Some items to keep your information hunger pangs from getting TOO loud...
SOME ADDITIONS TO THE PLUTO FILE: We have a couple of more questions answered about the move of Akron Beacon Journal sports columnist Terry Pluto to the Cleveland Plain Dealer.
Thanks to the PD's own article about their now-returning sportswriter (well, after that small 22 year break in Akron), we know that Pluto's bringing his full ABJ repetoire to the PD sometime around Labor Day.
That includes not only his popular Sunday "Notes" column, but also includes the regular column on faith that he's been writing for the Beacon.
It's very difficult to overestimate the impact Pluto's departure will have on the struggling Akron paper, which has lost other high-profile columnists and names (like, for example, Regina Brett to the PD) since Black Press took over operations at 44 E. Exchange Street.
Unlike any other ABJ writer or columnist, Pluto had a national presence. His books, for example, were not all about Cleveland sports. What we understand is a very entertaining book on the old American Basketball Association is high on a list of cherished sports books nationwide, and considered by sports purists to be the ultimate book on the former NBA competitor league.
Not to denigrate the fine folks still left at the Beacon - like former movie critic, sports/media columnist and OMW reader George M. Thomas - but the new ownership seems determined, in our eyes, to fit the Beacon into the role of a shrinking mid-sized city's daily newspaper. In that vein, we hope they keep their bill with the AP wire current.
Just our opinion...
ANOTHER "BIG JUAN": You've gotta hand it to Cincinnati Clear Channel talker WLW/700 "The Big One".
Earlier, a controversial billboard campaign titled "The Big Juan" poked fun at the issue of illegal immigration - and riled up Hispanic protestors in the Queen City as well.
The resulting mess got a lot of free publicity for WLW.
And it's happening again.
This time, according to the blog of Cincinnati Enquirer radio/TV guru John Kiesewetter, it's an on-air promo offering listeners "a few useful phrases next time you converse with an illegal alien."
The promo is described (we haven't heard it) as featuring Spanish-language music in the background, and phrases like "be careful with those hedge clippers around the garden" translated into English from Spanish.
As you might expect, it's not going over well with activists representing the Hispanic community. Kiese says one such activist, representing a national group, is calling for the ouster of Clear Channel market manager Chuck Fredrick.
Meanwhile, as the noise grows, so does WLW's free publicity. As long as the immigration issue is in the news, and as long as WLW talk show hosts continue to talk about it, the station will run promotional campaigns about it...
Not related, but on the same blog - Kiese notes a Cincinnati Reds doubleheader with the Pittsburgh Pirates will be the first Reds doubleheader in HD on FOX Sports Net Ohio, on August 28th. One of the games is a makeup game from earlier in the season.
That, of course, is the FSN Ohio Cincinnati branch network, generally not seen north of Columbus...
SPEAKING OF COLUMBUS: Where the PD slot at Saga AC outlet WSNY/94.7 "Sunny 95" is still open, that is.
We're just openly wondering if any Northeast Ohio programmers are looking to make the trek down I-71, to do more than to check out an Ohio State game.
It's been done in reverse, of course. "Sunny's" long-time PD, Don Hallett, went up to Clear Channel hot AC outlet WMVX/106.5 in Cleveland, where he lasted about a year and a half before losing his job due to "consolidation".
Hallett landed as program director of two Beasley Broadcasting outlets in Las Vegas, KSTJ/102.7 "Star 102.7" and KKLZ/96.3 "Classic Hits 96.3". He joined Beasley in April to program KSTJ, and added KKLZ to his oversight a week ago...
CALLER TO PROFESSIONAL: We don't have details right now, but OMW understands a member of the Cleveland Sports Talk Regular Caller Universe may actually be seen on the air soon, somewhere not that terribly far from our coverage area, as a TV sportscaster.
This one's good...stay tuned!
DEPARTURE: We'll admit, we don't really keep track of Dover-New Philadelphia radio mainstay WJER/1450 as much as we did back in the days when its FM signal was being sent north.
But OMW can confirm, now, that WJER morning host Randy Fox has left the building, leaving morning host duties, solo, for now, to sports director Bill Morgan.
That can't last long, since Morgan is up to his headphones in other work, including his job with the University of Akron's Zip Sports Network - heard on Clear Channel sports WARF/1350 Akron "SportsRadio 1350".
The basketball season keeps Morgan the busiest...in addition to hosting weekly shows for ZSN, Morgan does women's basketball play-by-play...so maybe he's got a chance to fit it all in for the next couple of months or so.
AND THAT COMPETITOR: We're aware of the item above appearing a couple of days or so ago on the new Northeast Ohio Radio Report website.
Well, we think so, because we don't read it - on purpose.
Not that we're upset at them, or that we don't think they're doing a good job.
It's kind of a "Clean Room" atmosphere that prompts us to say that. Simply put, we don't want any rumor items they post stuck in the back of our heads, and we continue to put up this report independently, with our own sources.
We'll invite the NEORR folks to give us a heads up on any confirmed, factual item they post, and we'll give them the proper credit - as we have here.
If we report something here after it appears on that site, generally, we haven't even seen it. We have our own independent network of sources, and sometimes, they'll have rumors and rumblings before we will. Some sources will tip off both blogs.
And if you see something over there and want to give us the heads up, please identify the site, so we know where it came from. Again, factual/confirmed items - we'll give them credit.
We welcome our friendly competitors, and continue to wish the NEORR folks well!