Wednesday, August 31, 2005

We Thought They Only Did That At Beacon Broadcasting

From today:

THREE TREES COMMUNICATIONS Christian Top 40 (THE HOOK) WWWD/MACON, GA and simulcast sister WJYF/VALDOSTA, GA has rolled out a brand new fall on air lineup and, for the first time ever, the station is live in every daypart. The changes all began last weekend when THE HOOK stunted with an ALL APOLOGIES, ALL APOLOGETIX WEEKEND as they played songs by the Christian parody band APOLOGETIX.


Tell us, Mahoning Valley OMW readers...has Michael "Angel" Arch been spotted slipping out the back of WANR/1570 Warren's Courthouse Square studios, heading south towards Georgia? Or, maybe he's offering format change consulting services to CCM stations in other markets. Hmm...

Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Toledo and Mansfield - The Sequel

Touching on the western edge of the OMW coverage area:

* AllAccess reports that long-time Toledo radio personality Denny Schaffer is heading south. The WSPD/1370 afternoon host, who's also been heard on "KISS FM" in that market, moves to Clear Channel Atlanta talker WGST/640, where he'll take the open midday slot starting in early October. Among other folks who've been heard in that slot - "The Regular Guys", a former Los Angeles team who returned to an FM morning gig in the Atlanta market recently, creating the opening. OMW notes that Denny's got a big job on his hands...the WGST midday slot is up against WSB/Cox/Jones superstar Neal Boortz, who basically owns Atlanta talk radio. When WGST ran Premiere's Glenn Beck up against Boortz, well, let's just say it wasn't pretty for Beck.

* The first confirmation that Mansfield "KISS FM" combo 98.3 and 107.7 are going to simulcast classic rock "The Fox" (WGLN/102.3 Galion) is on this new website for "The Fox Rock Network"...where 98.3 and 107.7 are now clearly visible on the new "Fox" logo...

Monday, August 29, 2005

WEWS "NewsChannel 5", It's Your Turn

News flash: OMW doesn't just have WOIO/19 in its sights.

A lack of sleep this morning, and curiosity about Hurricane Katrina, has us up at this early hour, and our TiVo landed on WEWS/5. (One of our regular rotating recordings is of ABC's "World News Now".)

Like almost all stations these days, "NewsChannel 5" has that ever, um, helpful news headline crawl...the TV invention borne out of the need to feed us extra information after the 9/11 attacks. Unlike WOIO, which uses the crawl on all of its newscasts, WEWS seems to limit it to "Good Morning Cleveland", which we never see because we're not usually awake at this hour.

It's not the news headlines which bother us. It's not the helpful 5 day forecast. No, it's the self-promotion.

On this morning's crawl, verbatim (thank you, TiVo!):


No, as Dave Barry might say if he were still doing his syndicated humor column, "we're not making this up". We get the feeling that if Hurricane Katrina were to somehow make it up here as a full-fledged 150 MPH-plus storm, the "NewsChannel 5" crawl would contain both crucial information and a plug for today's Oprah, complete with a lengthy list of topics. Frankly, we don't really need to know what "three things you need to do in the bathroom"...

Sunday, August 28, 2005

Mansfield CC Cluster Moves

On the far-southwest end of OMW's Sphere of Influence:

OMW hears that two "KISS FM Mid-Ohio" air talents are moving to Mansfield Clear Channel sister WYHT/105.3 ("Y105"), which is currently a Hot AC station. Making the move will be Nathan Tyler and Marty Scott, both voicetracking in from CC's Columbus cluster. Tyler does overnights and weekends for there for WNCI/97.9, and Scott is also based there, doing weekend shifts.

The move is revitalizing the Mansfield/Ashland Radio Rumor Mill. Speculation has focused on a shift from Hot AC to CHR for Y105, and a subsequent format change (or changes?) to the KISS FM combo, a dual-signal station at 98.3/Fredericktown and 107.7/Loudonville. We're not able to get a good bead on what might replace CHR on the 98.3/107.7 combo, or if the stations will even continue to simulcast. If OMW were at the Radio Betting Window, we'd put a $20 down on 98.3 and 107.7 becoming classic rock "The Fox", perhaps becoming stations two and three simulcast with WGLN/102.3 Galion...already in the format.

With the move of the "KISS" air talent to Y105, a format change towards CHR, or at least some music tweaking, seems possible for that station.

At one time, long ago, WBZW/107.7 in Loudonville was a locally-owned smooth jazz station, and actually targetted nearby a competitor to Dix's country WQKT/104.5, which now only competes locally with WKLM/95.3 Millersburg (not counting large Cleveland, Akron and Canton signals heard well in Wooster).

Two Youngstown Cumulus Changes - WHOT and Rock 104

A pretty reliable source clues OMW into some changes at two Cumulus/Youngstown stations.

Our Mahoning Valley source tells us that WWIZ/103.9 "Rock 104" program director Jim Loboy is out of that post, and has moved over to the morning producer position at sister CHR WHOT/101.1 "Hot 101"...for long-time morning team "AC and Kelly".

Rock 104's Matt Spatz reportedly takes over as program director of the Cumulus rocker. (And OMW knows that Matt has been spotted on the various local radio message boards in the past, so if he'd like to drop us a line, we'd love to hear from him about what he has planned for Rock 104...)

Saturday, August 27, 2005

More On That Toledo TV Thing

There's a good reason OMW doesn't touch on media news out of Toledo often - we don't really know the market.

A correction to our earlier report regarding Raycom Media (owner of WOIO/19 and WUAB/43 in Cleveland) and its merger with Liberty... it turns out that Raycom already owns Toledo NBC affiliate WNWO/24. Local media watchers there say it's likely that the newly merged Raycom will have to sell one of the two stations it'll end up with - the other being Liberty's WTOL/11. It's expected by most that WNWO will be on the Raycom chopping block because of the merger.

Though Raycom says it'll apply for a waiver, it isn't considered likely to be granted, according to an article in the Toledo Blade newspaper. TV duopoly ownership rules apparently don't permit one company owning both stations in a market the size of Toledo, but Raycom is allowed the duopoly in Cleveland with 19 and 43.

Browns Preseason: Week 3

OMW realizes that WOIO/19 is basically an easy target. We're trying, as we continue to grow this blog, not to take too many pot shots at the local CBS affiliate...even if they deserve pretty much all of them.

So, we'll open our look at the third Browns preseason TV telecast on a positive note.

