Welcome to RBR's Daily Epaper
Volume 22, Issue 48, Jim Carnegie, Editor & Publisher
Wednesday Morning March 9th, 2005

Radio News®

Less actually is more, at least so far
Another Wall Street analyst says the radio industry, and Clear Channel in particular, really is holding the line on inventory. But Wacovia Securities' Jim Boyle says it may take another two to three months before ad buyers are convinced that radio is going to stick to its "diet." Boyle admits that he is surprised. "We had thought Clear Channel's initiative would take considerable time to work, as we did not feel there would be strict adherence to its promised 'diet.' So far, we have been quite wrong," the analyst said in a note to clients. Although February is not a heavy revenue month, he says it is the first "demand month" due to two holidays and a seasonally active, top five ad category, media. So, he says it is encouraging that radio has passed its first test and is "growing a backbone." Boyle says, however, it may take another two to three months before the ad community is convinced that the new discipline is sustainable. Still, that's three months earlier than he had been projecting. Having cut its commercial loads significantly, Clear Channel now makes Boyle's list of the radio groups with the lightest spot loads, along with Cox Radio, Entercom and Radio One.

Emmis passes on banning Gangsta Rap
Following a second shooting incident outside WQHT-FM New York (3/2/05 RBR #43), Rev. Al Sharpton has called for a 90-day voluntary airplay ban by radio and TV of any performer who uses violence to settle scores or hype albums - - charging that broadcasters are romanticizing urban violence. Emmis, which owns WQHT, isn't biting. "All radio and television stations are required to meet community standards established by the FCC. We make every effort, and will continue to make every effort, to meet and even exceed those standards, through quality programming and such community outreach as Hip-Hop Has Heart. We are an entertainment option. We in no way condone acts of violence. We hope that the perpetrators of these violent acts are prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law by the proper authorities," the company said in a statement. RBR also asked whether Emmis was beefing up security following the second shooting incident, but a spokesman said that since both incidents happened on the street outside the building housing the company's studios, "there has not been a security issue" at the station.


FCC: Multichannel HD licenses still experimental-only
The FCC released a clarification on multi-channel HD Radio/IBOC digital broadcasting today, reaffirming that stations may apply for experimental authorization to split their digital signals, as some NPR stations do now with "Tomorrow Radio," but for now those licenses will still be experimental-only. | More... |

Agree to decree in New Jersey
Nonprofit WVRM Inc., licensee of WCNJ-FM Hazlet NJ (in the Monmouth-Ocean market) and the FCC have come to an agreement. WVRM will stop running what are essentially commercials, and the FCC will drop all pending charges for rule violations against the organization. WVRM will also make a 10K contribution to the US treasury, starting with a 2K payment in mid-March followed by 1K monthly payments ending in November. For the purposes of the decree, WVRM admits it went over the line and will take preventive measures to avoid any reoccurrence in the future.

Univision.com gets
MRC accreditation
Having successfully completed an audit conducted by Ernst & Young, Univision.com has laid claim to being the first Spanish-language website to be accredited by the Media Rating Council. The audit verified that key traffic measures of Unvision.comply with the MRC's Minimum Standards for Media Rating Research and the Measurement Guidelines of the Interactive Advertising Bureau. "The online Hispanic community is growing aggressively. As it matures, we need reliable and accurate numbers," said Javier Saralegui, President of Univision Online. Univision.com, which links to the websites of all of the company's TV and radio station websites, was visited by more than 6.1 million unique browsers in January.


