-president for radio sales at Clear Channel, Jeff Howard, now becomes the sole president. The appointment of Mr. McCurdy is a replacement for the 122 employees they fired last week.

Anonymous said...

I agree that CBS Radio has fired more employees per capita and in that division alone than Clear Channel Radio. Dan Mason is sneaky and does it over time. Just last week he got rid of a few more employees at WBZ in Boston. Have you heard John Lander's replacement? Boston used to be a good radio market. Now it's a joke. Will WRKO hire Sal to do mornings next?

Anonymous said...

From the Wichita Business Journal:

Clear Channel Communications Inc. confirmed Tuesday that it has laid off about 9 percent of its work force.

News reports on Jan. 19 indicated that the San Antonio-based communications giant planned to lay off part of its work force in an effort to save $400 million.

The company, which employs 20,000 people across the United States, gave pink slips to 1,850 people in its corporate, Clear Channel Outdoor and Clear Channel Radio divisions, according to an internal memo obtained by the Houston Business Journal that was sent to employees Tuesday by chief executive Mark Mays.

Most of cuts were in the sales department, the memo said, but ultimately all departments within the company were affected.

Clear Channel — which owns and operates four radio stations in Wichita: KTHR, KZSN, KRBB, and KZCH — would not confirm which of its locations were affected.

Anonymous said...

Amir Forester at Premiere got whacked, too.

Anonymous said...

I'm sure somewhere there is an attorney who could file a class action lawsuit against CC for wrongful termination, violation of contracts, etc. After all the litigation maybe they'll end up having to spend more then the $400 million that thought they would have saved.

Anonymous said...

Elle Castro was also let go at Premiere.

Anonymous said...

Mary Gallas was let go @ KEEY/Minneapolis

Anonymous said...

Adolph Eichmann's memo

John Hogan said:

Hello,

Today has been a difficult day companywide as we addressed the economic realities affecting our country and many other companies. While separating from colleagues is personally difficult, the changes we have made were carefully considered and are necessary and prudent business decisions.

We are choosing to change as the environment around us changes and will begin work today on re-engineering our operations to successfully compete today, tomorrow and in the future. The challenges will be many -- we continue to see softness in the advertising market; we continue to compete with all forms of media for both audience and advertising dollars; and we continue to have to do both in a way that's smarter, faster and more effective.

But, there are three very important things that we have going for us. Clear Channel Radio has the resources, the will and the plan to compete going forward. Our deep bench of talent and intellectual capital will drive Clear Channel Radio through this downturn and ensure our ability to emerge from it faster, stronger and better than ever.

In recessions, there is a flight to quality by advertisers, and Clear Channel Radio offers the highest quality by any measure.

-- Radio continues to have the largest, most desirable audience of any media. Better than broadcast television. Better than cable. Better than newspapers. Clear Channel Radio operates more top-ranked stations and digital sites in our local markets than any other broadcaster. We have the top syndicated talent on the air and online in our Premiere Radio Networks company.

-- Clear Channel Radio also continues to have the most desirable digital properties in the country. From our streaming broadcasts to our on-demand content to our mobile applications like iheartradio, our brands are gaining audience daily in the most coveted demographics and platforms.

-- Clear Channel Radio, in partnership with our Premiere Radio Networks and Katz Media Group colleagues, is part of the world's largest and most effective radio advertising network by any measure.

Recessions also favor the forms of marketing and advertising that give the highest return on investment. We clearly have the opportunity to take market share away from broadcast television, cable and newspapers in this economy.

As we move forward, please know that you have the support and commitment of everyone on the Clear Channel Radio management team. We have the best resources of any radio company – and we have the will to win. Please join me for an important all-staff webinar on Wednesday morning for which your Market Manager will provide details.

Thank you for your efforts and support.

John Hogan
Pres. & CEO

Anonymous said...

Clear Channel - You are fair game. CBS, Citadel, Emmis are all in the same shape. Cut, cut, cut, fire, fire, fire. This will not solve your problems. You will be in receivership before you know it. Your stations will be worthless. Radio will be on its final gasp. Internet stations that require no license will rise and become the new FM. Your licenses will be worthless. Don't try going on the net. You wouldn't know what to program nor to whom. You made your grave. Now go lie in it.

Anonymous said...