* The team of Sam Rosen, Bob Golic and Brian Brennan is meshing well. And in his second week as a "co-analyst", after the disaster that was week one's play-by-play role, former Browns defensive lineman and WNIR afternoon host Golic was insightful, not just funny. For the first time this preseason, we got "off camera" information that really helped to understand what was going on, on the field between the Browns and the Carolina Panthers. (But, don't lose the humor, Bob! Especially if a game turns into a blowout, which we worry will happen a lot this season with the Browns, the humor is darn near necessary to keep people watching.) Golic wasn't perfect this week - for one, he didn't realize until being corrected by Brennan that having too few men on the field wouldn't result in a penalty - but it was, in general, a solid effort.

* 19 Action News anchor Sharon Reed turned in a pretty solid sideline performance, with much less of the fluff we saw from her in week one. 19 sports director Chuck Galeti also did well. Someone must have gotten out the word that actual, well, information was key, not just self-promoting and clowning. Good work.

All in all, it was a decent performance for WOIO in its third game as the Browns preseason home.

But - and you knew there'd be a but, didn't you? - there was one thing that bothered us, and it had nothing to do with the on-air performance of the massive WOIO Browns Coverage Team.

At OMW World Domination Headquarters in northwest Akron, we have digital cable and high-definition service from Adelphia. Though we actually haven't managed to buy a full-fledged HDTV set, we always watch shows on the digital/HD channel wherever possible, since the picture quality is outstanding even on our 32" Toshiba analog set...being fed from the cable box (Scientific Atlanta 8000HD) in down-converted 480i via a component video link. (If you don't understand any of that, trust us, it looks good.)

But of all the local over-air digital TV stations, WOIO-DT always looks the worst, when it comes to airing upconverted SD (standard definition) programming. We suspect some of this is because WOIO apparently has no digital equipment in its Reserve Square studios (SD, HD or whatever), and that it takes the final analog output from its switcher and feeds it directly into the upconverter. The result, and 19's general picture settings, means a washed out picture even in digital mode...which looks like someone there turned up the contrast way too high.

In the Browns game broadcast last night, the WOIO-DT version showed some problems with the upconverting from analog to digital. It was intermittent, but at times, live action looked like it was off in terms of the frame rate, and the video almost took on a film quality...or at least, it appeared even the live action was run through the same filter stations use to produce promos of stutter-stepping football players.

It didn't last the entire game, but it was enough at one point to drive OMW to Adelphia's analog cable channel 4.

We're told by others that this is an ongoing problem with WOIO-DT, and has been seen in other programming, including "19 Action News". (Note: When WOIO's digital signal reproduces CBS's prime time HDTV programming, it looks fine. And more good news for HDTV fans - OMW has learned that CBS' "Late Show with David Letterman" will broadcast in high-definition starting on Monday!)

And our final Browns preseason TV note: this word on the ratings for week one and two, courtesy of the Browns media staff:

"Despite a 90-minute inclement weather delay in the preseason opener against the New York Giants on August 13th, the game, which began at 8 p.m. and did not end until after midnight, had a 15.4 rating and a 29 share.

The second game in Detroit against the Lions on August 20th kicked-off at 1 p.m. and produced a 15.9 rating and 39 share, which was the highest rated show that day by 50%.

Both games were the highest rated television program in the city of Cleveland each week."

Friday, August 26, 2005

WOIO/WUAB Pick Up Some Sister Stations

It probably doesn't mean much for Cleveland CBS affiliate WOIO/19 and UPN affiliate WUAB/43, but their parent company (Raycom Media) is taking over the Liberty group of 15 TV stations.

With nearly all of its operations in the Southeast, Liberty's only Ohio station is Toledo CBS affliate WTOL/11 - better known as "Toledo 11". It's possible the merger will mean more cooperation between WTOL and the Raycom operations in Cleveland, at least in the area of news.

And no, Toledo TV watchers, don't expect naked anchorwomen after the deal becomes final. WOIO's ratings stunt, when anchor/reporter Sharon Reed doffed all her clothes to join the "naked art" photographing session with Spencer Tunick, did not sit well with the conservative ownership of Raycom, based in Montgomery, Alabama. (By the way, while we're in the Land of Naked Newswomen, OMW notes that former WKBN/27 Youngstown anchor Catherine Bosley was seen - fully clothed - doing fill-in reporting on "19 Action News" recently. Our only question: What took 'em so long? And when are the breathless "the ONLY station with TWO anchors who dared to bare it all" promos going to hit the WOIO airwaves?)

Thursday, August 25, 2005

More Loose Ends

Yes, we're still here at OMW. As seems to be normal, more happens when we're away from Northeast Ohio than when we're actually here. (If our base of operations ever moves out of the area, watch out! The entire radio spectrum in the area may combust spontaneously!)

But there are still some loose ends to tie up. Most of this has been elsewhere, but OMW feels the need to add it to our own record.

* OMW noticed the absence of long-time Akron Aeros play-by-play voice Jim Clark on WARF/1350 this week, with fill-in Joe Jazstremski doing the honors on a road trip to Erie. When his absence stretched to three days, we became concerned. But we hear there's no reason for worry, as Clark has been off to spend before-school-year vacation time with his family.

* The "brain drain" at Cleveland pubcaster WCPN/90.3 continues, as the Plain Dealer reports the departure of reporter/anchor Janet Babin...for a new gig with public radio's syndicated "Marketplace". The departure apparently doesn't concern "ideastream"'s management...but at least she didn't bolt for competitor WKSU/89.7, as another WCPN news staffer did recently. The mix between WCPN and co-owned WVIZ/25 has always been a bit uneasy, to outside observers, and may get even more so with the TV station moving downtown.

* The Plain Dealer discovers the Internet and radio, and notes WKSU's new classical and news audio streams. The possible use of these streams on WKSU's upcoming HD Radio feeds is touched upon, but sees no elaboration in Clint O'Connor's article. Also not mentioned: the long-standing rumor that WKSU will split its classical and news/talk feeds with the purchase of one of Akron's two non-commercial stations.

* It was a promising debut for veteran sports play-by-play man Sam Rosen over the weekend, who basically single-handedly rescued WOIO/19's pre-season Browns coverage. And a nice recovery for Bob Golic, the ex-Brown and WNIR/100.1 afternoon host who was, as expected, much more comfortable doing color commentary. But...that leaves the WOIO booth very crowded, as Golic now shares analyst duties with another ex-Browns player, Brian Brennan. And, the station's continuing to bring in a third "guest analyst", another former Browns player slot which rotates each week. Add to that mix WOIO's Chuck Galeti, Sharon Reed and Brian Duffy, and the size of the station's Browns crew is approaching the number of players on the field! OMW suspects that the station likes the "larger than life" numbers, and that they won't cut back anyway, since there are only two WOIO-produced games left.

