October 2, 2015Defining Ourselves
The disconnect, as always, is in defining what "radio" is.
At this writing, I'm in the bowels of a convention hotel in downtown Atlanta, in the midst of the annual Radio Show, which is not, as the name would imply, a radio show in the traditional sense, but a show in the sense of a Car Show, or a Home Show, or any of those other things where there are a bunch of booths and people milling about. Call it a show if you want, but it's a convention, and as a convention, it's lacking in one area that is essential for a successful convention: fezzes. No sweaty guys from Nebraska wearing fezzes and causing a ruckus at the Holiday Inn lobby bar? Disappointing.
But I know that, because I've been covering the Radio Show since Marconi called a few of us wireless reporters to come around and write about the latest ship-to-shore transmissions. It's always been about station owners and GMs, transmitters and regulation and sales. The content, and I'll stop calling it content as soon as I come up with a better word that's equally convenient, isn't the main focus. It's the delivery mechanism, and that delivery mechanism's business model, and private equity's effect on that delivery mechanism, and measuring the effectiveness of the delivery mechanism, and selling ads to support the debt brought on by private equity investment in the delivery mechanism. And that's fine, because there's plenty to talk about regarding all of that.
September 24, 2015Showtime
Last week, I was at a podcast convention -- no, call it what it calls itself, a "festival." Next week, I'll be at a radio convention. Why, yes, there's a contrast. But the striking difference between the two is less about the different tones of the conferences -- ...
September 18, 2015The Acid Test
We're going to talk this week about science, health, the Inuits, and fish. It does include a lesson for radio. I'm serious. For a long time now, you've heard how you should be eating Omega-3 fatty acids. It's good for your heart, they say. Your doctors have ...
September 11, 2015The Price Of Tea In Torrance
Not too long ago -- six months, actually -- a great big supermarket chain merged with another great big chain, and the feds ordered them to spin off a lot of stores in some western markets where they both operated, sometimes across the street from each other. So the ...
September 4, 2015The Joy Of Bulk Erasing
And what if we throw everything out and start over? I've proposed this before. It's one method of brainstorming business development: You start over as if the rules don't exist and see if you can't come up with new ways of doing things. We aren't going to be able to just ...
August 28, 2015Worst One Yet, or Torpidity Now
Okay, I'm conceding defeat. August, you win. Congratulations. It's hot here. 90 degrees, going to 94, and humid, too. Where I live tends not to be 90 degrees, and the humidity usually involves the "Marine Layer," which normal people would call fog and which involves ...
August 21, 2015Happy National You Day
Thursday was a special day for everyone who reads this column, a day dedicated to something very near and dear to all of us. Yes, Thursday was #NationalLemonadeDay. What? Oh, yeah, that, too. It was, of course, also #NationalRadioDay, a day established by our ...
August 14, 2015And The Children Shall Lead
They announced the "Sesame Street"/HBO deal the other day, and by the tone of the reaction, you'd think that the world was ending. I don't mean the obligatory "dark, gritty reboot" jokes, either. People treated the deal as the end of an era, fretted that kids would ...
August 7, 2015Open Season, or Debatably Yours
Okay, so, we're in the season now. Election season, that is, a whole year and three months before the fact. (We're talking U.S. presidential election, of course. I know, Canada's having an election and it'll take a whole three months and change to get there. Nobody ...
In the interest of full disclosure: I just wrote a column, realized it sucked, and deleted the whole thing. That leaves me past deadline and needing something fast. Wait, it's 2015. Everyone loves listicles, right? Then let's do a listicle, sans photos (I'm lazy and, ...