Unconfirmed cuts in San Diego:

The entire air staff of XTRA 1360.
Cathy O’Brien, sales manager
Tim Stemler, sales manager,
Jason Courtemanche, 933 sales manager
Two XTRA 1360 account executives
Jay Isbell, promotions director KGB and Rock 105.3
Dana Swanson assistant
Jamie Jackson, Star 94.1 sales
Steven Marsh, XTRA sales
Brian Miller
Craig Eltson, XTRA Sports
Mike Costa, XTRA Sports
Jeff Dotseth, XTRA Sports
Matt Gulbransen, XTRA Sports (Producer)
Ditch, 101.5 KGB, afternoon host
Chris Ello, XTRA Sports
Josh Rosenberg, XTRA Sports
Mark Evans, KOGO News Director

Some insiders suggest 35-folks were let go today.

Only local show at KGB-FM: Dave, Shelly & Chainsaw.

Anonymous said...

You might email your local newspapers about the firings at your local stations. Don't forget to mention they were part of 1,850 fired nationwide.

Anonymous said...

"I'm sure somewhere there is an attorney who could file a class action lawsuit against CC for wrongful termination, violation of contracts, etc"

Good luck.

You got lawyers? They got lawyers.

Anonymous said...

Anybody know who got canned at either 970WFLA or 620WDAE Tanpa?

Anonymous said...

Ladies and Gentlemen,

Clear Channel is an evil company, we know that. Most companies whose highly paid managers (who WON'T, by the way, alter THEIR lifestyles to avoid bloodletting) always cut from the bottom or the sides. It's greed, pure and simple. This industry and many others (legal, financial, insurance, etc.) are all doing the same thing. There are people making waaay too much money and not sharing the wealth or adjusting how they live one iota to spare any of their "subordinates." Welcome to the new royalty. Our forfathers are turning over in their graves. They built this country to get AWAY from monarchy and look what this country has done little over 200 years later! Shame, shame, shame on you greedy bastards!

Anonymous said...

Quick edit - FOREFATHERS, not "forfathers." Sorry.

Anonymous said...

"I remember the days when we used to prop open the back door with a brick, and the soda machine was filled with beer."

Bob Lassiter - RIP



CHASE

Anonymous said...

random thoughts...

Don't you know that HD is going to save CC? LOL!

I totally agree with the person who wishes to get axed so s/he can get a 9 month vacation. The employees left behind get the extra work load with no extra pay. And no guarantee they'll make it through the next wave of firings. Better hope it's before the B-L 1-yr anniversary.

To add insult to injury, I heard people couldn't even pack up their personal effects; they were told their stuff would be shipped to their homes.

Those TV/radio commercials for broadcasting schools should show the business as it really is. Glamour industry, my ass!

Anonymous said...

>> You got lawyers? They got lawyers. <<

Their lawyers are on their payroll. Our lawyers are contingent (free with a cut on the settlement). I'm sure plenty of attorneys would be interested enough to at least look into the situation.

Anonymous said...

For those who are told "we'll ship your personal belongings" One simple solution: Call your local police department and they will send a civil standby and retrieve your belongings post haste. A station tried that on me once and in fifteen minutes an officer was there and told the station manager in no uncertain terms to give me my things or he would be arrested in another five minutes if he refused to comply. I got my belongings right away. It's amazing how fast the manager turned into a very nice person under threat of arrest. They have no right to hold your belongings even for five minutes period.

Anonymous said...

DC/Baltimore:

Getting pink-slips locally: Brian Graber, who was the producer for Jon Ballard's morning show on WBIG, DC101 General Sales Manager Colin Campbell, and WMZQ morning show producer Bryce Johnson. WBIG General Sales Manager Eric Johnson and Local Sales Manager Bobby Wright were also handed their walking papers. Plus, at least 15 more DC sales people and all part-time promotions positions were axed. It looks like the sales departments of WASH and WBIG will merge. In Baltimore, we hear that at least six people were let go today, as well as the part-time promotions staff. Four sales reps and the local sales managers of WPOC and WCAO were among the cuts. Also, DCRTV hears that Randall Bloomquist has been cut from CC's Atlanta talker WGST. Bloomquist used to be PD at DC talker WMAL.

Anonymous said...

One unusual irony in this entire situation is that the ones who were fired today could well be the lucky ones. The people who did the firing and who stay on with the company are probaly the suckers (through no fault of their own) if they themselves are fired in August.

Anonymous said...

