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View Diary: "Earth shattering" change in the radio industry in the aftermath of the Rush Limbaugh Effect (203 comments)

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  •  I drove cross-country last summer (16+ / 0-)

    and barely turned on the radio. Based on previous cross-country drives I wasn't enthused about having to endure religious shows, bad country and shock jocks. I don't have satellite, so MP3s and conversation had to do. We survived.

    "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

    by kovie on Wed Dec 05, 2012 at 05:26:47 PM PST

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    •  One of the times my 1st husb and I drove ~6500 mi (9+ / 0-)

      out to the Canadian Rockies and back, we discovered we'd made essentially the entire westward leg with the radio off. We looked and talked and napped and that was just fine, all of that America going by...

      YES WE DID -- AGAIN. FOUR MORE YEARS.

      by raincrow on Wed Dec 05, 2012 at 06:18:22 PM PST

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      •  Young folks I know never listen to the radio. (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        raincrow, BYw

        They've got their iPods and such. And at home, the kids I know just stream music and programs through their ever-present electronic devices. They can stream the good shows and podcasts and such at will.

        Radio to them  is rather like newspapers and traditional media are for us: an older model that is morphing and withering away, and usually rather irrelevant to us.  

        Personally, I don't read a newspaper anymore. Radio is sort of like the newspaper of the airwaves. MHO.

        Life is a school, love is the lesson.

        by means are the ends on Thu Dec 06, 2012 at 08:46:27 AM PST

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    •  Of course you survived. (13+ / 0-)

      What's sad is that people in local markets are effectively cut off from self expression in ways that they used to have.  You and I are cut off from hearing what they think about.  The current model tells them what to think - it doesn't allow them to figure that out on their own.

      •  With the internet there are so many other ways (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        elwior, Lujane, ColoTim

        of connecting to others these days. And yes, I know, you can't use the internet when you drive. But perhaps being disconnected while driving isn't such a bad thing, as it's the only time these days you can truly be alone and relax.

        Plus, with LTE being rolled out nationwide and most people having smartphones these days your cell phone is a virtual satellite radio allowing you to listen to whatever you want--or to nothing at all. The old radio model is obsolete.

        "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

        by kovie on Wed Dec 05, 2012 at 06:31:16 PM PST

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        •  What's so great about being disconnected (4+ / 0-)

          from the towns and cities that you are passing through?

          It may be great for you, but when I travel, I happen to enjoy having opportunities to get some sense of the local people when I am passing through.  It is a difference in traveling style, I suppose, but it is something that I like.  You're welcome not to agree or want that experience, but you're not going to talk me out of my interest in doing that.

          •  Huh? (4+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            elwior, ColoTim, Miggles, Dissentinator

            Are we talking about people who live in or pass through small towns? If you pass through them, most local stations are only powerful enough to last 10-15 minutes before they fade out. What can you possibly get out of that? And for locals, I'm guessing they have other, more interactive ways of connecting to other locals.

            When I drove cross-country 20 years ago, it was still mostly crazyass religious shows about fornication and JEEZus!, really bad country music, and idiotic talk radio about soshulizm and big guvmint. Is that something to miss? Radio hasn't been a big part of US culture outside the wingnut sphere for decades.

            "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

            by kovie on Wed Dec 05, 2012 at 06:44:29 PM PST

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            •  Stopped Listening To Radio in the 90's (9+ / 0-)

              I stopped listening to radio in the early 90's. Most of the channels played the same few songs, within a fairly narrow segment of popular music. Whether it was Adult Contemporary, Country, Solid Gold, or Oldies, or whatever, the variety was replaced by bland sameness. Talk radio even then was dominated by stupidity, sensationalism, and inanity. And every damn radio station had their version of The Morning Zoo, a concept that is intolerable when badly executed by unfunny copycats. Then, without the old FCC mandated limits to commercial time, gradually more and more ads began to take over programming, and soon there was almost 15 minutes of commercials for every half hour. Thank goodness for the calm at the low end of the FM dial - the local NPR stations, which at least presented a solid hour of news, and unique programming on weekends. But still, my tape deck, then the CDplayer, and then my MP3 player are what I've spent my time in a car listening to.

              Every now and then a small, miracle happens. In my town, one of the religious stations gave up, and new ownership came along, and they're trying an old standards format: Mel Torme, Sinatra, Diana Krall, Michael Bible and the like. I listen to it now and then, but they are tiny, and trying to use the public radio approach, with public funding. I don't have much hope they will last. A month ago I spent a week in Baton Rouge, and this little station -- also on the low end of the dial -- played some kick-ass Louisiana boogie all day long: a hellacious mix of blues, swing, and zydecko. I wanted to hop right out of my car and dance in the street.

              Big Radio sold their soul to the devil when they created automated formats, pre taped shows, centralized broadcasts, and dirt cheap talk radio created for ditto heads. (If you really watch WKRP in Cincinnati, this is the essential conflict that drives the show. Big Mama Carlson was always threatening to fire everyone and turn the station over to an all-talk format. Most people think fondly of this show because it was so funny and had indelible characters, but it also painted a very accurate picture of the radio business.) I feel no pity for these stations, and can't wait for their demise. Dr. Johnny Fever was right.

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