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DCRTV Mailbag - January 22, 2012 to January 29, 2012

Latest messages listed first.....
\/ January 29 Messages \/


Word is out that Nassau stations and mid/upper management has run the company into the ground in the range of $70 million. The creditors, Goldman Sachs will liquidate. Wish they were public so they could be shorted into the ground... terrible management. That's $70 million in bad decisions. Gee, who will win that Goldman or the twits at Nassau. Tick tick... BOOM! (1/29/12)

Yo Ken M. tell Harry Shriver I said hello....RIP - Hitman (1/29/12)

"For the past couple of weeks, I've noticed that Pat Lawson Muse on channel 4 has been wearing a wig." From www.wigs.com : "Most black women are comfortable wearing wigs and would rather pop on a new style than spend hours at the beauty salon." Apparently channel 9 is going to do a series on teen drinking during the February sweeps(?). The ad features Anita Brikman looking like she's dressed for a cocktail party. I can't tell if that's a bare midriff or a light colored waistband, probably the latter. Anyway, beautiful skirt. This ad doesn't make me want to watch the series, but to get Anita another drink and snug-a-bug on a sofa before moving to somewhere a little more private. I fap, I mean, watch this ad religiously. And now, back to our incredibly interesting discussion of WNEW. - ZombieWoof (1/29/12)

Hey Dave WMAL’s Mary Katherine Ham said again on the radio today that she had 17 teeth pulled but she didn’t say which ones or even if they had been replaced: do you know which teeth she had pulled, how many would have been left and whether she just replaced them with mini-marsh mellows or white Chicklets? Signed, Toothless In Sacramental (1/29/12)

Hey Dave don’t Tony Pann look a lot like the guy on the original Mission Impossible series who was real dumb and the muscle for the IMF? Who do you think is dumber? Tony Pann or Peter Lupus: dcrtv.com - images.tvrage.com (1/29/12)

For those who will be following Steve Chenevey over to WJLA, just saw a promo indicating that he will be starting there this Thursday. (1/29/12)

Last week I called the Washington Post and said "NO" to their price increase and, as a long time subscriber I wanted to cancel. They dropped my 8 week rate from $52 to $21 for the next year. Give it a try. Won't sign my name or they may stop delivering :) (1/29/12)

Roddy is right. An article in the 1995 Baltimore Sun gives these details: "When Ken Maylath was growing up in Westchester County, N.Y., he and a high-school friend recorded an entire imaginary broadcast day onto a reel-to-reel tape recorder. 'We made up a little hick town in the Midwest and played radio station,' says the news director of WCBM-AM (680), who has been reporting news in Baltimore since 1962 -- without taking a single sick day. ... As a boy, he particularly recalls listening to Arthur Godfrey on CBS, and notes the "How-ah-ya" man worked in the early 1940s on Baltimore's WFBR-AM -- which was Mr. Maylath's first Baltimore station. Mr. Maylath worked in college radio at St. Lawrence University in Canton, N.Y., did summer work at a couple of commercial stations, then -- during a two-year Army stint -- worked at an AM station in El Paso, Texas. In 1960, Mr. Maylath traveled home via Erie, Pa., where he landed a job playing easy listening music. 'I decided within a couple months that it was a lot of work for not very much money,' he recalls, noting he had to live frugally at the local YMCA. But he kept at it. In 1961, he moved to a station in Elmira, N.Y., as a staff announcer and middle-of-the-road music DJ, and in 1962 landed a job as a news announcer and DJ at Baltimore's WFBR-AM (1300). He recalls, however, that the job interview that brought him to Baltimore was secondary to the real reason for the trip. A lifelong train buff, Mr. Maylath came to town to ride an excursion train to Western Maryland. 'I decided to talk to the station the day before, just on the off chance,' he says. When he got aboard the train, it was with the knowledge he would be returning soon to work at all-talk WFBR. ... Mr. Maylath worked at WFBR until 1988, when all employees were swept out in the first of two ownership changes that ultimately led to the disappearance of the venerable station's call letters. ... After a few weeks, he joined several other former WFBR voices hired at WCBM to continue their talk show format. ...." Additionally, the DCRTV.com News Archives show "(September 8, 2005) Ken Maylath Retires - Brenda Carl has been brought onboard at Baltimore talker WCBM (680 AM) to replace longtime newscaster Ken Maylath, who is retiring after 46 years in the radio business. A lifelong lover of trains, Maylath will be spending much of his time as a volunteer at the B&O Railroad Museum in Baltimore." (1/29/12)

I'm a Washington Post home delivery subsriber, but this morning I picked up a copy of The New York Times (for $6 by the way...) and I couldn't help but notice the enormous contrasts with The Posts - - no silly errors, a more sophistocated look, lots of interesting material, thick sections, but perhaps the greatest difference is that The Times is very much an advertisement rich newspaper, unlike The Post which has several near ad-free sections daily. I remember the days when I could say these things about The Post, but alas, those days are far behind us. (1/29/12)

I am sorry to hear of the passing of Ken Maylath. Unsigned Corporate Suit mentioned Maylath was at WFBR in the early 60’s, which is true. But, I seem to remember him being there for many years after that. In fact, when Nick Mangione re-launched WCBM with several former WFBR people in 1988, I believe Maylath went there and was still there as recently as several years ago. Roddy Freeman (1/29/12)

AND it was Wayne Cabot's birthday this weekend (1/28) when the poor guy was doing the overnight Sat to Sun on 99-1...to show 'em how it's done. (1/29/12)

I've noticed that the two CBS Baltimore music stations (106.5 and 101.9) have not been transmitting RDS information for several weeks. Their third FM, 105.7, still is. Anyone know why or if it will return? (1/29/12)

A 1966 Baltimore Sun ad for WFBR's Ken Maylath. (1/29/12)


Very sad to report this morning that former WFBR newscaster Ken Maylath passed away unexpectedly yesterday (1/28) at the age of 75, after being suddenly taken ill just hours before. Ken, a native of Harmon, NY, was at WFBR back in the early 1960's, and is likely remembered for being an avid ferroequinologist. Unsigned Corporate Suit (1/29/12)

This mornings Washington Post has the Super Bowl listed as being on Channel 5 this year..Maybe they just guessed what channel it was on?? Mike in Dunkirk (1/29/12)

Dave's response: And a correction today on A2 that Mike Wise put the Congressional Country Club in Chevy Chase when it's really in Bethesda. Let's face it, it's a sloppy, mistake-prone rag. Now, the 8-week subscription rate rises from $48 to $52 for a paper that's thinner and features less information and a never-ending string of silly and stupid errors. Sheesh.....

For the past couple of weeks, I've noticed that Pat Lawson Muse on channel 4 has been wearing a wig. Although not unusual for a woman to wear one, but odd for her since she's always had a full, healthy head of hair. Just wondering if she's ill & going through chemo treatments. Hope not. (1/29/12)

Dave- Four days before Tony Pann's piece appeared, I published an extensive commentary on the Forecast the Facts campaign on TV weathercasters (on Monday, 1/23): Global warming activists launch misguided campaign against skeptical TV weathercasters www.washingtonpost.com... Forecast the Facts posted the following lengthy response (prominently featured at the top of its website): www.forecastthefacts.org.... Best, Jason Samenow (1/29/12)

Dave's response: It is funny how ever weather forecasting has now become political. Ha ha ha.....

The National Association of Broadcasters has always recommended that subscribing stations not use sirens on the air. Also there is this: www.allaccess.com (1/29/12)

Dave's response: Or beeping or ringing sounds. I don't know how many times I've been distracted while driving when I think my car is emitting a dashboard warning or someone's calling on my cell phone only to find the sounds are coming from a radio ad.....

There has been no mention of the Junkies producer leaving to take over his brothers restaurant -- "sup dog". (1/29/12)

Dave's response: Hey, I can't listen to every radio show all the time. It would help if people would send me the details. I'd be happy to get something up on the site.....

Very cool, Messrs. Sanchez and Swenson. WAYNE CABOT on your 99-One overnight Sat to Sun. To show the Triple A team how it's done? But even your 24-yr PM drive boomer from 880 stumbled over the poor writing and the strange music beds. Even HE had dead air at the top-of-hour. (Punch that Paul Anthony bed one or two beats sooner!) You both know WINS has the best TOH sweep in the business. Do it here! Cabot knew the town/city names but, as I'm sure you heard on the aircheck, the lousy rhythm of the format and writing tripped-up even a pro of his caliber. Looking forward to hearing how you react to it. The radio gods know we are starving for an alternative to what WTOP has become. -An Impressed NY Transplant (1/29/12)

/\ January 29 Messages /\

\/ January 28 Messages \/

At about 8:05 p.m. Saturday, I was listening to WNEW. They aired a promo for Channel 9, something about bad kids on drugs and "9 wants to know". Embedded in the promo was the sound of a police siren. I was making a maneuver in heavy traffic and hearing the siren made me wonder if I had done something wrong. For those of you creating promos and commercials, YOU DON'T BROADCAST SIRENS AS SOUND EFFECTS! They should only be heard in emergencies. Obviously a non-professional created that promo. Rather than fines for foul language there should be fines for airing sirens, EAN tones, and the like, in non-emergency situations. (1/28/12)

Which Tony Pann doesn't believe in man made climate change, the clean-cut version in the picture on the main page or his evil twin who recently appeared on TV sporting a mustache and goatee? (1/28/12)

Once again, events demonstrate DCRTV's impact: Within hours (minutes?) of the posting yesterday of my mailbag item about WASH-FM's HD-2 signal being off for days, the station returned its HD-2 programming to the airwaves. So Clear Channel's oldies channel is back. Hurrah! Many thanks, Dave! - EMR in NoVA (1/28/12)

Dave, your Dave TV for this weekend was interesting. However, here are some things to consider: The Washington Post, like all print media, is engaged in ancestor worship because they know they have only have their past, with only the delusional among them believing they have relevancy, let alone a future. As for the Post becoming a tabloid, why bother? I’ve been saying “Print is Dead” since WOIC was a fresh memory on channel 9. Also, I disagree with you on the Examiner being at all “anti-Obama”. They are no more “anti-Obama” than Fox News is. If they were anti-Obama, they would not engage in the name & title reinforcement they constantly engage in. If they were truly anti-Obama, he would never be mentioned. Plus, by being percieved as an”opposition”, they not only have a devoted core readership/audience, they also strengthen the “true believers” by providing an “enemy” for them to focus on and not be “distracted”; WMAL will not change for much the same reason WINC won’t, but for different reasons –They are scared shitless of the uncertainities to be wrought by any change away from their respective core constituencies. Until the Premiere Networks contract changes, all their properties will remain intact on WMAL. The only likely change would be Cheap Channel taking their products “in-house” on 100.3, a prospect which further relieves potential constipation at 4400 Jennifer. Also, re-establishing what was once the best news department in D.C. radio would take more money than either WTOP or WNEW currently spend? Why? While there’s a lot of good news people doing picture framing or such, they’re of such integrity and reluctantance to get involved with a short-term gambler, an ideologue, or a loser, that it would cost Cumeuless incredibly in signing bonuses and retention agreements as to get the good people needed to pull this off. Plus, spending money at all is anathema to the Cumeuless corporate culture. Now, as I predicted with the move to 105.9, I rarely hear “AM 630” mentioned on WMAL anymore. What could happen is that the WMAL call could disappear from the AM and becoming something else under a new call. How about “Smokin’ Oldies” on 630, from another Cumeuless station? Certainly cheaper than spending money on doing it right -like live and local. What you should have talked about are the changes coming to WRQX. But, we can talk about those later; HD Radio promotion and operation is closely tied to the contract the operating station has with Ibiquity. CBS does engage in HD cross-promotion where it is collateral with the prime signal. Good cases are the oldies stations in Philly and L.A. But, it makes no sense here because in the case of WPGC, an uptick in HD radio ownership/use by their target audience and listenership would cannibalize the ratings (and revenue) of their prime signal. The other stations carry streams which are so incompatable with their core audience, that promotion doesn’t make sense. So, why bother? Just because something seems like it would be the right (or even logical) thing to do, doesn’t mean it will be done… Unsigned Corporate Suit (1/28/12)

Damn shame about Jerry Phillips. I hope he is able to find a donor, and more importantly that there are no complications with it. Jerry is one of those good guys. (1/28/12)

On Jenny Glick yeah, she sounds like maybe she should be a writer, handing scripts to the anchor to read. Then again, a good agent smooths that over. Look at Angie Goff, "hacksaw on sheetmetal" for a voice, and she's a TV anchor. (1/28/12)

Has anyone seen the new Sportstalk Live on CSN? (1/28/12)

Jenny Glick: Listened to her and her voice is gravely and annoying. She needs a voice coach who could teach her how to breathe and how to support her vocal cords. Did anyone else notice this? Perhaps if she were paired with someone it wouldn't be so bad but 30 minutes is not tolerable. On another subject do the field reporters know how to interview people? I haven't listened that much but what I have heard are straight voicers and no wraps from field reporters. Cellphone quality also leaves a lot to be desired. (1/28/12)

I tackle a batch of topics on this weekend's "Dave TV." With Erik Wemple breaking the Mark Plotkin leaving WTOP story Thursday, why did the Washington Post get Paul Farhi to do the Friday print write-up? How about WTOP replacing Plotkin's politcal show with one hosted by Chris Core? And, OK, WMAL moved to FM in September, but why won't it make any programming improvements to prevent a ratings slide? Perhaps CBS should do something different with 1580 like a relay of El Zol or PGC's Area 95.5. And, maybe DC area stations should better promote their HD Radio signals. Also, maybe the Washington Post should become a tabloid..... (1/28/12)


Dave, as a "right-wing, gun-totin' nutjob soccer suburban mom" and avid WMAL listener, you know that I've always advocated having both points of view on WMAL, as when Chris Plante and Jerry Klein used to have their show together many years ago. This is what the listeners want!! I've suggested this many times since Plante & Klein parted ways around Dec. '07 -- and I'm not the only one to do so. Especially during a general election year. Best! -Silvie- (1/28/12)

DC media vet Jerry Phillips ill with kidney disease and needs kidney transplant... dcmetrotalk.weebly.com (1/28/12)

"Um, maybe my math is off, but WNEW using WJFK and TTN would mean LESS jobs, no?" No, Mr. Einstein! The overwhelming majority of people who are doing the sports and traffic updates on WNEW were hired by TTN and WJFK to fulfill WNEW's needs. In other words, TTN and WNEW have put people to work in new jobs. Try splitting another hair, Jim! (1/28/12)

Going unnoticed amidst other news and all this whoopie over NEW and whatnot is the HD2 channel for WPGC, Area95.5. It has been on the air for months now - doing the "energy" dance format of tight rotations and a short playlist. In markets such as Phoenix, "energy" did well enough to carry a good spotload. It's a no-brainer for every gym and health products store in town to play. Heard a lot of car radios on it, too. New York, L.A., and some other markets have had dance stations for decades - but D.C. has been locked into the Urban/HipHop groove. I wish CBS would pump Area out on a FM stick so I could hear it driving around town. (1/28/12)

Dave's response: How about El Zol to 1580 and Area 955 to 107.9.....

Mr Sanchez, if you're still reading, consider moving your female anchors from the 7-12 slot to the 10-2 and the 3-7 slots. Those daytime slots feature your weakest links (Jenny, Nancy, Evan) in both writing and delivery and your night anchors (Sarah and Sheryl) sound pretty darn good. (1/28/12)

Re: "WJFK had already hired Frank Hanrahan and would be making additional hires to staff up for the additional updates on WNEW. I have also heard a new guy, Pete something, in afternoons on WJFK this week."---Duly noted. And I'm glad to see Hanrahan get the full time gig he deserves. But my comment was more specific to traffic, where Lisa Baden, Jerry Booth, and Julie Wright are already gainfully employed. If folks want to celebrate two new hires, that's fine. It's a tough economy. But I look at it like this: only two people found jobs when it could have been seven or eight... (1/28/12)

Whooda thunk 99.1 would be an alternative to ANYthing ever again? News is so grungey!! UnsackedCorporateSlut (1/28/12)

WTOP's HD signal is back on the air today. For those of you who like free form eclectic music give the Gamuet a try on WTOP HD-3. It truly covers the gamut of musical styles and genres. Bob Fairfax (1/28/12)

Dave's response: Starting to get a really cool music line-up on DC HD Radio with HFS975 on 94.7, Area 955 on 95.5, and Gamut on 103.5.....

