The National Association of Broadcasters’ annual “Radio Show” is on now in Charlotte. It’s the year’s big trade show for commercial radio; not as big as it used to be, since most of the big companies who hold the prime big-market radio stations would rather have their people come to company meetings than schmooze for better jobs with everybody else (Thanks, Tom Taylor). There are signs that U.S. radio people are making an effort to get with the post-digital realities — the theme at NAB this year is “Radio Reignited.” That’s progress: they appear to recognize that a fire is out somewhere. There’s even some talk of more local orientation for programming. Radio’s always talked about being local, but most of its innovation’s involved networked programming over the years. Mostly, to today’s radio stations, “local” means the weather report. Business is actually pretty good, though trends are tilted downhill. Things will have to get much worse before most radio people feel a sense of urgency. But there’s progress. Of course the first efforts are behind a big promotion campaign, not truly revolutionary programming. For more coverage, see my new list of links to the radio trade publications, on the right side of this page.


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THE BIG RADIO CONVENTION; SIGNS OF LIFE

RADIO GUY GALLERY


hertzsketch1
Heinrich Hertz's experiments proved the existence of electromagnetic radiation. Cycles-per-second, the standard measure of radio wave frequency, was named for him. He died in 1894, at 37. Wikipedia: Hertz

RADIO GUY GALLERY


STERN-3
What do you do with a problem like Howard? After decades of profits and FCC indecency fines as routine budget items, Howard Stern, king of all pottymouth radio guys, followed his enabler Mel Karmazin to Sirius Satellite Radio, leaving CBS to make up a hundred million in revenue (They sold stations) and fill the void for the half of Howard's loyal audience who didn't choose to buy a new radio and pay fifteen bucks a month for a few more, ranker epithets.
Wikipedia: Stern

RADIO GUY GALLERY


PALEY-S
CBS might have become the Cigar Broadcasting System. William S. Paley was the scion of the family business. In 1927, his cigar tycoon dad, Samuel, bought the struggling network of early radio stations from a group of poor schlumps who were trying to – would you believe: sell programming to radio stations! Every syndicator since has had to relearn that this doesn't work. Bill and his dad figured out the right business model -- you sell commercials to advertisers, and give the programs to stations. Got it?
Wikipedia: Paley
zenithfloor

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