Sunday, February 17, 2008

Sunday Morning Odds & Sods

38° - light rain at 10:45am

Day off yesterday. Much needed after a long week. "Next week" begins this afternoon with some time spent at work to meet deadlines. Its all good. Played radio yesterday with some automation software on my laptop.

Ripped some music from CD, added sweepers leftover from my WMMQ days and was in heaven. Thanks to Lee Arnold for both the software tip and the inspiration.

Listening: To Chicago's WDRV this morning. The usual. Just heard "Raindance" from The Guess Who segued into "Easy To Be Hard" from Three Dog Night. Cools!

Noted: animated "raindrops" on the WDRV website header (above); not sure whether this is synched to the actual Chicago weather - if so - a very sweet touch!

Streaming. I've wrote here months back that listening on the 'net should be hassle-free for listeners; even suggesting a desktop icon that would provide instant audio, rather than navigating a station website simply to listen to a station.

Earlier this week, Mark Ramsey wrote about one streaming provider who intends to keep you listening on their terms. And as Mark notes
here - this is bad.

Adding to Mark's words are reader comments - with Tom Asacker writing:

"Instead of acting like a friend and giving someone the most direct, hassle free directions to get where they want to go, radio is trying to force them down their road so that they can sell the traffic to billboard advertisers. Big strategic mistake."

Mike Henry. The Paragon Media consultant sums up what many have been feeling (I'm part of that club):

"Radio may be dead on Wall Street, but it is alive and well on Main Street. Add up all the iPod users, satellite radio subscribers and internet radio subscribers, and go ahead and throw in all the illegal music downloaders, and they still wouldn’t add up to the number of people who listen to radio EVERY DAY."

"Local radio is still omnipresent. Listeners still wake up every day and turn on the radio. Radio still has a positive impact on local communities, when it wants to, because radio is still the most local and community-oriented of all media."

"Radio should rejoice and say, “Good riddance to Wall Street.” To the real radio operators out there, I say, “Welcome back to Main Street.” And please, leave the bean counters on Wall Street where they belong."

Mike's complete post

With all thats been written following Jim Cramer's comments, I'm compelled for full disclosure: my corporate radio experience - for the most part - have been positive; particularly with the so-called "evil empire".

The resources and support system provided to this programmer were never better. Those in the trenches are some of radio's finest and its an experience I wouldn't trade for much of anything.

If you've been reading this blog for some time, you'll also know that I've had first hand experience with the not-so-pleasant side of corporate radio too!

Chicago Radio Spotlight: Rick Kaempfer continues to feed my fascination with radio career stories and this week his light shines on WXRT/WBBM air talent Ken Sumka. Read here.

Ken makes note of the possible move to WXRT from its longtime stand-alone Belmont Avenue home to the corporate world downtown, saying:

"...there's a vibe at that building that comes from being away from downtown. There are some unknowns that cause a little worry-like what sort of consolidation might happen with us sharing a space and personnel."

Yep! Its all about "the vibe".

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