Welcome to RBR's Daily Epaper
Volume 22, Issue 49, Jim Carnegie, Editor & Publisher
Thursday Morning March 10th, 2005

Radio News®

PPM mic problem slows down Houston test
Arbitron has extended its panel recruitment schedule for its Houston Portable People Meter (PPM) test, saying it needs the extra time to "ensure the quality of the PPM data." In briefing Houston broadcasters about the status of the test yesterday, Arbitron said it found a failed connection between the mic and PPM circuitry in a few of the portable meters - - so it is replacing every meter in the field. Once that is accomplished, Arbitron will resume recruiting participants, with its target of having 2,100 people in the PPM panel now moved by one month to June 30. "Our objective is not to release any Houston PPM data until we are satisfied the total PPM system is operating at an optimum quality level," the company said. Once the 2,100-person panel is in place, Arbitron says it will begin to compile PPM station-level data for the month of July. In late August or early September, it will be able to compare the July PPM radio data to a special tabulation of May-June-July radio diary data. Then in September it will provide comparison of the July PPM television data to Nielsen meter/diary estimates for July. All stations participating in the Houston demo will receive an enhanced version of Arbitron's PPM analysis software with the July PPM data. Although it's still talking to the two hold-outs on the radio side (Cox Radio and Radio One), Arbitron says more that 90% of radio stations, TV stations and cable networks in the Houston metro are encoding their broadcasts for PPM.

Landlord threatens to evict WQHT
Emmis Communications may not think that any additional security is needed at its New York studios (3/9/05 RBR #48), but its landlord apparently doesn't agree. Local newspapers in the Big Apple report that the local Carpenters' Union, which owns the building, has sent Emmis notice that its lease will be cancelled unless it restricts visits to WQHT-FM's studios by rappers and their posses. The union says last week's shooting outside the building after an appearance by 50 Cent and a similar incident in 2001 have made the building unsafe for other tenants. The union wants Emmis to make artists notify WQHT a week in advance who will be accompanying them to the station so security measures can be taken, if needed. Meanwhile, 50 Cent and The Game announced yesterday that they've called a truce to their feud. "Game and I need to set an example in the community," 50 Cent said in a joint statement with his former protégé. A member of The Game's posse was shot in the leg last week outside the radio station after 50 Cent said on WQHT that The Game had been dropped from G-Unit, a rapper clique.

Kaiser on role of media in kids' lives
Children between the ages of 8-18 spend 8:31 a day with some form of media, and manage to cram that into 6:21 via multitasking, according to a new report from the Kaiser Family Institute. The report is called "Generation M: Media in the Lives of 8-18 Year-olds." Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-NY) keynoted the event, which also included FCC Commissioner Michael Copps. The panel also featured Grammy-Award winning Hip-Hopper Common, ex-WB exec Jordan Levin, Electric Arts exec Alain Tascan, and report co-author Donald Roberts of Stanford U. Kaiser's own Victoria Rideout, also a co-author, was also on hand. The third co-author, Juliet Schor of Boston College was unable to attend due to a flight cancellation. The good news for broadcasters was this: The event was not, as one might have expected, a wall-to-wall exercise in media bashing. Rideout said that they had produced raw numbers; now the task is to interpret those numbers. Is 6:21 good, bad or indifferent? She admitted she did not have an answer to that question. Here are some of those numbers. | More... |

Coalition petitions Bush on next FCC chair
A group of media watchdogs has fired off a letter to President Bush concerning the upcoming nomination of a replacement for outgoing FCC Chairman Michael Powell. Signatories to the letter are Charles Benton (Benton Foundation), Meredith McGehee (Campaign Legal Center), Ted Lempert (Children Now), Chellie Pingree (Common Cause) and Gene Karpinski (US Public Interest Research Group). The group wants a Commissioner who will use the DTV transition to spell out a meaningful set of public interest obligations for broadcasters, check the increase in media ownership consolidation, engage the public in FCC decisions and "...not confuse corporate welfare with the general welfare."

RBR observation: We're sure the signatories to this letter are aware that they have just penned a letter-perfect description of sitting Democratic Commissioner Michael Copps. And we're equally sure they know that Bush's answer to this letter will be something along the lines of "Fat chance."

