The Radio Equalizer: Brian Maloney

20 September 2005

Summer Ratings Trends Released For Key Cities


Air America's Pain, Others Show Faint Signs Of Life

While conservative news-talk stations begin to dig out of their giant post-election ratings hole, Arbitron trends released late Monday reveal more bad news for the troubled liberal Air America Radio network.

From New York, Long Island, Los Angeles and Chicago, there wasn't one piece of good news for Franken and Friends, according to figures posted at Radio & Records.

In New York, Air America flagship WLIB again showed a flat 1.0 audience share, for 24th place. It is still true, despite what you might hear to the contrary, that WLIB's previous Caribbean programming generated higher ratings.

Worse, in Los Angeles its KTLK fell slightly from 0.9 to 0.8, to tie at 30th with two other stations.

Chicago's Air America affilate WCPT-AM tied for last place with a 0.4, while on Long Island, the liberal network's WLIB offerings fell from 1.3 to 0.9, for 29th place overall.

You wouldn't know the situation's severity, judging by recent trade publication ads touting supposed huge ratings increases for liberal talk shows.

Meanwhile, conservative talkers are showing just minor signs of recovery from their ratings plunges this year, blamed by some on post-election listener boredom.

WABC/New York rose slightly, from a 3.2 to 3.4, ranking 10th. While a far cry from past highs, every little bit helps. In Los Angeles, KFI held steady with a 3.9, good for sixth, while Chicago's WLS increased from 4.0 to 4.2 to retake fourth place.

More ratings will arrive tonight from Boston and other large cities. Check back for updates.

AAR graphic by Pete at IHillary.

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  • Paging Mr. Tuck... we await your spin on these numbers.

    By Blogger BF, at 20 September, 2005 09:55  

  • Air America arrived in Boston (WXKS and WKOX) on Oct 4 of last year, IIRC.
    If the numbers for one or both are bad when released later today, is it possible Clear Channel may pull the plug on one or both of them? If so, maybe the change would happen next month, near the one-year anniversary.

    Meanwhile in Providence, WHJJ's prog. director came out and said the AAR "experiment is basically over", replacing Jerry Springer with Survivor's Helen Glover and pledging to announce in "a couple of weeks" what will happen with the Franken time slot.

    By Blogger raccoonradio, at 20 September, 2005 10:18  

  • ...although I just found a Radio And Records bit which said that WHJJ would be replacing AAR with "local progressive hosts".

    If you owned WHJJ would you want to try "local progressive hosts" or tried and true conservatives? ( Hannity, who is not on in RI, or maybe even he could lure Rush--there's a connection between WHJJ's owner and Rush's
    syndicator, and 'HJJ could steal Rush from 'PRO)

    By Blogger raccoonradio, at 20 September, 2005 13:11  

  • both of Boston's AAR stations went up by 0.1, I believe; the conservatalk ones (WRKO and WTKK) went down by slightly more but still dominate over
    AAR. at

    Ratings> Show All Markets> Boston

    By Blogger raccoonradio, at 20 September, 2005 17:08  

  • I am confused. The article says WLIB, in New York, had a 1 rating and 24th place, then later WLIB is described as a Long Island station and had a rating of 0.9 and 29th place.

    Is this a typo? Which station is which?

    By Blogger Roger Snowden, at 22 September, 2005 08:43  

  • WLIB is located at 3 Park Avenue in Manhattan. The fellow you'll see working the traffic light at the corner, squeegee in hand, is one of Air Idiot's interns.

    By Blogger Unknown, at 22 September, 2005 09:17  

  • Okay, so what is the WLIB on Long Island whose ratings fell to 29th place with a 0.9 rating?

    I am still confused. The article definitely mentions two different ratings for WLIB.

    Any ideas here?

    By Blogger Roger Snowden, at 22 September, 2005 10:09  

  • GrumpyGringo: hmm, I thought AAR moved from 1070 to 1390, which would allow them to be on 24 hours a day. 1390 had been classic country but they moved that to
    93.7...the 1340 you mention is
    WIRY doing oldies out of Plattsburgh, NY..or have they picked up AAR, too?

    1390's signal should reach the granola crowd in Ben and Jerry City fairly well (not that I'd listen
    while up there!) In Brattleboro VT awhile ago, they dropped conservative hosts like Howie Carr for AAR (though a station in Keene, NH still runs conservatalk), Brat. being another hippie Deaniac burg.

    By Blogger raccoonradio, at 22 September, 2005 11:08  

  • No prob on the radio freq...I live in Boston but go to Burl VT on occasion. I was up there a couple weeks before the switch and from my motel room in Colchester (2 or 3 mi. NE of Burl),
    1390 came in fine. It was probably one of those towers that can be seen
    nr Rt 127/Ethan Allen Homestead but after dark some areas of Burlington/Plattsburgh might not be able to get 1390, true.

    By Blogger raccoonradio, at 22 September, 2005 14:02  

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