Giving “Choice” to a Captive Audience is bad for media behemoths:
With the public turning to digital music players and podcasts, they can avoid the homogenized, ad-packed, junk-radio formats that litter the AM and FM dials in most cities. What they can’t miss, though, are the sky-blocking billboards owned by the same radio behemoths. During the late 1990’s, two corporations went on a deregulation-fueled radio and billboard buying spree. The two, CBS and Clear Channel, loaded up on debt to buy these speculation-steroid-enhanced properties. The results are mixed. CBS has done well, as it is insulated by its holdings in TV and publishing.
Clear Channel, on the other hand, which made its name in the early years of the Bush administration as the home of Rush Limbaugh and countless other right-wing radio hotheads, has lost a ton of someone’s (?) money. Their zeal to buy up radio stations led them to own over 1200 across the U.S. CBS, the next largest owner at its peak had 180 stations. Clear Channel reported losses totaling $21 billion in 2002 and 2005 due to the true value of their radio empire becoming evident, and they have sold off their 56 TV stations and are trying to sell off over 400 radio stations in smaller
With the economy in the dumper lately, a lot of the
Most important to the media monopolies is a “captive” audience. This is when we have over 100 cable channels available to us, but most of them are owned by the 5 media monopolies (CBS/Viacom, GE, Time-Warner, Fox and Disney). For daily newspapers, in most cities in the
Thanks to my digital music player, I can pack my entire music collection in a little box. I really don’t miss the inane, pre-recorded chatter. I can always look away from the billboards, unless I’m stuck in the gridlocked traffic.
But that’s another rant…
---by Rex Frankel
CBS to sell 50 of its radio stations:
August 1, 2008
“The New York-based broadcasting company, controlled by billionaire Sumner Redstone, said Thursday that it planned to sell 50 radio stations in a dozen mid-size markets as ad revenue continued to slide in a weak economy. The company's once-mighty radio division continued to produce static and a drag on the company's earnings…
…Just two years ago, CBS Radio boasted nearly 180 radio stations. It has since shed about 40 stations, and with the planned sale of 50 more, the company would cut its holdings to about 90 stations. Included on its roster are
Analyst Tom Taylor said CBS might look to sell stations in such markets as