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Welcome to RBR's Daily Epaper
Volume 23, Issue 233, Jim Carnegie, Editor & Publisher
Friday Morning December 1st, 2006

Radio News ®

Levine quits Arbitron
Radio Advisory Council

Saying he was fed up with rate increases, Galaxy Communications CEO Ed Levine has resigned from the Arbitron Radio Advisory Council and signed a contract to have Eastlan provide radio ratings in Syracuse (Arbitron #82), beginning with the Winter 2007 book. The upstate New York market is the largest to date to be surveyed by Eastlan. "It really was a simple decision," Levine told RBR. After seeing his payments to Arbitron go up 46% for the Syracuse market in the past five years, Levine said he could not justify paying for the diary ratings service, so he elected to go with a phone survey from Eastlan. Levine said his people will be using the Eastlan numbers for regional and national sales and he has set aside bonus cash for his own sales staff and those at his rep, D&R, to help drive sales. Of course, many ad agencies will have Arbitron numbers at their disposal, but Galaxy will be pitching the results from Eastlan. With radio industry revenues nearly stagnant for the past few years, Levine complained that Arbitron's stock has been trading at five-year highs. "Something is wrong with this picture," he said. The Galaxy CEO told RBR that his Arbitron contracts expired in all three of his markets with the release of the Summer 2006 book. For now, Galaxy will have Eastlan only in Syracuse, which he described as the "most ratings dependent," with no ratings service in Utica-Rome or Albany, NY. Levine predicts that other independent broadcasters will be exiting Arbitron due to pricing. He lamented that the two biggest operators, Clear Channel and CBS Radio (then Infinity) "both blinked" when each had contract standoffs with Arbitron in recent years, rather than standing their ground to open the market for a new ratings competitor. Levine had 13 months to go on his three-year term as an Arbitron Radio Advisory Council member. Contacted by RBR, Arbitron VP of Communications Thom Mocarsky had only this to say: "We thank Mr. Levine for his service and look forward to working with him in the future."

Ownership vote
late next year at earliest

That is what staffers of FCC Commissioner Robert McDowell (R) are reported to have said in a private investor meeting arranged by Bank of America Securities. BofA analyst Jonathan Jacoby also noted that there is less FCC opposition than he expected to a potential merger of XM and Sirius. Meanwhile, the private briefing by FCC officials that Jacoby arranged for investment clients at a hotel near Commission headquarters drew fire from the Associated Press, whose reporter was escorted out as a gatecrasher. RBR/TVBR was not invited either, but did receive Jacoby's report on the day of meetings that he sent out to clients. Working for the newest FCC member, the McDowell representatives said their boss was waiting to see the record before making his mind up on new ownership rules for radio, TV and crossownership with newspapers. They noted that a number of research studies won't be completed until Q1 or Q2 of next year and a planned series of hearings won't be finished until mid-year, so no vote on new ownership rules is likely to take place until late 2007. Representatives of Commissioner Jonathan Adelstein (D) told the investor group that "the public is well served by the current setup" of two competing satellite radio operators. But Jacoby said an experienced communications attorney present for the sessions said he believed a merger of Sirius and XM could win the three (of five) votes required for a merger because satellite radio is viewed as just one part of a broader market for the distribution of music. Nonetheless, he admitted the chances of winning such a merger approval had decreased with the Democrats winning back control of Congress. In a bit of an understatement, Jacoby also noted that "NAB likely would lobby heavily against such a combo."

RBR observation: The question of whether or not a satellite radio merger could win FCC approval is irrelevant unless the two want to merge. While Sirius is interested, it appears XM is not. Jacoby notes correctly that a merger might be more palatable to regulators if the cash flow objectives promised by both satellite companies - FCF in 2007 - aren't met. We agree that the darker the financial picture for satellite radio, the easier it will be to sell a merger. Still, we doubt that anything short of an actual bankruptcy court filing would be sufficient to make such a merger pass muster inside the beltway.

