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The American System Is Broken

“I’ve often suggested a bulldozer will be required to remove Trump from the White House. I’ve amended that today to an army of M117 Guardian tanks, Stryker Combat vehicles, LVSR Wreckers and maybe a High Mobility Artillery Rocket System, all coordinated by Dana White.”

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The only sure loser is America. Or, I should say, the two Americas, as this presidential slog of two tomato cans only widened an ideological gulf that leaves us red in exasperation and blue in the face. All the election did was re-confirm a toxic reality: We are a bipolar country that will continue to wage a civil war despite Joe Biden’s vow “to unite, heal and come together as a nation’’ — and if you doubt the social divide, wait until Donald Trump launches a 24-hour TV channel programmed for half the U.S. population.     

It wouldn’t be America, 2020, without a stupefying slugfest ending in coast-to-coast stench. The Democrats think the stink comes from Trump, who, in a remarkable last-stand media session, called himself a victim of election fraud and vowed to send packs of legal bulldogs to the Supreme Court. Trump thinks the stink is grounded in a wide-ranging conspiracy, and while he’s going to do need actual evidence before any judge considers the election was “stolen,’’ I will say this: Trump’s claims aren’t completely inane when an archaic, reckless process invites corruption and inefficacy.     

“If you count the legal votes, I easily win,’’ he said. “If you count the illegal votes, they can try to steal the election from us.’’     

Sour grapes? More lies? It’s difficult to trust a president who still thinks the coronavirus is fading into the wind — and a man who likely won a stolen election in 2016. Still, every wee-hours TV shot of a scene out of yesteryear — workers opening mail-in ballots, then placing them in piles on collapsible tables beside trash cans in dimly-lit warehouses — left me with the same haunting conclusion: We can trust neither Big Tech nor human beings to elect a president in the 21st century. It’s a broken system that should be condemned and overhauled, disposed into the same Washington dumpster as the irresponsible mainstream media — who never have looked worse in their failed bias-brainwashing — and the pollsters, who showed once and for all that they’re either nerds on the take or just inept.     

There is no transparency — from Trump, from the Democrats, from the media, from the prognosticators, from the electoral process. There is no integrity. There is no faith.     

Therefore, there is no America.     

The clumsiness of it all only fed Trump’s suspicions that the vote was rigged via dishonest counting practices and phony media slanting. Rather than let him finish his speech Thursday evening, the three major networks that have contributed to dubious election reporting — ABC, NBC and CBS — suddenly dumped Trump and returned to regular coverage. “We have to cut away here because the president has made a number of false allegations,” NBC’s Lester Holt said. Was it their role to cancel the President of the United States? When, after all, he still extended the election into triple-overtime, still showed enough clout to remain a disruptive force into the future and still had enough supporters — a projected 70 million-plus votes — who wanted to hear him. At a critical juncture of an astounding moment in time, the networks wanted to control the narrative of a desperate and defeated Trump, bleeding in the 15th and final round, losing his mind once and for all. Sorry, it is not their place to do so. If he’s lying, let the American people see him lie. They have a right to decide for themselves.     

I’ve often suggested a bulldozer will be required to remove Trump from the White House. I’ve amended that today to an army of M117 Guardian tanks, Stryker Combat vehicles, LVSR Wreckers and maybe a High Mobility Artillery Rocket System, all coordinated by Dana White. It’s useless to plead for dignity from a man who has little (hell, Kanye West conceded quickly after landing only a few votes, probably because he missed filing deadlines). Instead, a thick, gobsmacked anxiety will continue to hang over America, with ugly protests reflecting the premise of voter fraud. As Trump was tweeting, “STOP THE COUNT’’ and “ANY VOTE THAT CAME IN AFTER ELECTION DAY WILL NOT BE COUNTED,’’ people in the city streets were chanting, “Count Every Vote!’’ This is America now.    

If only our future could be as optimistic as Biden thinks. “Democracy is sometimes messy. It sometimes requires a little patience as well,’’ he said. “But that patience has been rewarded now for more than 240 years with a system of governance that’s been the envy of the world.” Envy of the world? Say it ain’t so, Joe. The world is laughing at us, and likely soon to be laughing at you.     

