Candy Talk

Here’s a comment I’ve just lifted from the Boston discussion board at Radio-Info.com:

I stream at work, and today, my local choices are Michelle McPhee on ‘TKK and Maryellen Burns on ‘RKO. Both are talking about Halloween candy.

The state of radio around here is brutal.

I even tried Gene Burns’ archive stream on KGO, and he was off yesterday, so no luck there. I wonder what DePetro is up to today….

There’s a good reason for the candy talk: it’s sweet and inoffensive. Talk radio in Boston has been dumbed down to keep it from upsetting the local power structure.

While that may keep Deval & Co. happy, for listeners, it means finding something other than talk radio to occupy one’s time. What a waste of a great medium.

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Time For A New Approach

By now, it should be obvious that Howie Carr has little hope of prevailing against Entercom in court and finding his way to WTKK anytime soon, if ever.

In a fundamentally corrupt state featuring some of America’s sleaziest judges, the merits of Carr’s arguments are largely irrelevant. Don’t forget that Howie has long been one of the Bay State’s most vocal critics of judicial rot and decay.


Given that,
have Carr and WTKK handled the situation the best way they could? From my safe distance, the answer is a clear “no”.

Think about it: they don’t have a prayer in a Massachusetts courtroom, but in the court of public opinion, they could win in a landslide.

While Entercom has been busy making enemies all over greater Boston, Carr and Greater Media have never looked better. All that’s left for the latter two parties is to capitalize on this growing public sentiment.

Why hasn’t Howie turned to his audience for help? Think they wouldn’t assist in organizing “Free Howie” rallies? Judging by the number of emails I’m getting about Carr’s situation each day, my guess is that he’s getting 100 times more.

This is WAR, Howie, and you’ve got a weapon you haven’t yet used. The time to fire it up is now.

As for Greater Media, it’s time for the same approach. Why the unwillingness to make stronger statements? How about paying for some “Free Howie” billboards? Why not use the situation to create a huge promotional opportunity for WTKK?

Turn the lemons into lemonade. Hasn’t Rush Limbaugh’s Harry Reid smear letter auction taught radio anything?

Don’t these ideas beat sitting around and waiting for the next depressing legal decision? Playing it safe isn’t working, it’s now time for a new approach.

A Revealing Statement

Remember what I’ve long maintained: Entercom uses legal muscle to make up for its extreme shortcomings in the programming department. Here’s one of the company’s sleazebag lawyers in today’s Globe:

Carr’s lawyers appealed van Gestel’s ruling and sought permission for Carr to work for the station of his choice while his appeal was under consideration.

Shepard Davidson, the lead Entercom lawyer on the case, said yesterday’s ruling was “a big win because I don’t believe he has any resort that could give him a quick victory, at this point.”

Carr has remained off the air since late September, when his contract with WRKO was due to expire. Entercom has already put Carr on notice that he could be liable for significant damages if he doesn’t fulfill his contract.

“Is he going to stick this out for, potentially, years and not work?”
Davidson asked. “We can’t force him to come back. We hope he comes back. We want him to come back. He’s under contract to come back. That decision is up to him. Hopefully, now, he will come back.”

Translation: we believe Howie Carr can’t afford to fight us indefinitely, so we’ll wipe him out financially, forcing him to return on our terms!

Another Legal Setback

Emulating their favorite baseball team, Bay State judges are in the middle of their own sweep. In this contest, it’s Howie Carr 0, Angry Revenge-Seeking Massachusetts Justices 3.

One more of these and Team Carr will be knocked on its feet for good.

Today’s ruling means Carr has no chance of joining WTKK anytime soon. And in a further blow, he won’t be getting full appeals court consideration, either.

In a blue state as a non-conforming talk show host, these are the breaks. To these judges, a chance to ruin Howie Carr’s career is like a second World Series victory in less than 24 hours.

Don’t expect the situation to improve for Howie anytime soon. In the meantime, WTKK still doesn’t seem to have a viable Plan B in place (and I mean the entire low-rated schedule, not just morning drive). Why not?

WTKK: Digging In With Current Lineup?

Now finally close to unveiling its redesigned website, WTKK appears to be digging in for the long haul with its current lineup and Howie Carr is nowhere in sight.

Unfortunately, it’s the court system that has forced this upon the station, but status quo even in the short term seems only likely to exacerbate the station’s already-painful ratings decline.

The current lineup has already been thoroughly rejected by the marketplace, so why maintain it? This is one stubborn media market.

Now Appearing: The Empress

Apparently keeping even its guest speakers from within Boston’s media-politics clique, the Greater Boston Chamber Of Commerce has selected none other than Empress Kahn to head up its next Women’s Network Breakfast, scheduled for November 8 at the Taj Boston.

Since the Empress is a busy, busy gal, I’m sure she could use some help with her speech. And since we’re such a nice group of people here at SaveWRKO, how about providing a bit of guidance?

With that, the question is put to you: what ought to be the theme of her presentation?

Leave your assistance in the comment section below.