Lawmaker's ties to TV station questioned
Nevada State Senator Barbara Cegavske (R-Las Vegas) has asked the state ethics commission to determine whether she's breaking any laws because of her second job - - she's a consultant to KVBC-TV (Ch. 3, NBC) Las Vegas on education and legislative matters. The 3,000 bucks a month consulting job came to light last week when Cegavske disclosed it publicly during a joint budget committee hearing, although she'd previously reported the income as required and had gotten an opinion from the bureau which advises state legislators on legal issues that the arrangement was legal. Now, though, it's become an issue of public debate and the state ethics commission was expected to take it up at a meeting yesterday. KVBC Executive Vice President and General Manager Gene Greenberg told RBR/TVBR that he was waiting for the commission to make its ruling before deciding whether Cegavske would continue to be employed as a consultant to the station, as she has been for over a year. Nevada has a part-time state legislature, so all of the lawmakers have other jobs. Greenberg said the idea of having KVBC employ Cegavske came from the wife of Jim Rogers, the owner of KVBC's parent Sunbelt Communications, who is a friend of the senator. As it happens, Rogers himself is also a state official, currently serving as interim chancellor of the state university system. "We just thought that she could probably help us out with some insight into the mechanics of what goes on in the legislature when they are in session," Greenberg said. Prior to the beginning of the last session, Cegavske met with KVBC's news producers to go over how the legislative process works in Carson City, the state capital. Greenberg said he didn't see any ethical problem with the arrangement. "We didn't feel we were doing anything wrong and we haven't done anything wrong," he said. But now that it's become a public issue, Greenberg acknowledges that many people think the arrangement "doesn't pass the smell test," so the station may decide to end Cegavske's employment, even if the ethics commission says it is OK.

Winners named for 2005 Gracie Awards
American Women in Radio and Television (AWRT) has announced the 2005 winners of the Annual Gracie Awards. National Award winners will be presented at a black-tie gala in New York on June 22nd. Local market, public and student award winners will be celebrated at a luncheon the following day. This year's winners include actress Meryl Streep for HBO's "Angels in America," CBS News anchor Hannah Storm, CNBC host Suze Orman and soap opera star Susan Lucci of ABC's "All My Children." Thursday, June 23, 2005, at the New York landmark, Tavern on the Green. The Gracie Allen Awards recognize exemplary programming created for women, by women and about women in all facets of electronic media. Here's the complete list of winners.


TV10s John Moczulski
on closed captioned advertising
RBR/TVBR met with TV10s President John Moczulski at the AAAAs last week in New Orleans and asked him a bit about his company. He was also a panelist for "Using Nontraditional Media in Nontraditional Ways" there at the conference. TV10s, a sales and marketing firm specializing in the sale of closed-captioning sponsorships and promotional advertising, is dedicated to the expansion of advertiser opportunities through 10-second short-form messaging in a variety of both existing and emerging media. Moczulski has more than 33 years of experience in advertising, communications and media covering a full spectrum of industries. His background includes executive posts at Viacom Television Group, CBS, Columbia TriStar Television, KGO-TV, ABC/KABC, NBC/KNBC and Carson & Roberts Advertising. | More... |

Arby's effort celebrates being different
in a cluttered fast food world
Arby's is celebrating 40 years of providing its customers with a "something different, something better" experience by launching a new advertising and branding campaign that focuses on its roots, and well recognized hat. The "I'm Thinking Arby's" campaign, which includes television, radio, print and all packaging, was designed by advertising agency, Merkley & Partners, and launched nationwide the week of 2/28. :30 TV spots humorously depict what happens in a day in the life of customers preoccupied with "Thinking Arby's". The punch line comes to life for the viewer with an animated Arby's signature red hat appearing throughout the spots. "It's about an urge for quality ingredients, unique product offerings and better taste," said Doug Benham, Arby's CEO. "Arby's has a long history of giving its customers what's quenching their craving, which is what separates us from the rest." Arby's new Market Fresh Chicken Cheddar Jack Wrap is the centerpiece menu item featured in Arby's new campaign. The new wrap, the fifth option in the Market Fresh wrap menu, features crisp, pepper bacon, a shredded blend of cheddar and pepper jack cheeses, hot, crispy chicken, green leafy lettuce and tomato, and creamy ranch dressing all wrapped up in a soft tortilla.

Erwin Ephron is thumbs up
on Less is More - Part 2
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." Continued from yesterday: If advertisers and agencies can't manage clutter, it becomes the medium's problem to solve. And indeed it is the medium's problem. Advertisers have options, while clutter and the commercial avoidance it produces, threaten the cost-effectiveness of ad supported broadcast. With most of the focus on TiVo and television, it's ironic that the first move to manage clutter comes from radio. | More... |

Bill wants NCAA to forgo alcohol ads
A resolution asking the NCAA to end alcohol advertising on radio and television broadcasts during college athletic events was introduced yesterday in the House of Representatives. Rep. Tom Osborne (R-NE), the former football coach at the University of Nebraska, is the author. The resolution comes with the NCAA men's basketball tournament set to begin in five days. The four-page resolution points to a 2002 study by the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism that says two in five college students are binge drinkers, 1,400 college students die each year of alcohol-related injuries and more than 70,000 college students are victims of alcohol-related sexual assault. The resolution has the American Medical Association's backing. Alcohol producers spent 52 million on radio and television advertising for college sports in 2003, including 21 million for the NCAA tournament.

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
Benedetto is at de Wit's end
Vince Benedetto's Bold Gold Media Group is spending four million bucks for a quartet of stations east of Scranton PA. The seller is Robert Mermell's de Wit Broadcasting Corp. The stations include WPSN-AM/WDNH-FM in Honesdale PA, WYCY-FM in Hawley PA, and across the line in upstate New York, WDNB-FM Jeffersonville NY. Three quarters of the total value will be due in cash by the closing date, with the final 500K paid pursuant to a promissory note.