Presidential plans
may have certain effects

A Democrat has jumped into the pool for the presidential circus which will some say officially began the day after the midterm elections were in the books. At just about the same time, a Republican has exited. The Democratic entrant has to be considered a dark horse at this point, but he still may wield influence on the process in excess of his what standing in the polls would lead one to expect. That's because Gov. Tom Vilsack (D) is the chief executive of the great state of Iowa. If there's any place in the nation where he has name recognition that would be it. Of course, the Iowa caucuses will constitute Round One of the 2008 presidential sweepstakes. His presence there may cause other potential Democratic candidates who do not find the Midwest to be prime territory to use his presence as a favorite son as an excuse to skip the state entirely. This may have some impact on the Iowa state economy and its media community. On the other side of the divide, outgoing Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist (R-TN) has announced his decision to stay out of the race. He was planning to run as a true conservative, and his absence will leave a little more room on that track for Sen. Sam Brownback (R-KS), although whether or not it will be enough to brighten the color of Brownback's own horse is yet to be seen. The key broadcasting moment on Brownback's resume is his sponsorship of the Senate version of the Broadcast Decency Act which raised the top FCC fine to 325K. We are still waiting for the first sufficiently indecent broadcaster to step up to the plate and draw the prime punishment.

Honda to gear up 650,000 '07 vehicles with XM
XM Satellite Radio announced American Honda will factory- install XM in more than 650,000 of its 2007 model year vehicles. Honda was an original strategic partner in the launch of XM, and introduced its first factory-installed XM vehicles in 2003. Honda produced more than 200,000 vehicles with XM in 2004; over 400,000 in 2005; over 550,000 in 2006; and is projecting production of more than 650,000 factory-installed XM units for 2007 model vehicles. XM is a factory-installed feature on 2007 Honda models including Civic, Ridgeline, Accord, Accord Hybrid, CRV, Pilot, Odyssey and Element. XM is also a standard factory-installed feature on all 2007 Acura models.

Polarizing the population, part 2
We continue our exploration of the media's role in creating an increasingly polarized electorate, based on the lecture of Diana C. Mutz at the Brookings Institute 11/28/06. The second aspect of media coverage which tends to push people to the extremes, she said, is the way that elections are covered. It all boils down to the horse race aspect of politics, which is how it tends to be covered these days. The format of news programming in the electronic media is not always well suited to a substantive look at complex issues, and for all media, that approach can be boring and causes the audience to go away. So horse race coverage dominates. The topics are tactics, strategy and manipulation. It's about triangulation, the Southern strategy. It's the economy, stupid. It may not seem obvious how this leads to polarization, but it does in that it gives the losers not only an excuse for losing other than blaming their beliefs, their ideas and their proposals. It let's them blame Karl Rove or James Carville for using political technique to defeat their own obviously superior ideas. This not only fuels anger on the losing side, it often motivates them to redouble their efforts next time around in so doing feeds polarization. More to come.

2007 seen as tough year for
newspaper and TV companies

The Fitch bond rating company is warning that 2007 could be a tough year for companies in both the newspaper business and broadcast TV as both face advertising revenue challenges. While TV had strong revenues this year, Fitch warns that the 2006 gains came largely from political spending and masked underlying weakness. "Fitch believes that the 2006-2007 upfront signaled a shift in power toward advertisers," the ratings agency said. Fitch said it expects video-on-demand to grow in importance, making it difficult to grow CPMs for broadcasts. That may not hurt the content providers, the networks, and their O&O stations, but Fitch questioned whether affiliate stations will be able to draw as much benefit from VOD. Meanwhile, the newspaper business continues to face what Fitch calls "intense secular issues on the revenue side," adding that they are structural, not cyclical, so the lost advertising will likely never return.

RBR observation: The Fitch report issued yesterday did not mention the radio business, but we all know that radio has been under many of the same pressures as newspapers and TV, falling somewhere between the two in terms of severity. The woes facing newspapers may be an opportunity for radio, but all traditional media outlets are having to deal with a growing challenge from the Internet.

Why Do We Bring
Radio & TV Together?

Right this minute Radio & TV are more closely tied together than ever before. Both regulated by the FCC, we are being Challenged by New forms of Media from the likes of: iPods, Mobile Services and do not forget internet giants like Google and Yahoo. Contact & Discuss how you can Partner with RBR in the January report.