Assuming Biden survives Trump — and his legal weaponry — and takes over the most unforgiving political hotseat in the history of humankind, he’ll be treated with kid gloves by media who have no shame. There is no doubt about this: They did try to fix the race with deceptive, one-sided coverage. What happened to the so-called “Blue Wave,’’ an assumption the Democrats would control the White House and Congress? As seen all week, four years of Trump-bashing backfired on organizations that allowed wishful-thinking agendas to slant coverage — and projections. The pollsters must go away, starting with the now-miserably-unreliable Nate Silver, who once called 50 states correct for Barack Obama but since has crashed twice on Trump forecasts (he gave Biden an 89 percent chance of winning). The amateurs at MSNBC, meanwhile, literally looked ready to cry as Trump was making it a long race, with Nicolle Wallace abandoning hopes for a Biden landslide and saying, “You can see the hopes and dreams of our viewers falling down and liquor cabinets opening.’’ Later, host Brian Williams stayed with the booze angle when, referring to a Democrat guest, he said, “Wondering how much closer he is to the liquor cabinet.”     

They excoriate Trump for four years, then want to get drunk when they are embarrassingly wrong about a predicted landslide defeat. Just what they teach in journalism school. “What’s journalism?’’ you ask. I think it died, too, this week.     

With nearly every major news outlet needing major chiropractic surgery — leaning in yoga-like contortions to project a winner according to naked in-house schemes — we wanted to believe in an equilibrium-based news source when we can’t believe in the New York Times, the Washington Post and other hysterically anti-Trump organs. They didn’t learn lessons from four years ago, when Trump’s supporters — many blue-collar, many rural, few reading elitist websites — helped him win and shocked editors who pretended those sectors didn’t exist. Nothing changed this time, with the ivory towers assuming 2016 was an aberration and that Biden would win big. The Post, in a purported poll with ABC, said before the election that Biden was up 17 percent in Wisconsin. They were shot full of holes like a piece of Dairyland cheese.     

It was shocking to see Fox News, long considered Trump’s unapologetic rooting section, incur his wrath by calling Arizona for Biden early and becoming the first network to credit Biden with as many as 264 electoral votes. Trump was so enraged, he reportedly called Fox patriarch Rupert Murdoch and ranted. “Many Americans will never again accept the results of a presidential election,’’ said the network’s popular host, Tucker Carlson, who lashed out at mainstream media for pro-Biden bias. As for CNN, I’m amazed at how John King breaks down every new blip from some distant Georgia county with a barrage of data; but eventually, I was ready to strangle him, too.     

The traditional news networks weren’t immune from stumbling. Before the election, NBC projected a “slight lead’’ for Biden in Florida, while CBS was trumpeting Texas as an “unlikely battleground.’’ Wrong. And wrong. Those networks plead for our trust, but they blow it because they are influenced by the same corporate directives that taint Fox News and CNN and, well, most American media.     

How refreshing to see one sturdy, tried-and-true organization show how am election should be reported. The Associated Press never has plunged into the we-broke-it-first cesspool, refusing to predict or name a winner until finality is certain. Nothing was different this year in the most volatile election in modern U.S. history, when only a fool trusted what was reported on a cable network or a traditional legacy site. Even Jack Dorsey got it behind his Amish farmer-meets-ZZ Top beard, listing the AP among only seven outlets that Twitter trusted for results. So I believed the AP when it called Arizona early for Biden. The news service uses 4,000 freelance local reporters who carefully wait for vote counts from every county in the 50 states, then report results to hundreds of AP entry clerks who grill the freelancers and verify the information for publication.     

“There’s no winner in the presidential race. That’s OK,’’ an AP headline said in mid-week, above a story explaining that “the closer the margin in a state is, the more votes are needed for The Associated Press to declare a winner.’’ Professionalism and patience. What a concept.     

Which is in direct contrast to race-baiting that often sounds like an act for attention and traffic. Case in point: The Atlantic’s Jemele Hill, who wrote, “If Trump wins re-election, it’s on white people.’’ She might want to ask Hispanic voters in Miami-Dade County and Texas who embraced Trump at the polls.  

The credibility is gone and not retrievable. If the media entered the election with a low trust quotient, they’ve completely lost the American people. And this comes from a guy — me — who has been in the industry since I was 18, has made a comfortable living from it for decades and has been alarmed to see a rapid deterioration of transparency starting with the Internet boom. When we need reality in this country, we get self-styled b.s. EVERY DAMNED DAY.     

If nothing else, Trump would leave Washington knowing that his derisive term for the media — fake news — is a permanent staple of the national lexicon. I just didn’t feel like seeing it drop into my in-box at 6:43 p.m. Pacific time. “DEFEND THE RESULTS! THE DEMOCRATS WILL TRY TO STEAL THIS ELECTION!’’ said the e-mail, signed by Donald J. Trump himself. He also wanted me to help bankroll his lawyers, asking for $2,750. Or more. “Donald Trump is going to court to stop votes from being counted,’’ Biden tweeted. “We have assembled the largest election protection effort in history to fight back.”     