As WNEW gets its act together… and as WTOP begins to realize what its act should’ve been in the first place, the info junkies around here should find a surfeit fit to satisfy all but the most paranoid. Yesterday, I mentioned the WNEW errors… as have others, but not always the same ones. Today, let’s look at the WTOP errors… and opportunities. Again, so many have repeated the same ones I have… perhaps differently. WTOP should’ve never strayed from its core product: News. Leave the political and bureauractic grandstanding to C-SPANiel 90.1 or the Government and Local Access channels on cable where it belongs. And, will get the same audience numbers. (Worst WTOP “Politics” program I got to hear? Mark Plotkin interviewing then-Maryland GOP chairman, John Kane. Probably the worst on-air interview I’ve heard in the almost five decades I’ve been in this business. Absolutely painful…) Tighten (preferably eliminate) the grandstanding “resident experts”. Leave them to Fox News where they are quite welcome. Clean the lint trap and remove the daily fluff. Read my thoughts on entertainment reporting re: WNEW. Add investigative reporters who break relevant local, regional, and national news. A runaway garbage truck hitting a laundromat is not that important a story. Nor would a blaze at a beauty salon where the fire started in the number five dryer. Become to broadcast journalism what the Washington Post once was to print. Tighten your air. (WNEW needs to do that as well!) Thankfully, this has been a dull winter. But, while I can understand Doug Hill audibly resembling a teenager with his first Playboy magazine when snow is mentioned, restrain him and others from the perils in sensationalizing. Finally, a note for Robert Sanchez: Savor the freedom you currently enjoy by being able to sign your real name to your posts. A freedom often contractually denied. –Unsigned Corporate Suit (1/28/12)

/\ January 28 Messages /\

\/ January 27 Messages \/

Re: The "I am no Farley apologist" who got his panties in a twist apologizing for Farley and demanded that a previous Mailbagger cough up a quote from Farley...I'm guessing you'll get no such quote, because the quote you claim the guy attributed to Farley ("we're making a lot of money and are as perfect as can be") was not in quotation marks. Quotes aren't quotes unless they're quotes. Capiche? To quote you, sir, "If you're going to flame someone at least flame them for something they actually said. sheesh...." (1/27/12)

[Re: "Um, maybe my math is off, but WNEW using WJFK and TTN would mean LESS jobs, no? They're using people who are already employed elsewhere, not hiring their own traffic and sports people. If anything, they're taking the cheap and easy route...and so far, it sounds it..."] Actually the original poster was correct. Jim Williams reported last week tha WJFK had already hired Frank Hanrahan and would be making additional hires to staff up for the additional updates on WNEW. I have also heard a new guy, Pete something, in afternoons on WJFK this week. (1/27/12)

"I’ve been listening to WNEW for about 35 minutes in my office (on line). There have been NUMEROUS production glitches." Seriously, have you ever heard the online stream of any terrestial station that didn't have the same problems? I have not -- including WTOP. Constantly. Just try listening to one of the :25/:55 business updates. It rarely goes uninterrupted by errant commercial inserts. "It reflects badly on the operation in it’s initial week of broadcasting." Riiight, because whoever heard of any business enterprise having problems during a random 35-minute window during their first week. Eesh. "Its", by the way. (1/27/12)

(From earlier) Is that the same Earl Bullock who is now at RCS/Prophet? (End) Might be, but not sure. He gives his title as President of Broadcast Automation in Dallas TX. (1/27/12)

I am no Farley apologist nor defender but to the poster who said that Farley's responses to complaints boiled down to "we're making a lot of money and are as perfect as can be"...do us a favor and cite that quote. Say what you will about WTOP but Jim Farley would not say something like that. If you're going to flame someone at least flame them for something they actually said. sheesh.... (1/27/12)

Here's some free career advice for Rita Mullin, who's taking over at OWN: Quit now. Hasn't Queen Oprah been off regular TV long enough to put her ''personal stamp'' on her own network? She doesn't seem like she gives a shit. Why should she? The only thing her audience wants to see is The Oprah Winfrey Show. Not bad reality shows and outdated movies. Why do people think Oprah has some idea that's going to be a hit? She has more money than god and can sit at home and pick her nose all day if she wants. Oprah's gone and aint coming back. Stop living in the past. Paul (1/27/12)

Mr. Sanchez does a good job trying to sell us on a difference between WNEW and WTOP. He needs to sell us and advertisers. But, lets be honest. When he says WTOP can be processy, he's right. When he implies WNEW will never do processy stories, he's deceiving us. I've listened most of week 1. And while most of their material is interesting, I've heard several processy stories on WNEW. Congressional staffers paying less in taxes. A "street reporter" not on the "street" at all reporting on a snoozer of a Maryland amendment being proposed to oust public officials at conviction, not sentencing. A proposal. Plus several AP rip and reads on government process in Richmond. That's understandable. WNEW has a larger news hole to fill, fewer commercials, fewer reporters, and no interviews like WTOP. But lets be honest Mr. Sanchez. WTOP is processy, as is WAMU, WMAL and yes, even WNEW! No station is perfect. And I will gladly admit WNEW sounds very good. Just sell us the facts, not unrealistic platitudes. WNEW offers a good product that's a nice alternative from WTOP. It may never be better, but it'll be a nice alternative option. (1/27/12)

Warning to Comcast customers! You may receive an email (and it doesn’t require an exact Comcast.net address for you) supposedly from Comcast asking you to take a survey about the Xfinity service. I believe it’s spam! I reached a senior executive at Comcast who would NOT have been sent this email if it were legitimate, who told me that he had received it too and to NOT open it. You can’t be too careful in the internet! (1/27/12)

Regarding WNEW, I really like the sounders they have on there, they don't seem over the top, they seem a whole lot more modern than the retro-sounding WTOP news sounders. Just saying. (1/27/12)

Thursday was the day where about a dozen employees took buyouts from the Washington Post's weekly newspaper, the Gazette, in suburban Maryland. These were employees who worked there for more than 18 years. But there is also talk that some other emloyees were let go this month. Can anyone confirm? Also, if another company in the region had buyouts and layoffs, wouldn't the Post write about it? Why has there been no coverage of their own division? (1/27/12)

It strikes me that most of the gripes about WNEW that I'm reading in the Mailbag have been said about WTOP for years. Excessive self-promotion, anchors who "often sound like they're seeing their copy for the first time," a staff that "seem almost frantic," weather overkill...has a week gone by in the past five years when this kind of thing hasn't said about the old news station at least once in the Mailbag? Sounds to me like Mr. Farley has his staff typing up the complaints that pile up in the "Talkback Line" every day and firing them off to DCRTV. So far I like WNEW, though it isn't always easy to pick up their signal. In any case, it's wayyyyyyyy too early to crown WNEW king OR declare it a disaster. Twelve weeks from now we'll start to get a pretty good picture of just how hungry DC has been for an alternative. I'm guessing their numbers won't be huge, but they'll be enough to drag the old news station back to reality. Monopolies never put out a quality product. (1/27/12)

I’ve been listening to WNEW for about 35 minutes in my office (on line). There have been NUMEROUS production glitches. Jingle interrupts, commercials cut short, personnel intros, no one there. Is it an automation issue? Can the ‘casters” hear what’s going out. It reflects badly on the operation in it’s initial week of broadcasting. Mr. Sanchez had better get a handle on this quickly. (1/27/12)

Happy Birthday wishes to my former Morning Show Co-Host Craig Heist......from The Hitman and all of your friends on the Eastern Shore.....Happy Happy Joy Joy (1/27/12)

Re: "Competition has put MANY of our brothers (and sisters) back to work practicing their craft every day. That includes the hiring of people down the hall at WJFK for sports, and the hiring of staff at Total Traffic (is that the name this week?) to be used on WNEW. In a time when many people are desperately trying to find work, I'm glad that we have put so many BACK into the game. "---Um, maybe my math is off, but WNEW using WJFK and TTN would mean LESS jobs, no? They're using people who are already employed elsewhere, not hiring their own traffic and sports people. If anything, they're taking the cheap and easy route...and so far, it sounds it... (1/27/12)

Hey Alan P. Is that the same Earl Bullock who is now at RCS/Prophet? (1/27/12)

Sometime in the past week or so, WASH-FM's HD-2 signal disappeared. The station's HD-1 channel is still operating (with a relay of WASH-FM's programming), as are the various HD channels for other DC-area Clear Channel stations that I've checked. 97.1's HD-2 signal carried CC's superb oldies channel (mostly '70s music). I hope that someone will turn the switch back on! - EMR in NoVA (1/27/12)

I caved in and gave WNEW a listen. 1:30. Jenny Glick. Strike 1. In 5 minutes, they mentioned "WNEW" SEVEN TIMES, 4 of which occurred in the 1st 2 minutes. Isn't this just a wee bit excessive? (1/27/12)

Cold read? The WNEW anchors often sound like they're seeing their copy for the first time. Not that the copy is poorly written, but just that it's never been read for the ear. Are they writing their own copy? Less excuse then. If someone else is writing, strongly recommend more time for a run-through on a prepared newscast. Obviously, breaking news has to go on the first try. But not the cast someone has had an hour to write and rehearse. Speaking of breaking news, does anyone have the best newsroom phone number to call a tip in ? Is there a cell phone speed dial like the old news station in town has offered ? (1/27/12)

Sajak and Vanna got lubed during breaks in WOF tapings? Uhhh... that's not unusual in a broadcast setting. Flashback to WDCA-TV 20 of the '70s where they prepped for Bozo's Saturday tapings by erecting the set in the AM before breaking for lunch. Of course, lunch was at The Godfather on Wisconsin Avenue, so you can be sure the afternoon tapings went particularly s-m-o-o-t-h! (1/27/12)

To Rob Sanchez: Get rid of the total redundancy…the staff has to simmer down, at times they seem almost frantic. If you miss a remote…chill, don’t rattle! Your weather is at the point of over-kill. Love the energy but don’t like the loudness of the sounders…Love bells and whistles, but you’re over the top. All in all, I really enjoy a contemporary news sound. Keep on keepin on…..I personally think you’re gonna win the war….TKX! (1/27/12)

I saw a commercial with Riggo in it hawking gold coins...it's kinda funny since he refers to the Skins coach as Scamahan (1/27/12)

Market research and “cumes” aside, you can build a radio station based on market surveys and focus groups, or you can build a station around your listeners – the real ones and not the ones who have time to participate in focus groups for $20. Launching a station based on that information is great, but building an audience requires retooling, and I’m enjoying WNEW so far – I only hope that management isn’t so in love with some of their ideas that they’re willing to sacrifice listeners to keep those ideas intact. Going for the cume and the short term listener is fine. But the amount of buzz and critique that NEW has generated has been above and beyond expectations. Washington loves its news. I listen for my entire commute which is more than 10 minutes long, sadly. As for those who criticize Mr. Sanchez for responding here, isn’t that the goal of some of these comments? To have someone who can do something about these complaints listen? Been listening since Sunday. A few thoughts, in no particular order. Weather ever four minutes is overkill. When you add in the weather on the ones, you’ve got 17 weather broadcasts. And the “repeating the current temperature” schtick makes it seem like it’s more often than 17 broadcasts. Tighten down on the anchors and enforce that ‘repeating the current temperature’ is just that, and no forecast. Anchors – weak anchoring and writing from morning through the evening, with the exception of Chaz Henry – he’s good. Your weaknesses in the full time anchors are from 10-7, unfortunately, and particularly in the 3-7 timeframe. Reporting live – we’re not dumb. If you tell me someone is reporting live at 9:15 on the Silver Spring traffic/power outage, and he tells me that PEPCO met the 9:00 power on deadline with “15 minutes to spare,” I know it wasn’t live. Don’t patronize us. We understand that not everything can be live. Just don’t call it live if it’s not. Good luck. TOP is taking notice, that’s for sure (1/27/12)

Kudos to Sanchez for replying...and for signing his name. And his response...[As for the comment about me having better things to do than reading this board, I think it’s a great resource. At WCBS, I used to love taking complaint calls, because those were the people who were most passionate about the radio station.]...was a good explanation even though it had a hint of spin. However, in time he will learn, that the majority of people posting in this mailbag are in the business, and outspoken and opinionated about topics that are often not reflective of what the general listening population cares about. You want to talk about "process" and "minutea"?? you got it all right here. MP (1/27/12)

Neal, I’ve never met JJ, but from everything I’ve heard on the radio he’s a fantastic reporter. Ditto for you and most of the folks at WTOP. I was only pointing out that goofy Los Angeles homeland security assignment which continues to vex me and many on this board, as an example of how WNEW will be different. As for the comment about me having better things to do than reading this board, I think it’s a great resource. At WCBS, I used to love taking complaint calls, because those were the people who were most passionate about the radio station. And 95% percent hung up feeling satisfied that either their complaint was heard or with a better understanding of our editorial decisions. What I don’t get is why everyone is so angry. It’s crazy to think that people would be throwing rocks through the window of the new burger joint that opened across the street from McDonalds. Unless of course, you work there. We’re providing an alternative, that’s all. You don’t have to listen. And it's a local station that employs a lot of people at good pay at a time when other companies are cutting back and relying on canned programming. I will keep reading but I’m not going to reply to baited comments and get into a back and forth over every little thing. So, Neal, to quote Jim, I wish you a moderate amount of success moving forward. And like you, I’m not afraid to sign my real name. I will encourage others, who have something to say, to not hide behind their keyboards or post under clever handles. Rob Sanchez - speaking on behalf of myself and noton behalf or as a representative for my employer. (1/27/12)

"Joe Madigan" or "Bob Madigan"; It really doesn't matter because that's his made-up air name. (Not that there's anything wrong with that.) He's used it at least since his days at KNX-FM (1977-80) through the '80s working for Jim Farley at NBC Radio's NYC Bureau and his time at WWRC AM 980 in the early '90s before arriving at WTOP Radio. (1/27/12)

Dave's response: Back in my porn star days, I was known as "Spike Madigan." Ha ha ha.....

fyi - One of the last posts Mark Plotkin posted on his Twitter account, it looks like he played the RACE card. Wonder if that had anything to do with his firing? His post says: "Every insult, every slight adds up. If this President was a White Republican, there would be outrage. He's got us in his pocket." twitter.com/markplotkinwtop... Just sayin... (1/27/12)

Attention, WTOP: The fact that Mathew Broderick is going to be in a commercial shown during the Superbowl IS NOT NEWS, in any way, shape or form. It's certainly not such a big deal that it needs to be teased twice in four minutes. You couldn't even say what the spot was going to be about or what product he was going to be hyping. All you had was a tape of Ben Stein saying "Bueller...Bueller," and an anchor who kept saying "Ferris Bueller...Ferris Bueller" and then yucking it up at himself. Nothing else. Idea: pull your heads out of your asses, or 'NEW is going to do it for you. (1/27/12)

To the poster that was asking about the Metro story on WNEW- The story was probably referring to a power problem that happened shortly before midnight Thursday. More on that available here: wmata.com. The 12AM closing time for Metro on weekdays only applies to a few stations in DC's inner core. At the outermost stations, the last train can arrive as late as 12:45 on the normal schedule. That time is pushed back even further if there are delays in the system, as there were on Thursday night. A 1AM report on Metro delays would make sense in this context. (1/27/12)

I'm confused. Farley says WTOP is going "back to basics," but for years all he and his staff at WTOP said in response to complaints was that the station made a lot of money and, therefore, was as perfect as perfect can be. I wonder what happened to bring about this change? I....wonder....? (1/27/12)

International Public TV Conference in DC, in the Examiner! examiner.com (1/27/12)

in all fairness to Fahri, credit for the story notwithstanding, i believe he didn't make any factual errors in the story. typically he has at least one mistake that hurts his "media" credibility. (1/27/12)

Dave's response: That's right. Farhi did report that WTOP is "principally heard on 103.5" in today's piece. None of that 1050 shit, which I still haven't seen the Post run a formal A2 correction about.....

[RE Farhi penning a piece without mentioning Wemple's Plotkin scoop:] I've heard that Post treats their new media folks as second class. (1/27/12)

Dave's response: It's kinda nice to see Farhi screwing over another Washington Postie, instead of me. I guess I shouldn't take his journalistic lack of ethics too personally. Ditto with Zurawik.....

Had the car instead of the truck today, and the car's got better speakers. At 7:30am, heard the WNEW news sounder for the first time in hi-fi, and wow, sounded like the music you get at the movie theater when it finally beings. Even smelled the hot buttered popcorn. Nice job. Still seeing the stereo pilot light, but I'm not hearing much in the way of stereo imaging, including the anchor microphones. Years ago, WGH-FM in Newport News, the original home of the WNEW call letters, just by the way, had a pair of mics on the announcer (classical music format). With headphones, you could hear him slightly turning his head to read the liner notes or whatever. I guess the new WNEW could do that, but why bother when you can get another few db of signal for certain people (hi Dave!). Stereo on primarily the spoken word just won't show up much in the car, and how big is the ear bud audience going to be? (1/27/12)

Very surprised to see that Sanchez has enough time on his hands to be reading, AND replying, to the DCRTV Mailbag. No offense to the mailbag, but doesn't he have more important things to be focused on this week? like how his morning drive anchor yesterday was instructing listeners to "streamline" WNEW on the web, instead of "stream". Robert, you still have a LONG way to go. Keep your eye on the ball and off the mailbag. MP (1/27/12)

Pat Sajak's stories about having margaritas during taping breaks at Wheel of Fortune are in this video interview, which is pretty funny. (1/27/12)


Dave: Oops...it's Bob Madigan, not Joe. Would you be so kind as to correct my post? I'm sure someone has already pounced on it. Thanks, (1/27/12)

Dave's response: Yeah, "Joe Madigan" just doesn't have the class that "Bob Madigan" does.....