Adbiz©

DISCUS opens ad review process
For the first time in its 70-year history, The Distilled Spirits Council of the United States (DISCUS) is publishing its decisions on advertising complaints amid growing concern over the effect of liquor ads on underage drinkers. DISCUS said it aimed to open up its review process of objectionable advertising to show lawmakers and consumers that self-regulation works. The review process follows seven straight years of U.S. spirits volume growth. A surge in advertising on cable television and radio have helped boost sales in recent years, but also put a spotlight on the kind of marketing employed. "Our goal is to solve these problems before the ads even go public," said Peter Cressy, president of DISCUS, which represents distillers in the United States including Allied Domecq, Diageo and Brown-Forman Corp. DISCUS released its report on 2004 complaints, which questioned 15 incidents. Cressy said the majority of advertisers either pulled or changed the ads found in violation of self-regulatory guidelines. Cressy said he expected complaints over liquor ads to rise in the near term as the review process becomes more widely known to consumers and watchdog groups. Most of the complaints registered in 2004 came from industry members.

US ad market shows strong growth in 2004
Total advertising expenditures for all media in 2004 increased 9.8% to 141.1 billion compared to 2003, according to data released today by TNS Media Intelligence, the leading provider of strategic advertising and marketing information. "Advertising spending expanded steadily throughout 2004 and has now grown at a faster rate than the general economy in nine of the last 10 quarters," says Steven Fredericks, TNS CEO. "Gains were seen in almost all forms of media. These increases were not exclusively attributed to the Summer Olympic and the Presidential election, nor confined to TV media, the form that most benefited from these two events." Almost all of the media measured by TNSMI experienced growth throughout the year, with the Internet, Outdoor, Cable TV and National Syndication showing the strongest gains. Local Newspapers led in dollar spending for 2004, posting 24.5 billion, an increase of 6.7% versus 2003. The Internet showed the most robust year-over-year gain for 2004 posting a 21.4% increase to 7.4 billion in ad spending versus 2003. Outdoor advertising increased 20.1% to 3.2 billion in spending. This strong growth reflects both organic growth and an expansion in TNS Media Intelligence's measurement base. Procter and Gamble was once again the leading advertiser in spending for 2004, posting a 7.4% increase to 2.9 billion. Other leading spenders include General Motors, whose advertising activity totaled $2.8 billion and Time Warner with a total of 2.1 billion. Verizon and Ford also saw major increases of 27.1% and 12.9% respectively. Overall, the top 10 advertisers represented 13.6% of total advertising expenditures in 2004.

Erwin Ephron is thumbs up
on Less is More - Part 1
Erwin Ephron, father of recency planning and principal of Ephron, Papazian & Ephron, had a few comments on "Less is More" in his March newsletter, "The Ephron Letter": "It's the other guy's commercial" Only the media can reduce clutter. So why not help them when they try? "A wise man said" If you can measure a thing, you can begin to manage it." That's probably why the 4A's stopped its clutter-watch report. Agencies can't manage it, so why try to measure it? Clutter is always the other guy's commercial. Besides, clutter has an upside for buyers. It is the price advertisers are willing to pay to limit CPM's. When the ANA asked advertisers "would you spend 10% more for 10% fewer commercials," only 10% said "yes."

RightMarch.com launches radio, newspaper effort
to save Terri Schiavo
Political Action Committee RightMarch.com is launching a nationwide radio and newspaper effort ask Americans to contact their Congressmen and Senators and tell them to support Rep. Weldon's new bill, the "Disabled Person's Legal Protection Act" (Terri's Law), which would give Terri Schindler-Schiavo and others in similar situations the same constitutional protection of due process as death row inmates now receive-protections guaranteed by the Fourteenth Amendment to the Constitution. Schiavo is a disabled young woman in Florida whose estranged husband is trying to have her feeding tube removed, against the wishes of her parents (see www.terrisfight.org for details). The campaign uses full-page ads in newspapers across the country, as well as 60-second radio spots on hundreds of stations reaching millions of listeners nationwide.
View the full-page newspaper ad.


April Radio & Television Business Report

Be sure to catch our blockbuster April NAB issue:

One on One: We interview outgoing NAB CEO Eddie Fritts.

Feature: What kind of individual would industry leaders like to see head the NAB?

AdBiz: But will they buy it?
We ask agencies and the industry about support for new, unproven formats.

Media, Markets and Money: We check the financing climate: Is financing still readily available for radio and TV deals?