* Radio trade site reports that WMMS/100.7 afternoon guy "Maxwell" has inked a new 3 year deal. It's a long-term deal in a slot that once featured another station vet, "Slats".

* AllAccess also reports the departure of "Johnny D" from Toledo CHR WVKS/92.5 "Kiss". As with the item about Cincinnati, we don't spend a lot of time in the Toledo market, but note that "Johnny" apparently did time at Cleveland's 92.3, back when it was "Jammin'" WZJM.

Sunday, August 21, 2005

"X-Star" Goes Dark in Cincy

OMW is mostly a Northeast Ohio production, focusing on markets like Cleveland, Akron, Canton and Youngstown. It's where we live, and the area of the state we know best. We mostly don't intend on covering Columbus and Cincinnati, but this is a unique one.

The "X-Star Radio Network", a far-flung regional network of public radio FM stations based at Xavier University's WVXU/91.7 in Cincinnati, is going off the air tonight. In its place will be a new NPR-based news/talk service operated by incumbent Cincinnati public radio station WGUC/90.9, which will move many NPR talk programs to the new outlet...and focus more on its classical music output. (Does this sound familiar, OMW regulars? It's happening in other markets around the country, and may well be duplicated here in Northeast Ohio if WKSU/89.7 gets its hands on one of Akron's two non-commercial outlets.)

Though it appears WVXU did air some NPR programming, like "Morning Edition" and "Fresh Air", it also carried some very unique locally-produced talk and music programming. "X-Star" was by far not your typical local NPR station, and starting Monday, it'll be chock full (mostly) of NPR's news/talk programming. In one nod to "X-Star", the new WVXU will carry old-time radio shows...though not the locally-hosted productions once heard on the station. It'll run the syndicated "When Radio Was" weeknights.

The closest "X-Star" outlet to Northern Ohio is down in Chillicothe - OMW has heard it while on the road. In addition to that station, the Cincinnati base and a station in West Union, WVXU also has repeaters in northern Michigan...stations we've also heard. In fact, OMW's first encounter with "X-Star" was while driving through that state.

It seems somewhat likely that the Michigan stations will be spun off to another operator, as it appears UNLIKELY that WGUC has any interest in serving that far-off area.

Saturday, August 20, 2005

It's a Bob Golic Triple Play!

STILL LIVE FROM THE UPPER MIDWEST -- We're not sure if the title on this one is a baseball joke about a former football player, or a radio joke, but regardless... we have one more item about WNIR afternoon host and Browns TV voice Bob Golic.

As reported below, Golic moves to the analyst's chair for the WOIO/19 broadcast of today's Browns/Detroit Lions game, which is at 1 PM this afternoon. Even WNIR boss Kaiser Bill hasn't figured out how to have Bob do his regular Saturday noon-4 PM show at the same time as he does color commentary on a televised football game, so someone's gotta fill in for Bob on 100.1 today.

WNIR morning host Stan Piatt says that there will indeed be a Golic on the air on WNIR this Saturday afternoon...and no, it's not Bob's brother, ESPN Radio morning co-host Mike Golic ("Mike and Mike"). It'll be Mrs. Bob Golic on the air in her husband's slot from noon until 4 PM. We're not really familiar with Mrs. Golic's on-air history, though there's a decent chance she has some experience in Los Angeles...where her husband did sports radio and TV for many years.

It'll be interesting, at any rate...

A MUCH Better Move For Bob Golic

LIVE FROM THE UPPER MIDWEST -- Just hours after OMW turned in our take on Bob Golic's performance on the Browns pre-season opener last weekend on WOIO/19, the Plain Dealer's Roger Brown reports in his Friday column that veteran play-by-play voice Sam Rosen has been hired to do the rest of the games, with Golic moving into a "co-analyst" role with fellow ex-Brown Brian Brennan.

And like Mr. Brown in his Monday column - where he held back a little less than we did in the item immediately below this one - we don't blame Bob Golic here. He never should have been asked to do the play-by-play in the first place, and will likely perform a thousand percent better not having to take that role. Golic clearly knows NFL football, and his insights will be welcome, but he isn't a play-by-play guy, despite his years of sports radio and TV experience after the end of his playing career (and after his last encounter with "Screech").

Kudos to both the Browns organization and WOIO/19 for addressing the problem sooner, rather than later, and for keeping the affable Golic in the booth in a more familiar role for him.

And OMW apologizes for our delayed coverage of this item. We're on the road, and have been dodging severe weather, travel fatigue and spotty Internet access...

Friday, August 19, 2005

Dear Bob

ON THE ROAD IN THE UPPER MIDWEST -- At OMW, we've been thinking about this for a while, and have been trying to word this as gently as possible.

It's almost a sport for This Space to take shots at Raycom Cleveland CBS affiliate WOIO/19 and its "19 Action News". It's what it would look like if the folks at "The Star" tabloid in Florida decided to do local TV news in Northeast Ohio. And we've already taken WOIO to task for, among other things, its "domination" of the Browns training camp and its inability to update the news ticker to reflect breaking news.

But, we like Bob Golic, the former Browns star who eventually landed in Los Angeles with the Raiders, who then did local sports radio and TV (and "Saved by the Bell: The College Years"), then came back to town to do an impossible task, replacing radio legend and 20-year WNIR/100.1 veteran afternoon drive talk show host Joe Finan in the Akron market.

Golic is no Joe. Not only is he not a liberal, he's not as "deep" as Joe when it comes to weighty topics. He has broadcast training, but his voice sometimes throws a slight "jock" feeling into issues discussion...though he IS a graduate of Notre Dame, and presumably learned much more than where to find Touchdown Jesus.

But on the whole, WNIR did much better than it could have expected in replacing a station fixture. And the personable Golic has an easy, comfortable feel that fits the homespun Portage County-based station, and the Akron market in general.

That's why it pains OMW to write this. Dear Bob: That was the worst major market local TV sports broadcast we ever saw on Saturday, and it pained us to watch you struggle through it.

The Cleveland Browns opened up their home exhibition season by trying to play the New York Giants, and the WNIR afternoon host and ex-Brown did play-by-play for WOIO/19, with ex-Brown and sometimes WTAM weekend sports talk voice Brian Brennan in the booth, with another Brown as guest analyst - Reggie Rucker. Even before the game was interrupted by fierce thunderstorms, it wasn't going well for Golic, especially. He sounded like he was rushed into the booth. (For that matter, maybe he was, since we heard him do his regular Saturday afternoon show on WNIR until 4 PM, presumably live via phone from Cleveland Browns Stadium!)