Dave, I am overwhelmed today with grief and depression from the death of my first-born son, Michael Glenn Clawson of Leesburg, VA. Mike, who would have celebrated his 34th birthday today (1/26), was killed Tuesday night in a traffic accident in Fairfax County, Virginia. Lots of people in Washington radio knew Mike because of his ties to the broadcasting and music industries. He grew up around broadcasting due to my work at Radio & Records, NBC and CNN - and because of his step-father (due to my ex-wife's remarriage), TODD MARTIN LEE, a nationally-known and veteran radio executive who is currently Operations Manager for the Vox Radio Group in Pittsfield, Massachusetts. Todd has worked as on-air talent and senior management at radio stations literally all over America, from Maine to California, during his 40-year career. Mike worked at some of those stations doing audio production and promotional work. For the past two years, Mike has been located in Leesburg, VA working as a rock music singer with his band, One Nightstand, which has been a crowd-pleaser in Northern Virginia. Photos and music samples here: www.nightstandrocks.com... On Sunday January 29th, our family will celebrate his life. Viewing is from 3-5 PM with a memorial service following at 5 PM at: Loudoun Funeral Chapel, 158 Catoctin Cr. SE, Leesburg, Virginia 20175... Also, a news release from the Fairfax County PD follows below. Contrary to the initial police press release, it does NOT appear that alcohol was involved. The police initially reached that conclusion because a half-empty bottle of rum was found in his knapsack in the trunk of the car, but it is my understanding that the medical examiner report does not substantiate any alcohol abuse. Based on new information we received late last night, we believe the accident was caused because he made a mistake while following his GPS and made an improper left turn from Fairfax County Parkway onto Route 7 at a poorly marked intersection while driving in the dark. He turned about 100 feet earlier than he should have, onto the exit ramp for eastbound Route 7 instead of the entrance ramp for westbound Route 7. He was hit head-on as he was accelerating off the ramp onto Route 7. Police now estimate his speed was 50-55 mph, which is the limit in that area, so excessive speed was not a factor. The detectives now believe he struck the bridge because he was swerving to avoid the oncoming traffic. I will be moving very rapidly to get the Fairfax County Government to more clearly mark that area with no-left turn signs. Regards, Pat Clawson, Flint, MI/Washington, DC..... Reston Police District – Police are investigating a fatal crash that occurred on Tuesday, January 24, 2012 shortly after 7:30 p.m. A 33-year-old, New York man was operating a 2005 Hyundai Elantra, headed north on Route 7100, the Fairfax County Parkway. The Hyundai turned from Route 7100 on to the ramp leading from eastbound Leesburg Pike, to Route 7100 into opposing traffic. The Hyundai traveled the full length of the ramp and got onto Route 7 east, but heading westbound. The vehicle struck the median barrier on the bridge over Sugarland Run Stream and then veered into oncoming traffic. The front left of the Hyundai struck the front left of an oncoming Ford Explorer. The 33-year-old driver of the Hyundai, Michael Clawson, was pronounced dead on the scene. The 29-year-old woman driving the Ford Explorer was transported to a local hospital with non life-threatening injuries. Speed and alcohol appear to be factors in this crash on the part of the driver of the Hyundai. Crash Reconstruction detectives continue to investigate. Anyone with information is asked to contact Crime Solvers by phone at 1-866-411-TIPS/8477, e-mail at www.fairfaxcrimesolvers.org or text “TIP187” plus your message to CRIMES/274637 or call Fairfax County Police at 703-691-2131. (1/27/12)

Mark Plotkin's WTOP local political commentary didn't impress me. He's not "God's gift to political reporting" by any means - but that's how Farley and TOP puffed him up. Now that the brilliant Mr. F has to work for a living again, notice how quickly he's shedding things that slow the station down and take it off the main track. I wonder how long it will be before another time waster, "Your Man about Town, Bob Madigan," hits the dumpster at 3400 Idaho NW. His "finds" need to be buying a spot schedule, not getting free air time. (1/27/12)

Mark Plotkin's WTOP local political commentary didn't impress me. He's not "God's gift to political reporting" by any means - but that's how Farley and TOP puffed him up. Now that the brilliant Mr. F has to work for a living again, notice how quickly he's shedding things that slow the station down and take it off the main track. I wonder how long it will be before another time waster, "Your Man about Town, Joe Madigan," hits the dumpster at 3400 Idaho NW. His "finds" need to be buying a spot schedule, not getting free air time. (1/27/12)

It should be pointed out that the pic of the Schafer 903 automation system in the earlier message may not represent the condition of the one being offered by Bullock. These systems were in prime shape some 30-40 years ago and the picture shows a rig in its heyday. It's a pretty good bet this thing is now sagging like a '70s Penthouse model. (1/27/12)

Folks, I just got an email from Earl Bullock, a developer of the classic Schafer 903 reel-based radio automation system; the big blue monster that a lot of us seasoned pros got our start on in the '70s and '80s before giving way to computer-based hard disk systems. Anyway, he tells me he's got a 903 that's been in storage for many years that he "needs to dispose of". I don't know how much love any of you do or don't have for this machine, but if you have a nostalgic tendency and an empty room at home you don't know what to do with, this might be for you. Is anyone from the Capital Radio & TV Museum or perhaps the Smithsonian looking in? (Al Peterson) (1/27/12)


it's about time that MASN parted ways with Debbie Taylor. It was embarrassing watching her on our team's broadcast. (1/27/12)

[RE Plotkin:] I enjoyed Mark..at least for awhile, he'll have more time for tennis. (1/27/12)

Hi. I recently sent a note to the WBAL-AM news department inquiring about the disappearance of their 4:30 a.m. newscasts. I commented that I thought it strange that in the place of the news the station now runs a commercial about the station is committed to keeping the public updated with the latest news. No response to me as of yet from the station. Take care, Marvin Barrash (1/27/12)

What's all the fuss about Pat Sajak and Vanna White having some cocktails during the long dinner break on Wheel of Fortune taping days? When Match Game was on CBS, the panel always had drinks during the dinner break and many of them have publicly credited that practice with looser, funnier shows because of it. I wouldn't doubt it if other game shows did similar things on taping day and I'm not aware of any scandals, firings or show cancellations because of these liquid lunches. (1/27/12)

When Robert Sanchez and his reporters break as many stories, and does his station as proud as J.J. Green does WTOP, that might be the time to lob unsubstantiated accusations. Neal Augenstein (1/27/12)

I had an entire email written to respond to my brother, The Unsigned Corporate Suit, but I tossed in favor of the following... Two news stations in Washington can only mean BETTER things. Competition makes us ALL better broadcasters. Competition is EXCITING to watch and listen to. Competition has put MANY of our brothers (and sisters) back to work practicing their craft every day. That includes the hiring of people down the hall at WJFK for sports, and the hiring of staff at Total Traffic (is that the name this week?) to be used on WNEW. In a time when many people are desperately trying to find work, I'm glad that we have put so many BACK into the game. - Another Corporate Suit (1/27/12)

I'm SO happy for Bully Wright. I hope she got the money that she was asking for (and openly discussing in the hallway with anyone that would listen). Funny, when I asked Bully about getting a raise for doing more stations, Bully told me that I got paid my salary whether I did one station or ten. I wonder why there are different rules for Bully Wright? I wonder why Bully continues to do things that are in her own best interest, and not in the best interest of the people that she claims to represent? Signed - Your Shop. (1/27/12)

Sanchez Sez "“ I hear a lot of process on WTOP — national-security stories, political minutiae". This is Washington DC, isn't it? National-security and political minutiae IS news, Robert. Sanchez should makes his own products great, instead of throwing knives at the competition. (1/27/12)

So after a late evening out to dinner with friends, I was listening to WNEW on the ride home Thursday night/Friday morning. Their 12:51 and 1:01 traffic reports both led off with major Metro delays "according to riders" and "Metro's website." In addition, they mentioned it as a news story just after 1:00 - but, again, with no specific info. However, Metro closes at 12:00 on weeknights. When I got home at 1:10, the only alert on Metro's website was about scheduled weekend track work on the Red line. What's the deal WNEW and Total Traffic? (1/27/12)

While I appreciate Unsigned Corporate Suit's analysis of Sanchez/Plotkin hypocrisy argument, I would say consider this: what WNEW says it will do should be taken with a softball-sized grain of salt. All of their reporters seem to have their ankles chained to parking meters in the District. What happened to the promised suburban focus? Smart money says they simply haven't figured out to get there yet. (1/27/12)

I saw Mark Plotkin do his regular political Q and A analysis Thursday night on Fox5 News at 10. After talking politics about 10:22pm, anchor Brian Bolter asked about Mark's status at WTOP. Mark confirmed he was no longer with WTOP. He said the parting was amicable and added "it's good to be with you here." That was all he said and the live segment ended at that point. (1/27/12)

I applaud Mr. Sanchez for responding to my post, and unlike others, I can admit when I am wrong. I am pleased WNEW will do national security stories. Mr. Sanchez and Mr. Swenson made a good hire in Chas Henry, a former WTOPer. He and JJ Green are both top notch. I also agree WTOP erred in a series on terrorism in Los Angeles. Nevertheless, the Mailbag should notice Mr. Sanchez ignored my main argument altogether. WNEW would get a splash by hiring Mark Plotkin, but they won't do it. Mr. Plotkin is a great local political analyst, but he loves political minutae. He wins awards for his commentary, opinion and Politics Program. Three features Mr. Swenson and Mr. Sanchez have publicly stated they will not have at WNEW. I am not misquoting him on that. To hire Plotkin would send a message to advertisers that you can't take us at our word ("no long interviews, no commentary, no opinion, just news."). The DCRTV Mailbag should notice Mr. Sanchez completely ignored that issue. Perhaps Mr. Swenson hasn't authorized him to comment on employment matters of Mr. Plotkin. But as a loyal WNEW listener, he should tell the public his opinion on hiring Mr. Plotkin. (1/27/12)

So, how many Martini's did Pat Sajak and Vanna White knock down between shows in the early days of WOF? ap.org... Sounds like Sajak could have given Ed McMahon a run for his money in the day. JA (1/27/12)

Memo to WTOP: Have Chris Core do the Politics Hour. Memo to WNEW: There are awkward pauses from the anchor to & from traffic reports, and to & from recorded reports from reporters. Tighten up! Also, I suggest keeping the traffic bed running under the complete traffic report--it makes the report sound more compelling! Finally, cut down on the repetition of WNEW--your anchors are having trouble saying it! Perhaps focus on an alternative: "ninety-nine one newstime is..."; "ninety-nine one traffic", etc. (The peoplemeter ratings means fewer call sign repetitions are necessary.--Mike from Silver Spring (1/27/12)

/\ January 27 Messages /\

\/ January 26 Messages \/

Here's another big blunder on WBAL's website. "Under the governor's proposal, the deduction would be limited to 90% for those earning more than $100,000, and 80% for those earning more than $20,000." Guess who? (1/26/12)

Gotta love WNEW’s headline on their WTOP story: “DC Radio Vet Mark Plotkin Silenced by WTOP”. They make it sound like TOP wrestled him to the ground and shoved a sock down his throat. No doubt that would make more than a few people happy, but it’s hardly accurate. (1/26/12)

["Dave's response: I'm not really "from" Philly. Born in NYC, as a kid lived in the Jersey suburbs of Philly until 1972, when my parents moved the family down here. I've been in the DC area 40 years. That's pretty close to making me a DC area native, I would think....."] God Dave, you're STILL a come-downer! (1/26/12)

Dave, had the shouting and fisticuffs between Mark Plotkin and D.C. City Council Chair Kwame Brown (check the spelling on your front page!) occurred at WTOP instead of WTTG, it wouldn’t have any discussion traction. However, consider how much of a chunk of the broadcast week the “Politics” and “Ask the (whatever)” programs take out of the WTOP broadcast week, and you’re talking serious tune-out when you’ve got a no-nonsense competitor. Also, Mark Plotkin was presented as even more of an “outsider” than the late Joe Barber. Or, Chris Core. More of a free-lancer than a staffer, if you will. Yes, Mark is a liberal. He’s honest about it. But, I don’t see him going to either WMAL or WNEW. MSNBC, NPR, PBS, or an online service would be possibilities. Or, as an operative in a 2012 Democrat campaign. Perhaps, even with the party itself. WTOP is beginning to feel pressure -if not wind- from WNEW. WNEW is getting better. The worst mistakes WNEW is making now is their “cross promotion” strategy tying WNEW with “Fresh” and “Fan” and the non weekend entertainment reports. It’s unlikely that WNEW will have many “Fresh” or “Fan” listeners. And, “Ross Crystal’s Showbiz Express” is another example of the “fluff” on WTOP. So, limit the entertainment stuff to Friday-Sunday, and put a local focus on it like Joe Barber did. With good promotion and good programming, WNEW could gain WTOP listeners. That’s the whole idea of competition: Dominate your competitor and force them to make changes to try to catch up. That’s why WNEW is kind of going low-profile until they can get the CBS affiliation in 2013: They don’t want to hit WTOP so hard in AM drive that it cannibalizes the network’s revenue. A prediction for discussion in 2013: What does WTOP do when it loses the CBS affiliation to WNEW? -Unsigned Corporate Suit (1/26/12)

Hey Dave, WNEW has posted an article about Mark Plotkin on the website. washington.cbslocal.com... Enjoy! (1/26/12)

The “insider” who wrote this misquoted me. [RE: As an insider, I would be shocked if WNEW hired Mark Plotkin as a political analyst. First, it would fly in the face of Robert Sanchez, the Program Director, who was quoted in the Post saying WNEW will not delve into "political minutae". I have great respect for Mr. Plotkin, and his vast knowledge of local politics, but he would fit that to a T. If WNEW hired him, Robert Sanchez would look like a hypocrite. Then again, Mr. Sanchez said they wouldn't cover national security, and they're using Chas Henry as a WNEW National Security Correspondent. So maybe I shouldn't believe what he says publicly.] I never said we would not cover national security stories. That’s ridiculous. Here’s a cut and paste of what I actually said..... “The goal is not to be WTOP,” said Sanchez, a veteran of news stations in Miami and New York. “The idea is, you punch the button and you’ll find out what’s happening now. You don’t always get that on WTOP. I hear a lot of process on WTOP — national-security stories, political minutiae. They can sound like a very glossy magazine. That’s great, but when something is happening, you don’t pick up a magazine to find out about it.” We will of course do national security stories – but stories that matter. Suffice it to say, we’re not sending anyone to LA to do a week-long series on how safe Los Angeles is or isn’t. Still scratching my head at that one… Maybe JJ got a free vacation out of it. Robert Sanchez, Program Director & Executive Editor, WNEW-FM All News 99.1, WNEW-AM The Big Talker 1580 (1/26/12)

The old news station in town could hire Blair Lee IV as political commentator. That would get him off WBAL where he's a punch-out anyway. Or maybe Peter Morici, there ya go. Univ. of Maryland economics professor masquerading as a political commentator. Or is it the other way around? Also would be good to scrape him off WBAL. Both are quite good at fulminating. Just trying to be helpful here. (1/26/12)

Seven reasons why I would never hire Mark Plotkin: Arrogant Smug Snide Heel Outlandish Lout Exacting.... Five reasons why I would never hire Plotkin: Pretentious Reptilian Idiot Clown Kook (1/26/12)

Mark Plotkin treats his shoes better than he treats other human beings. Maybe that's why he's out of a job. (1/26/12)

As an insider, I would be shocked if WNEW hired Mark Plotkin as a political analyst. First, it would fly in the face of Robert Sanchez, the Program Director, who was quoted in the Post saying WNEW will not delve into "political minutae". I have great respect for Mr. Plotkin, and his vast knowledge of local politics, but he would fit that to a T. If WNEW hired him, Robert Sanchez would look like a hypocrite. Then again, Mr. Sanchez said they wouldn't cover national security, and they're using Chas Henry as a WNEW National Security Correspondent. So maybe I shouldn't believe what he says publicly. Second, it would fly in the face of the promos that Steve Swenson approved of, and pitched to advertisers, that WNEW will do all-news, no long interviews, no commentary, no opinion. Mr. Plotkin is Mr. Commentary, Mr. Opinion. I doubt Steve Swenson would anger his advertisers and listeners, especially when they're literally giving away commercials for free. Nonetheless, it is a big loss for WTOP in an election year. Not just nationally, but with a big Virginia Senate race. Jim Farley would be wise to hire another political analyst with connections to DC, Maryland and Virginia politics very soon, or else he could find this election season very difficult in the Arbitron ratings. A national political analyst? Not a big deal. WTOP can use Politico and CBS News. Likely scenario: WAMU rehires Mark Plotkin, with little effect in the ratings. Also remember, Mark is old. He's had health problems within the last 3 years. He may retire soon anyways. (1/26/12)

I'm guessing Farley killed the Friday Politics Program to make room for more "Knuckleheads in the News," more "Core Values" and more of those breathless stories about what Kristi King saw on her drive in to work today. That's just how those serious journalists over at WTOP roll. Or maybe they're already cutting payroll...? (1/26/12)

What took WTOP so long in dumping Mr. Plotkin? Any self-respecting news organization would have rid themselves of him long ago. Hard to imagine that in a town filled with D-list gas bags, WTOP and before that WAMU employed a political analyst who actually BOASTS of not knowing how to use computers, social media, email and the like. Of course those tools have nothing to do with modern politics. Would you buy a car from a sales guy who doesn't drive? And don't forget: the expert Mr. Plotkin doesn't know enough even to win TWO attempts for the D.C. City Council. I'd rather listen to Lisa Baden analyze elections. (1/26/12)

WOW, I love that WNEW ran the breaking news bulletin about Mark being shown the door. I actually heard it on the air. But, Dave...can you do me a huge favor..can you put some audio processing on your Dave TV video? I mean damn! You can get a Samson processor for $50! (1/26/12)

When I heard the news, I thought it was because of this: washingtonpost.com... "One could argue, and and plenty do, that Washington’s mayor should automatically receive an invitation to the president’s address out of respect to the federal city. Outspoken D.C. advocate Mark Plotkin tweeted his outrage Tuesday that Gray had not been invited by President Obama: “The ultimate ingrate. No invitation to Mayor Vincent Gray of DC to the SOTU. 93% in 2008, every precinct.” " (1/26/12)

Interesting to track the commentary on the news battle in this here blog...most of the people are talking about style, production values and presentation. I see very little commentary about actual content. you know, the stuff an all news station breads its butter with. What this says is that people are more concerned with how the station sounds than what it says. That is not surprising. However, eventually WNEW will have to deliver on the depth and immediacy of the news content they say they are providing. Two cases in point. Was listening to 99.1 for about 20 minutes then flipped to 103.5. They had a live reporter at Montgomery Mall talking about a gas main leak. Had heard nothing about that on 99.1. Second, 99.1 does a fluff piece on Chef Jeff and the foxhall rd speed cameras. Though the reporter claimed he was on foxhall road it did not sound like it. The reporter also claimed he talked to the Chef...yet there was no audio to back it up. In reality, all he did was rehash the info from the Reliable source column. While I'm sure 99.1 will improve, so far their boasts and promises are not being backed up by their content. (1/26/12)

I've got to admit that WNEW is crisper, faster and higher octane than WTOP; all of NEW's broadcasters have great voices and the station is a nice alternative. Kind of makes you decide whether you like the soft old shoe or the Nikes. Problem here in DC for me is that the reception is just not very good for NEW. (Shawn in DC) (1/26/12)

WNEW runs a news bulletin about WTOP firing Mark Plotkin on January 26..... (1/26/12)


[RE DCRTV's Facebook page: WMAL's Brian Wilson says he gets an average of one speed cam ticket a month!] So, does mean he doesn't have the intellectual facility to figure out where the cam is that keeps tagging him OR he doesn't care and basically ignores the law? Either option doesn't really speak well for BW. (1/26/12)

Suggestion: Bring Mark Plotkin in as a guest host (or co-host) on WMAL's "Morning Majority" -- it would be a RATINGS BONANZA, especially during this Election year. Or, as a guest host on Andy Parks' WTNT afternoon show. Best to Mr. Plotkin.... - Silvie in Waldorf - (1/26/12)

Dave's response: I think that would be a great move for WMAL. But Plotkin is a "big lib." I don't know how well he'd go over with WMAL's crazed right-wing listeners. Or, he could jump over to WNEW. That would really be "sticking it" to WTOP. Ha ha ha. Or to WAMU or even one of the local TVers.....