John, Thank you for making your comments section an open forum and thank you for not editing or censoring it. Yes there were some insensitive comments but I am glad you provided Clear Channel employees past and present the opportunity and option to comment or at least report on what was going down. Thank you. R&R, Radio-info and you deserve special recognition for what you did yesterday.

Anonymous said...

Forgive me for not being a math/business major, but how does terminating a worker and paying the legally-required severance (9 months for long time full timers) "save" money for CC???? I want that!

Anonymous said...

Answer to above comment. That was the deal CC and Bain and Lee made with the SEC to approve their privatization. It runs out later this year when one can assume CC will get rid of more high priced talent without having to pay that lengthy severance. They will have contracts to pay off but CC can turn that into tell your lawyer to sue my lawyer.

Anonymous said...

The final grand total for those fired in San Diego: 57

ferris said...

Hi all. I'm a newspaper writer in Cleveland. If you have any Cleveland info, or if you know someone who'd like to talk for a story, you can get to me via

d f e r r i s [ ( at ] ) clevescene (dot ) com

sorry for the spaces and brackets; you know the deal. thanks.

ferris said...

Hi all. I'm a newspaper writer in Cleveland. If you have any Cleveland info, or if you know someone who'd like to talk for a story, you can get to me via

d f e r r i s [ ( at ] ) clevescene (dot ) com

sorry for the spaces and brackets; you know the deal. thanks.

Anonymous said...

"I'm sure plenty of attorneys would be interested enough to at least look into the situation."

Sure...I know the kind. The ones who chase ambulances.

Anonymous said...

"I'm sure plenty of attorneys would be interested enough to at least look into the situation."

Sure...I know the kind. The ones who chase ambulances.


Well, I am one and let me tell you something: Any lawyer dumb enough to take a case like this, can't be a very good one. You don't have a case ... you can't force people to keep you on the payroll.

Anonymous said...

WOW.

Cheap Channel canned most of two thousand employees. Who saw that coming?

The flaccid FCC (the best third-world telecommunications regulator that money can buy) decides that allowing one company to own 8 stations in a market would increase "ownership diversity".

When the FCC tried to rein them in, Cheap Channel simply went to the "other commission"--the 2nd District Federal Court of Appeals and sued the FCC to get whatever they wanted.

Buying stations for 20 and 30 times BCF. Loading up with sellers with the theory that if you put enough lead in the air, something will hit a target.

There was never a possibility that they could support that kind of debt service and anyone with a radio brain knew it. Then came the downsizings and making one person do the job of four, and if you complained, you were reminded that they just fired a bunch of people who would take your job for LESS than you were making in a heartbeat. And it continues, with people accepting MP3s on the air from a computer instead of talent.

Satellite radio is the direct result of too many terrestrial broadcasters abandoning compelling programming in favor of cost efficiency. Replacing morning drive with a hard drive. The FCC refusing to require live staffing, community service or any kind of responsibilty to communities of license.

Cheap Channel's programming is the worst in the country. They back the utter nonsense that is HD Radio so they can give us MORE bad programming. Think about it: HD-2 and HD-3 channels have programming not good enough to be on the main signal. And this is the "killer app"?

This is only the beginning. They can't make their debt service now either. Ratings will fall, revenues will fall and more will lose gigs. Instead of clamping down on them, the FCC will look the other way.

The only way to hurt them is to stop patronizing their advertisers and call those advertisers and make sure they know--you advertise on a Cheap Channel station and you lose my business. This will be painful beause you have to listen to their MP3 and internet based low audio quality programming to figure out which advertisers are buying ads.

Legendary stations like WGAR and AM 1100 are in ruins because of their God-awful practices. It will only get worse.

Cry and grieve for our good friend radio. Remember the thrill you got from tuning in to AM stations from far away late at night and get pissed off at them for killing it. While we may not be able to stop the Mays' brothers destruction, we can support the operators who hire and keep live local talent and stand guard over the memory of this once great medium.

Anonymous said...

You can "force people to compensate you if you had a legally binding contract".

All of this banter is just for nothing. Terrestrial radio, as we know it, has another four or five years left before there will simply not be enough money to keep most stations afloat. The small market local stations will survive, but the days of making a "big buck" will be gone. Clear Channel, CBS, Cumulus, Entercom, Radio One, etc. will be gone.

Anonymous said...

Did Ray Davis get the boot?

Anonymous said...

This is only the beginning. They can't make their debt service now either. Ratings will fall, revenues will fall and more will lose gigs. Instead of clamping down on them, the FCC will look the other way.