I was going to pass along the e-mail to a Trumper I know. But in a week when the U.S. — in other news — recorded a single-day record for COVID-19 infections, I am exhausted and ready for someone else in the top office, even if that someone else soon will have me wanting someone else. If this crazed American episode was, as Biden said, a “battle for the soul of the nation,’’ that soul is bludgeoned.

BNM Writers

Dan Mandis Has Done Every Job Imaginable in Radio

Mandis has been in the news radio business for a long time, which means it presents him the opportunity to wear many hats throughout his career.

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When WWTN personality Dan Mandis was ten years old, he wanted what every other red-blooded young man wanted; to have something to do with professional baseball. 

Only one problem; he sucked as a player.  

“I played little league, but I was terrible,” Mandis said. “They stuck me out in right field. I was Lupus in Bad News Bears.”  

Wow. Lupus? He must have really sucked. But Lupus made a mean martini for coach Buttermaker. Mandis had another baseball dream.  

“I wanted to be Vin Scully,” he said. “He was the greatest play-by-play guy in history, the absolute best. He drew pictures with his words.” His love of baseball hasn’t aged well. Instead of current teams and games, Mandis said he likes to flick on YouTube and watch the 1977 World Series between the Yankees and Dodgers. 

“If you grew up with baseball, it has a place in your heart,” Mandis said. “I collected baseball cards, and I was the kid who had the transistor glued to his ear listening to games.” 

There are two things I know for sure about Nashville; Minnie Pearl and the drinks are way overpriced.   

“We’re all about the free market,” Mandis said. “People from the north can come down, and we’ll take their money.” He’s been working in Nashville for eight years and just signed for another four years. According to Mandis, Nashville feels comfortable because the city embraces ‘everything that makes this country great.’ Oh, and there’s no state income tax. To avoid the exorbitant drink prices, Mandis suggests you go to a liquor store and pre-game before you go downtown. If you don’t know what that means, ask one of your kids.  

“I hate to sound like I’m pandering, but this state is ripped right out of Americana,” Mandis said. “Cities like Los Angeles and San Francisco are crime-ridden and have massive homeless issues. Down here, we have southern values.” He admits Nashville has its share of crime but nothing like other cities. The suburbs, he says, are second to none. 

If you find yourself in Nashville and are into presidential history, he says you have to visit Andrew Jackson’s Hermitage. There are lots of wineries and whiskey producers. Mandis sounds like a public service announcement for Tennessee.  

He loves baseball films too, like For Love of the Game and Moneyball. 

“For me, those are comfort movies,” Mandis said. “If it has baseball and a love story, I’m hooked.”  

Mandis likes prequels more than sequels, especially the Star Wars franchise.  

“I prefer Better Call Saul to Breaking Bad. Saul is one of the more intriguing characters in history.” He said movies don’t pack the same punch they used to.  

“I was a terrible student in high school. My passions didn’t really lend themselves to do a lot of reading. With one exception, I’m fascinated by the Civil War and so much of that went on down here. If I could go back in time, I’d be in the crowd for the Gettysburg Address.” 

That seems like a wasted wish. Lincoln’s speech was only two minutes long. 

The south and things southerners love have been a target during the past few years. Mandis said he understands when folks became upset when some of the statues were taken down. “I’m against it,” he said. “If you’re going to take down a statue of Robert E. Lee, that’s a mistake. He’s an important historical figure, and many in the south appreciate his role in the Civil War.” 

Mandis said he wouldn’t think of going up to someone and tell them to tear down their statue because he didn’t agree with them. 

What would he do if he got fired after the next four years? Retire and go off into the sunset? “I work in radio, and I’m a man of modest means,” Mandis said. “My goal in radio has always been to be that morning guy who has been in the market forever.” He’s not looking for syndication, a major market, or hoping to be a top-ten radio personality. That’s not on the radar. “I’ve had a long and pleasant career.” 

You can listen to Mandis daily from 5:00 a.m. – 9:00 a.m. on Nashville’s Morning News on WWTN.

Working in radio for as long as he has, Mandis has become a deft interviewer. He counts his interview with Steve Perry of Journey as one of his best and favorite.  

“I was allotted 20 minutes to talk with him,” Mandis said. “We ended up talking for about an hour and twenty minutes. He found the first question I asked to be interesting, and it was golden from there.” 