[RE Plotkin:] One of the sharpest political analysts in the area. I can't believe WTOP let him go. (1/26/12)

[RE Plotkin:] Who else will blather on about DC Voting Rights and Statehood and softball the local pols? No one, I hope. (1/26/12)

Love Plotkin -- I'm stunned. (1/26/12)

[RE Plotkin:] Is he the old guy who sounds like he's going through puberty? (1/26/12)

[RE Plotkin:] doesn't surprise me one bit....yet another reason why I got out of radio, too much BS (1/26/12)

And Plotkin was great. (1/26/12)

[RE Plotkin:] Fired?!? This wouldn't have something to do with his spat in their studios with that pol in DC who insists on a sweet ride, would it? (1/26/12)

Mark Plotkin apparently out at WTOP and so is his show... (1/26/12)

"[Dave said "Ah, remember back in the 1970s when 97.5 was rocker WKMZ, the Mountain....."]Nope, and you don't either, Dave. The WKMZ call letters didn't appear until 1981. You don't remember "the Mountain" in the 80's either, Dave. WKMZ was Top 40 as "KMZ-FM" until it finally flipped to "Classic Rock" (hardly a "rocker") in the early-mid 90's. I think it got a power upgrade somewhere in there, as well. (1/26/12)"..actually Dave is sort of right - before it was a Top - 40 at KMZ-FM - it was a rock station as K-97.5. I don't recall the dates but it was a LONG time ago (1/26/12)

We are just getting into the teeth of political season. Bad timing to lose Plotkin. (1/26/12)

[RE Plotkin:] Don't worry I am sure CBS Radio has him in its speed dial (1/26/12)

[RE Plotkin:] The Post's Erik Wemple broke this story including staff e-mail with WWE-style future endeavored language. (1/26/12)

[RE Plotkin:] Why would they let him go? He does his job, knows his beat thoroughly, doesn't pretend wrongdoing is not going on in the District gov't when it is, and has no other life. Bad move. (1/26/12)

Dave said "Back in the day, news talker WSVA, 550 AM, in Harrisonburg was a pretty good news and weather source for the Shenandoah Valley and the Virginia mountains. Haven't listened to them much lately, though.." Back in the day WSVA was the only radio station in this area that gave a weather forecast three days out. I used to sit in the Student Union at UMD where there was a little radio in a study room. I'd tune to the station just to see if any snow was on the horizon. (1/26/12)

Concerning WKGO, I don’t think it’s a case of the station claiming that it serves the D.C. metro market. Instead, Envision Radio Networks (the syndicator here) likely issued the announcement with the DMA (which would indeed be D.C.) instead of any other geographic identification (e.g., metro market or city). Both All Access and Radio Online have the same item as FMQB and both also have the same D.C. mention. That said, as [its Google listing claims], the station does specifically try to play up the fact that it is in the D.C.DMA. As always, thanks! EJM (1/26/12)

Dave's response: Obviously, both radio news sites ran the press release without reading it. Hagerstown stations can get away with saying they cover part of the DC market, but not Cumberland stations. Hell, Philadelphia is closer to DC than Cumberland is. Sheesh.....

From the Mailbag:--- Re: "WNEW is sharp, hot, focused, motivated and improving. Say what you will, they are definitely a contender for the Number One position in the news business here in the nations’ capitol."---- Glad you had a good laugh. Just wait and see who ends up “being the President of the United States”. You evidently have no idea what makes or breaks a news operation. To me, you’re just another “armchair programmer” without a clue. WNEW will prevail…BET ON IT-TKX (1/26/12)

Oh, dear. The voice of the Robot has died. That lumbering lout. That clanky cacophonous bucket of ragged rusty bolts! Oh dear, oh dear. Woe is me. I’m too young to die. Dr. Z. Smith (1/26/12)

The "money demo" age 25-54 radio ratings for the 4th week of the "holiday" period for DC and WTOP ain't on top. Plus, I take a look at some cool books from the DCRTV Library, including a new offering from DC radio vet TC called "Smoothies." Also, CBS finally closes on the 107.9 signal. And more in today's "Dave TV"..... (1/26/12)


Hey Dave, can you recommend a good news/weather radio station serving the Winchester VA area? I've noticed since moving from DC to Fauquier Co that the WTOP and other DC area outlets are not really capturing the weather out in my area. It's like a different climate zone when you move 60 miles SW of DC. (1/26/12)

Dave's response: Back in the day, news talker WSVA, 550 AM, in Harrisonburg was a pretty good news and weather source for the Shenandoah Valley and the Virginia mountains. Haven't listened to them much lately, though.....

Another memory of when WRC carried NBC's News & Information Service, was when Hanafi Muslims took control of the District Building. A WHUR reporter was killed and a policeman also died. Marion Barry was wounded, but survived. They also took hostages at B'nai B'rith headquarters and at the Islamic Center of Washington as well. It was a huge story for several days. WRC had the story covered and plenty of resources to get the job done. I'm sure WTOP was on top of it as well, though I wasn't a listener then. In 1977, even WMAL had enough of a news staff to handle it. If a story of that magnitude broke today, I wonder if WNEW would be staffed sufficiently to cover it. WTOP would be fine, but I know WMAL would certainly make a hash of it. (1/26/12)

One thing missing from WNEW is a newsroom hotline -- a cellphone "#" number we can program and hit to tell them about breaking news and/or traffic somewhere. Eh? Eh ? I had them for the old news station but haven't bothered anymore. (1/26/12)

Re: "WNEW is sharp, hot, focused, motivated and improving. Say what you will, they are definitely a contender for the Number One position in the news business here in the nations’ capitol." Whoever wrote this...thank you for the hearty laugh. I needed that. You probably think Tim Tebow is a great quarterback too. Projecting success or failure for something only a week old is shortsighted at best. That's like saying your newborn son is going to grow up to be President of the United States. Give it some time; let things play out. Is WNEW better than Day 1? Yes. (And they better be...hard to be worse.) Are they polished enough to even put a dent in WTOP? No. Not saying it'll never happen, just saying that it's crazy to think it will after one shaky week. (1/26/12)

WOW! Got a call from WNEW offering me a month of FREE spots!! My media buying friends are getting the same calls. We think it is a dumb idea (for them), but we’ll take them. Good luck getting us to pay for ‘em. Signed-DC Media Princess (1/26/12)

Re: "Thank you, Mr. F*rl*y for that nice comment! What you described is how WTOP SHOULD BE and ISN'T! WTOP lost its way in the 90's when they started playing to the "Happy, and Peppy and Bursting With Love" (*) approach that TOP continues to nausiate a lot of listeners with (for god sake please stop the chuckles and ha ha's in the morning...it does not work!)." Hear, hear. Well said, sir. I have taken WTOP off my presets, plugged 99.1FM in its place, and am HAPPY to have made the change, SPECIFICALLY because WTOP produces a product apparently designed for 12-year-olds. They giggle through news, they giggle through sports, they make the same asinine joke about the weatherman being responsible for the day's weather every 10 minutes...it's just childish in the extreme. And the "chemistry" they claim between on-airs sounds artificial as hell. WNEW, so far, has avoided the gigglefest approach to news...they've even convinced Lisa Baden to give traffic reports without the singing and horse-laugh that marked her time at WTOP. Now if 'NEW could just expand its signal range a bit... (1/26/12)

WNEW would be better off keeping the stereo signal on. They might sacrifice some outer coverage area, but the production elements and advertising are in stereo, and collapsing it all to mono would cause the product to be flat and uninteresting. While not consciously detected or recognized by an audience, the presence of ear candy and a wide spacious sound that flies around inside the car make the station sound important and exciting. As was said the other day, CBS is pulling out all the stops - technical and psychological. They're doing this stuff for a reason. (1/26/12)

Topic-WNEW—I’ve listened on and off since their first day and they just get better and better! At times the production elements are a bit off, at times the announcers make mistakes, but over all they are really tweaking and tuning constantly. I get a kick out of the “armchair programmers”. Making the analogy that they sound like a college radio station, out of town sound etc….blah, blah. I am for one, certain they will knock off WTOP. WTOP has gotten too comfortable with their “warm and fuzzy” sometimes loose delivery. WNEW is sharp, hot, focused, motivated and improving. Say what you will, they are definitely a contender for the Number One position in the news business here in the nations’ capitol. TKX (1/26/12)

So WAFY tweaks its format and falls 3 shares? I would suspect Nassau to make a flip back to mainstream a/c, and quickly. Regionally, I think Fredericksburg's adult standards WFVA has to go too. They've fallen badly since dropping news talk to their other AM'er. Closer to DC, Multicultural Broadcasting (1390?) may start brokering out time to the Music Of Your LIfe format. My thoughts on WNEW and WTOP: WNEW is actually reading NEWS, while WTOP's Mike Moss and company are giggling up the weather intro with an ABC7 weatherman. WNEW's reads are crisp and to the point, while WTOP beats around the bush with every intro to every story. There are many ways of writing the news of which most of us broadcasters learn in Broadcasting 101. Taking the main point of the news story in the first sentence, then funneling downward to other facts towards the main topic. Possibly, the most effective - especially on the radio. WTOP does the opposite and teases about a story and funnels upward - getting to the main point. It's very annoying. For example: WNEW reporting on Metro problems... "A broken rail is causing single track delays on the Red Line at Tenleytown." This is followed by interviews, explanations, etc. WTOP's take ... "Riders on the Metro's red line are wondering what is taking so long for their morning commute. Often 15-20 minute delays are experienced in bound to DC. Riders are frustrated and angry about ongoing problems with the Metro System. Metro spokeswoman explains this morning's issue is caused by a broken rail at the Tenleytown station." Why doesn't WTOP just get to the reason of today's issue at the intro of the story? We know the system is old and poorly maintained! DC'ers don't have time for this conversational roundabout format and once more and more people sample WNEW, WTOP is going to start to tank. Take a listen to a 30 minute newscast on both WTOP and WNEW. How many stories do you get on WTOP? Very few. Old Mother Hubbard needs to hire an editor. While WNEW does have a weather forecast every 4 minutes (way too often!), nothing compares to the extended rambling every ten minutes over on WTOP. Stop with the conversational weather reports, WTOP. You could actually devote this time to NEWS! And don't even get me started on the morning traffic reports on WTOP. Not sure which of the following of Rita's reports are the worst: the endless screaming of route numbers, the hurryupandblureverywordintheendofthetrafficadtagsowecanrambleabouttheweather, or the poor audio quality. Her voice is not clear as it is, and sometimes it sounds like she is sitting in a padded cell somewhere. MLB4 (1/26/12)

Dave: I just got back into town on Monday after a month long business project and decided to give sportstalk radio another chance and boy, it was a mistake. I guess we're all counting the days to when 980 makes a talent change in the afternoon...however, when will someone from Snyder's ownership team realize they need a totally house cleaning and not bring back an uglier version of Doc Walkers' "lockeroom" show. Second, what an uncomfortable, unprofessional, nails-against-the-chalkboard, interview Czaban conducted this morning with the yahoo NFL beat reporter. Czaban wasn't only antagonistic but stepping all over your guest, that's totally in-excusable!! Amateur hour at its best and from 980, we don't want your sports! (1/26/12)

Driving down 95 through Northern Virginia yesterday, I was picking up WNEW 99.1 all the way to Quantico. A little noise by then, but still listenable. I noticed they're still wasting power on a stereo pilot signal too. Once they find the switch for that, the signal will get even better. (1/26/12)

Holy baloney... those WRC/NIS sounders amazed me. Not necessarily for their historic significance, but in their production. Back in the day, I would estimate an individual synthesizer intro/stinger/bed would have set the buyer back about $250, in the currency of that period. Today, one could create the very same sounder on a $45 Craigslist computer, using Audacity (free audio recording/editing software), Anvil Studio (free music editing software) and the MiniMogueVA (a free emulation of the MiniMoog synthesizer). The orchestra parts could be duplicated using the PCM sounds already in the soundcard, and that was paid for when the computer was bought off of Craigslist. Are these amazing times or what? -- Matt Morse (1/26/12)

["WNEW has all the production quality of a college station. They have some good staff members but way too clinical and no warmth "] Thank you, Mr. F*rl*y for that nice comment! What you described is how WTOP SHOULD BE and ISN'T! WTOP lost its way in the 90's when they started playing to the "Happy, and Peppy and Bursting With Love" (*) approach that TOP continues to nausiate a lot of listeners with (for god sake please stop the chuckles and ha ha's in the morning...it does not work!). As I've said previously, I and many of my associates prefer the Bryson Rash / Bob Dalton straight-up reading to the Mike Moss/Bruce Allen poor-man's Rowan & Martin routine any day! [(*) - Look this up in Google along with the string "Tony Randall" to find the origin of the reference.] (1/26/12)

RE: "My initial review of WNEW....it sounds like a bunch of out of towners trying to sound local." You forgot to mention that DC is nothing but a bunch of out of towners, so what is your point again? I'm totally confused here. Are you schizo/out of towner? Even DCRTV/Dave Hughes is from Philly! LMAO (1/26/12)

Dave's response: I'm not really "from" Philly. Born in NYC, as a kid lived in the Jersey suburbs of Philly until 1972, when my parents moved the family down here. I've been in the DC area 40 years. That's pretty close to making me a DC area native, I would think.....

When you talk about production values in a news format, nothing tops this 7-minute collection of sounders that News & Information Service used on NBC in the 1970s. I remember how several were used over the course of an hour, but not all of them. Is there a list somewhere that says which cut went where in the news wheel? www.98wrc.com (1/26/12)

Have a feeling that maybe FOX5 is going to go with Wisdom Martin/Sara Simmons on the early broadcast, Allison Seymour/Tony Perkins starting at 7 & hire another weather person to replace Tony. (1/26/12)

David - is there any truth to the rumor that Julie Wright won't be on WNEW soon? The scuttlebutt is that our union president and her management couldn't come to terms on a salary bump. (1/26/12)

[Dave said "Ah, remember back in the 1970s when 97.5 was rocker WKMZ, the Mountain....."] Nope, and you don't either, Dave. The WKMZ call letters didn't appear until 1981. You don't remember "the Mountain" in the 80's either, Dave. WKMZ was Top 40 as "KMZ-FM" until it finally flipped to "Classic Rock" (hardly a "rocker") in the early-mid 90's. I think it got a power upgrade somewhere in there, as well. (1/26/12)

I want to like WNEW as a news junkie, and I think I will, but they're not they're yet and they're drowning in production values. I tuned in around 7 p.m tonight and the cutsey background music was so loud it was burying the announcer all the way through; I had to turn it off. And they've put way too much thought into it, with special effects that act as pauses between headlines. I don't want to hear a hyped clanging of the closing bell on Wall Street every single freakin' time you tell me what it closed at, and equivalent sound effects when they run through the cycle of sports, politics, whatever, as they open the hour. Chris/Manassas (where the signal, surprise, can be sketchy) (1/26/12)

Does Adam Tuss work for VDOT? It seems like every other day there is a positive article by him about the Beltway AFTER the construction of Express Lanes. What about reporting on what a pain in the ass it has been for the people who ride in it everyday during this construction. I even asked him to look into it and he has not. I told him they recently reduced the Inner Loop to only three lanes under the new I66 over pass. The politicians and planners promised the Beltway would not be three lanes at rush hour for a day during the project briefings. Now, this is to last till the Fall? It is one big mess every morning. But, all TOP reports is how well it will work when it is over. Do they have a Chrystal Ball? Can someone in the news business get after VDOTabout this. NEW? Where are you? Every state and local politician and official just gives me the run around. This affects anyone east/south of the I66/496 intersection who needs the beltway in any way. OOBBEE (1/26/12)

Frederick News-Post is resuming their Monday print edition, starting February 6th. www.fredericknewspost.com (1/26/12)

/\ January 26 Messages /\

\/ January 25 Messages \/

From a previous post "The one minute rock history vignette airs daily at 6 a.m., Noon, and 6 p.m." Huh? WKGO?) It’s in Cumberland, Maryland, nowhere near the DC Metro..." While that is true many stations in the valley DO try to pass themselves as being "within DC metro". Mount Jackson's 790 WSVG's Wade & Noyes did it all the time such as "..Fair Oaks Mall is local to us at WSVG..we were there last week"....despite..well what are the odds of picking up WSVG on I-495? Recently I heard Martinsburg's WLTF Lite 97.5's Marc "Bear 411 " Richards giving "metro DC weather" and traffic updates from Baltimore. Its all a ploy to make those stations to look "big city" when in reality they aren't. (1/25/12)

Dave's response: Well, WLTF is an easy catch here in Reston. Ah, remember back in the 1970s when 97.5 was rocker WKMZ, the Mountain.....