June Barnes: 803 731-5951
Carl Marcucci: 703 492-8191 ext 202
Jim Carnegie: 813 909 2916

January 2007 report:
* Programming: HD Radio Report-HD2, 3
* TV Retrans Update: Sinclair plays hardball
| View '07 Content Focused Reports Calendar |

Ad Business Report TM

Heineken and AAF challenge students
to "Think, Create, Win"
Heineken USA and the American Advertising Federation (AAF) once again are joining forces to challenge college advertising students to address underage drinking prevention in a PSA campaign. The second annual Heineken USA/AAF PSA Competition gives students the opportunity to develop a three-part campaign to address one aspect of underage drinking prevention. This year's campaigns must focus on how to avoid getting in a car with someone who has been drinking. Students of legal drinking age will develop a campaign that includes a print, radio and Internet execution. It may be an evergreen campaign that can be used all year or may focus on key targets and time frames throughout the year. The contest, which runs from 12/1, until 2/1/07, offers a maximum of eight cash awards and both individual or team recognition for student members of the 215 AAF college chapters. All participants must members of an AAF college chapter. Students may enter the campaign individually or may participate on a team of no more than three. Winners will be announced in April during Alcohol Awareness Month. The first-place winner will receive 3,000 and the opportunity to pitch their ideas to Heineken USA execs.

Washington Media Business Report TM
Belo sets the tone for
election coverage

Television group Belo Corporation has 15 news-producing television stations, and it pounded away covering the midterms to the tune of 71 stories per week, amounting to an hour and 39 minutes. It hosted seven debates (in our opinion the best thing a station can do to bring the issues and candidates before the public), it repurposed much of its coverage on cable news channels and the internet, and perhaps most importantly, it provided free airtime to no less than 146 candidates. Belo's President/Media Operations Dunia Shive said, "Showcasing our political coverage on our television stations, cable news channels and web site significantly expanded our dialogue with the voting public."

RBR observation: It is generally only a matter of time before some politician in Washington rediscovers the idea of forcing broadcasters to provide free time for their advertising on the grounds that broadcasters are using the public airwaves. For starters, we always thought there was a lot more to "public" than "politicians." The main point, though, is that political ads are perhaps the worst aspect of modern campaigning, and do not justify legalizing the simple theft of broadcast inventory to get through even more distortion and nonsense into the process. That's why companies like Belo are to be applauded. They will give the NAB great ammunition the next time another free political ad proposal is floated on Capitol Hill.

Media Markets & Money TM
Close encounter in Chico and Redding
Mapleton Communications says it is now California's third largest radio group now that it has officially brought 10 Regent Communications stations in two markets into the fold. The acquisition takes the California portfolio up to 28 stations, and there are another six in Oregon. For 17.5M, Mapleton picked up KFMF-FM, KALF-FM, KQPT-FM & KZAP-FM in Chico and KQMS-AM, KNRO-AM, KSHA-FM, KNNN-FM, KRXX-FM & KRDG-FM Redding CA in a deal filed with the FCC 7/21/06. Tom McKinley and George Reed of Media Services Group will no doubt be able to do some Christmas shopping after picking up the check for brokering the deal. Look for more dealing - the company has an equity partnership with Corporate Partners II, which itself has a relationship with Lazard Freres.

Close encounter in Wilkes-Barre
George W. Kimble of Kozacko Media Services checked in to note the closing of Educational Media Foundation's 675K acquisition of WPGP-FM. The Tafton PA station is east of Scranton in the Wilkes Barre-Scranton market. Frequent buyer EMF feeds on both sides of the commercial/noncommercial divide. This station is tucked comfortably in the reserved band at 88.3 MHz.

Entertainment Media Business Report TM
Fox News Radio adding Neil Cavuto
Fox News Channel's (FNC) VP and Managing Editor of Business News, Neil Cavuto, will begin anchoring a financial newscast, "The Cavuto Money Report," for Fox News Radio beginning 1/15/07, announced Kevin Magee, EVP/Fox News: "Neil's keen knowledge of the business and financial world combined with his broadcasting style will bring a new depth to our radio division. We are thrilled to offer the number one business news product to radio stations across the country." The daily vignette will consist of three separate one-minute weekday reports: an early morning pre-market report, a market opener, and a market wrap. Timed to the daily opening and closing of the stock market, the reports will cover business news beyond Wall Street. Cavuto currently anchors the weekday one-hour program, "Your World with Neil Cavuto," and the weekend program, "Cavuto on Business," on FNC

Editor's note: Be sure to check out our interview with Cavuto in the January issue of RBR/TVBR Solutions Magazine.