Advertisers: Don't miss this opportunity to appear in Eddie Fritts' farewell interview!
Call Today, space is limited.

June Barnes at 803-731-5951 or
Jim Carnegie at 813-909-2916

Don't miss your copy!


Media Markets & MoneyTM
Three deals for seven stations in two PA markets
Nicholas Galli's 2510 Licenses just bought five stations in State College and four in Johnstown from Dame Broadcasting (12/1/04 RBR #233). Now it's selling two in each market, and buying back three in Johnstown. Its dosey-do partner is Forever Broadcasting, headed by Kerby Confer, Donald Alt and Carol Logan. The four stations going from Galli to Confer et al are valued at 5.375M; the three coming back to Galli are valued at 2.5M. In State College, Galli's selling WRSC-AM & WBUS-FM for 2.65M They'll cluster up with Forever's WMAJ-AM, WLTS-FM, WOWY-FM, and WBHV-FM. The Johnstown stations, WGLU-FM & WQKK-FM, are fetching the remaining 2.725M, and will join up with WKYE-FM, WFGI-FM, WNTJ-AM & WNTW-AM. Simultaneously (and the parties did submit paperwork requesting simultaneous processing by the FCC), Forever will be sending WSPO-AM, WUZI-FM & WUZY-FM to Galli, where they will be in a cluster with WYSN-AM & WCCL-FM. As we mentioned, these three stations are valued at 2.5M.

Churubin finds a Niche in Miami
Emmanual Cherubin is snagging the WSRF-AM, a Caribbean Music outlet in the Miami-Ft. Lauderdale market licensed to the latter of those two towns. Cherubin's company is Niche Radio Inc. The 1580 kHz facility is being sold by ICBC Broadcasting Holdings, a subsidiary of Pierre Sutton's Inner City Broadcasting. Frank Boyle, who handled brokerage chores for Sutton, tells us the price is 1.75M in cold, hard, spendable, bendable cash.


Washington Beat
Small change at the Commerce Committee
The Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation has announced subcommittee chairs, and the biggest news is not who got what, but rather what is missing. No longer on the sub-list is the Subcommittee on Communications. There are three items which have no doubt contributed to its demise. (1) The top dogs there in the 108th Congress were Ted Stevens (R-AK) and Daniel Inouye (D-HI), who just happen to have both been promoted to top dog of the full committee. (2) In a press conference recently on an unrelated topic, former full committee chair John McCain (R-AZ) indicated that he would have gladly headed up the subcommittee, he was barred since he had accepted a similar post in the Armed Services Committee. (3) The 108th edition of the subcommittee had 18 members - - the full committee had 23. So, since the heads of the subcommittee are now the heads of the full committee, and given that the person most interested in chairing it can't, and given that the subcommittee and the full committee are almost one and the same anyway, it makes sense to let it simply disappear.

2006 campaign warchests growing
The Democratic National Committee is breaking fund-raising records under the new leadership of former Vermont governor and presidential contender Howard Dean. It has brought in more than double the amount in collected in this time period following the first inauguration of George W. Bush. According to the Associated Press, Dean is especially encouraged since he has yet to kick off a planned Internet campaign to build the warchest. However, even with the recent successes, the DNC still has taken in less than half the amount collected by its counterpart, the RNC.

RBR observation: Both parties are already targeting vulnerable incumbents for 2006. We'll try to stay on top of the list of prospective hot spots in the coming months.


International

CC Entertainment in 50-year Chinese joint venture
Beijing Gehua Cultural Development Group, a prominent Beijing cultural agency, and Clear Channel Entertainment announced a landmark, 50-year joint venture. With headquarters in Beijing and satellite offices in New York and London, the joint venture company will be named Gehua Clear Channel Entertainment & Sports Company, Ltd. and has a 50-year, first right of refusal for live tours of performance shows, promote international events, manage venues, sponsorship opportunities, ticketing, logistics, artist management, food and beverage services, merchandising, staging, sound and lighting. The new company will bring international entertainment and sports events to China; create opportunities through which Chinese artists and events can tour the globe; and create international event and venue management systems within the Chinese sports and entertainment related industries. "We believe this is an historic partnership that will enhance the way Chinese culture and entertainment are experienced around the world," said CC Entertainment CEO, Brian Becker. "We are honored to have been chosen to bring Western entertainment to Beijing, and we look forward to using the Clear Channel Entertainment global network of venues and experts to market traditional Chinese culture throughout the world."


