Yesterday, management at Seattle's AM 710 KIRO, owned by Bonneville International, abruptly cancelled The David Goldstein Show (which ran on Saturdays and Sundays from 7 to 10 PM here in the Pacific Northwest) and terminated two other weekend hosts, to be replaced with reurns and syndication. The move, made to cut costs, ends an eighteen month run for our good friend David Goldstein, one of the few bloggers nationwide to succeed in breaking into the traditional media and getting his own radio show.
David's show frequently featured guests from the netroots community, including many contributing editors here at Daily Kos. In response to KIRO's ungracious and sudden termination of David's show, we have written an open letter to KIRO which we urge you to join us in signing.
The text of the letter follows below the fold. When you sign, remember to check your email to confirm your signature so it shows up!
January 30th, 2008
News/Talk 710 KIRO
Bonneville International Seattle
We, the undersigned, are writing to express our profound disappointment with your sudden termination of several KIRO weekend personalities, including Bryan Styble and Carl Jeffers, but especially, David Goldstein.
For months, we have watched with dismay as the quality of KIRO’s programming has tumbled downhill. More and more airtime is being filled with syndicated talk or reruns – the same bland fare that can be found on almost every other station. This decline began while the station was owned by Entercom, but has sadly continued following Bonneville International’s acquisition of KIRO.
You are making a serious mistake if you believe that canceling live local talk and replacing it with "filler" programming is good for listenership or the community that KIRO and Bonneville proudly claim to serve.
You are also willingly sacrificing your unique competitive advantage in the Seattle market by firing hosts who gave Washingtonians a compelling reason to tune in on weekends. Listeners (if they wish) can already choose from a wide selection of programming across the dial that has been pre-recorded and is being rebroadcast.
By following the rest of the industry in obliterating your own talent, you are signaling to listeners that today’s bottom line is more important than KIRO’s future as a prestigious and uncommon radio station.
To put it more succinctly, you are encouraging your listeners not to listen.
Because live local talk has become the exception in the radio industry rather than the rule, there is value in being different...in offering to the people of this region what competitors are not offering on the weekends: a chance to call and join in a conversation, live in-depth coverage of a major Seattle news story, or simply the opportunity to hear what a local personality has to say.
The David Goldstein Show featured a wide range of unconventional and exceptional guests...including journalists, comedians, columnists, bloggers, and elected officials. David offered six hours of entertaining and original radio every Saturday and Sunday night. We will miss his show and his voice.
Your decision may yield financial savings, but it comes with its own cost: our loyalty to News/Talk 710 KIRO. You have invited us not to tune in on the weekends, so rest assured – we won’t.
Andrew, Rick, Jason, Kathleen, Jonathan, Scott, Garlin, Keith, Jennifer, John, and the entire Northwest Progressive Institute team
Sign the Open Letter to 710 KIRO!