The Radio Equalizer: Brian Maloney

12 September 2005

September 12 Roundup

Dollar-A-Holler

Want Advertising On The Cheap? Try Air America


***Updated With Limbaugh Reaction***


Need a really cheap place to advertise?

Today's Santa Cruz Sentinel reports Air America affiliate KOMY-AM in Monterey Bay, California, is having a heck of a time finding sponsors. That's despite being in one of the most liberal cities in the country.

Owner Michael Zwerling has even taken to the airwaves to let the public know that if it doesn't pick up soon, he's yanking the programming.

Meanwhile, Rush Limbaugh advertising on sister station KSCO-AM is just about sold out, according to the Sentinel.

While the station's sales manager is slightly more optimistic about Air America, so far expectations have simply not been met:


SANTA CRUZ — Even in the nuclear-free zone of Santa Cruz, left-wing talk radio doesn’t sell well.

Since programming content for local AM sister stations 1080 KSCO and 1430 KOMY made the great political split July 18, the liberal arm has been slow to hook advertisers.

It’s so slow, station owner Michael Zwerling went on the air recently with an ad of his own threatening the future of progressive shows on KOMY.

"For liberal programming to continue ... you need to support it," his ad said.


Not a word about the Air America funding scandal in the story, think that might be a reason to avoid advertising on KOMY?

Perhaps there are some intellectually honest liberals who don't want to be associated with the diversion of $875,000 in taxpayer funds from an inner-city community center?

The story didn't get past Limbaugh himself, who had advice for Zwerling. From a new WorldNetDaily report:


Rush Limbaugh, who is broadcast on sister station KSCO, gave some advice to Zwerling today on his nationally broadcast show.

Limbaugh suggested perhaps the best way to support the liberal broadcast was to find a local Boys & Girls' club, and "tell them you need an operating loan" for some unspecified purpose, referring to the recent scandal involving Air America allegedly siphoning money from such a club in New York City.

"I want to help this man because he took a great risk," Limbaugh said. "I don't want this guy to suffer out there."



--- Michelle Malkin and I continue to find support in the Denver area. Here's the latest, from Dave Kopel at the Rocky Mountain News:


Kudos to Post TV critic Joanne Ostrow for her Sept. 1 article reporting on the scandal at Air America, the left-wing national talk network some of whose programs are is heard in Denver on Clear Channel's KKZN (760).

Ostrow explained that the scandal involves a possibly improper loan of up to $875,000 from the federally funded Gloria Wise Boys & Girls Club in New York City.

She lauded bloggers including Brian Maloney and Michelle Malkin (whose syndicated column appears in the News) for pursuing a story which was ignored by the mainstream media.

At the News, the Air America network has been mentioned in 48 items since its 2002 debut. Yet the only coverage of the months-old scandal was an editorial (Aug. 13) castigating The New York Times for ignoring the controversy, and praising The New York Sun for its aggressive investigation.

On Thursday, the Sun reported that the suspicious loan from the charity to the for- profit radio network was "interest-free."

It is appropriate for New York papers to take the lead, since all the principals to the scandal are in New York, and it is the New York City Department of Investigation and New York state attorney general that are conducting the government inquiries.

But it is also true that the News entertainment and news sections have entirely overlooked the corruption story involving a Denver station and its high-ratings hosts. (Malkin and Maloney argue that Al Franken has been lying about his role in the scandal.)

Both the News and the Post would do well to rely less on The New York Times for coverage of New York, and to start running some of the best stories from The New York Sun.



Thanks!

AAR Scandal graphic by Darleen Click. Radio Equalizer recommends Mercy Corps for Katrina relief.

Your Amazon orders help to support this site's efforts. Thanks!

Disclosures: I was a talk host at KSCO in the early-mid 1990s, in the mid-1990s I wrote for the Santa Cruz Sentinel and KKZN/Denver's programming manager is my former KIRO/Seattle boss.


28 Comments:

  • What a yawn. KOMY went to AAR on July 18th, doesn't even have a ratings book yet, and you dig up some story about them having trouble selling ads. That's less than two months for the math impaired.

    Do you realize how pathetic that is?

    By Blogger Dick Tuck, at 12 September, 2005 17:22  

  • Did you notice that KOMY didn't even put up a website, and you have to go through the wingnut site to get the KOMY feed? Good business man.