Vamping without a game for over an hour is not easy, and that's not even the biggest part of our complaint about Golic, Brennan and Rucker. The rest of the actual game was very uneven, and many times, it sounded like Golic didn't realize that he was the main play-by-play voice. He'd wait, watch a play go off, and start commentary.

It was all the more noticeable for those who had the NFL Network - as we do at OMW World HQ in suburban Akron - and saw much more polished efforts by pretty much every other team they carried, both in games and in highlights.

We're not ready to write off Golic as a play-by-play man, yet. Later in the game, as he got more of his footing, he was more confident. But the effort clearly needs some work, and we expect (and hope for) a better showing by the last pre-season game. And since we like Bob, we're pulling for it to happen.

We have a feeling Golic knows what happened Saturday, and he's the last person who wants to see a repeat of it...even without the lightning.

Thursday, August 18, 2005

Checking In From The Road

Greetings, OMW readers!

We're on the road, as mentioned, traversing much of the Upper Midwest with some friends until early next week. We've had some form of high-speed Internet access along the way each night, though "high-speed Internet" in hotels is becoming much like the advertised "continental breakfast"...your mileage, and speed, may vary.

One brief note which we'll expand upon later:

We're hearing that there may be a dispute behind the recent shuttering of Beacon Broadcasting's WGRP/940 Greenville PA, which returned to the air a while back simulcasting Youngstown market rimshot WLOA/1470 Farrell PA and its "Wexy 107" oldies format. The format, as any regular OMW reader could easily answer as a game show question, is the former oldies format from Beacon's WEXC/107.1 Greenville PA, now rimshotting the Youngstown market as Christian rocker "Freq 107".

The details are still not confirmed, so we won't go into much detail on what we've heard. But it appears that Beacon and new owner Harold Glunt, and WMVL/101.7 Linesville PA's Vilkie Communications, may not seeing eye to eye on some issues related to WGRP's return. WMVL operated WGRP in an LMA, and had filed to purchase it from Beacon late last year. The sale was approved by the FCC, but never consummated...but even after that, WMVL programmed the Greenville PA AM station until just a few weeks ago, at one point with an ABC satellite-delivered 24/7 AC format, and then with a simulcast of WMVL (oldies "Cool 101.7") itself. 940 then went off the air, until returning recently with the WLOA-based "Wexy 107" simulcast.

We'll have more news that's NOT from the World of Glunt later this week...

Friday, August 12, 2005

Odds and Ends: Friday Leftovers

Some stuff that's still sitting up there on our plate, either stuff we haven't touched yet, or stuff that's left over:

* Congratulations to WEWS/5 general manager Ric Harris, who's leaving the local ABC affiliate to head up the "digital media" section of NBC Universal. He'll help NBC forge ahead in Internet initiatives and other "new media" projects. Harris has been with "NewsChannel 5" for five years.

* The Cleveland Browns start their pre-season schedule against the New York Giants on Saturday night (WOIO/19, 8 PM). Two voices which should be very familiar to Browns fans and radio listeners handle the call - Akron market talker WNIR/100.1 afternoon host Bob Golic, a popular former Brown, does play-by-play. Will Kaiser Bill give him Saturday afternoon off of his radio show? Hmmm. Former Brown Brian Brennan, who's done on-air work for Browns AM flagship WTAM/1100, does color. The game will also be seen in Youngstown (WYTV/33), along with affiliates in Columbus and Toledo. And in case you missed it and have the NFL Network on cable or satellite, it'll rerun the game Sunday night at 11 PM ET, along with a high-definition feed (presumably from the Giants' home station, WNBC) at the same time. Adelphia cable carries NFL Network on digital channel 178, and NFL Network HD on channel 778.

* Speaking of Golic's radio home, it still hasn't happened yet - as the long-time CBS Radio News affiliate hasn't switched to ABC Information Network. OMW's sources have told us that WNIR was slated to pick up the affiliation after WTAM/1100 Cleveland dumped ABC. As we mentioned earlier, though WTAM and other Clear Channel talkers in Ohio have gone to FOX News Radio, there's no way to tell when WTAM's contract with ABC Information Network expires. We're pretty sure WTAM's continued carriage of ABC's Paul Harvey is not tied into this.

* Speaking of things that haven't happened yet - we're still in a holding pattern re: "JACK FM" in the Cleveland market, as Infinity's WQAL/104.1 and WDOK/102.1 (along with other Infinity Cleveland market stations) haven't budged from their current formats, despite rumors to the contrary. A suggestion: look to the start of the Fall book for ANY changes in the local Infinity cluster, and some of it may depend on how long Infinity hangs on to one-foot-out-the-door Howard Stern.

* Our usual listener/tipster in the area reports that Beacon Broadcasting's WGRP/940 Greenville PA, which had returned to the air simulcasting WLOA/1470's "Wexy 107" oldies format, is once again silent. There's no word if this is due to technical problems, or perhaps recent bad weather. When OMW visited the area recently, the 940 signal wasn't quite what it was last time the station was on the air, so maybe they're fixing it.

* Meanwhile, also in the Land of Glunt, we heard "Michael Angel" (aka soon-to-be-former majority owner Michael Arch) on Beacon's WANR/1570 Warren last Sunday, playing secular oldies music, and trying his best to turn the names or lyrics in the songs into religious messages. Yes, secular oldies, religious disk jockey. Our favorite was when "Mr. Angel" spun off the line "Jesus loves you more than you will know" from the Simon and Garfunkel hit "Mrs. Robinson" - without mentioning that whole Married Mother Seduces Young Student thing in the movie "The Graduate", by the character of the same name.

* OMW is once again on the road starting Sunday night, with a week long jaunt through much of the Upper Midwest. As usual, we're laptop equipped, and our stopping places are all reputed to have high-speed Internet access, so we won't stray TOO far from The Mighty Blog of Fun(tm). We also have full electronic access to most of our usual local radio and TV stations, thanks to modern technology, though we'll be occupied most of the day all week. But, if there's a big change, we'll be able to hear or see it.

The Edwards Thing Again

Now that we've finally figured out if the Cleveland Browns' top draft pick, Braylon Edwards, is signed or not (he is), we have some Brownie Points to make. For one, we spotted WEWS/5's "Chevy Network Dealers Sports Wrap Brought To You By Pepsi And In Part By Cintas" (OK, so we're kidding about everything after "Wrap", though we're pretty sure Cintas sponsors the Browns training camp this year.). And before WEWS sports director Chris Miller told us that Braylon Edwards had officially signed, a graphic told us that Channel 5 was, in big letters, "THE INDEPENDENT HOME OF BROWNS FANS". Shades of, say, WKNR/850, "The Voice of the Fan"!

