A few days ago in an RBR-TVBR interview National Hispanic Media Coalition President and CEO Alex Nogales was demanding that Clear Channel fire “John & Ken” from top-rated KFI-AM Los Angeles. Now the NHMC has added a video pitch as well – and has named additional Clear Channel hosts it accuses of engaging in hate speech.
In a companion report as the video was posted on YouTube, NHMC listed accusations against numerous Clear Channel hosts, ranging from syndicated giant Rush Limbaugh to John and Ken, who are local to KFI. Also thrown in were some hosts not syndicated by Clear Channel, such as Michael Savage and Neal Boortz, although they may be carried by some Clear Channel stations. Even liberal host Randi Rhodes, now syndicated by Clear Channel, was cited for an insult of Hilary Clinton off-air in a stage show that got Rhodes fired from Air America in 2008. Click here to read the two-page pdf that NHMC bills as an exposé.
Rather than accepting the idea that market forces have made the Clear Channel hosts successful, NHMC claims it is the other way around – that they make money because Clear Channel is so big.
“These pundits regularly spread vitriol against people of color, women, gays and lesbians, the poor, and others. Clear Channel is the largest radio conglomerate in the U.S. It has grown too big to fail. Even in the face of massive outcry and successful advertiser boycotts, hate pundits like Rush Limbaugh, John Kobylt and Ken Chiampou remain on air. Why? Rather than selling advertising time by station, Clear Channel regularly sells placements for multiple stations at the same time. This gives Clear Channel greater bargaining power and reduces its competition. When responsible companies call Clear Channel to explicitly request that their ads not air on hate programs, they are just shifted to a different time period or station. This negates the ability of the free market to dictate content. In other words, because Clear channel owns so many stations, it can ignore community outcry over its programming, while still continuing to profit. And its CEO, John Hogan, is standing behind this hate speech profit model.
Hogan can expect to find his email inbox to be full and his telephone voicemail overflowing, since NHMC is distributing both his email address and phone number and urging people to call Hogan and demand that he take “John & Ken” off the air.
RBR-TVBR observation: Clear Channel may be most noted for its conservative Talk hosts, but it’s interesting that one of the radio giant’s liberal hosts was blasted by NHMC as well.