It seems a little odd to see Rush Limbaugh drop to second place behind someone who's currently not even on the air. Right wing shock jock Michael Savage has wrested the streaming radio top spot away from the purported "king of talk radio" for the third quarter of 2012, according to Talk Stream Live. The survey period was from the beginning of July through September. Both Limbaugh and Savage had their numbers drop from the second quarter to the third quarter, with Limbaugh's numbers taking the greatest hit, from a 13.7 share down to a 9.6 share.
Limbaugh was recently singled out as one of the significant reasons that advertising revenues are dropping across the board, and by as much as fifty percent in some radio markets. National advertisers have pulled out due to recent controversies on conservative talk radio.
Savage was recently released from restrictive contractual obligations to syndicator Talk Radio Networks, and has signed with Cumulus. Savage is expected to make gains in many markets and, apparently sensing weakness in the opposition, has alluded to the possibility of challenging either Limbaugh or Hannity directly. This will give Cumulus two top names — Savage and Mike Huckabee — to take on the Premiere Networks lineup.
On Wednesday, October 17, Radio-info.com speculated that Cumulus may choose not to renew contracts with Hannity and Limbaugh. According to the Wall Street Journal, Limbaugh is at risk of losing 40 radio stations in 2013. Cumulus keeps the actual date of contract expirations secret, but industry scuttlebutt suggests the contracts may expire next summer.
|Rush Limbaugh's talk radio career is in a slow downward spiral in part because of the activism of consumers, volunteers, and activists who seek to hold Rush accountable for his hate speech. One very active group in this cause is Flush Rush on Facebook. Flush Rush and other, similar groups use the StopRush Database to inform advertisers about where their ads are appearing.
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