[RE: Dick Tufeld dies at 85; actor who intoned 'Danger, Will Robinson!' latimes.com] As the former HFS radio personality "Will Robinson," I thank you for sharing this news as I weep a robotic metallic tear. Good bye old friend. (1/25/12)

[RE: Dick Tufeld dies at 85; actor who intoned 'Danger, Will Robinson!' latimes.com] At one time channel 20 had the "Lost in Space" robot. They used it on Captain 20...Danger Danger Danger! (1/25/12)

[RE: Nationals reporter Debbi Taylor will not be returning to MASN broadcasts for the 2012 season.] Carpenter will be back. (1/25/12)

[RE: Nationals reporter Debbi Taylor will not be returning to MASN broadcasts for the 2012 season.] That's too bad..I hope she'll end up with another team soon..and what's happening with Bob Carpenter & his contract ? Hopefully,they'll re-sign him ! (1/25/12)

I love the lack of gas baggery on WNEW 99.1. WTOP is goin' down to Chinatown!!! (1/25/12)

Dave please tell us who “Tommy Christopher” is and is that his real name or just a made up name: should we care if he’s former MSNBC anchor Dan “Chelsea” Abrams? (1/25/12)

The name of WRCW's (CRI's) music show used to be Music Safari. The trouble with shows that purport to have a "unique" mix like this are usually nothing more than one person's record collection. Regards, Dave Loudin (1/25/12)

Not local but notable: RIP Dick Tufeld at age 85. The veteran voice actor is best remembered by Boomers as the voice of the robot on "Lost In Space" -- "Warning! Warning! Danger Will Robinson!" The actor inside the robot, Bob May, died in 2009. (1/25/12)

re: 1190AM; Never even noticed the name of the show, The Shuffle; but I'm pretty sure it's the same music program that's been on since the station relaunched. (1/25/12)

WNEW has all the production quality of a college station. They have some good staff members but way too clinical and no warmth (1/25/12)

WASH will have to run sappy, drippy, stuid love songs for Valentine's day to get numbers back! Wait they do that anyway... (1/25/12)

(From FMQB today: "Envision Radio Networks welcomes WKGO-FM/Washington, D.C. as the newest affiliate of Paul Shaffer’s Day in Rock. The one minute rock history vignette airs daily at 6 a.m., Noon, and 6 p.m." Huh? WKGO?) It’s in Cumberland, Maryland, nowhere near the DC Metro. (1/25/12)

Kilgore at Washington Post says Debbi Taylor gone from Nationals MASN games, and she confirms it. (Shawn in DC). (1/25/12)

Answers to two questions which have popped up in the mailbag today: (1) "The Shuffle": it's a China Radio International program: english.cri.cn... As far as I know, WCRW has English programming from CRI 24/7. (Hence the callsign - "China Radio Washington" perhaps?) The music programming is very cool, but otherwise CRI's stuff is kind of a waste of 50 kW. (2) The poster who asked about WKGO: Unfortunately, don't get your hopes up for a station flip. It's a rocker based out in Cumberland ("Go 106", 106.1 FM). The signal somehow makes it into the Winchester/Front Royal area but the FMQB article is incorrect as it is certainly not a Washington station. Thanks for all that you do, Dave... (1/25/12)

Should be interesting to see what happens in a few months with WNEW splitting the all news audience. Hopefully it won't result in both going under. (1/25/12)

Dave's response: I do think that Washington can support two all-newsers. By spring, I bet WTOP will drop from its usual first place to maybe third or fourth place, with WNEW settling in the 15th to 18th place range. Now, if WNEW was to get an inside the Beltway signal or add 106.7 to 99.1 for better coverage of Northern Virginia, it could be more worrisome for WTOP.....

[RE WTOP and WNEW:] Then again it could be like NYC with WCBS AM and that other news station 1010AM. But I think they maybe owned by the same company if I'm not mistaken. The 2 NYC ones that is. (1/25/12)

Dave's response: CBS owns both of NYC's AM all-newsers - WCBS-AM and WINS.....

From FMQB today: "Envision Radio Networks welcomes WKGO-FM/Washington, D.C. as the newest affiliate of Paul Shaffer’s Day in Rock. The one minute rock history vignette airs daily at 6 a.m., Noon, and 6 p.m." Huh? WKGO?

I sure hope the WCBM/WVIE Classified doesn’t surprise anyone at the stations. That could be a disaster??? (1/25/12)

"........WBAL-TV. More to come in the next few weeks." As long as you are "re-launching" WBAL-TV, how about bringing back the Sunday morning movies....Blondie, East Side Kids, Tarzan, Charlie Chan (the Warner Oland ones, not those crappy SIdney Tolar ones)......come on! If it worked in 1968, it'll work in 2012, right? Besides, I need something good to watch on TV while I work on my News American Sunday Crossword Prize Puzzle! Signed....P.W. Doodle. (1/25/12)

Around 11:40 AM yesterday on ESPN 980, Kevin Sheehan broke into a commercial break on Tony Kornheiser’s show to inform listeners that Sports Fix (co-hosted by himself and Thom Loverro) was starting 20 minutes early in order to deal with the breaking news of Flip Saunders getting fired as Wizards head coach. So the natural question to ask is why Kornheiser wasn’t allowed to finish up his program (which normally goes until noon) by commenting on the coaching change. The answer is simple – earlier speculation in this forum about Mr. Tony’s show being prerecorded between 8 and 10 AM for airing from 10 to 12 is almost certainly accurate, meaning that he was long gone from the studio when the station found out about Saunders’ dismissal. Some years ago, I recall a similar move by the same franchise (involving Jim Lynam) where Andy Pollin came on the air and announced that Kornheiser had just left to cover the story for the Washington Post and the next show would be starting early. While Pollin (who’s talked more than once about not tolerating liars) may have been technically correct, it was later revealed that the final segment of Kornheiser’s show back then was always pretaped so he could get a head start on his duties with the newspaper – so it was a bit misleading to make it seem like leaving at 11:40 was the rare exception rather than the rule. Mike, Fairfax (1/25/12)

Just got on your page here and experiencing a problem. When I keep scrolling down looking at the posts, the screen resets itself and takes me back to the top like as if I just clicked on. Did have this problem once before after getting the computer back from service but the computer place did something to fix it. Don't know what. (1/25/12)

Dave's response: Try using a different browser. Download Firefox, Safari, or Chrome if you're using Explorer.....

Podcasting still seems like a second rate business model compared with broadcast radio but I hope ol' Mikey is making it work. (1/25/12)

Email from WBAL TV News Director: "While the Ravens may not be in the Super Bowl this year, the game on February 5th is the start of what Dan has been calling Championship TV on WBAL-TV. With the game we see the re-launch of NBC prime, we roll right into high profile news events like the elevation ceremony for Cardinal-elect O’Brien, we have annual events like Preakness, Marathon and Monument Lighting, add in the 200th anniversary of the War of 1812 with its Parade of Tall Ships and fireworks and then the London Olympics and it truly is a remarkable year of opportunity. So to that end, why not make the most of this year. That’s why we have asked Donna Hamilton to step-in and co-anchor with Rod Daniels our 11pm news. Always a pro Donna will begin her new shift on Super Bowl Sunday. I think you would agree this year is the right time to maximize her strengths and extend Donna’s brand to a day-part that will be at the center of everything we do this year. This move is the first domino to fall in an exciting year for WBAL-TV. More to come in the next few weeks." (1/25/12)

RE: WNEW-FM, Could there be any truth to the rumor that the evening news will be anchored by legendary TV anchor Ron Burgundy? I expect he’ll be hawking “Sex Panther” cologne on the side; it works 60% of the time, all of the time! Just sayin…Mike in Frederick and the Dashboard DX Society, all news, all the time. Or at least 60% of the time. (1/25/12)

WZDC showed up on my 10" GE analog CRT TV connected to a Radio Shack Digital Stream CECB last night. wikipedia.org. I should elaborate. When I got my first CECB, in June 2008, it was the newly released Zenith DTT-901, with a build date of April 2008, from Circuit City. I set it up and scanned for signals. Among the stations it received was channel 26, Arlington's WETA. It came in as five subchannels: 26-4, 26-3, 26-2, and two 26-1s. One of the 26-1s must be a place holder, as it never has any signal. The second 26-1 is the expected digital transmission, and other subchannels are variations of WETA. So, of the five subchannels, I get 26-1 through 26-4. Now go into the kitchen, where the Digital Stream and GE combo are used. When I set that CECB up, it got 25-1, 25-2, 25-3, 25-4, 26-1, 26-2, 26-3, 26-4, 27-1, 27-2, 27-3, and 27-4. All of these were channel 26 WETA. I never could figure that out. Last night, all of a sudden, here was WZDC on channel 25-1. Reception was really spotty; it could hardly come in. By now, I've given up trying to figure out why the two different CECBs, located in different rooms, give such unalike results. I just watch the stuff. Pay for television? Not me. ~~ Blair in Alexandria (1/25/12)

Here's that article from the Local section about the State Delegate from Alexandria who has proposed to sell marijuana at Virginia ABC stores. www.washingtonpost.com... Virginia would be smarter to go the route of California (and 14 other states, along with DC) and legalize it for medical use. Contrary to the belief of some, cannabis does have numerous medicinal properties/uses and more are being discovered on a regular basis. I've been a CA medical marijuana user for several years, to help with stress, panic attacks and anxiety issues. After little success with standard pharmaceutical treatments, I did some research and found great relief with pot. Both my regular physician and the doctor who recommended medical marijuana, have seen improvement from this unconventional treatment. The only reservation my regular doctor has, is about possible weight gain, due to "munchies," but that hasn't been a problem. I wouldn't ordinarily post something like this here, since there's no connection to DC media, other than the item in the Post. I'm fine with those who might be skeptical about it all or think it's just a way to party by using a medical "excuse". If someone is happy with a more conventional medical approach to what ails 'em, that's fine too. All I can attest to is my own personal experience and what my doctors say. For anyone interested in how cannabis is helpful with my condition, I'm including this additional link about it. medigardens.blogspot.com (1/25/12)

Dave, because you like accuracy, that’s over 11 million downloads for TMOS podcasts. (1/25/12)

Dave's response: It looked like a "1" on Robb's Facebook page. Maybe I need glasses.....

[From DCRTV's Classified Ads:] NEWS DIRECTOR immediate opening - WCBM/WVIE AM is looking for a news director to manage the news on both of our AM stations. Please submit all inquiries to the GM, Bob Pettit. at bpettit@wcbm.com or call 410-580-6800 ext 5705 (1/25/12)

To the earlier poster who must be smoking crack. WBAL Radio extended the tallk show for C4, an African American. They hired a woman, Mary Beth Marsden, and gave her a four-hour program. They have female traffic reporters. They have an African American commentator for Ravens football. And more and more of their guest panelists come from all segments of the community. They have a new female news director. Back into your cave now. (1/25/12)

Grandpa Tony started his show today, as he does frequently, by scolding people who take what he says seriously. "The show is about hyperbole," he said, and anybody who holds him responsible for what he says, "or write down what we say...are crazy." In other words, he's too much of a coward to stand behind his own words. A-hole, a-hole, ahole. (1/25/12)

It’s going to be a very hot Election year and that has to help WMAL now that they are on FM. Agree? (1/25/12)

Dave's response: I think election coverage will boost all news and talk "boats" in the DC area, including WTOP, WMAL, WAMU, and the new WNEW.....

Check out the ads appearing on a Post story about pot. It's an ad for a vaporizer, a commonly-used weed accessory... (1/25/12)


Hey Dave: WMAL’s “Morning Majority” star Mary Katherine Ham does an ad for dental implants and tells us that she had something like sixteen teeth “pulled” and presumably replaced! Ain’t that a lot of teeth replaced for a woman who is only thirty-one years old? You are probably twice her age and have all your original teeth, don’t you Dave? You wouldn’t have all your teeth pulled and have implants put in just to be able have the dentist advertise on DCRTV, would you Dave? Just wondering why she had all those teeth pulled & replaced Dave and then I was thinking & thought “Maybe she just had them pulled to put dental implants in just to be honest when she did the ad?” I know that you predicted in December that WTTG would “plug” dental implants (great pun!) but WMAL’s Mary Katherine Ham has such a nice Alabama native smile! What do you think Dave: inquiring minds want to know! Like you (you have nice teeth Dave!), she seems to have all her teeth: newsbusters.org... Signed: toothless in Sacramental. (1/25/12)

Hi I have Some question about 1190 AM What format is that station and who does the afternoon 2-5? I stumbled upon it and they play Cool musicform 2 to 5. I know the show is called the Shuffle Can you tell me a little more info, if you have it. Thanks, Chuck (1/25/12)

Dave's response: The new WCRW launched on 1190 last year with Radio China International. The station appears to be a brokered outlet. Maybe the "Shuffle" tunes are being aired because the station hasn't been able to sell those afternoon hours. Anybody know?

It would be nice to see more diversity - or diversity period - at WBAL RADIO. From the early morning news programs to the night shift all you hear are old, tired sounding, white male newscasters. This includes sports and weather people. Why should whites or blacks pay attention to a station that is still stuck in time? WBAL RADIO should pay closer attention to the hiring practices of WBAL TV 11 News. Signed, an old white man tired of the same things. (1/25/12)

RE: "WTOP smug". I dont think WTOP sounds any different, let alone "smug". It's been fun reading the WNEW fans (actually their consultants, I'm guessing) talking about "let the games begin." As it SHOULD be. The trash talk, as an observer, seems like great fun. But remember this: TOP news director Mike McMearty is the only active news director in the country with two national Murrow Overall Excellence awards under his belt (two in the last three years). You can say "bring it", but you gotta go through that dude first. Good luck! Tina in MoCo (1/25/12)

Things are MUCH better on WNEW today. Without all of the first day screwups, you can start to hear what this station can become. By NOT having a CBS or ABC hourly, they are able to lead with very local stories OR with very national stories. Each of the 8 or 10 2-minute news blocks has a mix of national and local stories, around the whole wheel, which TOP doesn't do. Their spot load seems lower than WTOP's, so it seems like there is actually a bigger news hole, and I think they are using it well, with a blend of different stories, not so strictly segmented to the WTOP clock that we all know. They are sourcing to smaller pubs, such as the local Patches, which gives them much more interesting stuff than I hear on WTOP. I really, really like the WINS-type shifts -- 30 minute, solo anchors. It's a direct approach, no gooey, gassy Mike Moss handoffs to Doug Hill. Their sounders are great -- upbeat, contemporary, high energy, distinctive! Nice tones at the top and bottom of the hour. Nice script for anchor handoffs and shift change. But I do think Paul Anthony sounds like he is straining at stool. Doing temps for "the National Mall" is brilliant . . . short, simple, and not requiring a temp from DC, MD, and VA. I also agree with Monday's poster who said that the call letters are making it tough for them to be brisk and punchy. They need to call themselves "All News 99" and get on with it. We don't need the .1 and we don't need all of the call letters all of the time. We need all of the news all of the time, and those call letters, as much as I love them, are getting in the way of doing the news. You can see the press for AQH vs cumes in their decision to have wx every 4 minutes and very short times spent listening. It's WCBS vs WINS right here in Washington and it's great. I might be my imagination, but it seems like TOP has had more street reporters out this week, maybe in anticipation of the WNEW launch. One area where they can improve a lot is their SEO. When I google WNEW News, their station site is about 9th. The first few are about the old WNEW, including this news open from TV (below). But aside from the web, I think they've got a great concept -- clear, clean, short, to the point, no banter, and pretty well written news stories. I've turned my preset from 106.7 over to 99.1 now. (1/25/12)


a lot of WNEW's on-air mistakes aren't necessarily the air staff's fault. i heard a lot of throws to business, traffic, weather; all were dead air. wrong pot? wrong cue? what i will agree is they should have done at least a month of no-transmitter dry runs. this is NOT brain surgery. all-news radio is like flying. it's easy to fly the airplane. it's hard to remember all the ancillary stuff. it may take a while to get their act together but i do think they'll be an alternative to the monolith. is farley worried? i doubt it. WNEW might take a share away and make things more interesting for the stations at the top. but i don't think WTOP has any concerns over where to store all that advertising money. (1/25/12)

/\ January 25 Messages /\

\/ January 24 Messages \/

(regarding some posts earlier this week) I found a link that enables WNEW streaming with iTunes Player. streamtheworld.com (1/24/12)

Harry Averill passed away several years ago. After he left WEAM he was replaced as General Manager by Bruce Houston. Bruce is now President of Metro Radio. (1/24/12)

(ATTN: Margaret T.) Harry Howard Averill of Annandale died July 10, 1994 at age 74. His passing was mourned by many. Unsigned Corporate Suit, for one, is on record as saying he would have liked to personally perform a special grave site service. (1/24/12)
I'll throw in my .02 worth on WNEW. My opinion is like everyone elses, we've all got one. I think WNEW sounds better today and seems to be ironing out some of the kinks but I am doubtful that it will come close to removing WTOP from its perch. The more I think about it, the more I don't think that is necessarily their intent. CBS have said they would like to make $10mil this year. That should be doable. There are AM stations in this market doing that or close to it.The more CBS ties "ALL NEWS 99.1 into (mostly) The Fan and Tommy McFly on Fresh, the more it is obvious to me that "ALL News 99.1" is positioned not necessarily to kick anyones ass or get lofty ratings but as a sales vehicle to cross promote CBS stations in the market and sell spots which they seem to already be doing (at what rate, who knows). If they can make $10 mil that's pretty decent. Certain stations that are 20+ in this market are making that. Maybe that's just their plan. To hell with Arbitron, just bring us your cash! Tom R./Fairfax (1/24/12)

Will someone please, please tell Nancy Lyons that the letter is pronounced "double-U" not dubba-you? It's tough to listen to her say the call letters so often, especially since there are two Ws! (1/24/12)

Just a rundown, Dave. Politifact has given Ken Cuccinelli’s rat rant on WMAL’s Morning Majority a“(Liar, Liar,) Pants on Fire!” rating. That’s the highest lying rating they award! The Human Society issued a statement labeling Mr. Cuccinelli’s comments on WMAL’s Morning Majority about DC rat laws “fear mongering, at best.” WTOP has labeled three rat laws comments made by Ken Cuccinelli on WMAL, and repeated to CNS News Service, as “false.” Way to go Cooch, and way to go WMAL’s Morning Majority! WMAL, in concert with “the conservative movement,” happily spreading misinformation (crap) everyday. Dave, you are a great American; Ken Cuccinelli, not so much. (1/24/12)

Re: the WNEW call letters. I doubt that most DC (or NYC transplanted) people know this, but from 2007 to 2011, the WNEW call letters were being used by a radio station at 106.3 FM in Jupiter, Florida. On Dec. 1, 2011, that station in Florida at 106.3 FM and the 99.1 station in Bowie switched call letters -- so, now, the WHFS call is now in Jupiter FL, while the WNEW call is here in Bowie. Like many others, I used to listen to WNEW in NYC; it was a great radio station, but they and a lot of other stations (and that format) got strangled by companies like Clear Channel. For me, the WNEW call letters are painfully emblematic of that change - it worked out that I listened to WNEW in NYC for the last six months of its life as a rock station. One day, all of a sudden, it wasn't a rock station anymore. I wish the new WNEW news channel success. From what I have observed in this short time, they are trying to be a different type of news station than WTOP. Much more along the lines of "what is happening right now in the communities". (1/24/12)

Is it me Dave or does WTOP sound just a tad bit smug(Given there national rev standing and ratings I understand SOME smugness)but never get too cocky. WTOP has a bunch of out of towners in its ranks just as WNEW has. Sometimes it does not hurt to be a tad HUMBLE something can last for years but nothing last forever. (1/24/12)

The Michael Savage Show is now on from 7pm-10pm on AM 730 & 102.9 FM WTNT “The Truth”. The Armstrong Williams Show is now Live from DC from 6pm-7pm followed by 3 hours of Savage! (1/24/12)

Oh that Washington Post website! - DCRTV Dave (1/24/12)


From the Mailbag: “ Day Two of WNEW...For all the high hopes from the WTOP haters that this new station would be soooo great, to utter the words "WNEW sounds contemporary, upbeat and will come together, I’m sure" sounds more like you're referencing a college radio station than a news radio giant. And after two days, it sure has the sound of one too:” . You will live to eat those words. WNEW is going to end up at the top of the heap. I’m not affiliated with them or any other organization in broadcasting, but, you are listening to beginnings of a victory.TKX (1/24/12)

Does anyone know where Harry H. Averill is these days? Margaret T. (1/24/12)

I like WNEW’s music and the anchors sound great! My only complaint is I feel like I am getting the same stuff, over and over again, often within a 30 second time period. For instance, when they give the weather report, why do they have to say “repeating again, it is 30 degrees.” If they just said it, be done with it. On a side note, I watched Channel 7 today and they look as if Y2K just arrived. The set is so dark and sad looking, even worse, it looks DIRTY! Sort of like the cat lady neighbors house that everyone is afraid to go in. (1/24/12)

I saw a WNEW news vehicle Monday evening. At 5:30 p.m., a black Chevrolet crossover of theirs was parked in front of the courthouse complex on D Street next to the Judiciary Square Metro stop in northwest DC.~~Blair in Alexandria (1/24/12)

I think we may have a new record here in the Mailbag. WNEW has passed "Don & Mike" as the most discussed topic ever over a 3-day period ! (hee-hee) (1/24/12)

Dave's response: I remember Mike. But, who's that Don guy? How quickly we forget.....

