The Radio Equalizer: Brian Maloney

29 March 2006

Air America, Ratings, New York City, Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles, San Diego


For Air America, Latest Ratings Bring More Bad News

Two days into
the latest batch of big-city Arbitron radio ratings releases, not even one piece of good news has yet emerged for Air America.

With the liberal radio network's second anniversary just days away, that leaves little to celebrate when it comes to real audience growth. After fresh numbers from New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Boston, San Diego and elsewhere, here's a quick scorecard:

--- In New York City, temporary network flagship WLIB-AM showed losses. From an overall 1.4 audience share last month, it fell to a 1.2 this time around.

In the broadest measurement of listeners, this critically important station still is unable to crack the top 20.

Meanwhile, Limbaugh affiliate WABC showed gains: from a 3.4 to a 3.7.

--- Still stuck in the Southland's bottom tier, KTLK-AM/ Los Angeles moved from a tiny 0.8 to this month's 0.9 share.

In order to avoid continuing to pay station owner Clear Channel high fees to run Air America programming there, KTLK needs to see dramatic ratings improvement. A quarterly finish above 1.0 would help a bit.

Conservative KFI held a 3.7 overall share.

--- In Chicago, Air America's WCPT-AM hasn't budged, still turning in a miniscule 0.7 share. Since last summer, the station has been unable to show any growth.

Rush's WLS-AM gained, moving from a 3.7 to a 4.0.

--- Both Hub stations combined couldn't bring the slightest improvement for the liberal network, as WXKS and WKOX-AM/ Boston again reveal a paltry 0.5 share. Only three distant, tiny outlets showed up with smaller numbers.

--- Especially ominous news has emerged from San Diego, where the previously somewhat successful KLSD-AM has seen gains erased. From a respectable 3.1 last fall, it's taken a huge hit, now down to a 1.8 share.

Representing the second phase of a three-month ratings period, final Winter 2006 Arbitron figures will emerge in April.

With nearly all of Air America's stations still ranked outside the top twenty, however, how could the network ever expect to attract a significant advertiser base?

For the network's coming second anniversary celebrations, expect the bubbly to be covered by our friend George Soros.

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Images provided by David A Lunde for the Radio Equalizer


  • No point in mentioning that in Dallas - the # 5 market in the U.S.- Air America had fallen off the charts for the summer 2005 ratings.

    By the way, the lowest station listed only manages a .3, so we can safely speculate that Air America falls below that... and if winter ratings are always down.... well - can you fall below zero?

    By Blogger Lokki, at 29 March, 2006 10:54  

  • What kind of idiot continues to pour money into a dog like AAR?

    This kind?

    By Blogger Lidsville, at 29 March, 2006 20:37  

  • Hello, hello, anybody out there?

    Dick Tuck?
    Mr. Kite?
    Hardcore, etc.?

    Isn't it time to drag out the old argument about Brian using the wrong numbers from Arbitron?

    Everyone on vacation at the same time?

    Hello, hello?

    By Blogger Lokki, at 30 March, 2006 13:19  

  • Like I've said before, there is room on the AM airwaves for *quality* liberal talk and AAR isn't it.

    By Blogger Lidsville, at 30 March, 2006 19:58  

  • Like I've said before, there is room on the AM airwaves for *quality* liberal talk and AAR isn't it.

    Like this here B.M. site. This one has quality. Cabin Boy Quality.

    By Blogger @whut, at 31 March, 2006 01:48  

  • This is so funny. How ironic. The Radio Equalizer's readership goes way, way up while listenership on AAR goes way, way down. *chop* *chop*...timberrrrrr!

    Keep up the good work, Brian.

    By Blogger Mike, at 01 April, 2006 15:47  

  • We can only hope that Air America will soon be thrown off the air. The fewer opposing viewpoints on the radio, the better for America.

    By Blogger Jon Swift, at 01 April, 2006 17:24  

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