He said it pays to do your research on a subject. “I cared enough to really know about him, prepped for the interview, and I could tell Perry respected that.” Mandis said rock star Perry used to clean Turkey coops for a living.  

Mandis has done it all; worked as a call-screener, board operator, producer, news anchor, a news and traffic reporter, and now host. He also worked with Dr. Laura Schlessinger for many years.   

Mandis said his favorite all-time radio gig was traffic reporting in his hometown of Los Angeles. “I loved it. It goes back to my dream of play-by-play. Back in those days, all the reports were (for the most part) live. In a region the size of Los Angeles, it was a blast to do live reports on big-time radio stations as the traffic situation evolved. Such a blast.” 

“I was an off-air PD, then became a full-time host. I believe that’s unusual, but not sure.” He has amassed a collection of awards, including the Colorado Broadcasting Award for best radio imaging. Mandis was an AP winner for best reporter in Indiana and was nominated for a Marconi last year. “I was robbed,’ he jokes.  

He said his father was a big talk radio fan, listening to KABC in Los Angeles. “Early, I hated it, but tastes change,” Mandis said. “It was always a dream of mine to host a show on KABC in honor of my dad. I kind of did. I guest-hosted Red Eye Radio, and their LA affiliate is KABC. Given my lack of success in getting an opportunity on KABC, that will have to do.” 

“I’ve never really worked in anything but talk radio,” Mandis said. “It’s the greatest and most viable format, in my opinion.” 

If the radio gigs dry up, he’ll always have Lupus’ spot in right field.  

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BNM Writers

Possible Reversal of The 1973 Roe vs. Wade Decision Dominates Network TV Coverage

“Surprisingly, the overall cable news landscape remained relatively steady in prime time on May 2.”

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News of Justice Samuel Alito’s initial draft majority opinion that would have the Supreme Court overturn the landmark 1973 Roe v. Wade decision — which guaranteed federal constitutional protections of abortion rights — immediately spread like wildfire on the evening of May 2nd.

The development, first reported by the website Politico starting within the 9 p.m. ET hour, holds monumental implications for the nation if the Court officially does overturn the law.

Yet, surprisingly, the overall cable news landscape remained relatively steady in prime time on May 2. Compared to the three prior Monday nights (averaging Apr. 11, 18 & 25), MSNBC’s flagship program “Rachel Maddow Show” slipped 4 percent to 1.94 million total viewers, according to Nielsen Media Research. Its lead-out “Last Word with Lawrence O’Donnell” (1.45 million) was down 7 percent. 826,000 then tuned in to “The 11th Hour” up 3 percent.

Over at CNN, the 9 p.m. hour of “Anderson Cooper 360” (660,000 viewers) ticked up one percent. “Don Lemon Tonight” grew ten percent in the 10 p.m. hour (689,000 viewers) but fell two percent in the 11 p.m. hour (517,000 viewers).

Fox News Channel’s coverage focused on how the leak from the Supreme Court occurred. “Hannity” (2.79 million) stayed even, while the subsequent two lead-out programs on the night jumped up the most (of all cable telecasts) in raw figures — each increased by two million viewers: “The Ingraham Angle” (2.4 million; +9 percent from the 2.2 million average of Apr. 11, 18, 25) and “Gutfeld!” (2.15 million; +10 percent from the 1.95 million average of Apr. 11, 18, 25).

Cable news averages for May 2-8, 2022:

Total Day (May 2-8 @ 6 a.m.-5:59 a.m.)

  • Fox News Channel: 1.484 million viewers; 241,000 adults 25-54
  • MSNBC: 0.631 million viewers; 69,000 adults 25-54
  • CNN: 0.478 million viewers; 102,000 adults 25-54
  • HLN: 0.183 million viewers; 52,000 adults 25-54
  • CNBC: 0.132 million viewers; 32,000 adults 25-54
  • Newsmax: 0.132 million viewers; 18,000 adults 25-54
  • Fox Business Network: 0.112 million viewers; 12,000 adults 25-54
  • The Weather Channel: 0.111 million viewers; 22,000 adults 25-54

Prime Time (May 2-7 @ 8-11 p.m.; May 8 @ 7-11 p.m.)