By last night, WNEW had its audio chain lined up properly. Gone are equalization (too much treble) and gating (peaks causing volume to dive, board level problems exposed) issues, and their average volume was similar to others in the market. Regards, Dave Loudin (1/24/12)

Re: Day Two of WNEW...For all the high hopes from the WTOP haters that this new station would be soooo great, to utter the words "WNEW sounds contemporary, upbeat and will come together, I’m sure" sounds more like you're referencing a college radio station than a news radio giant. And after two days, it sure has the sound of one too... (1/24/12)

You people are missing the point. The weather every 4 minutes is meant for a high cume audience. See, news radio is not built for high TSL. You tune in for 10 minutes and get what you need, and come back later. Weather and traffic are the most important elements a station can have in this region, so they are making sure that listeners always catch the weather. How many times have you hopped online, turned on the TV or suffered through 15 minutes of radio or tv programming just to get the forecast?? (1/24/12)

Funny: Frank Hanrahan's photo is still up on the WTOP site as a sports reporter. Do they not realize he's gone? (Shawn in DC). (1/24/12)

Given the old news station's power failure that knocked it off the air for a substantial amount of time a few months ago, WNEW's comparison to trusted, reliable power is a good one, let alone having the "power" of one strong signal all over the place, instead of a bunch of little AA cells strung together like the other station. (1/24/12)

Anyone notice the teensy bit of reverb on some of the newswraps heard on WNEW? It's subtle but it's there, giving some of the reports a slightly larger sense of importance. Psychoacoustics, y'all. CBS is pulling out all its weapons here, both technical and psychological. This is going to be a fun battle. (1/24/12)

Day two of WNEW. The improvements are happening minute by minute. I really think they will kick ass before the war is over. The production is the key and that takes time. I love the armchair coaching..come on, give them time and I do think they will prevail. Too much weather and traffic. Agreed. By the end of the month they will be close to being the king of the hill. Jim Farley needs some adrenaline on his airwaves. WNEW sounds contemporary, upbeat and will come together, I’m sure. (1/24/12)

To the person who called me "dipshit". I understand. Sorry, I'm not in the business, so I don't know all the inner workings. It seems odd still that WTTG would send at least 2 different feeds (one to cable and one to satellites) and insert specific ads. Again, not in the business, so I don't know why it would be done that way. I guess it's, "the way things have always been done". Also my point was more the automation of that, whoever caused the issue. Automatically placing ads at specific times for the first show after a live event is bad business. It's not like football has ended on time all season. In fact, that may be the reason why Fox decided to stop programming 7-8 on Sundays during football and put on "The OT" so they can transition into the 8PM hour easily. TL (1/24/12)

In general I like WNEW, but I think they're falling into the same trap as WTOP: weather report overkill. (1/24/12)

Dear CBS/DC and WNEW folks....a few suggestions from a listener: (1) Cut the 15 weather updates per hour down to 4 to 6; that's waaay to much filler; (2) Not sure if it's happening to just one air personality, but every time Evan Haning went off mic (to an actuality, commerical, etc.) and came back to mic, the gating release slope was verrrry slow to recover, so much so that it sounded like someone manually potting him up every time he came back on; (3) While I am not a fan of your morning traffic person, it is nice to NOT hear her singing or attempting to "banter" with the anchors (so much so that it should keep me from flipping back to ever annoying WTOP morning yuk-it-up airstaff); (4) However, your mid-day traffic person can never be anything BUT annoying and needs to either take some qualudes, or get a big shot of demerol before each broadcast....for god sake SLOW DOWN woman! We can't understand you; (5) Back off on the disco music beds; the volume is way to high in the mix. (6) Lastly, please tell engineering that either they have too much high-end empasis on the air signal, or else there's too little bottom as the sound is a bit on the brittle side. Otherwise, so far, so good!!! (1/24/12)

It's funny how everyone here is pointing at all of the screw ups they hear on WNEW since it hit the air on Sunday. It's undertsandable that everyone's attention is focused on the new guys on the block. BUT they need to go back and listen to their own product and think about how they can clean up their own screw ups. I can count numerous of times when going to work in the morning that I hear misplayed bumpers and audio cuts on TOP...and the times that the weather is played at the wrong time...yes, folks it's taped, not live as they'd like to lead you to believe. So you die-hard TOP loyalists, need to know that what you've been listening to all of these years is just repurposed and revoiced wire copy with a fancy lede. BTW, they don't do multiple versions of their stories over in nW and the copy gets tired after 12 hours. Bring on the competition, I love it!!! (1/24/12)

Looks like WNEW has a long way to come. I counted four mistakes in FIVE MINUTES from 1 to 1:05. One missed transfer to traffic and three missed transfers to live reporters. (1/24/12)

I gave WNEW a listen Monday afternoon. Heading south on I-95 I started to lose them at about mile marker 110. I like the pacing, very upbeat. Stories are what they should be, concise. The '9 News Now' convergence works better than the so-called relationship TOP has with 7, which is paid for and not reciprocal. As with any all news station, they're programming to the short term listener and listening cycles. You can pretty much get all you need to know within a half hour. NICE execution! (1/24/12)

"[Here we go again..with Rush's Two If By Tea infomercial from noon to 3 PM.]Uhhhh...don't listen then." You're right...I have been tuning out. (1/24/12)

I don't have a strong opinion yet about WNEW vs. WTOP. But do we really need weather every 4 minutes, or even every 10 minutes? Does it really change that often? Do people forget the forecast that quickly? I don't get it. Twice an hour is enough, or maybe 4 times during morning and afternoon drive. (1/24/12)

A mysterious source provides an audio "gag reel" for all-newser WNEW's first few days. And, we try to figure out what caused those mysterious Comcast Xfinity ads that ran on Channel 5/WTTG during the Giants-49ers game Sunday. And more in today's "Dave TV"..... (1/24/12)


TO THE GUY IN THE NW DC OFFICE THAT CAN'T GET 99.1: Try using this portable radio available from Amazon.com (www.amazon.com). It has excellant sensitiviy and selectivity on both AM and FM stations. Your problem is that you are on the "edge" of WNEW's city grade contour. Your location makes you suceptable (sp) to dead spots. If your NW DC office is full of computers and such that will also hinder reception on a so-so radio. Try this unit you will find it to your liking. Radio Shack also sells their version of this same receiver. This radio will perform AS well as the CCrane portables that you hear advertised which cost twice as much. (1/24/12)

There’s nothing wrong with WNEW’s concept; the timing and pacing of the stories needs to pick up the tempo, or there needs to be a marker to indicate a ‘beat-beat-beat’ of new stories. Perhaps they could emulate Cuba’s Radio Reloj and use a clock in the background. – The Airless Cubicle (1/24/12)

Gave WNEW another listen this afternoon on the way home from work. It sounded a LOT better than it did this morning, although the weather spots still are choppy & sound like they're coming over a couple of tin cans and a piece of wet kite string. It was great to hear Julie Wright too - is she doing a split shift now? (1/24/12)

I really enjoy WNEW, I thought it was good yesterday, but it really seemed to improve by today. I predict that by this time next week, it will be great. I strongly disagree with some people who don't like the station much. I'm glad to have an alternative to WTOP in the area. My first impressions of WNEW in the first 36 or so hours, is it's great. I really hope it works out. (1/24/12)

Jee. Zus. Christ. Did I read correctly that JULIE EFFING WRIGHT is the afternoon traffic mouth on WNEW? Man, she must have some pretty incriminating evidence on someone to pull a gig like that. Or are they just passing time until they can hire a professional? Well, since I don't usually drive in the evening, I appreciate the heads up here, at least. Otherwise, I could see me checking WNEW for traffic and then, in shock and disgust, driving my car into a friggin' wall. FML (1/24/12)

/\ January 24 Messages /\

\/ January 23 Messages \/

I've listened off and on today to the new WNEW.....I don't agree with all the ney-sayers....I really think they will cause some real issues on the dial. First day.....hey, I don't know if you remember the first days of WTOP...They didn't light the world on fire either. I'm guessing that WNEW starts to fly by Friday...I for one, wish them all the luck in the world. Just love battles of the airwaves. Wish is was a music/personality war....TKX (1/23/12)

In the darkness at 6:45pm, the WNEW traffic report still referred to "the afternoon commute." Earlier in the day I heard about a power outage that wouldn't be corrected for "10 years — er, make that hours." I also thought "Entertainment News: Robin Gibbs of the Bee Gees has colon cancer" sounded a little odd. And the bumper theme music sounds a little too much like a '70s "Action News" parody. But overall I liked the no-nonsense delivery and expect them to improve over time. Good luck to them. (1/23/12)

Interesting to note that the WNEW traffic sounder sounds eerily similar to the WTOP traffic sounder... (1/23/12)

Regarding, "Dave's response: From what I understand, WTTG provides area cable systems with a landline feed of its signal, which differs slightly from what is broadcast. And, apparently, one or several of those cable-directed feeds contained the extra, random Xfinity ads. That explains why some Comcasters and some non-Comcasters saw them, while other viewers didn't....." OK. So WTTG provides landlines (likely optical links) to Comcast and others so if their transmitter goes down cable subscribers sill get the signal. Got that. So if it was a WTTG problem who was manning the master control room? Does ch. 5 use some remote master control such and chs. 4 and (I believe) 9 do? Things like what happened on Sunday are totally UNACCEPTABLE, no matter who's to blame. Perhaps if the station and Comcast for that matter, had PEOPLE and not computers controlling master-control wrong cut-ins like this would not happen. All you have to do is listen to many automated radio stations to find out how things can go bad with machines in control. (1/23/12)

Hey Dave! I didn’t think I’d be able to hear WNEW way out here in the valley, but I tuned to 99.1 about 3:50 p.m., and lo and behold there it was. I listened for about 25 minutes. I like Evan Haning and it was nice to hear Julie Wright on traffic, but they have a lot of work to do to get their pacing like that of KYW or WINS — if that is what they are shooting for. During the weather forecast after 4 p.m., they were still mentioning a high of 46 degrees today, but it probably was time to throw out the “today” for something a little more descriptive of 4 p.m., on a day when it gets dark shortly after 5. And weather every four minutes is kind of repetitive unless there is something serious going on. It’s little things like that that become irksome. I switched back to WTOP for the last 10 minutes of my commute. Charles in Winchester (1/23/12)

I'm not blown away by the new WNEW. You only get one chance to make a good first impression and I was less than overwhelmed. The team of Rehkopf and Morris is a good one. Middays were lacking. Jenny Glick should be the first casualty. Plus, the technical performance of the station was lacking. Doubt they will be much of a challenge to WTOP. Their signal booms into part of the Baltimore area though, and if they had taken more of a regional approach, they could bump the big news do there out of the top 10. I enjoy Lisa Baden as well. Hope they stick around. They are a good alternative thus far but they need more solid content and a lot less rip and read. (1/23/12)

[Here we go again..with Rush's Two If By Tea infomercial from noon to 3 PM.] Uhhhh...don't listen then. (1/23/12)

A message about our game-inter?rupting ads: Heidi-hi, y'all!!! Comcast/Xfinity (1/23/12)

Many thanks for the video of the M.V. Norderney, also known as Radio Veronica. Brought back memories of a different part of my career. And, why I shook my head at some parts of the movie “Pirate Radio”. Offshore broadcasting and “Border Blasters” are alas, other parts of this business which are long gone. My good friend Mike Venditti turned his technical prowess loose in an effort to resuscitate the old XERF, but it was all too brief an effort as Mike was found to have the cancer would took his life all too quickly. If you drive south from Tijuana on 1D, you can pass the sites of XETRA and XEPRS, while in Rosarito, there’s a memorial to XERB and Wolfman Jack. Funny that many of the “outlaw” broadcasters (and their stations) of the past sounded better than the “professional” broadcasters from the “clusters” of today. –Unsigned Corporate Suit (1/23/12)

"Interesting that they're saying it's a WTTG error. On DirecTV, there were no interruptions." Read the earlier posts dipshit. WTTG has its own fiber to Comcast, and they send different Comcast ads to Comcast viewers when they run Comcast ads. DirectTV gets the main ad, Comcast gets the alternate ad. I bet the idiots at 5 just programmed the wrong times for the different ads and never noticed! (1/23/12)

It was good to hear Judlynne lilly and Kimberly Suiters again! (1/23/12)

Washington state's governor, Christine Gregoire, just got a sex change on 'NEW. She was a she, but is now a HE. Cool! (1/23/12)

Interesting that they're saying it's a WTTG error. On DirecTV, there were no interruptions. (1/23/12)

My initial review of WNEW....it sounds like a bunch of out of towners trying to sound local. I don't think they completely grasp the difference between the District government and the Federal government. They'll get the hang I am sure. Its GREAT to hear Lisa Baden back in her element!! (1/23/12)

Unimpressed with WNEW. In a 15 minute period they introed three field reports and all three failed leaving dead air. Then traffic report came on and there was no mention of anything in Maryland. The female anchor left a lot to be desired. Also one sports report also failed to air. This all in a 20 minute period. Guess the folks at the glass enclosed place are having a laugh to two today. (1/23/12)

Here we go again..with Rush's Two If By Tea infomercial from noon to 3 PM. (1/23/12)

Was good to hear Judelyne Lilly on 'NEW Sunday afternoon. (1/23/12)

RE: "Comcast Runs Ads Over Fox 5's NFL Playoff". According to Tracey Hamilton at the Post (“I admit I don’t understand how the pictures appear on the magic screen, but I don’t even have Comcast Cable”), even non-Comcast subscribers got those ads. (1/23/12)

Dave's response: From what I understand, WTTG provides area cable systems with a landline feed of its signal, which differs slightly from what is broadcast. And, apparently, one or several of those cable-directed feeds contained the extra, random Xfinity ads. That explains why some Comcasters and some non-Comcasters saw them, while other viewers didn't.....

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The Post story says WNEW’s antenna is in Bowie in P.G. Co. Actually, it’s in the Crofton-Davidsonville area of Anne Arundel County, just off Defense Highway, Rt. 450. Much closer to Annapolis than to Bowie. T.G., Laurel (1/23/12)

Dear Dave, ABC7/NC8 is the only local station that still doess its field reports in standard def, yet does its studio shots in hi-def. I thought it was reported here 3 or so years ago that they were going to make the switch...any info on when that may finally happen? (1/23/12)

Re: "I have an initial "fail" for the WNEW website. I tried to listen to the audio and they require Flash, so iPods, iPads, & iPhones need not apply." No, that's an initial "not yet". CBS uses the Radio.com app to stream to smartphones and tablets. There are versions for iPhone, iPad and Android here: radio.com WNEW may take a day or two to be added to the app. When we had a big format change at a CBS FM here in Ohio, it took about two days for the change to be reflected - it was already streaming under the previous format. (1/23/12)

Re: "Is Bill Rehkopf on CBS Radio's WNEW related to Aaron Rehkopf" - They are one in the same. Doing a Google search you'll see his name sometimes listed as Aaron "Bill" Rehkopf. Dave in Fredericksburg (1/23/12)

Are we sure we're blaming the right idiots for the Xfinity spots over the game last night. All the local stations can play split spots for Comcast. Over the air gets "buy Xfinity", Comcrap subs get "subscribe to more....". I'm betting that WTTG did it and their automation wasn't handled well......, just sayin' (1/23/12)

Flipped on WNEW at the office. They have some really nice promotional stuff, but, it’s WAAAY too long if in a spot set.….ran promo in the midst of the spot set….mistake, it should be a stand alone. Newsers are working well…good sounders, good production…traffic guy was good…actually sounding better than they did on the ride in. Breaks are much too long, they get away from their mission, “All news, all the time” I’m actually liking what I’m hearing. Good sounders, good straight up reporting. Could win the war..Time will tell, won’t it??? (1/23/12)

My smartphone and my car are wondering why -- when they already constantly display it -- does WNEW give the temperature 30 times an hour? (1/23/12)

Hi Dave, Al Jazeera English's DC based show is getting a mini relaunch. wp.me (1/23/12)

Question - is Bill Rehkopf on CBS Radio's WNEW related to Aaron Rehkopf, who used to be with Clear Channel's WPOC in Baltimore? Their Thanksgiving might be a lot like the Harbaugh family... (1/23/12)

Dear Dave: To the sharp-eyed poster who said "I'm afraid you've got the wrong Percy," I stand corrected. I've fired up that youtube link a bunch of times over the past few months so I would think I'd get the name right. No matter. It's a great instrumental. Great site Dave! Sincerely, Joe Kasell (1/23/12)

#comcastsucks was huge last night on twitter during the game. 4 Infinity ads interrupting game play is inexcusable. It looked like comcast was switching from auto-pilot to manual in the control room... as fans watching the game were freaking out and yelling expletives about comcast! (1/23/12)

we dumped comcast 5 years ago and we still get "come back" offers weekly :-( no thanks comcast !! (1/23/12)

But, but, but, but it's not Comcast, it's Xfinity! (1/23/12)

Not surprised actually. If you ask Comcast they will tell you that you wanted to see those ads and they run all media. (1/23/12)

Dave's response: The FCC is the Federal Comcast Commission.....

