Rush Limbaugh once likened an advertiser boycott to "losing a couple of french fries in the container when it’s delivered to you in the drive thru. You don’t even notice it."
The radio networks might choose to disagree. Financially distressed radio corporation Dial Global "started to experience the slow down the day after" Limbaugh attacked law student Sandra Fluke.
Dial Global, a radio network that recently blamed Rush Limbaugh in part for its dire financial circumstances, voluntarily de-listed itself from NASDAQ last week. In the three most recent quarters, Dial Global has lost 98.6 million dollars. The period corresponds fairly closely to the nine months since Rush Limbaugh attacked Sandra Fluke. Radio Ink interviewed Dial Global co-COO Spencer Brown about the impact on the company, and about the relationship between the financial difficulties and the firestorm stirred up by Limbaugh:
Radio Ink: The one thing in the release was the mention of a talk show host costing you revenue, which I am guessing was Rush Limbaugh. How did that incident impact your revenue?Other radio networks have also been impacted by the Rush Limbaugh advertiser boycott; Cumulus is suffering financially, and Clear Channel is conducting "stealth layoffs". Talkers.com concludes,
Dial Global co-COO Spencer Brown: What Dial Global has experienced is that the news-talk sector for us, has materially slowed down in terms of billing, particularly on the news front. As a result, we are proud of our representation, but we represent CBS News and the Wall Street Journal. News is a significant part of our company's inventory. At least this year-to-date, advertisers have kind of shied away from advertising in news-talk. They've bundled them as one in the same. I just want to be specific, I am talking about national non-direct response advertisers.
Radio Ink: You think it had to do with what Rush said?
Dial Global co-COO Spencer Brown: Well, certainly, we started to experience the slow down the day after he made the comments. It has continued. Yes, I believe that a lot more national advertisers have shied away from news/talk impacting both demand and pricing, after this [sic] comments. [emphasis added]
—DIAL GLOBAL - MOVING FORWARD, November 19, 2012
Talk radio is unlikely to become “family friendly” in the eyes of agencies anytime soon and talk sellers appear resigned to having to carve out new niches of advertisers and work hard to get and keep them. For big corporations with a lot of debt, that’s not a comforting thought.Media Matters For America called it right just ten days after the advertisers began to drop:
—Talkers: Friday, November 16, 2012
Yes, it seems that Rush Limbaugh is irrevocably losing "his" country.
And we're all better for it.
The diarist is active in Flush Rush on Facebook:
|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.
Please consider joining. Small donations are also accepted to fund data storage; visit StopRush for more information.