Jim Cramer ending radio show 12/1 announced that Jim Cramer will reallocate his time to focus on video and multimedia initiatives, including participating more frequently in TV. This content will include ad sponsored videos that will appear on, in strategic concert with the company's push to deliver an end-to-end content solution to the mass market audience. Accordingly, The Street confirmed Cramer will broadcast his final nationally syndicated radio show, "RealMoney with Jim Cramer" today. As we speculated yesterday, while Cramer is ending syndication with Westwood, it doesn't necessarily mean he is out of radio for good. A spokesperson couldn't confirm or deny he may resurface with another syndicator.

Ed Schultz announces new time slot
The Ed Schultz Show, distributed by Jones Radio Networks and owned by Randy Michaels' Product First (P1), announced its new time slot. Beginning 12/11, the progressive will be heard live from Noon-3:00 p.m. ET. The show will re-feed from 3:00 p.m.-6:00 p.m. ET. "Because it's the middle of the broadcast day across the country, Noon-3:00 p.m. is prime real estate," said Stu Krane, President of P1. "The Ed Schultz Show is the gold standard in progressive talk and a ratings getter in any format. We don't know what's going on around us, but we're going to grab this daypart now." Now entering its third year, The Ed Schultz Show is heard on more than 100 affiliates.

RBR observation: Since Stu claims not to know, we will have to be the ones to inform you that noon-to-three is also the time slot of Conservative talk giant Rush Limbaugh. Schultz will be going after listeners who prefer the other end of the political spectrum.

3.6M KICX-FM/KRKU-FM/KBRL-AM/FM CP McCook & KFNF-FM Oberlin KS; KADL-FM Imperial NE; and KJBL-FM Julesburg CO & KSTH-FM Holyoke CO from McCook Radio Group LLC/Imperial Media Association/Julesburg/Holyoke Media Association (David M. Stout, Connie M. Stout) to Armada Media - McCook Inc., a subsidiary of Armada Media Corporation (Tommy G. Thompson, Jim Coursolle et al). 250K escrow, balance in cash at closing. Also includes a 37.5K consulting agreement for David M. Stout. Daisy chain overlap. [File date 11/13/06.]

70K AM CP Wasilla AK from Charles Dunham to John N. Klapperich. 10K escrow, 60K note. Combo with KMBQ-FM Wasilla AK. CP is for Class B on 1430 KHz with 1 kw-U, ND. [File date 11/13/06.]

Stock Talk
Mixed news, mixed market
Stock prices closed mixed on Thursday, as a disappointing forecast from Wal-Mart and a weak report on manufacturing were counterbalanced by rising oil prices that sent energy stocks higher. The Dow Industrials slipped five points to 12,222, the Nasdaq composite was also slightly lower, but the S&P 500 was slightly higher.

Radio stocks were mostly lower. The Radio Index was down 0.214, or 0.1% to 148.591. Radio One (Class D) had the worst showing, dropping 1.7%. Beasley led the gainers, up 1.4%.

Sirius Satellite Radio rose 2.7% as CEO Mel Karmazin predicted that the company would begin offering mobile video as well as audio by late next year. XM also rose 2.6%.

Radio Stocks

Here's how stocks fared on Thursday

Company Symbol Close Change Company Symbol Close Change













Journal Comm.







Lincoln Natl.







Radio One, Cl. A




Citadel CDL
9.51 -0.01

Radio One, Cl. D




Clear Channel








Cox Radio




Saga Commun.








Salem Comm.








Sirius Sat. Radio








Spanish Bcg.
















Westwood One








XM Sat. Radio














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Below the Fold
Ad Business Report
Heineken and AAF
Challenge students to "Think, Create, Win"...

Media Markets & Money
Close encounter in Chico and Redding
Mapleton Communications says it is now California's third largest radio group...

Entertainment Media
Business Report
Fox News Radio adding Neil Cavuto
Anchoring a financial newscast, "The Cavuto Money Report,"...

Jim Cramer ending radio show 12/1
Will reallocate his time to focus on video...