Heard a report about the Ravens from Annapolis on 99.1 just now. At least they are trying to do live reports there. They should be the Maryland focused news station. (1/23/12)

Dave's response: I really think that while WNEW is being produced by CBS Radio/DC in Lanham, it will equally cover local news in the Baltimore market. Seems like I'm hearing a lot of local news on 99.1 for Laurel, Howard, and Anne Arundel. And why not. The combined DC-Baltimore market is upwards of 6 million people. And that 99.1 signal is probably the only bi-market signal, not that there's anything wrong with that.....

Re Comcastic interruptions during the NFC Championship game: It seemed obvious this was a problem caused by Channel 5, not Comcast. We're on Cox in Fairfax County and had the same interruptions. The commercials are irrelevant here in FFX, since we can't get XFinity. And, further, I suppose they don't do much for anyone watching on Comcast either, since of course, switching back is a moot point. Nor do I imagine Comcast gained much in the way of promotional value in a commercial that was interrupting the national broadcast. (1/23/12)

Dave's response: Well, if you saw the Xfinity spots on Cox then the problem was with Channel 5/WTTG and NOT with Comcast. Unless Cox's WTTG feed is provided by Comcast. Hmmm. We will get to the bottom of this mystery, eventually.....

re: Xfinity ads; Junkies talked briefly about the Xfinity ads on Comcast this morning. One, who has Verizon said that he didn't see them. (1/23/12)

Dave's response: OK, that puts the "ball of blame" back in Comcast's court.....

Okay, I just heard one of the first 11:31AM WNEW Traffic update gaffs as the reporter described an accident on MD Route 193, Spencerville Rd in Burtsoville......sorry pal, it's actually MD Route 198. MD Route 193 ends at U.S. 1 in College Park...check your maps, please! (1/23/12)

In the rush to judgement, I'm surprised that no one has suggested that a failure of Comcast's automation gear was responsible for the repeated random misfiring of the :15 Xfinity spot on WTTG Sunday. I realize that's not an excuse for running a sloppy set-up, but it might explain the error. Frequent mailbagger Marty Madden will remember one morning in the mid-1990s when the automation system at WMJS-FM kept defaulting back to the Fendermen's "Mule Skinner Blues" for what seemed like hours while a computer glitch was reigning havoc high atop Thunder Hill. (1/23/12)

I listened to WNEW on the way to the office this AM. First day…..a bit on the “skitsy” side. Too much adrenaline…unsettled, level issues…but, all in all, if they calm down, breath deeply and focus on the quality of the content I think they’ll come around. As I said, first day…A bit “teeny bopper”. Will get better. (1/23/12)

Joe Kasell; I'm afraid you've got the wrong Percy. Grab some Dramamine and hop aboard for a lovely tour of Radio Veronica accompanied by the correct Percy. Or as we say in der Nederlands; Tune van het zondagmiddagprogramma "Fietsen rond de tafel" en later ook van "Veronica moet aan Land". (1/23/12)


With 19 seconds left in the 4th Qtr they went to a Comcast commercial. Also did it with 04 seconds left and at 00 when the officials were preparing the coin flip. And while in overtime they did it once with about 12 min. on the game clock. The only thing I can think is this was all after 10 p.m. and they had some mandatory runs programmed in to a computer or perhaps make-goods for spots missed during the network game. Bone-headed. But, hey, that's Crapcast for you! (1/23/12)

[RE WNEW:] Thanks for reporting Dave. I tuned in specifically because I saw your story about it. But I got to say, what I heard was straight out of college radio as if the folks had never done dry runs of the newscasts before yesterday. I'll give it another chance at some point. (1/23/12)
I have an initial "fail" for the WNEW website. I tried to listen to the audio and they require Flash, so iPods, iPads, & iPhones need not apply. (1/23/12)

“For my morning listening pleasure, I finding myself being increasingly drawn to the "Coast To Coast" replay on Sirius XM 168”: Dave we never had you pegged for a member of The Tin Foil Brigade, but then, just because you’re paranoid don’t mean they ain’t out to get you! Actually: Coast to Coast is the best thing to listen to while driving cross country in the middle of the night. You can even pick it up in the mountains & hollers of West Virginia! (1/23/12)

Forget WTOP & WNEW: listen to The Junks, C-SPAN or Howard Stern. Can WTOP or WNEW top this woman to wake you up in the morning: www.howardstern.com (1/23/12)

Dave's response: For my morning listening pleasure, I finding myself being increasingly drawn to the "Coast To Coast" replay on Sirius XM 168, which runs until 9 AM. It's a shame the a-holes who program WMAL cut off such a great show at 3 AM most nights.....

End of an era for the Junks; Bret Oliverio is leaving to take charge of his late Brother’s restaurant in NC. Good luck Bret. OOBBEE (1/23/12)

RE: "Comcast Runs Ads Over Fox 5's NFL Playoff" - Unbelievable they would pull this kind of crap during the 4th quarter and OT of the NFC Championship. At least 4 interruptions of the game, all about XFINITY and how great. I'm sure this primetime number was off-the-chart. I called my local Comcast office and they said it was nothing that they did and that it was a problem from the broadcast distributor. Who else could that be? I told them that I bet Verizon customers weren't having this problem. Question - Did any non-Comcast or over-the-air viewers have this problem last night? I've never complained to the FCC before, but this kind of garbage needs to be investigated!! (1/23/12)

Dave's response: Cable companies are allowed to run their local ads on cable-only networks like CNN and USA. That's part of their contract with those networks. But they're not allowed to run local content or ads on local broadcast stations, like DC's Channel 5/WTTG. If Comcast is doing that locally, it's a violation of FCC rules, I would think. And it would also leave the cable firm open to possible legal action from WTTG's owner, Fox. Is that Xfinity ad you're seeing on WTTG coming from WTTG or being "inserted" over another WTTG ad by your local Comcast system? Hmmm.....

[Re: Dave's response: "They take turns" on WNEW.] It's basically the old Group W (Westinghouse Broadcasting) news format used since 1965 on 1010 WINS ("All news, all the time...you give us 22-minutes, we'll give you the world...") and on 1060 KYW and other Group W all-news stations. The anchors alternate each half hour. It's just like radio is supposed to be: one voice talking to us, the listener, rather than many voices talking to each other! --RB (1/23/12)

Twitter was on fire with complaints about DC XFinity ads. I saw five at random times. Comcast Twitter account said "looking into it". (1/23/12)

[RE Comcast:] yup. Happened at least four times. Couldn't have been an accident. (1/23/12)

[RE Comcast:] Yep. Happened during the last few minutes of the 4th Quarter and near the start of the OT quarter (1/23/12)

Well, so far WNEW sounds like a clone of WTOP but with Micky Mouse running the board & better traffic. (1/23/12)

Dave's response: They need to crank up the audio of 9er Howie Bernstein's morning weather reports.....

Your story about Comcast running commercials over the game Sunday night is completely correct. I missed a punt and when they came back Joe Buck said it was a 14 yard punt and I was wondering what happened. Actually, I was on the phone talking to Comcast Tech support about an unrelated issue when that happened. I asked the guy about it and he laughed and said he did not know anything about that (which that was probably correct that he did not know anything). I told him it was strange as soon as the play was over it went to the commercial. There was no "The Giants are taking over, be right back after these messages" from Joe Buck. It just went straight to the Comcast commercial and it did happen about 3 or 4 times. Jon (1/23/12)

I'll give WNEW another chance but so far I'm impressed with their ability to pronunce the letter "W". In Baltimore, and in particular at WJZ that letter W is pronounced dubba-you. Also on WBAL...that's dubba-you BAL. Now back to 99.1. Listened on line but that's all screwed up...levels are WAY off and many reports didn't make it at all. Single anchor needs to be changed. Team is easier to listen. As I said I'll try again. (1/23/12)

I forgot what a nice voice Amy Morris has. WNEW is lucky to have her. I had not heard her since I deleted the button when that other station quit doing the news on 1500 a few years ago. (1/23/12)

Isn't there supposed to be a chick co-anchoring on WNEW? Delayed like the private schools? (1/23/12)

Dave's response: Amy Morris. I've heard her. The WNEW co-anchors don't seem to be on the air together. They take turns.....

With the announcement of Steve Chenevey leaving channel 5, was that effective immediately? I ask because isn't this the third week that he's been out? And considering his popularity, I would think the morning crew would want to give him some sort of celebratory send-off. That is of course unless the powers that be were none too pleased with his decision to leave and said "just go now". (1/23/12)

Dave's response: Usually, if you jump to a rival station you don't get a big on-air "send off" from your soon to be former station. You're kind of viewed as a traitor.....

Now we know why WnEW chose to go with a soft launch on Sunday.. need to get the cobwebs out of their system before the Monday rush. (1/23/12)

While WCBM and WCAO may have adopted meanings for their call signs, those came after the fact. Both calls were sequentially assigned by the FCC, not requested. Early four letter calls were of the format W_A_, then W_B_, W_C_, W_D_, and so on. Regards, Dave Loudin. (1/23/12)

Dear CBS Radio: I am in Upper NW DC. I can't hear 99.1 in my office building. Your stream continues to cut off the newscast and play spots in the middle of the stream when using firefox. The levels are all over the road - more than a drunk driver. Please stop sucking, and give your station a fighting chance. Thanks. (1/23/12)

I posted about this a week or two ago, but there's still no sign of what I'm looking for. Will CBS will add WNEW to the News/Talk stations that are available via iTunes? Other CBS stations KNX, WBBM, KMOX, WCBS, WINS are already available. Hell, even WMAL, WAMU, WFED and WTOP can be streamed this way. For some reason, other stations' live streaming in other modes, never seem to work too well with my set-up (iBook G4, OSX 10.5.8, Safari browser). There's always "stuttering" or some other tech issue that screws up the listening experience. Listening via iTunes is always simple, smooth and stable. I hope some local CBS executive reads my post here and adds WNEW-FM to the News/Talk section of the iTunes "Radio" line-up. I did find what appears to be the only streaming option for WNEW, via player.radio.com. Unfortunately, there are issues. I was listening from about 9:45 to 10:30 Sunday night. For a while, there was silence where commercials were supposed to be. A little later, the spots ran, but at a much lower volume. Then, for a while, two spots at a time would play for a few seconds, then one of them would cut out, with just one playing correctly. I'm sure they'll sort out the minor tech issues as they go along. My main concern is whether WNEW will be added to the iTunes Radio list of News/Talk stations. Does anyone know about the timeline on this? (1/23/12)

Seems like either Channel 5 OR Comcast is slipping extra commercials into this playoff football game. They seem to all be :15 and all for Xfinity (Comcast)..... (1/23/12)

Dave's response: I don't believe that cable systems are allowed to insert local spots on a broadcast signal. That's an FCC rule.....

Dear Dave: Wanted to extend my complements to the producer of the photo tribute to Bill Trumbull. While I never met the man, I do remember listening to him so often for so long that I felt like he was a friend of the family, as I'm sure other listeners did too. The photos just add another layer to that feeling. And I loved the backing instrumental of "Chicken Feathers" by Pat Williams. I remember that selection so well from back in the day and how, when it was playing, you knew you were listening to Bill Trumbull. I miss how talent like him would have a musical piece tied closely to their show. With him it was "Chicken Feathers." Tom Gauger would have "The Music Scene" (another Pat Williams selection). Over at WWDC-AM, Eddie Gallagher would end his program with Dick Powell's "Thanks a Million." And Dutch pirate radio station Radio Veronica would feature the Percy Sledge version of Neil Diamond's "Crunchy Granola Suite." Don't see much of that anymore in the business. Such a shame. Great site Dave! Sincerely, Joe Kasell (1/23/12)

Four times now Comcast ads have aired during the Fox coverage on Comcast in Alexandria. The last one aired during actual play, an OT punt, not just the time between plays. Is Comcast in need of commerical time that bad to interior games. One time is a mistake, four is a corporate decision. Would love to know what WTTG/News Corp thinks. Ed (1/23/12)

Re: WEAM... VERY close! It was actually Ellen Ann Miller... Newsworthy & Noteworthy... Harry H. Averill (1/23/12)

WOW, so it looks like little old WICO-FM had the upper hand. Even the local flagship for the Ravens didn't know how to get the rights from Westwood One/DG. Great Scott management should be ashamed. This is a total disconnect from their product, which as they promoted on the air, Delmarva's Home to the Ravens. Way to go, same to MTS... (1/23/12)

Dave..I had to laugh at your response when asked if you could update your station listing. This is what you said "Dave's response: I'll update the page soon. Oh, the Post hasn't run its local radio station list in several years....." This is pretty funny, considering you would rip a station a new one if they "delayed" updating something just because someone else hasn't. Be better than them, be innovative... (1/23/12)

Dave's response: Hey, I spent a lot of time on a Sunday updating the site due to the WNEW launch. The station listings page can wait a day or two. By the way, the Washington Post's sports media listings still call DC's 1050 WZAA, even though it was changed to WBQH something like two years ago. Oh, I just updated DCRTV's Station List.....

The best part of This Week With Sam Seaborn is the Roundtable. This Sunday was a treat because the roundtable was most of the show. The only downside was Kirsten "re-animated corpse of Claude Cockburn" van den Heuvel of The Nation. I used to think she was bangable but my God she has hit the wall. Combine that with her crazy talk (I used to think you could just turn her around to face the TV) and you have the dictionary definition of dealbreaker. To be fair, and judging by the way she talked, they probably just strapped her on a dolly and rolled her over from McPherson Square. I shudder to think what her muff is like. Dave, you know I have a fascination with ladies' handwarmers of the olden days. Now I bet that Lady Sybil on Downton Abbey has a superlative muff. I would certainly like to warm my fingers in it. With the notable exception of DCRTV Dave, if you're into radio, you're most likely carrying a few extra pounds. The Mike O'Meara Show is promoting a weight-loss program called Weight Not. Does anyone here know if it involves Human Chorionic Gonadotrophin (HCG)? - ZombieWoof (1/23/12)

To WNEW - Send more Chuck Berry. (1/23/12)

Looks like KHZ has a new website. (1/23/12)

WNEW Streaming Update #2... As of about 6:15 AM, the electronic "straining washing machine noise" issue had been cleared up and you could actually hear the news content portions of the programming. Unfortunately, the issue with commercials not playing or partially playing that was happening on Sunday night, was still an issue. If there's a first weekday morning drive debriefing session with management today at WNEW, I'd hate to be the person who had the responsibility for station streaming! (1/23/12)

I think they should take another week. Listening to WNEW is no news all weather and boring boring boring. Yes I repeated myself but so do they. I can understand technical glitches but the content clock with WX every 4 minutes? Do we all have short memories? As repetitive WTOP us at least you don't feel like your being told the same thing over and over. The burn turn off rate on NEW will kill them if they don't change their clock and put some news there. Charlie / Arlington (1/23/12)

It seems that WNEW is trying be a clone of WINS. But there is a major reason why it will never sound as tight: Its call letters. When you hear WINS newstime 6:01, WINS is pronounced as "he WINS the game" (one syllable). WNEW (doub-le U N E doub-le U) is 8 syllables. Say that 20-30 times an hour and it slows the newscast & gets annoying. Suggestion to CBS: find a 4 letter, one syllable word starting with W that's easy to pronounce!--Mike from Silver Spring (1/23/12)

Update on WNEW stream... I had tried listening online in the late evening on Sunday and I reported on numerous problems/issues. Now, at about 5:45 AM, I thought I'd check in and see if the issues had been fixed. No such luck. This time, when you load the streaming page, you get a 30-sec video commercial, followed by an electronic noise that sounds like a washing machine with two large comforters in it and the agitator waging a losing battle against them, in the effort to wash them. After a few minutes of that, you get one or two audio commercials, then the straining mashing machine noise again. At this point, I can't comment on the station's content, as I have yet to be able to actually hear it, to make a judgment, but I can tell you, the WNEW stream is a joke! (1/23/12)

WNEW 99.1 -- I just came in at 4:58am. Strange to hear the "legal ID" saying WNEW Bowie. AND it was strange NOT to hear the CBS time gong at 5am. The one they're using almost sounds like the BBC. Depressing to hear Lisa Baden over here. Just when I had pretty much forgotten her. (1/23/12)

/\ January 23 Messages /\

\/ January 22 Messages \/

What I hear is the sound of radio newspeople getting a paycheck! That many not matter much to radio "fans," but it sure does to those in the business. Radio newspeople have been picked off left and right in recent years - news dropped or outsourced to traffic companies, whatever. So WNEW's sign-on, imperfect as it may be, means growth in a tough career area. And the on-air product will get better. I especially enjoyed hearing a Ledo Pizza spot on WNEW - considering that it once had naming rights to WTOP's "Glass Enclosed Nerve Center" that makes me laugh at Jim Farley every time I hear that silly line. (1/22/12)

I tuned in to 99.1 tonight and - wow, what an amateur sounding station. First off, the anchor was completely bush league. He stumbled on every other sentence and his inflection was horrible. When they went to the spots the audio drop was awful. There isn't any excuse for that. The spots are all Mp3's that should be blocked in Enco or Scott or whatever automation they are using, making it an easy once over switch. The overall processing of the voices was very thin and sounded like they had no idea what processing or an Optimod is. The content was all DC and Virginia, even though the signal is Maryland, so they are completely blowing off Baltimore as expected. I'm sure that they will fix the technical side, but they better have better talent in mind and a better overall execution. Also, if the focus is Virginia, they are alienating more than half of their coverage area - and the whole reason that I don't listen to WTOP is because it's mostly Virginia news. I was hoping for more of a Maryland slant with 99.1 and I'm sure that I'm not alone on that. RJF (1/22/12)

The online version of WNEW stinks. The commercials begin in the middle of a news story. The commercials are also quite a bit louder. I have not yet listened to the station over the air, but if it is anything like the online version, I am not sure I want to. (1/22/12)

Dear Dave: Now that all-news WNEW 99.1 has launched, you may wish to update the station list on your website to include these entries: 1580 - WNEW (AM) - talk - Morningside MD... 99.1 - WNEW-FM - news - Bowie MD.... Now, how long will it take the Washington Post to update its station listings? Thanks, Ken in Greenbelt, Md. (1/22/12)

Dave's response: I'll update the page soon. Oh, the Post hasn't run its local radio station list in several years.....