  • Fox News Channel: 2.286 million viewers; 352,000 adults 25-54
  • MSNBC: 0.996 million viewers; 107,000 adults 25-54
  • CNN: 0.605 million viewers; 131,000 adults 25-54
  • Newsmax: 0.223 million viewers; 26,000 adults 25-54
  • HLN: 0.206 million viewers; 57,000 adults 25-54
  • CNBC: 0.149 million viewers; 54,000 adults 25-54
  • The Weather Channel: 0.142 million viewers; 25,000 adults 25-54
  • Fox Business Network: 0.059 million viewers; 8,000 adults 25-54
  • NewsNation: 0.052 million viewers; 10,000 adults 25-54

Top 10 most-watched cable news programs (and the top MSNBC and CNN programs with their respective associated ranks) in total viewers:

1. Tucker Carlson Tonight (FOXNC, Tue. 5/3/2022 8:00 PM, 60 min.) 3.449 million viewers

2. The Five (FOXNC, Tue. 5/3/2022 5:00 PM, 60 min.) 3.431 million viewers

3. The Five (FOXNC, Mon. 5/2/2022 5:00 PM, 60 min.) 3.371 million viewers

4. Tucker Carlson Tonight (FOXNC, Wed. 5/4/2022 8:00 PM, 60 min.) 3.284 million viewers

5. The Five (FOXNC, Thu. 5/5/2022 5:00 PM, 60 min.) 3.220 million viewers

6. Tucker Carlson Tonight (FOXNC, Mon. 5/2/2022 8:00 PM, 60 min.) 3.188 million viewers

7. The Five (FOXNC, Wed. 5/4/2022 5:00 PM, 60 min.) 3.182 million viewers

8. The Five (FOXNC, Fri. 5/6/2022 5:00 PM, 60 min.) 3.151 million viewers

9. Tucker Carlson Tonight (FOXNC, Thu. 5/5/2022 8:00 PM, 60 min.) 3.047 million viewers

10. Hannity (FOXNC, Wed. 5/4/2022 9:00 PM, 60 min.) 2.876 million viewers

36. Rachel Maddow Show (MSNBC, Mon. 5/2/2022 9:00 PM, 60 min.) 1.941 million viewers

159. Real Time With Bill Maher “Episode 599” (HBO, Fri. 5/6/2022 10:01 PM, 55 min.) 0.870 million viewers

161. Stanley Tucci “Piedmont” (CNN, Sun. 5/8/2022 9:00 PM, 60 min.) 0.859 million viewers

290. Last Week Tonight (HBO, Sun. 5/8/2022 11:01 PM, 42 min.) 0.567 million viewers

356. The Daily Show (CMDY, Wed. 5/4/2022 11:00 PM, 31 min.) 0.434 million viewers

Top 10 cable news programs (and the top  CNN, MSNBC, HBO and HLN programs with their respective associated ranks) among adults 25-54

1. Tucker Carlson Tonight (FOXNC, Tue. 5/3/2022 8:00 PM, 60 min.) 0.623 million adults 25-54

2. Tucker Carlson Tonight (FOXNC, Mon. 5/2/2022 8:00 PM, 60 min.) 0.553 million adults 25-54

3. The Five (FOXNC, Tue. 5/3/2022 5:00 PM, 60 min.) 0.533 million adults 25-54

4. Tucker Carlson Tonight (FOXNC, Thu. 5/5/2022 8:00 PM, 60 min.) 0.503 million adults 25-54

5. Tucker Carlson Tonight (FOXNC, Wed. 5/4/2022 8:00 PM, 60 min.) 0.480 million adults 25-54

6. Hannity (FOXNC, Tue. 5/3/2022 9:00 PM, 60 min.) 0.475 million adults 25-54

7. The Five (FOXNC, Wed. 5/4/2022 5:00 PM, 60 min.) 0.474 million adults 25-54

8. The Five (FOXNC, Mon. 5/2/2022 5:00 PM, 60 min.) 0.445 million adults 25-54

9. The Ingraham Angle (FOXNC, Tue. 5/3/2022 10:00 PM, 60 min.) 0.444 million adults 25-54

10. The Five (FOXNC, Thu. 5/5/2022 5:00 PM, 60 min.) 0.441 million adults 25-54

76. Last Week Tonight (HBO, Sun. 5/8/2022 11:01 PM, 42 min.) 0.231 million adults 25-54

81. Rachel Maddow Show (MSNBC, Mon. 5/2/2022 9:00 PM, 60 min.) 0.228 million adults 25-54

96. Don Lemon Tonight (CNN, Mon. 5/2/2022 10:00 PM, 60 min.) 0.211 million adults 25-54

129. The Daily Show (CMDY, Tue. 5/3/2022 11:00 PM, 31 min.) 0.167 million adults 25-54

152. Real Time With Bill Maher “Episode 599” (HBO, Fri. 5/6/2022 10:01 PM, 55 min.) 0.154 million adults 25-54

Source: Live+Same Day data, Nielsen Media Research

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BNM Writers

What Would a Jeff Warshaw Consortium Takeover of Cumulus Mean?