Transactions
WVNY-TV Burlington VT-Plattsburgh NY (Burlington VT) from C-22 FCC License Subsidiary LLC to Lambert Broadcasting of Burlington.

WTHM-AM York PA (Red Lion PA) from Pioneer Broadcasting Corporation to Susquehanna License Co.

| More... |


Stock Talk
Profit-taking sends prices lower
There wasn't much news to affect the stock markets on Tuesday, although oil prices edged up again, so profit-takers took some money off the table. The Dow Industrials fell 24 points, or 0.2%, to 10,913.

Radio stocks were also lower. The Radio Index dropped 1.402, or 0.6%, to 222.000. Salem fell 4.5% after giving Q1 guidance below what Wall Street had expected. Going the other way was Regent, up3.5% as one of the few gainers.


Radio Stocks

Here's how stocks fared on Tuesday

Company Symbol Close Change Company Symbol Close Change

Arbitron

ARB

40.00

-0.51

Jeff-Pilot

JP

48.99

-0.11

Beasley

BBGI

17.95

+0.07

Journal Comm.

JRN

16.37

-0.23

Citadel CDL
14.55 -0.08

Radio One, Cl. A

ROIA

13.59

-0.21

Clear Channel

CCU

33.50

-0.36

Radio One, Cl. D

ROIAK

13.60

-0.21

Cox Radio

CXR

16.98

+0.16

Regent

RGCI

5.40

+0.18

Cumulus

CMLS

14.30

+0.12

Saga Commun.

SGA

16.02

-0.32

Disney

DIS

28.53

-0.43

Salem Comm.

SALM

22.50

-1.05

Emmis

EMMS

19.13

-0.09

Sirius Sat. Radio

SIRI

5.80

-0.09

Entercom

ETM

35.61

+0.04

Spanish Bcg.

SBSA

10.75

-0.04

Entravision

EVC

8.65

-0.20

Univision

UVN

28.68

-0.42

Fisher

FSCI

51.17

-0.12

Viacom, Cl. A

VIA

35.18

-0.40

Gaylord

GET

43.58

-0.25

Viacom, Cl. B

VIAb

34.74

-0.46

Hearst-Argyle

HTV

25.52

unch

Westwood One

WON

21.25

-0.27

Interep

IREP

0.55

-0.01

XM Sat. Radio

XMSR

32.52

-0.63

International Bcg.

IBCS

0.02

unch

-

-

-

-

-



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Bounceback

Send Us Your OpinionsWe want to
hear from you.

This is your column, so send your comments to radionews@rbr.com

A reader takes a minute
to discuss :30s

I've never heard a more 70's mentality towards :30 vs :60 radio creative than what
Alan Gray espoused in your March 7 newsletter sidebar (3/7/05 TVBR #46). Oh wait, I take that back. I heard a similar feeling expressed. It was just other day when speaking to an agency buyer. She also said they use :30's on TV because "..pictures make it more effective.." than a :30 on radio. Does the word "frequency," when used in a radio context, have any meaning to Alan? Don't get me wrong. There's a definite place for :60 radio spots, and I don't mean in the trash. However, there's an even more beneficial use for :30 radio spots.

Lou Vespasian, Account Manager
Clear Channel Radio
Tulsa OK


Arbitrends

Arbitron
Market Results
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| Fresno |
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| San Antonio |


Upped & Tapped

Two new GMs in Philly
Beasley Broadcast Group named two new General Managers in the Philadelphia market. Natalie Conner, who had been VP/DOS for both of the company's Philly FMs, is now GM of WXTU-FM. Lynn Broder, who had been managing Radio One's Philadelphia Cluster, is now GM of WRDW-FM.