    By Blogger Dick Tuck, at 12 September, 2005 17:24  

  • As much as Mr Tuck would like us to think that his comments are serious, the fact is that KOMY has been unable to sell advertising for Err America.

    And, as posted under comments for other headlines, Err America is being dumped from the liberal talk radio station in Providence (while the conservative station, in a very liberal area, is beating the pants off of them), and the Err America station in Boston, home of John Kerry and the bluest of the blue states, has a whopping 0.4 share . . . compared to the conservative station, with a 4.2.

    But Mr Tuck did ask one rhetorical question: "Do you realize how pathetic that is?" Well, yes, we do realize how pathetic Err America is.

    Rush Limbaugh and Sean Hannity and Michael Savage and Glenn Beck didn't have wealthy backers to try and push them on the public: they succeeded because they are good. The hosts on Air America are failing to generate an audience, despite financial backing that has kept the network afloat long after any radio show not receiving such subsidies would have been canceled due to low ratings.

    Air America? Stick a fork in it; it's done.

    By Blogger Vermillion & Pico: Our Political Website, at 12 September, 2005 20:46  

  • Rush Limbaugh noted KOMY's problems selling advertising time for Air America. I think that it would be hilarious if Rush bought an ad on KOMY, during the Al Franken show!

    By Blogger Vermillion & Pico: Our Political Website, at 12 September, 2005 20:47  

  • "Rush Limbaugh and Sean Hannity and Michael Savage and Glenn Beck didn't have wealthy backers to try and push them on the public"

    Disney isn't a wealthy backer? You delude yourself.

    By Blogger Dick Tuck, at 12 September, 2005 21:55  

  • "the fact is that KOMY has been unable to sell advertising for Err America."

    You seem to have a similar spin problem as Brian. The article doesn't say "unable to sell". The article says "difficult to sell."

    Please try and be factual with the facts you seem to be pulling out your butt.

    By Blogger Dick Tuck, at 12 September, 2005 21:57  

  • The market isn't there for those advertisers.

    Dick is wrong. Pure and simple.

    And Duluth, Minnesota is not a prime replacement for Providence, Rhode Island.

    By Blogger Sailor Republica, at 13 September, 2005 04:44  

  • Dick, you can spin it any way you want, but Disney/ABC collects a fee from stations who want to carry Hannity; they don't pay the stations to run his program, as Air Idiot has to do to get time on a healthy number of the stations clearing their programming.

    And Hannity's the only one out of the four you listed who Disney even syndicates. Premiere/Clear Channel handle Limbaugh and Beck (I've no definitive proof about that idiot Savage, though the fact he broadcasts on an ABC competitor staion here in NYC makes it highly unlikely he's in their stable).

    Keep up the Don Quixote impersonation...it's quite entertaining.

    By Blogger TC, at 13 September, 2005 08:46  

  • as Air Idiot has to do to get time on a healthy number of the stations clearing their programming.

    That was the thing about the "business model" that always bothered me, those payments to affiliates have to be sucking Airball America dry.

    By Blogger Tom C, at 13 September, 2005 10:39  

  • So it's official: This blog is now completely devoted to Air America, a radio network which this blog also claims is not viable.

    If Air America has so few listeners and so few prospects for success, why are conservatives like Maloney so obsessed with it. And before answering "Gloria Wise", please remember that this obsession far predates that issue (at least in this blog).

    By Blogger Justin, at 13 September, 2005 11:18  

  • Why are conservatives like Maloney so obsessed with it?

    Because they predicted at the outcome that Air America wouldn't last four months, and they're trying to salvage their credibility.

    Because they hate the fact that there's an audience for a POV contrary to Savage/Rush/Hannity/O'Lielly. Expecially the entertaining segments that show them as liars.

    Because of the pure fear factor. They know that there's a population out there that relies on Rush as a news source.

    It's required for conservatives to succeed, they must control and dumb down the population. Listen to them snarl about college professors or demand that creationism be taught in science classes. With a new kid on the block that doesn't buy into that tenet, they know that their weak ideology can't stand the scrutiny.

    By Blogger Dick Tuck, at 13 September, 2005 11:59  

  • Sailor, you still haven't a clue about what you're trying to talk about. WHJJ is making the same mistake that WRC did in DC. They keep idiots like Imus for their morning show instead of branding themselves. Same crap in Boston and Philly.