The "OFFICIAL HOME OF THE BROWNS", WOIO/19, did manage to get the Edwards news conference on the air, live. For whatever reason, the OTHER "official" Browns broadcast partner, WTAM/1100 ("The AM Home of the Browns"), did NOT have the news conference on the air, though it's traditionally an event they would carry. On afternoon motormouth Mike Trivisonno's show, sports director Mike Snyder noted that they were "technically unable" to carry the news conference.

OMW observes that perhaps WTAM was down some equipment, given their assistance to their sister cluster in North Canton, which was hit by a lightning strike a few days ago. And they were doing one of those "Triv in Your Backyard" remotes...though OMW wonders why they don't have a dedicated line to Browns HQ in Berea. Or, perhaps, they could have an agreement with WOIO/19 to simply air 19's audio? Or, perhaps, Browns beat reporter Andre Knott could have held a cell phone up to Braylon? It worked for a Philadelphia sports radio reporter, who used the same technique to feed live audio of Terrell Owens' bizarre outside-his-house press conference the other day...

We didn't hear WKNR running the press conference, either. But we don't expect much from a station that used to air phone-line-fed sound bites from Berea two days after a Butch Davis press conference.

And oh, if you were a Browns fan trying to find out the latest on their high-profile holdout, being near a radio wasn't the place to be in general. With WTAM's Trivisonno wrapped up in his remote, and a long discussion on police chases (something we'd normally encourage from the station!), it was tough to find out the latest until the signing was actually imminent. WKNR was no better, with afternoon driver Kenny Roda spending a long amount of time talking about some odd basketball tournament at Gund Arena this weekend. It took a snippet in one of Ryan McNaughton's sports updates - delayed by an interminable amount of commercials until about 4 minutes after the hour - to learn that Edwards' agent was stuck in bad weather in Chicago, which caused the delay in the actual signing.

By the way, for all the complaining about WTAM's huge commercial load in PM drive, WKNR is not any better. It sounded like they were trying to match their larger competitor spot for spot!

Oh, and when Triv did get around to talking about it, he verbally sparred (playfully) with his foil, Mike Snyder, about whether there was an agreement or not, repeatedly, on and on... then complained that we wouldn't BE in the dark if Carmen Policy was still around. Oh, brother.

We would have much appreciated Triv, Roda, Snyder or someone mentioning the status of the situation once every so often, like, maybe, coming out of a break? We know we ask a lot here at OMW...but our standards are high.

Wednesday, August 10, 2005

Being "Official Home of the Browns" Means You Should Get It Right

UPDATE: As of 11:30 tonight, both WOIO/19 and WKYC/3 are reporting that the tide has turned AGAIN, and that there is a deal between Braylon Edwards and the Browns. The below was written before that news came out, and still stands on its own... -- OMW


Watch out, Reserve Square...this one is for you.

So, OMW caught all but the very beginning of tonight's "19 Action News", the 10 PM edition on WOIO/19 sister station WUAB/43. We saw lead sports anchor Chuck Galeti reporting live, "breaking news" from Berea, where Cleveland Browns first round draft pick Braylon Edwards had apparently bolted for his home in Detroit, just hours after his contract negotiations with the team had gone sour.

It's not Galeti's reporting we're calling into question here.

No, just a few minutes after Galeti correctly brought "19 Action News at 10" viewers up to date on the contract situation suddenly falling apart between the talented wide receiver and the team, the station's crawl let us know that Edwards was in Berea and was close to signing a contract, and could be in uniform as soon as tomorrow! Yes, stay tuned to "19 Action News" - The Official Home of the Browns - for details.


We've checked the wires (see this AP story via, and as near as we can tell, someone at Reserve Square neglected to update the crawl to reflect the most recent information. It wouldn't be so funny if WOIO didn't spend hours breathlessly proclaiming itself the Official Home of the Browns....a phrase that was repeated again in the crawl.


It's not the first time the 19 crawl has been behind reality. One Sunday night recently, it proclaimed that a local freeway would be shut down until early Monday morning for construction work...a project which actually wrapped up three hours before we saw the crawl. We knew that, because we saw competitor WEWS/5 air live video of the re-opened freeway.

Someone at Reserve Square has to shout out - "HEY! THE CRAWL! UPDATE IT!" - when something changes in a major news story. And as OMW enters this update, the "Braylon could be in uniform as soon as tomorrow" line has repeated itself on the crawl.

That Ashtabula Bull Ride Has Begun

Our good friend Scott Fybush at NorthEast Radio Watch happened to be within listening range of new Clear Channel country station WYBL/98.3 Ashtabula on its first day Tuesday, and reports that the station has indeed launched as advertised.

Scott tells OMW that "98.3 The Bull" charged out of the gate (too bad we don't get paid for our pithy prose!) with a live and local airstaff, and spent much of its first day with a live remote from the Ashtabula County Fair.

"The Bull's" website is up and running. It's using the new Clear Channel music station template, and for example, looks nearly identical in style to Cleveland CC hot AC WMVX "Mix 106.5"'s site.

The air staff:

Morning Drive: Roger McCoy (PD)
Middays: Jake Andrews
Afternoon Drive: Kristie Lee
Nights: Paul West

OMW has no idea how many of those personalities are live and not voice tracked, though it appears both drive time shifts are live. Ms. Lee's afternoon drive show is certainly live from the Ashtabula County Fair this week. (And what a way for a country station to launch - live from the county fair!)

According to Clear Channel sister news/talker WFUN/970's website, morning driver/program director Roger McCoy has been doing morning drive for that station. And we'll assume Ms. Lee is no relation to the Bob & Tom Show regular of the same name...

Tuesday, August 09, 2005

"Mix's" New Midday Mix

Local listeners have noticed a regular new midday host on WMVX/106.5 "Mix 106.5" - by the name of Lori Bradley. The Clear Channel Cleveland Hot AC station is still looking for an afternoon personality, as OMW noted a while back.

Lori's been saying the word "Mix" into a microphone for a long time. She worked at "Mix" stations in Austin and Houston, and has been voicetracking for the "Mix" station in Rochester, all of them owned by Clear Channel. She replaces other voices heard in middays on 106.5, including Kat Jackson (who's at CC sister WGAR/99.5) and Cindy Spicer. Her voicetracking studio must be busy, as we spotted her on the air personality list for contemporary Christian network "Air 1", the younger skewing side of satellite-driven "K-Love". "Air 1", of course, is not owned by Clear Channel.

