Jim Walsh's Big Hairy Weblog Thingy

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

The Future Of Talk Radio (or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love Hosts Who Bomb)...

So Glenn Beck, the highly-touted talk radio wunderkind is producing underwhelming results at Headline News (and even more - or should I say less - so at CNN).

Doesn't matter. He's syndicated, and syndication is cheap. And he's totally predictable, as well as virtually indistinguishable from just about every other yakker on the dial.

In the world of broadcast management, those are good things.

It boils down to this: the suits who run radio companies - and the suits on Wall Street who bankroll them - have a very narrow, provincial, stereotyped notion of what talk radio is supposed to sound like.

And it's our own damn fault - those of us who work in the industry. We've dropped the ball in educating the business world and selling them on what a creative, engaging, live and local air personality can do for the bottom line.

The suits are a short-sighted, cowardly lot - but no more so than they ever were (Contrary to the blowhards on the message boards, the industry was not exactly a Utopian wonderland ere Telecom '96). The difference is in the past we had guys with vision, and passion, who fought for their ideas. Sometimes they even won.

The house of cards that is the spoken-word communication industry is starting to teeter. The good news is that it only takes a handful of true visionaries, in the right place, at the right time, to turn it all around. If the right people will listen.

It may already be too late. I hope not...

Thursday, July 12, 2007

You Just KNOW This Is Coming...

So...how long before some idiot suit offers Scooter Libby a job as a syndicated talk host (thereby knocking another hundred or so perfectly qualified local hosts out of work)?

The pool is now open; place your bets now, folks...

Friday, July 06, 2007

I, Pod

This weekend, I'll be working on setting up a Pod page where you can hear Your Humble Narrator speak his mind in glorious mono. Given my computer savvy (or lack thereof), I hope to have the ten-minute job done sometime next week. Wish me luck...

Update: got it - I think. Bookmark that sucker and watch for desultory philippics from Y.H.N coming soon...

Wednesday, July 04, 2007

The Price They Paid (Or Didn't)

Perhaps you've seen the essay that claims to outline the fates of the signers of the Declaration Of Independence - it makes the rounds via email from time to time. Well, the folks at Snopes.com have done some serious research on the subject and found that some of it is true, some, uh, isn't.

In the interest of historical accuracy, I link it here. Happy Fourth...

Sunday, July 01, 2007

Please God, Tell Bob Riley To Shut Up

The governor of Alabama is asking the citizens of that fair state to pray for rain.

Can't wait to hear commentators in the Heart of Dixie, tear into this silly grandstanding tomorrow.

(That's a joke, of course: since Riley has an R next to his name, the squawk hosts will praise him as a good Christian, or ignore the story completely and continue to harp ad nauseum about the war...)