    Once you brand yourself as a progressive station, like Portland, ME, things pick up.

    By Blogger Dick Tuck, at 13 September, 2005 12:11  

  • Tick Duck is an uneducated clown, just like both of AAR's listeners. They have no argument for the facts, better just to ignore them and analyze the fact, which in this case is that AAR is going bye bye in RI and is having trouble selling ad space in Santa Cruz. Democracy Radio is 10X's better than AAR can ever hope to be.

    By Blogger Lidsville, at 13 September, 2005 12:27  

  • lidsville, you sound like you been doing a few lids. The fact remains that KOMY is less than two months old. Do you think magic money just starts rolling in when you take a risk on a new format?

    Do you listen to AAR? They have quite a few high profile advertisers on the national shows.

    lidsville, you're just another ignorant wingnut flamer, who doesn't know what to think until Rush tells you.

    By Blogger Dick Tuck, at 13 September, 2005 12:41  

  • why are conservatives like Maloney so obsessed with it.

    It's akin to creating an episode guide for The Chevy Chase Show: to create a historical record that documents the complete and utter flameout that is on the horizon.

    Yes, Mr. Tuck I do listen to AAR. And in the 3 months it's been on the air in Baton Rouge, I've heard exactly ONE local commercial. They're not even running the Demco/Entergy/State Farm/Allstate ads you hear on EVERY OTHER STATION talking about how to apply for Hurricane relief.

    As has been shown previously, the ONLY reason the network remains on the air is that the financial backers have a high tolerance for losing money.

    --the "other" Bryan

    By Blogger BF, at 13 September, 2005 13:53  

  • Dick Tuck, I think you have no idea what you're talking about.

    Even IF they branded themselves as "progressive", it STILL would have faltered. People just don't want to hear it except in places like Portland, Oregon and Denver, Colorado.

    Duluth, Minnesota is NOT a suitable replacement for Providence, Rhode Island. I can say that because I know those markets well.

    Oh, but that's right...I'm not an AAR fan, so any professional statements on radio made by myself are disregarded by some guy who names himself after someone who named himself after a surgical procedure.

    By Blogger Sailor Republica, at 13 September, 2005 13:55  

  • Do you think magic money just starts rolling in when you take a risk on a new format?
    It was not magic money that rolled in when Air Idiot took that flier on their format model back in '03-04, Dick.

    It was embezzled, scammed, (insert synonym of choice) money.

    By Blogger TC, at 13 September, 2005 16:08  

  • Yes, Mr. Tuck I do listen to AAR. And in the 3 months it's been on the air in Baton Rouge

    Actually, it's been on in Baton Rouge since July 12. According to my calculation, you're BS is off by an easily proveable 50%

    By Blogger Dick Tuck, at 13 September, 2005 18:34  

  • Yo sailordork, do you know what the latest book is for Providence? Here's a clue. It's not that bad. If they and DC dumped that clown Imus, it would probably be much better.

    So they're replacing Springer with some dweeb from Survivor. That should really put their ratings over the top. The New York suburb markets skyrocketed when Springer was added.

    BTW, I think Springer's show is lame, but he sure seems to get the beer and pretzel crowd.

    By Blogger Dick Tuck, at 13 September, 2005 18:38  

  • Dick, you can spin it any way you want, but Disney/ABC collects a fee from stations who want to carry Hannity; they don't pay the stations to run his program, as Air Idiot has to do to get time on a healthy number of the stations clearing their programming.

    Wrong moron. They syndicate with a right of sharing ad space, just like Air America and just about every other radio syndication model.

    P2 Summer starts coming out next week. It should be interesting to see if the trends of Franken beating Hannity in Portland OR/Miami/Denver continue.

    By Blogger Dick Tuck, at 13 September, 2005 18:44  

  • Mr Tuck writes:

    "Rush Limbaugh and Sean Hannity and Michael Savage and Glenn Beck didn't have wealthy backers to try and push them on the public"

    Disney isn't a wealthy backer? You delude yourself.

    Sorry, Mr Tuck, but that's putting the cart before the horse. ABC and Infinity picked up successful shows, and presented them to new audiences, audiences which chose to listen, audiences which grew.

    Precisely the opposite happened with Air America: they got a big bankroll together, to put people who were not radio hosts out to compete against established radio talk shows. It didn't work.