Ms. Spicer has some career moves herself, according to our friends at in San Diego. She has been doing middays at Clear Channel's "My 94.1" in that market (itself, you guessed it, once known as "Mix 94.1"), but moves to CC sister country KUSS "US 95.7" as midday host and music director, next week. No, they're not changing the name of the country station to "Mix 95.7".

OMW doesn't know for sure, but we're pretty confident when we say it's likely neither woman is anywhere near the Clear Channel World Domination HQ on Oak Tree Boulevard. But, the afternoon drive "Mix" opening is indeed in-house.

Monday, August 08, 2005

Ashtabula - The Small Market Radio Capital of Northeast Ohio?

While waiting for WYBL/98.3 Ashtabula to unleash its country "Bull" tomorrow...

It turns out that there's yet ANOTHER possible FM station in Ashtabula's future. OMW stumbled upon this allocation from the FCC earlier this year...granting a move by long-time broadcast engineer Dana Puopolo to add a class A allocation on 96.1 FM in Ashtabula. According to our good friends at NorthEast Radio Watch, Puopolo originally tried for an allocation on 95.9 just up I-90 in Erie a couple of years ago. Unlike the Erie attempt, the Ashtabula allocation for 96.1 FM is officially on the books, though Puopolo hasn't yet applied to put a station on there.

As NERW's Scott Fybush pointed out, putting an FM on in that section of the band along the Lake Erie coastline is quite a squeeze, considering the monster signal pushing across the lake from rocker "FM 96", otherwise known as CFPL-FM/95.9 London, Ontario, Canada. In fact, on our trip into Ashtabula over the weekend, OMW heard 95.9 out of Canada along the lake just east of Cleveland, with a signal that was nearly as strong as Northeast Ohio's locals.

If you read the allocation, you'll note that Puopolo's request reportedly works out interference issues with CFPL-FM as a "specially negotiated, short-spaced allotment", and got the approval of Canada's version of the FCC for the allocation. Maybe it was the nudge one channel over to 96.1, and the move to Ashtabula, that sealed it for Puopolo.

The Ashtabula market has seen two new FM signons in recent years. In addition to the new WYBL/98.3, Clear Channel also added WFXJ/107.5 North Kingsville, now running classic rock as "107.5 The Fox". Puopolo appears to have no connection with Clear Channel, being a broadcast engineer who's worked in markets such as Boston and Los Angeles. He's most recently been listed as chief engineer for MultiCultural Radio's Los Angeles operations.

With two new FMs in a couple of years, and a third on the way sometime in the next couple of years or so, will economically depressed area...become over-radioed?

No, "19 Action News", You Don't Own The Browns

Cleveland CBS affiliate WOIO/19 has made a big deal about their new deal with the NFL's Cleveland Browns. Along with broadcasting the team's pre-season games, and producing other programs, 19 proudly proclaims itself "The Official Home of the Browns" on the air.

Someone might want to send a note down to Reserve Square to remind them that WOIO only bought the rights to AIR the Browns, not to run the training camp in Berea.

OMW hears that WOIO's staffers spent much of the first week of training camp acting like they were an extension of the team. The "last straw", as we're told, involved a 19 producer clearing out a refrigerator full of bottled water to deliver to the "Action News" team at the camp. (That whole thing about having water for the TEAM, in 90-degree weather, must have gotten past the producer.)

And as a result, from what we've been told, WOIO's staffers no longer have unfettered reign in Berea. They're still allowed in the building, of course, but with a Browns escort. Outside work at the practice field is unaffected.

Though it's quite easy to poke fun at the folks at Reserve Square, we'll end this missive with a positive note. Though he acts like a hyperactive high school basketball coach on camera, especially when there's severe weather, we're hearing nothing but nice things about 19 weathercaster Jeff Tanchak. Especially considering the above, he's a great ambassador for the station, and his presence may smooth over at least some of the ruffled feathers from the station's "we own this place" attitude at training camp...

Sunday, August 07, 2005

Robin Swoboda Stops "Fishing" August 19th

A confirmation on our earlier report... as OMW hears the news from WFHM/95.5 Cleveland "The Fish" morning co-host Robin Swoboda.

Robin tells OMW that her last day at the Salem contemporary Christian station will be August 19th. And as we indicated in the earlier report, Mrs. Swoboda-Wagner tells us that it's indeed for family reasons. Her husband, former Cleveland Browns punter Bryan Wagner, now has a teaching job which starts at 7:45, and her three children have a new school with a new starting time of 9 AM...and mom's going to take them to school herself. After all, "the thought of hiring a stranger to do it just seems...well, strange!!", says the former local TV news anchor, whom we remember very well from her days at WJW's "NewsCenter 8".

Robin adds in her note to OMW, "Look for me to pop up here or there every once in awhile...just not at the expense of the children!"

Once again, in our opinion, it's good to see someone putting "family first" in their real life, and not just using it as a slogan. (Robin, or anyone, by the way, if you want to contact us directly via E-Mail, feel free to write "OhioMediaWatch" [at] gmail [dot] com, our new address. Or find the E-Mail link under our profile link, at the top left hand side of this page.)

Yes, Our Report Was No...Uh...Bull

When stations are in the throes of format changes, and are stunting, OMW can't resist.

We piled into the newly-tagged OMW Mobile this afternoon and headed for Ashtabula, where we confirmed our earlier listener report of WYBL/98.3's stunting. The station abandoned its temporary oldies format, and is now running a continuous loop of country songs with the word "country" in them. (We're no country music experts at OMW, but it sounds like they're all from the same artist.)

And new since our last report - the station is actually using "The Bull" on air to refer to its upcoming format, and proclaims that "The Bull ride starts Tuesday morning at 6".

From the song clips they've been using, it sounds like "The Bull" is going to be a modern/hot country station, perhaps somewhat more so than the other country outlet in the region, Geneva's WKKY/104.7. As noted here in OMW before, WKKY spends a lot of time serving Lake County, even to the point of running Lake County Captains baseball games on Saturday evenings.

A full-bore effort at a contemporary country format by Clear Channel Ashtabula may ensure that WKKY spends even less time paying attention to areas east of Geneva. Of course, anyone who knows the area will tell you that there's more money in Lake County, anyway...but WYBL's signal doesn't serve much of Lake County, which they'd assuredly leave to Clear Channel Cleveland big sister station WGAR/99.5.

By the way, OMW has recorded some clips of this stunting. At some point, as soon as we can figure out where to put it, we'll start linking audio we've recorded on the road...