Market Results
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Radio Media Moves

Online promotion
Salem Communications has promoted Chuck DeFeo to Vice President and General Manager of and News Talk Online. In his new role, DeFeo will manage Salem's news talk radio station websites and while maintaining responsibility for Before joining Salem last year, DeFeo had been eCampaign Manager for Bush-Cheney '04.

More News Headlines

Country and Classical formats swap signals in Boston
At Noon today, Greater Media/Boston's country format, WKLB, will begin broadcasting on the 102.5 MHz frequency in the Boston market. Simultaneously, classical station WCRB will begin broadcasting on the market's 99.5 MHz frequency. Greater Media recently acquired the 102.5 slot in a transaction with Charles River Broadcasting Company, and sold its 99.5 frequency to Nassau Broadcasting Partners.

Manngroup gets "Testimonies of Faith"
LA-based syndicator MannGroup Radio has picked up the radio rights for daily distribution of "Testimonies of Faith," a daily mini-feature made available for all urban radio formats during the first broadcast week of February coinciding with the start of Black History Month. The program is available thereafter throughout the year. Host of the program is nationally syndicated television and radio personality, Wendy Wheaton.

November RBR/TVBR
Digital Magazine

In November's RBR/TVBR Solutions Magazine:
* GMs on top promotions
* Integrating advertising
on TV & the Net
* MEC/Group M's Rino Scanzoni
* Jon Mandel on
Playing in the Right Field
* Gannett's Roger Ogden
* Talkers' Mike Harrison
* MEC's Kim Vasey on the importance of relevance
* Victor Miller from the
NAB Radio Show

Read RBR/TVBR in 2 simple steps:
1.Create a simple account with Zinio and download the Zinio Reader.
2. You can then download the
November Issue of RBR/TVBR

RBR Radar 2006
Radio News you won't read any where else. RBR--First, Accurate, and Independently Owned.

A look at media's part
in polarizing populace, part 1
Diana C. Mutz of the University of Pennsylvania notes the media's complicity, she also pointed out that it's just one element of society working toward or against that trend, and the reasons for the media's effect are not based on decisions made in smoky back rooms by conglomerate moguls, but rather are natural outgrowths of the way the media has evolved for better or worse. One factor is the expanding news hole and more to the point the expanding news sources available at all hours of the day. Consumers can pick the source that reinforces their own viewpoint.

RBR observation: It doesn't take a long time covering the Washington beat for any industry to become aware of what is almost certainly the major polarizing element in society. RBR finds Ms Mutz's analysis more eye opening to truth than fiction. Call reality today in our media world. Reading her findings gives broadcasters a better view of the consumer which is your listener and viewer. Review part 1 in
11/30/06 RBR #232

Radio to win newspaper ad dollars?
According to Charles Courtier, global CEO of Mediaedge:cia,, Radio stations can be expected to pick up local ad dollars, such as sale-driven commercials from retail outlets, as newspapers shift their businesses online. "Most people don't think well of radio's future. I don't agree. I actually think that satellite radio particularly is going to have a good future,"

RBR observation: It seemed Courtier singled out satellite radio most as benefiting from the potential shift of local dollars from newspaper to radio, which makes little sense when satellite radio isn't local. Unless, of course, they change the rules and all of those local repeaters become local ad insertion boxes. That has been speculated on numerous times - make satellite radio subscriptions much cheaper in exchange for one or two local and/or national ads each hour. We're not sure, as well, that newspaper advertisers would automatically choose radio over a local newspaper site banner ad - although it would be nice! We contacted Courtier, but haven't heard back yet. See RBR's Ad Business Report section for more details.
11/30/06 RBR #232

Rebuilding VNU/Nielsen
fun to Watch
After 32 years in on the agency side, Jon Mandel, former Group M chief of strategic solutions and MediaCom Chairman, has joined VNU as CEO of NielsenConnect, a newly formed business unit. RBR asked, how did this move come about? "[VNU] had evidently talked about this for some time. Then a few weeks ago Dave Calhoun called and sent an emissary in Susan Whiting. We went out to dinner and she said, 'Look, this is what we're kind of bouncing around, what do you think?' (More on this one-on-one in RBR)
11/29/06 RBR #231


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