    By Blogger Vermillion & Pico: Our Political Website, at 13 September, 2005 19:45  

  • Mr Tuck said:

    "Because they hate the fact that there's an audience for a POV contrary to Savage/Rush /Hannity/O'Lielly. Expecially the entertaining segments that show them as liars."

    If there were much of an audience for a POV contrary to the conservatives, Air America would be prospering, not telling its employees that they were sorry, but their direct deposits didn't quite get in their bank accounts on time.

    Why, I wonder, does the conservative talk station in Boston, of all places, draw a 4.2 share, while the Air America affiliate has an 0.4? The latter is the kind of number that gets station managers looking at not just programming changes, but complete format changes.

    By Blogger Vermillion & Pico: Our Political Website, at 13 September, 2005 19:51  

  • Mr Tuck said:

    "WHJJ is making the same mistake that WRC did in DC. They keep idiots like Imus for their morning show instead of branding themselves. Same crap in Boston and Philly.

    Once you brand yourself as a progressive station, like Portland, ME, things pick up."

    I guess that we'll see if WHJJ made a mistake.

    And I suspect that you are unfamiliar with the Philly market. Air America is on here on WHAT-AM 1340 . . . but only part time. WHAT is a black oriented talk show station, that has local programming on in the morning. It also has a signal so weak that it's difficult to pick up in the suburbs. WPHT-AM 1210, which carries conservative shows, is highly rated, and is a 50,000 watt blowtorch that reaches up to the Poconos.

    There is plenty of room in Philly, but WHAT was the best Air America could find . . . and that isn't much.

    By Blogger Vermillion & Pico: Our Political Website, at 13 September, 2005 19:57  

  • Richard Tuck,

    if you're going to berate me, at least get your numbers right. It's been two months that AAR has been in BTR (though having listened, it FELT like more).

    Still, that's only a 33% difference. And you totally ignore the more obvious point that since it's been on the air, there has been a fatal lack of commercial support.

    But hey, I overstated by a month. That's a much more important point!!!!!!!!!!

    --the "other" Bryan

    By Blogger BF, at 14 September, 2005 08:56  

  • Just a FYI - "Dick Tuck" was a famous (or infamous) political opponent of Richard Nixon. I believe he faded from the scene when Nixon faded from the scene.

    http://www.museumofhoaxes.com/tuck.html

    By Blogger Robert, at 14 September, 2005 12:23  

  • And his idiotic namesake's blog is a hole in cyberspace. Really, child, at least pick a better template.

    And here's a hint about how the blogging game is played: Just linking to an American Spectator article and then saying "It's been almost 8 years since I made their enemies list, as "Nuck Fewt", so I figure I'll start a small shit storm and see what happens" and bloviating away may give you a little chubby, but it will not start ANY kind of shitstorm, since no one's aware your blog exists. According to Technorati, a grand total of one joint links to your place, and no one links to that one. A a quick run through your commenters show spam to be leading actual respondents.

    And you're calling me a moron?

    For all your blustering about audiences and ratings, you sure as hell don't know diddly about drawing an audience yourself, and therefore, ratings-wise, you're too insignificant to even register a pulse.

    Just like your heroes at Air Idiot.

    By Blogger TC, at 14 September, 2005 18:09  

  • TC Lynch, you really are a moron. I think your leather penguin blog provides proof positive. Talk about a piece of crap. That's about the lamest blog I've seen.

    By Blogger Dick Tuck, at 15 September, 2005 05:13  

  • Hey, Dicky my boy? You may not enjoy the tone of my "programming," but according to Technorati's rankings, of over 17 million sites tracked, I rank #9353, with 130 sites linking--that is, "advertising"--my "station." I've had my servers go bonkers from an Instalanche, and from other heavy hitters in the blogosphere--from both sides of the political aisle--sending people to me. So, keeping with this site's radio theme, I've got an audience, while your talking to yourself in your basement.

    Google "Leather Penguin," or the blog's real name, if you could read correctly, "LeatherPenguin," and I'm the first hit listed. Punch in "Dick Tuck" and eventually you show up as a commenter.

    LeatherPenguin is a mildy successful show out here on the cyberdial; you're a cranky listener who calls in shows like "Radio Equalizer" to hear their own voice.

    By Blogger TC, at 15 September, 2005 09:02  

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