Washington Beat
Berman is middleman
between House and Hollywood
Rep. Howard Berman (D-CA) has been named by House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) as the official liaison between the Democratic Caucus and members of the entertainment industry. He will tackle critical issues such as copyright enforcement and combating digital piracy. Pelosi noted that Hollywood is one industry which has a positive influence on the international trade balance. Berman noted that he is the logical choice to act as go-between, since Hollywood is in his district.

Smith gets Rather's radio spot
Now that Dan Rather has delivered his last "Dan Rather Reporting" for CBS Radio (3/7/05 RBR #46), Harry Smith has been given the daily slot for what debuts today as "Harry Smith Reporting." Smith has been co-anchor of CBS News' "The Early Show" on television since 2002. Prior to moving to TV, Smith's broadcast career included stints at KHOW-AM and KIMN-AM Denver and WLW-AM Cincinnati.

KADD-FM Las Vegas (Laughlin NV) from M&M Broadcasting LLC to 3 Point Media.

KWPK-FM Sisters OR from Thunderegg Wireless LLC to Horizon Broadcasting Group.

| More... |

Stock Talk
Oil prices slam stocks (again)
Stock prices took a dive on Wednesday as oil prices shot up again. The Dow Industrials lost 107 points, or 1%, to 10,806.

Radio stocks joined in the retreat. The Radio Index dropped 1.407, or 0.6%, to 220.593. Univision fell 2.4%, but its main rival in radio, SBS, was one of the days few gainers - - rising 1.5%.

Radio Stocks

Here's how stocks fared on Wednesday

Company Symbol Close Change Company Symbol Close Change













Journal Comm.




Citadel CDL
14.42 -0.13

Radio One, Cl. A




Clear Channel




Radio One, Cl. D




Cox Radio












Saga Commun.








Salem Comm.








Sirius Sat. Radio








Spanish Bcg.
















Viacom, Cl. A








Viacom, Cl. B








Westwood One








XM Sat. Radio




International Bcg.









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This is your column, so send your comments to [email protected]

This reader in a small market doesn't see much future in digital AM.

Regarding the AM digital debacle, first I can say that as a small market broadcaster no one is going to go out and buy an AM digital radio - - ain't gonna happen. And a lot of my AM listeners have pickups with AM only radios, along with tractors. I imagine this follows in most farm and ranch areas in the country. Also, its bunk that AM does not sound good - - just listen to stations like KSL in Salt Lake or my own AM station. Last summer I was driving with my son and did not realize we were listening to AM 'till we went under the canopy of a gas station. Also, I might add that one certain 50 kw AM clear channel station has so much garbage 20 kHz on each side of the station - - read 2 channels up and 2 channels down - - that you cannot listen to 2nd adjacent stations 90 miles away at night. Clearly this is in violation of NRSC rules. Where is the Commission on this issue??

J.H. Rees
Gunnison, Colorado


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Upped & Tapped

Infinity names
Kevin Robinson has been named Vice President of Infinity Broadcasting's Hot AC Programming, it was announced by Rob Barnett, President of Programming. Robinson has served as the Program Director for KYKY-FM in St. Louis since September 2004. He will continue with his day-to-day responsibilities at the station. The appointment is effective immediately.

Waitt names format PD
Waitt Radio Networks has promoted Music Director Polychronopolis (Paul Pelowski) to Program Director of its Alternative Now format. He succeeds Chris Reeves, who was recently promoted to Director of Operations at WRN.

iBiquity expands
Detroit office
iBiquity Digital announced it has hired Steven Cowherd as Senior Director of OEM Business Development, based in the company's Pontiac, MI office. With over 20 years experience in the automotive industry, Cowherd will be responsible for partnering with automotive manufacturers and their suppliers to develop and deploy HD Radio technology and its telematic applications. Prior to joining iBiquity, Cowherd held several managerial positions at Visteon.

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: [email protected]

February Digital Print Magazine Now Available

"The Pros and Cons
of Nielsen's LPM and Arbitron's
proposed PPM service"
After a rocky start, it's roll-out time of LPM & PPM. Will there be cooperation or more talk?

GM talkback: "How has LPM ratings changed selling in your market?" TV GMs say what they think-the good, bad and the ugly.

Media, Markets, and Money: Only one place tells it like it is with a run-down and overview of the biggest quarterly Radio and TV deals and outlook to 2005.

November Zinio Solutions Magazine
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 February Issue of RBR/TVBR

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

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." 03/09/05 RBR #48

FCC: Multichannel HD licenses
still experimental-only
The FCC released a clarification on multi-channel HD Radio/IBOC digital broadcasting, 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. 03/09/05 RBR #48

Erwin Ephron is thumbs up
on Less is More - Part 1
Few comments on "Less is More" 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."
03/09/05 RBR #48

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