Ain’t No Sunshine

They’re drinking the Kool-Aid in Florida again, thanks in part to a grant from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting. This post from Naples details the move WGCU has made, moving classical music to an HD channel, citing for one those wacky Arbitron ratings. The comments here are far from laudatory:

So wait a minute… I’m supposed to go get a satelite radio, upgrade my internet, and donate a lot more money to listen to my classical music? Public Radio had better wake up and smell the economy before making bad decisions.


My family loves classical music. We also love jazz (real, not smooth), country, RnB, World, opera and Oldies. In fact we like just about all kinds of music except gansta rap. There is no way in heck I would screw up a wonderful system of components to add a HD radio. So why should I spend more to subsidize WGCU and NPR? Nah, we have our own collection of CDs, SACDs and MP4s to keep our ears busy without fundraising interruptions for years to come. Radio serves some purpose when wanting news when we are driving around but I have no intention of adding a “table top” model or reconfiguring our car systems.

And this:

HD sales are bust. Citizens rejected this lame ‘carny shill.’ NPR bilked millions from taxpayers to air ‘HD streams’ to which none listen. HD sets need outside antennas — in this era of deed restrictions? — and still, range is short. NPR removes its popular shows from easily heard FM and puts them on low range HD ‘streams’? Talk about ‘too clever by half.’ HD is State Sponsored Jamming. Some say everything HD is a lie. Promoters claim listeners ‘demand crystal clear HD,’ when they really want compelling shows on analog radio.

Supposedly ‘free’ HD may cost you. Promoters openly discuss ‘Controlled Access,’ meaning you pay-to-listen. HD is a closed system of (some wags dub it ‘iNiquity’) so you may pay endless fees for perpetual upgrades. All schemes carry the seeds of their demise. HD is a cheaszy ’90s BigRadio scheme to jam competitors to ruin and make you discard billions of radios worth trillions of dollars and buy costly HD stooge sets. Listeners saw HD as a ‘carny shill’ and rejected it.

As long foretold, HD now jams itself. WOR 710, New York is jammed by 700 and 720, Chicago and Cincinnati. Wouldn’t logic say to dump this HD jammer?…

We mustn’t judge too harshly, though, should we? After all, isn’t this a typical New Economy gag? Deny listeners their favorite shows by removing them from long easily heard FM. Next, stick them on ‘HD streams,’ and offer their return with the implied ransom that they buy HD stooge radios?

Once again:

Well it is sad to say that the radio stations GM Kathleen Davey doesn’t have a clue and probably doesn’t care since she is about to retire. She is just taking the easy way out — buying the bill of goods that NPR in Washington DC is selling (after all news to NPR equals big dollars for NPR Headquarters to pay for that programming).

NPR in Washington has been busy brainwashing radio station managers that classical music doesn’t attract listeners and listener dollars. That couldn’t be farther from the truth as radio station WETA-FM in Washington DC found out when they switched from classical to news. The lost half of their audience and 40 percent of membership dollars making that switch….

This idea that classical music is perfect for the web and HD radio is a joke. Any Radio GM should know that classical music listeners require high quality sound and have spent lots of cash on good audiophile listening equipment. Do you really think they are going to listen to a bad web stream or the inferior sound of an HD radio. For her information, HD radio is not taking off. It is an inferior sounding product and the radios are not selling. If you don’t believe this check it out online.

The problem with HD radio is that nobody has the radios, therefore no listeners, therefore no advertisers equals no income. This is a chicken and egg issue. The advertisers are waiting for listeners so they are willing to spend money on spots. The station is waiting on the ad dollars so they can pay for programming. See the problem.

Ask yourself this question — do I actually know anyone with an HD radio ? I bet the answer is no, and FYI, HD radio has been around for years. The next time you are in Best Buy or radio shack ask a salesperson about HD radio. See if they even know what it is. Most likely they will point you to a sat radio.

The other bit of info the GM forgot is that classical music attracts an older audience with more disposable income (most likely house and car are paid for). The younger news savy audience the station and GM is trying to attract can get the news they want faster and more in depth online by searching for the story they want and getting the reports from the BBC or whoever in text, audio and/or video formats. They do not have the income to support this format and I predict the station will see a drop in pledge dollars just like WETA-FM in DC did.

It seems they will not go gently into that good night in Florida…


One Response

  1. I see that Paul is still busy with his “stooge” and “carney-shill” comments — LOL! Easy solution to this HD Radio scam — stop donations to NPR, and refuse to buy HD “stooge” radios.

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