Legendary stations like WGAR and AM 1100 are in ruins because of their God-awful practices. It will only get worse.


I agree with many of your sentiments and am by no means a fan of Clear Channel, but it really isn't the job of the FCC to determine staffing levels at CC stations. CC is a business, and it's their job to figure out how best to make the monthly mortgage payment.

Furthermore, I have no problem with CC owning 6 or 8 stations in a market, what I do have a problem with is that they get to monopolize the best signals in many markets. In my mind, you can own 8 signals so long as you are forced to take a few Class-A FM's or 1,000-watt AM's along with your high-powered stations.

Finally, are you kidding about WGAR and WTAM? Don't you remember how God-awful "3WE" was under NBC ownership? And WGAR under Nationwide wasn't much better. Maybe Nationwide was a classier outfit, but their "talent" was no less robotic than what Clear Channel puts out.

Lurker said...

I bet John Gorman could tell you stories about Nationwide. He was among those with OmniAmerica that chose to stay on when Nationwide bought their Cleveland cluster. Putting it as only the G-man could he said he never met anyone in the business who knew less about radio than that twitchy bald guy that replaced Dean Thacker. I think WMMS was #1 18-34 and WMJI was #1 25-54 and that guy Bob something or other told him he had never heard two more "unlistenable" stations in his life. I heard the hallway conversation he had with the G-man. I forget the name of the GM who took over WMJI but he ruined that station as well. He said WMJI "rocked too much". Then Nationwide sold WMMS and WMJI to Jacor and the stations really went down the tubes.

Anonymous said...

Some followup comments:

First, no one is suggesting the FCC dictate staffing levels on an entire station but I do not think that requiring one warm body per station that is on the air whenever it is on the air is out of line. There are many examples of automated stations without anyone on duty missing weather and other emergencies until someone could be summoned to the station. The station is there to serve the community and it's not happening now at many stations.

Next, a big part of the problem is Cheap Chanel's "economies of scale". Less people, less quality. Overworked employees. Mediocrity on the air. Voicetracks being piped in from 1,000 miles away. And when you have 8 stations in a group, anything that you do promotionally that is even slightly aggressive will hurt one of your other properties in the market, so promotions are nonexistent or milquetoast at best.

No more than one AM and one FM in a market, I say. THAT will bring about "diversity of ownership". Deepen the radio gene pool. RIght now you have the obvious effects of radio inbreeding. Everything becomes weak, cannot fight off attacks, and eventually dies of an opportunistic disease like this economy.

Cleveland radio, historically, had some of the absolute best that radio had to offer. Cleveland radio is now an overconsulted, overly safe, homogenized, computer delivered cacophony of MP3 files and bad production. The farce that is HD Radio has less audio quality than the MP3 on your ipod.

Radio station ownership is NOT a right, it is a privilege. Many operators have abdicated their responsibilities to the communities they serve. Yes, it is a business, but it's also an art form and someone desperately needs to start paying attention to the art. And given a finite spectrum and a lot of other people who would love to have that license, we as the owners of those airwaves should demand better.

Yesterday's firings make it more clear than ever that people are simply software to the Mays boys. It's time to releive them of some licenses until they can run one or two correctly. We'll be waiting forever.

Anonymous said...

has anyone heard of a second round of lay-offs? anyone hear of upcoming february cuts?

Anonymous said...

CHEAP CHANNEL? Yes, I agree to that. I was there 3 and a half years with #1 ratings. After the GM comes back from the Dallas meeting with scalping orders, he
pulls me into the office with a lame excuse to get rid of me.
Why? To avoid paying 9 months severance pay. I wish I knew of a good lawyer who would take this on. It's so wrong how they will
lie and cheat to save a buck.
The GM is so crooked. What's sad about it is that Mark Mays is letting him get away with it.

Anonymous said...

Reply-back to Feb 3 @ 1:24AM
Indeed heard more layoff rumors-coming in Feb, don't know when, rumored-local drive times

Anonymous said...

Mark Mays and Bill Hamersley know of lot's of wrong doing in Fort Smith, AR. They choose to do nothing. Let's watch and see how this plays out very soon.

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Anonymous said...

What makes me so angry is that the original Clear Channel business model was to buy as many top rated stations in top markets AT ANY PRICE so they could fix advertising rates.A classic case of buying the competition and manipulating rates and nobody said anything about it.

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