When the news of Warshaw’s consortium became public, some of us looking for a knight on a white horse wondered if this was what we had been waiting for. The announcement led to the question: would a Jeff Warshaw-led Cumulus be an improvement over the current management?

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On April 14, 2022, reports became public that a consortium led by Connoisseur Media CEO Jeff Warshaw made an unsolicited, $1.2 billion bid (including debt) to acquire Cumulus Media.

Reuters reported that Warshaw planned to take the company private with a bid of $15 to $17 per share. As a result, Cumulus shares which traded in the $10 – $11 range over the past year, jumped to $14.21, a 40% increase and a level not seen since July 2021.

Cumulus management responded to the reports by acknowledging the indication of interest and stated it was “reviewing the letter.”

During Cumulus’s Q1 22 earnings call on May 4, President/CEO Mary Berner announced a $50 million stock buyback program and rejected the Warshaw consortium acquisition bid.

Radio companies have lagged the overall financial markets for over a decade. I have participated in conversations with groups that already own radio stations and others currently outside the industry who have considered buying radio groups.

In 2013 music streaming service Pandora bought an FM station in Rapid City, South Dakota. Upon first hearing that news, some of us thought perhaps they realized how undervalued FM signals were and would invest in the medium. Alas, Pandora thought they had found a backdoor means to lower its music royalty costs but otherwise had little interest in broadcast radio.

As somebody who has been involved in every facet of the radio industry for nearly 40 years, I was interested in far more than just the investment implications of the proposed buyout.

When the news of Warshaw’s consortium became public, some of us looking for a knight on a white horse wondered if this was what we had been waiting for. The announcement led to the question: would a Jeff Warshaw-led Cumulus be an improvement over the current management?

To answer that question, I used reviews from the website Glassdoor. Reviewers can rate the company on a one to five bases, with five the best and one the worst.

These reviews have to be taken with a grain of salt as former employees may have an ax to grind, but this caveat holds equally true for all employers.

The company Jeff Warshaw currently runs, Connoisseur Media, receives an average of 2.9 stars (out of five) on Glassdoor. This rating is based on just 32 reviews, so the low sample size is a factor to consider.

Cumulus currently has an average of 3.2 stars on Glassdoor based on over 800 reviews.

These Glassdoor reviews suggest that a new Cumulus led by Warshaw wouldn’t be an improvement over the current management. If it takes a knight on a white horse to make Cumulus a better company to work for, it will have to wait for another day.

To be fair, I don’t know Jeff Warshaw. I have never spoken with him. I would appreciate the opportunity to talk to him at the appropriate time (assuming that his attempted takeover remains ongoing). I also welcome employees of Connoisseur or Cumulus who feel the average reflected on Glassdoor is unfair to contact me (andy@andybloom.com). I will accept comments and input anonymously regardless of whether it is more positive or negative than Glassdoor poses for use in a future column.

While we’re looking at the reviews for Connoisseur and Cumulus, it’s a worthwhile exercise to see how the other major radio broadcast groups fare:

iHeart also rates a 3.2 with over 2,200 reviews.

Audacy receives a 3.5, which is misleading as it’s based on 23 reviews. Entercom had 691 reviews and rates a 3.1.

The best I can find in the industry among the majors is Cox with 4.1. Again, this may be deceiving. Apollo Global Management scores a more modest 3.1.

Hubbard has no reviews. I’m not sure why.

SiriusXM appears to have the highest current score at 3.6.

You’ll find common themes, positive and the negatives are dizzyingly familiar across the companies throughout these reviews.

The main reoccurring negative themes include:

· Low pay

· Long hours

· No chance for advancement

· Doing the work of too many people

· Management pays lip service to feedback but doesn’t do anything

The main reoccurring positive themes include:

· The people

· Fun place to work

· Perks – such as free tickets

· Glad to be working in the industry

I was curious about the differences between the companies employees rated higher and lower to work for. Listening to a couple of recent earnings calls revealed some of the variations. In next week’s column, we will examine some of the differences.

Are the pros and cons listed above familiar to you? I welcome your input and anonymous comments for next week’s follow-up column. Please reach out to me at andy@andybloom.com.

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