Saturday, August 06, 2005

The Bull's About To Launch

Update on the story of new Clear Channel oldies WYBL/98.3 Ashtabula:

A listener in the region tells us that they've dumped the temporary oldies format entirely, and are now stunting with such songs as "Gone Country", "Rock My World, Little Country Girl" and other songs with the word "country" in them, in a continuous loop.

OMW reported earlier that WYBL was slipping country songs into the oldies format, and was hinting at a format change with "bull noises". It's expected that WYBL will adopt a typical country station name, "98.3 The Bull", and eagle eyed web surfers would do well to keep checking ""...which is currently dead, but does have a server attached to it.

If this were a larger market, we'd wonder if this stunting was a little TOO perfect, and wonder if CC Ashtabula had a different format up its sleeve...

Friday, August 05, 2005

Lightning Strikes...And Not The Lou Christie Song

At OMW World Headquarters overnight Thursday into Friday morning, we rode through some lines of heavy thunderstorms safely, and didn't lose power or have any problems once. The folks at Clear Channel Akron/Canton wish they could say the same.

OMW hears that lightning directly struck the tall tower behind the CC Akron/Canton building on Freedom Avenue in North Canton, in heavy thunderstorm weather early Friday morning. It's believed the tower was struck at least twice.

The damage was so severe that the mighty WKDD/98.1, the cluster's hot AC station, is now operating off of a $300 Mackie mixer the station bought at a music store. Talker WHLO/640 is operating out of a news booth at the station. Liberal talk WARF/1350 "Radio Free Ohio" is mostly unaffected, though OMW thought we heard some STL noise while sitting in line at the Ohio eCheck station literally in the shadow of 1350's towers off State Road in Cuyahoga Falls. (Yes, it's that time of year for the OMW Mobile.)

Other equipment was also fried, including production gear, ISDN units and the like. The estimated total damage that needs to be repaired or replaced is over $50,000.

And the GOOD news? There was no fire, and very thankfully, there were no injuries. All three stations recovered by afternoon as far as their on-air presence - due to the temporary setup described above.

But if you happen to run into someone in North Canton who smells like they've been in a fire, ask them where they work...

Thursday, August 04, 2005

Telegraphing A New Format In Ashtabula

It's not like Clear Channel's Ashtabula cluster wants to hide its intentions with new signon WYBL/98.3.

More than once here in OMW, we've pointed to market rumors and other signs that the new station, which hit the air running automated oldies with no production other than a brief legal ID, would go country as "The Bull"...a name even suggested by the "WYBL" calls.

A listener in the region now tells OMW that WYBL has "now added some country into its oldies mix, and they are now running teasers that say 'More country, better country, coming soon'". Our tipster also notifies us that they're throwing in sounds of a "bull whip cracking".

You think they're gonna change formats, soon?

As noted earlier here in OMW, there's already a country station serving the Ashtabula region: Geneva's WKKY/104.7, otherwise known as "One Reason Classical WCLV/104.9 Lorain Can't Move East". WKKY has a local morning show and a local afternoon drive show, and otherwise, last we heard it, was running ABC's satellite-delivered "Country Coast to Coast" format, usually positioned as "America's Best Country" or "The Best Country Around". (NOTE: We've edited this to indicate WKKY's broader local programming.) It's the same format Wooster's WQKT/104.5 ran until switching to Westwood One's similar full-time satellite country format.

WKKY makes a pretty concerted effort at serving areas to their west along the I-90 corridor, such as much of Lake County (Mentor, Painesville, etc.). 104.7's stick is actually west of Geneva, on the eastern edge of Lake County. There could very well be enough room for WKKY to focus there, and WYBL to focus on Ashtabula and its nearby areas. One thing's for sure...the Bull is about to be unleashed.

Wednesday, August 03, 2005

Another Cleveland "Where Are They Now" Entry: Jaz McKay

You might remember Jaz McKay from his stint as a talk show host at the station then known as
"3WE", today's WTAM/1100 Cleveland. He was one in a very long line of what could be called "talk radio experiments" on the station, before Jacor bought it and transformed it into today's Clear Channel-owned news/talk powerhouse.

Jaz has, until recently, done evenings at Infinity talk KMJ/580 in Fresno, California. As of August 22nd, according to AllAccess, he'll be working just down California Highway 99 in middays at Buckley talk KNZR/1560 Bakersfield CA.

It's a direct market trade, if not a direct station trade. KMJ's new evening host is Inga Barks, who starts today, and is midday host at Bakersfield's OTHER (and more popular) talk station, KERN/1410. (NOTE: We're told that Barks will continue doing her KERN show, in addition to doing the KMJ evening slot.)

Both Fresno and Bakersfield are a LONG way from Cleveland.

The Harold Glunt Wexy Oldies Empire Expands

From the department of "One of Our Favorite Obsessions": A listener along the Ohio/PA border reports that once-silent WGRP/940 Greenville PA has returned to the air.

Take a guess what format it's running! Go on, we'll wait.

We'll give you a hint - what format does Beacon Broadcasting's Harold Glunt run on the AM dial? You guessed it...the "Wexy 107" oldies format once heard on WGRP sister station WEXC/107.1 in that same city. 107.1 has been Youngstown-targetting Christian rocker "Freq 107" for a few weeks now. "Wexy 107" has also been running the past few weeks on new Beacon acquisition WLOA/1470 Farrell PA.

And actually, it's no surprise, since along with listing the now-off-in-other-format 107.1 in its legal IDs, the new "Wexy 107" incarnation has also ID'ed the until-now-silent WGRP, even when it was not actually on the air! So, you have two small AM stations running the unchanged oldies format that used to run on the FM in Greenville, complete with its frequency number, and no acknowledgement of the AM stations except at legal ID time. Yep, that makes sense to US.

We're still waiting to hear if Beacon's WANR/1570 Warren or new acquisition WRTK/1540 Niles will join in the Wexy party at some point, as rumored earlier right here in OMW...

Job Listing: WQAL/Cleveland Looking For Part-Time Air Talent

From AllAccess:


WQAL - Cleveland’s Q104 “90’s & Now” needs part-time air talent. Work with a new digital facility this summer and with a team who wins. Duties include weekend on-air shifts. At least 2 years on-air experience preferred. Send your CD and resume to WQAL, Attn: Allan Fee, 1 Radio Lane, Cleveland, OH 44114. Please, no calls.

Infinity Broadcasting is an Equal Opportunity Employer.

The Stick Has Landed In Florida

AllAccess reports that former Clear Channel Cleveland WAKS/96.5 "Kiss FM" jock "Stick on the Radio" is taking nights at CC's CHR "XL 106.7" in Orlando. He's scheduled to start in late August.