Infinity names VP/Interactive Marketing and Sales
Infinity announced that Sandy Smallens has joined the Company as Vice President, Interactive Marketing and Sales. He joins Infinity from ssDmm, a boutique digital marketing consultancy specializing in accelerating the growth of technology, entertainment and media companies which he founded in 2003.

Langmyer gets WGN
Tribune Company has named Tom Langmyer as Vice President and General Manager of its only radio station, WGN-AM Chicago, effective March 21st. he had been VP/GM of Infinity's KMOX-AM St. Louis and National VP/Programming for Infinity's 10 News/Talk stations.


Stations For Sale

Top 50 Market in the Carolinas LMA Opportunity
Solid 5,000 watt AM daytimer in one of the most attractive and fastest growing markets in the southeast. Strong Hispanic Demographics. Partial LMA or extended time brokerage also a possibility. Email serious inquiries to: terry.a.greenwood@verizon.net


More News Headlines

TVBR - TV News

Congress pressing FTC on LPM oversight
Spurred on by the Don't Count Us Out Coalition, several Members of Congress wrote to the Chairman of the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), Deborah Platt Majoras, this week, pressing for a decision by the FTC on whether it has the authority to investigate whether Nielsen's Local People Meters (LPMs) fairly and accurately count TV audiences - - in particular, to investigate complaints that it undercounts minorities. "If, however, it is deemed that the FTC does not currently have authority for providing oversignt, it is my intention to work with you and my fellow Members of Congress to craft legislation that will empower the FTC to play this role," wrote Sen. Gordon Smith (R-OR), who chairs the Senate's subcommittee on Trade, Tourism and Economic Development.

TVBR observation: Rupert Murdoch had better be careful what he asks for - - and we all know that the Don't Count Us Out Coalition won't go on operating for a week without News Corporation pumping money into its coffers. Getting the government involved in regulating broadcasting ratings is a bad idea for every broadcaster, including News Corporation. We repeat our admonition from last May (5/14/04 RBR #95) that the government has no business sticking its nose into how Nielsen, Arbitron, Gallup or anyone else surveys the activities and/or opinions of the American public.






RBR Radar 2005
Radio News you won't read any where else. RBR--First, Accurate, and Independently Owned.

Cable's Insight going private
Just as Cox Enterprises took Cox Communications private, the controlling shareholders of Insight Communications have proposed to buy out public shareholders of the #9 cable MSO. Company co-founders Sidney Knafel and Michael Willner have The Carlyle Group backing their bid to buy out other shareholders for 10.70 per share - - an 11% premium over the pre-announcement closing price. The deal values Insight at about 650 million.
RBR observations: Will we see any move toward going private by broadcasters? The question came up during the quarterly conference call of Hearst-Argyle Television, which is viewed on Wall Street as one of the most likely targets for such a buyout of public shareholders. But CEO Dave Barrett said he wasn't privy to any such plans by the Hearst Family's Hearst Corp. The other broadcast company that's been the subject of speculation is Cox Radio, since Cox Enterprises had already taken its cable MSO private.
03/08/05 RBR #47

Publisher Perspective: 4A Moving Forward with Solutions
Yep, I use the word solutions for the simple reason that if you attended this conference last year, which most of the radio and TV CEO's did not, in either year, you heard agency and ad clients screaming and pulling their hair about accountability with audience and listener measurement systems of Nielsen and Arbitron to justify spending billions of dollars on the up front season which is almost upon us. TA-DUM - Mr. & Ms. Media Person, this year it seems the buying side of the table is experiencing the same problem with accountability and facing the fact that they must be willing to share in finding the solution to the various problems facing total media. I quote Carat North America CEO David Verklin view - #5. Media planning will be transformed into communications planning. CEO's in radio, TV and others best get into research and communications sharing and planning. Those who do win are sometimes simply those who don't lose. 03/08/05 RBR #47


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