"Stick" left Cleveland's Kiss FM after it was announced that former Kiss APD/MD Kasper, a regular reader of This Space, was returning to his old job in Cleveland...from his current gig at CC sister CHR "Q102" in Philadelphia.

Oh, one housekeeping issue: We have a new E-Mail address. It's linked in the profile link at the very left of this blog. Feel free to drop us a line and let us know you're reading OMW! And if you'd like to share some news you know about, or have heard, please also drop us a line. We hear from people in many of the local broadcast outlets, and anyone who's fed us stuff in the past will tell you that we keep our sources confidential. (Of course, since we do, we can't tell you who's fed us stuff. Just thinking about that circular thought is baffling. ;) )

Why September 22nd Could Be A Big Day at Infinity/Cleveland

This little nugget, from dependable Chicago Sun-Times media columnist Robert Feder, caught the eye of OMW:

Mancow, Johnny B. could be on the move

The upshot in the column is that Infinity and Emmis are reportedly negotiating over a game of musical chairs among three of the Chicago market's bigger stations. If it all falls into place, it'd land WKQX/101.1/TRN FM morning host Erich "Mancow" Muller onto Infinity's hot talk WCKG/105.9, as the replacement for Howard Stern, who'd be pulled off WCKG and other Infinity stations on September 22nd (start of the Fall ratings period).

This move - the end of Stern's terrestrial radio run over three months before Stern joins Sirius Satellite Radio - has been speculated repeatedly by none other than the King of All Media himself. The theory, of course, is that Stern's affiliates would not be able to use his Fall 2005 ratings to sell spot time in January 2006, after he's gone. Feder's column also mentions another Chicago legendary host, Jonathan Brandmeier, but that part doesn't affect Cleveland.

No, what affects us here in Northeast Ohio is Infinity's reported willingness to shut down the Stern Machine at the start of the Fall 2005 ratings book, which puts a whole OTHER set of things into motion among Infinity's Cleveland market stations.

You might recall that WXTM/92.3 "Xtreme Radio" morning star "Rover" recently signed a new contract with Infinity. In that contract, it was actually spelled out that Infinity would syndicate his show, and he was expected to pick up many of the markets being vacated by Howard Stern. Infinity appears to have settled on a regional strategy to fill the Stern hole, with Rover, former Van Halen frontman David Lee Roth and "Loveline" host Adam Carolla being mentioned in that mix.

Enter Mancow. According to the Feder column, if this all happens, the Cow would get "at least" 6 former Stern stations on his affiliate list.

You'll only need to look at a map to see how this spells trouble for Rover. Roth would likely get, in addition to Stern's flagship WKRK/New York, stations in markets like Philadelphia and Boston. Carolla would do a live west coast show out of KLSX/Los Angeles for markets like San Diego and Sacramento. And with Mancow in this mix now, he gets new home base WCKG/Chicago, and a half-dozen other Midwest markets.

Does the Cow push Rover out of markets like Detroit, Cincinnati and other major Midwest cities? Rover already airs, at last check, on two non-Stern Columbus and in Madison, Wisconsin. If Mancow makes this move, Rover can likely axe any hopes of being on in Chicago, and maybe other markets he thought he was ticketed for, when Stern ceases being heard on terrestrial radio.

Meanwhile, back at Infinity/Cleveland, is this speculation the reason we haven't heard JACK... er...JACK FM, that is...out of any of their local stations yet, despite industry rumors? Are they waiting to do it all at once if Stern's being pushed out of the Infinity fold a few months early? Is September 22nd the date to watch?

You make the call. We're just throwing stuff up against the OMW Wall again, seeing if any of it sticks. At least we're open about the speculation...

Tuesday, August 02, 2005

Job Listing: CC Akron/Canton Looking for NTR/Marketing Director

Posted in various places by Clear Channel's Keith Kennedy:


NTR/Marketing Director Akron, Ohio

At Clear Channel Akron/Canton (Hot AC WKDD/Newstalk 640 WHLO and Progressive talk 1350am Radio Free Ohio) we are losing one of the best in the business! If you can conceive, plan, and manage both large and small events; hire, train and manage a staff; conceive, and design effective marketing pieces; and have a background in graphic design; we need to talk Email resumes to: (danlankford at clearchannel dot com) or via mail to 7755 Freedom Avenue, North Canton, Ohio 44720.

That Confusing ABC/FOX Shuffle, Part Five

Continuing in our quest to keep track of what network radio newscasts are being run at various Northeast Ohio radio stations:

* It turns out that OMW was mistaken, and a well-informed source at the Akron Radio Center tells us that WAKR/1590 Akron runs the ABC Entertainment hourly news feed. As we noted to the source, it's difficult to tell the difference between the ABC Entertainment, Direction, and other feeds that aren't the Information network. The primary difference between the non-Info network casts is length and the top-of-cast sounder.

* A listener has already heard Clear Channel talker WHLO/640 Akron running the FOX News Radio hourly news product, as of tonight. OMW will verify this, but not before going to sleep. :)

* If they haven't made the switch from ABC Information already, we presume it'll be the ABC Direction news feed that will air on Clear Channel liberal talker WARF/1350 Akron in the next while. (See above about WAKR's Entertainment feed.)

* We did hear Clear Channel talker WTAM/1100 Cleveland's new Fox News Radio-based ID/top of the hour news sounder. We're still getting used to it. It's not bad, considering, but OMW loved the "boom-boom-BOOM" of the old ABC-based sounder.

* Still undetermined - when ABC Information Network will start on MediaCom Akron market talker WNIR/100.1 Kent. We'll pull something out of the air, and guess it'll be before August 8th. We'll make the logical assumption that the ABC-I product will also grace the 1000 watt directional daytime signal of WNIR sister station WJMP/1520 Kent(/Akron/Cleveland/Mars/Jupiter), now the area's Fox Sports Radio affiliate.

* Could CBS Radio News try selling their product to WAKR/1590? They could, but WAKR is a long-time Paul Harvey affiliate. ABC may be willing to let WTAM/1100 let go of the ABC-I designation (and inventory) to save Harvey's clearance on a 50,000 watt top-30 market flamethrower, but likely wouldn't be as flexible for an Akron market station.

Monday, August 01, 2005

Mini Update: Re: WCER/Canton's New Local Show

Talk/religious WCER/900 Canton's new early evening local talk show apparently won't start until the third week in August, according to station OM John Amrhein. had reported the show, with host Jason Burnette, would begin Monday at 6 PM.

And a question for John, if he's reading: Why 6-7 PM? That time slot will be brutal for Jason when WCER is forced to go to its anemic night power (75 watts!) before 6, in the late fall and winter...