For K.M. (the Ravens fan) – for the NFL Conference Championships and Super Bowl, Dial Global (Westwood One) has near-total radio exclusivity. Each team’s flagship station can air a local broadcast, but the teams’ networks are shut down. Those out-of-market network stations must carry the DG/WW1 broadcast – or no game broadcast. So for the Ravens, only WBAL/Rock 98 can air the game locally with their announcers. – Rob in Richmond (1/22/12)

Listening to the all new 99.1 FM between 8-8:15 PM tonight and there is no reason why anyone would change their listening habits from WTOP. First of all, it's boooring as hell, sounds so monotone, dead air in between everything, traffic report cut off in mid-sentence with anchor reporting that she guessed they lost the traffic report and then there's the weather every 4 minutes that seems like it's every minute. It's gotta get better than this. (1/22/12)

I just tuned in to WNEW a little after 8 PM on Sunday, and right now at least from a technical viewpoint it sounds like bad high school station. The levels are all over the place - I either can't make it out or it's blasting me - and some of the audio sounds it went through a Radio Shack mic that's been dropped a couple times too many. We'll see....but I hope Monday goes better for them. (1/22/12)

Dave: Good thing I watched the halftime report on FOX5 during the football game. They reported that the federal government is dealying its opening from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. tomorrow. The announcement confused me, so, after talking for several minutes about it with my wife, I went to washingtonpost.com, figuring they'd have a big story about it. I had to scroll down the front page a ways before I found something about it in a Post blog! washingtonpost.com. This might change soon, but the story affects thousands of people and the local TV news has it, while the Post has buried it for the time being. Why does the Post relegate it to a blog? Some comments beneath the blog discuss the difficulties in interpreting the government's announcement and its effects on employees who arrive at different times, but I would think the Post would have led with a big story on this, even if it needed further updates into the evening. Christian (1/22/12)

(Dave...Ref. to your comment on Philly's WIBG call letters origination)...WCBM Baltimore stood for Christ Brings Multitude, in an article some years back in the old Baltimore Sun Magazine section of the Sunday paper. Also WEAM was named for the owner's daughter, Edith Ann Miller and I think the WCAO calls stood for a family name also... (1/22/12)

Hey Dave. I've seen you post in order for a radio station to work, it has to come in on a clock radio. I just put 99.1 on in Bel Air and it comes in crystal clear. CBS may be aiming things the wrong way. (1/22/12)

As of this writing (early Sunday evening), the best thing I can say about WNEW 99.1 is that it has a good signal into Great Falls on the worst radio in the house, a Grundig (Eton) G4. However… the air sound (so far) is terrible at best. There is no tightness… no “urgency”… no “fresh” stories… and the list could go on. The afternoon anchor sounds like she’s either on Valium or ‘ludes. Rather than sounding like a major market CBS all-newser, it reminds me of the local cut-ins of small market class A FM affiliates of the old NBC NNIS. And, unlike KFWB, it is not (yet?) available on the CBS Radio.com app for Android. I realize that it’s Sunday afternoon, and a good time to get the kinks worked out. But, the “debut” was inauspicious. Right now, I’d have to say that while WTOP should be watching, they really have nothing to worry about. So far... And, as for WBAL, even less. Remember that NNIS in Baltimore was on WIYY. And, Baltimore is nowhere near a “news junkie” market like D.C. So far, I give WNEW 99.1 a double yolker. Unsigned Corporate Suit (1/22/12)

WNEW must abandon the "weather every four minutes" idea. That's way too frequent for a weather report...Other than that, they seem to be doing well. (1/22/12)

heard WNEW at 4pm on way shopping! Oh dear! 3, yes 3 weather forecasts in 4 minutes, 3:59, 4:01 and 4:03, oh and a reminder that its 31 going to 35(really) after the 4:03 weather "in your face" update. . Headlines with over powering music, could hardly hear KImberly Suter at times..... Phoner from Annapolis that was muffled, all I heard was "mmmm, mmmmm, mmmmm,, WNEW 99.1". Maybe they should stay rehearsing for longer, I was bored and if I hear the fucking temperature again I'll choke on my salami! Same again at 5pm on way back from shopping. WTOP shouldn't get worried yet! (1/22/12)

A very strong start to the news war for WNEW. WTOP better unleash matching firepower Monday. "Just keep doing what you're doing" is not enough for WTOP. WNEW is predictably running a clinic on all-news radio done right. WTOP staffers need to learn fast and exponentially step up their game. Except for several expected "startup moments" of dead air Sunday, WNEW has a great sound with energy, flow and credible content. I'm sure it'll quickly get better and make WTOP sound tired and "yesterday" (unless TOP gets it seriously in gear ASAP). WNEW owned breaking news Sunday afternoon. Paterno's death appropriately dominated with multiple high profile reports the first couple hours on the air and at 2:17p it aired a "this just in" sounder in reporting Gabby Giffords' resignation, followed by repeated attention-getting updates several times per hour. WNEW also instantly owned weather, reporting the freezing rain advisory every four minutes. Let the games begin. (1/22/12)

The following was forwarded to DCRTV.....

[WNEW] suddenly popped up a short time ago. (I was most disappointed no to find the "history of Rock and Roll"). by now I have to assume it's not a switching error, but a soft launch. some random notes and thoughts: two pretty good sounding female anchors so far ... one, Sheryl Simone, worked at WINS a long time so she's fairly comfy; the other woman wasn't (see below). unsurpsingly, they still have tech bugs to work out ... three missed liveshots in the 40 minutes i've been listening .. one live weather and two reporters on cellphones. they say they are doing the weather every FOUR minutes. (have not been trying to verify that, but I've heard a couple in under four). the formal weather and traffic on the 1's carry voiced sponsorhips ... the "ted britt ford traffic center" and "thompson creek weather center." they are running some commercials. am assuming those are likely unpaid placeholders .. but they have run a few back-to-back. they don't have the teletype sound, but do have a kind of countdown stringer set under the headlines and teases. it's fairly frequent and gives it some sound of urgency .. sometimes a bit incongruously. they are also doing "WNEW Newstime" ... perhaps also too frequently. reporter lockout is "all news 99-1." editorially, it's top-heavy on Paterno .. almost as frequently as the weather (way too much .. because it's also in sports) with one of the missed liveshots from some bar for reax. they also ran some ABC Paterno pieces... The national and intl stuff sounds rip and read ... maybe from ABC's billboards... (1/22/12)

The following was forwarded to DCRTV.....

[WNEW's] sound came in great when i was in the Pilot in Germantown this afternoon. But boy did it deteriorate rapidly as i went south on 270. and in my car, it is really static-y around bethesda- to the point of being unlistenable. i have no idea what kind of radio is in my car but i would assume it is better than average... Simone i think is very good. (1/22/12)

So I tuned to WNEW during the 1:00 hour, just in time to hear the anchor mention "freezing dribble...drizzle." That's the problem with first impressions - you only get to make one. And to all you whining about the call letters, there are only about three of you in the world who care - please drop it. Call letters mean nothing these days. (1/22/12)

Dave's response: I don't like the way some of WNEW's personalities say the calls, which sound like "W any W." They should take a slight pause after the "N" - "WN...EW." That just sounds a bit classier. Or, maybe they should catch that scene in Howard Stern's "Private Parts" - "W NNNNNNNNNNNN BC." Same kinda call. "W NNNNNNNNNN EW." Oh, don't get me started on how YDB says "WT Opie".....

the WNEW call letter WILL return to 102.7 in New York later this as CBS is mulling a do format change to ursurp the Fresh 102.7 format and WWFS call letter. Rumor had is that for the first time since February of 1996 ( or May of 2002, if you prefer), New York City will have a radio station specializing in COUNTRY MUSIC!! The song played: "Play Something Country" by Brooks and Dunn! (1/22/12)

Seriously, there will never be a return of WNEW to NYC. It's been so far removed from the old rock format (and later, the disastrous 'hot talk' format) and were de-emphazied heavily while as a marginal AC station. It makes far more sense for CBS to create a new identity around the WNEW calls in another market. CBS would be more likely to flip 102.7 to a simulcast of WFAN than even think about returning country music. And that ain't happening for many years (especially if ESPN doesn't get an FM signal for WEPN [WFME] and I doubt Disney wants to even spend the money). (1/22/12)

WNEW DOES NOT have ANY significance, historical, geographic, or otherwise, in the Wasington, D.C./Baltimore markets. WNEW has a real significance in New York as WNEW AM, WNEW FM, and WNEW television. It makes more sense for CBS to bring back the WNEW calls back to 102.7 where they RIGHTFULLY belong. BTW, I see as per the FCC call letter database, the old WGSM call letters ARE available for CBS Washington to acquire for 99.1 FM. WashinGton (D.C.) and Southern Maryland... (1/22/12)

Considering CBS is heavily branding the station as "WNEW All News 99.1" and as "WNEW," they would be clinically insane to change their core identity less than a year in. Yeah, "WGSM" may be available, but that's just pure speculation with no proof otherwise suggesting CBS wants to do something like that. And yes, WNEW-TV and WNEW (AM) were long standing station, but they've been long erased from the media scene. WNEW-TV for 25 years; WNEW (AM) for 20. WNEW-FM lost relevance when the rock died and the talk flopped. People in NYC moved on. (1/22/12)

There are three radio stations on the Eastern Shore that normally carry the Ravens games. Today, WZBH is playing music, with a chick DJ promising score updates. WCEM seems to be playing music as well. WICO-FM IS carrying the game, albeit from Westwood One's feed, not WBAL/98 Rock's, as they usually do. What's up? K.M. (1/22/12)

i hope WNEW improves exponentially soon. i know it's not good to critique someone on their first day but those first few minutes were just horrible. if that's the average representative sound--God bless us everyone... (1/22/12)

I tried to check out All News 99.1's webstream this afternoon... I lasted about 10 minutes before I finally had to tune out when it became obvious that the technical wizards at CBS Washington have a lot of work to do. The stream is about 80% commercials, with occasional glimpses of on-air content being wiped out in mid-sentence by another online spotset. I'm sure it's a setup glitch -- I've listened to WCBS/New York, WBBM/Chicago, and KNX/Los Angeles without having the content wiped out by endless commercials... CBS needs to get this worked out by Monday morning, otherwise all of that at-work sampling will turn right back around to wtop.com. -- Rob in Richmond (1/22/12)

Anybody get a chance to listen to wnew both on air and on ooTunes? Listening on ooTunes there are TONS of commercials. Wondering if it is the same over the air? (1/22/12)

Listening to the DCRTV-provided audio of the WNEW launch, it seems that the folks at WNEW were so excited that they forgot to give a Station Identification at noon. Not that it matters as the FCC apparently doesn't fine stations for not obeying the rules. (1/22/12)

It was mentioned here that WNEW would use ABC newscasts, however I didn't hear one at the top of the hour...with traffic and weather on the 1's, I'm wondering when they'll be able to squeeze in an ABC newscast? (1/22/12)

Listening to WNEW in Baltimore. Sounds like a big commercial break. If this is going to be the round the clock sound, WTOP will be fine and WNEW will have the results of Merlin in NYC and Chicago. Also, Not a WBAL radio hater here. But the website is totally missing the Freezing Rain Advisory for Baltimore and the surrounding area. I know they want to cover the Ravens, but this points out nobody is at home at the Mighty 1090. WBAL could be in a LOT of trouble if someone will step up and do it right. (1/22/12)

Kimberly Suiters is anchoring WNEW as of 2:30.... (1/22/12)

How sad is it that for the AFC Championship game, the FLAGSHIP station of the Ravens doesn't even do any kind of score update on their website? (1/22/12)

[RE WNEW:] Coming in loud and clear in Baltimore! Thanks for the double dose of DaveTv today. Lets go Ravens! So there. (1/22/12)

'99.1FM WNEW' is live on ooTunes (iPhone app) (1/22/12)

had to stop listening; not a fan multiple commercials between every news story re: WNEW 99.1 (1/22/12)

[RE WNEW:] Just makes me miss WHFS again... (1/22/12)

[RE WNEW:] As advertised, it's basically 1010 WINS in Washington. I think there's plenty of room for two all-newsers in this market. (1/22/12)

And what makes CBS think people are gonna switch from WTOP ? (1/22/12)

If you want to listen online, WNEW has an awful website. The blame goes to CBS because WFAN has the same terrible setup. (1/22/12)

[RE WNEW:] They've been on the air less than an hour and I've already switched. (1/22/12)

[RE WNEW:] Heck that is weird... Could have sworn Last night they said it was starting Monday.... I guess they wanted to create some buzz... All for a BUCK.... Why didn't they start this NEWSTATION when they killed HFS? (make a Buck, make a buck) (1/22/12)

joe paterno dies you go WNEW ! (1/22/12)

Doesn't WNEW in New York have the lock on the calls? Unless they are also owned by CBS. (1/22/12)

Dave's response: There is no WNEW in NYC any longer.....

Just happened to turn on 99.1 two minutes before noon and heard the clock. My first thought was this is a hell of a stunt for 18 hours, but I stuck around to see how the legal ID would work. I was nicely surprised to hear the news start at noon. I like the presentation very much. It reminds me of WTOP's sound before being weighed down by a ton of clutter. (1/22/12)

"Welcome to WNEW, where we never met an annoying, overly-played music bed we didn't like... " (1/22/12)

This Ravens program being broadcast by WMAR-TV is a bunch of crap!! (1/22/12)

WNEW 99.1 opening moments: competent, some not-so-smooth moments they'll iron out, no reinvention of the wheel. It's just what you'd expect, and it ought to be enough to carve out a niche. Only time will tell if the niche is big enough to pay for a labor-intensive format. (1/22/12)

Heard 99.1 All-News WNEW rehearsal today at 1:00 PM. Smooth running until the second segment with failed phone system causing embarrasing missed reports from the Carpool bar but things cleared up in a few minutes. During traffic reports the reporter's voice gets quieter and quieter--seems to be an AGC problem there that may be going un-noticed. The signal is still in stereo and is still atrociously poor quality in Fairfax, VA. WNEW has a hard, uphill climb in the suburbs. -Chainsman (1/22/12)

It is 12:30 on Sunday afternoon and we have all news programming on WNEW. I believe it is a waste of investments if reception stays the same. Right now inside the buildings starting from western Fairfax County the station is not audible if you use a regular household clock radio. Just like Dave the others suggested it is a good idea if they can simulcast the programing on 106.7. The distance between the two transmitters is far enough that 106.7 greatly enhances the coverage area and reception. (1/22/12)

CBS Radio launches new DC area all-newser WNEW, 99.1 FM, at noon Sunday. And we have live video/audio of the first few minutes of the new station..... (1/22/12)


How can WBAL Radio spell this reporter's complicated name and screw up locker room? "Jennifer Franciotti sends us a pic inside the Ravens locket room at Gillette Stadium" (1/22/12)

[RE DCRTV's Twitter & Facebook pages: I'm hearing rumblings of a surprise noon Sunday launch for new CBS all-newser WNEW at 99.1. Stay tuned.....] They want a soft -dry run rollout and so it likely will come today (1/22/12)

[RE DCRTV's Twitter & Facebook pages: I'm hearing rumblings of a surprise noon Sunday launch for new CBS all-newser WNEW at 99.1. Stay tuned.....] Be interesting to see if THEY can execute. (1/22/12)

[RE DCRTV's Twitter & Facebook pages: I'm hearing rumblings of a surprise noon Sunday launch for new CBS all-newser WNEW at 99.1. Stay tuned.....] listening right now they have a clock ticking sound on wnew bet they will be on at noon (1/22/12)

[RE DCRTV's Twitter & Facebook pages: I'm hearing rumblings of a surprise noon Sunday launch for new CBS all-newser WNEW at 99.1. Stay tuned.....] NOOOOO! Must hear more history of rock and roll for the 300th time! (1/22/12)

Dave, Here is my column on how CSN is expanding its new show past the Washington Post to use their analyst, as well as writers from other papers around the region and most importantly top name guests from their parent company NBC. Cheers, Jim... Here is the link - washingtonexaminer.com (1/22/12)

To the poster seeking a tabletop radio, I would check out the products offered by C. Crane and Company (www.ccrane.com). You wont be finding nice veneered cabinets and fancy decor anymore, as you would in 1960s vintage AM/FM Zeniths, but they are worthwhile radios. -Alan Peterson (1/22/12)

On this '80s synthpop weekend, I take you on a tour of some of the greatest synthpop jems of Dave's Record Collection..... (1/22/12)


You're kinda missing the COMCAST Super Bowl Scare story of 2012 too Dave, the deliberate blocking of WBAL TV from certain Comcast customers. It's funny that no one wants to talk about it until Monday. I'm guessing they want to craft a carefully worded "customer friendly sounding response?" (1/22/12)

There’s actually another CBS-owned News station that’s not in the promo video: KRLD. Granted, it’s only News during the day, but so is WBZ. Also, it looks like the video doesn’t use the current logo for WBZ (see boston.cbslocal.com). Separately, I didn’t get a chance earlier to weigh in onthe WMAQ discussion. Not only was its attempt at All-News prettysuccessful, but I don’t consider it to have been the last major attemptat the format (prior to any recent launches). Off-hand, that honor may goto Seattle’s KOMO—which flipped to All-News about a decade ago(although it may have backtracked a bit since). As always, thanks! EJM (1/22/12)

"Nice of the Washington Post to run Tom Ardolino's obit today. Especially since they already ran it two days ago. And the New York Times had it a week ago. NRBQ alumni deserve better then to become just another filler piece in a newspaper that can't do anything right anymore." Sorry to be so late with this, but you suck. To quote Alexander Pope's Essay on Criticism, "Those oft are Stratagems which Errors seem, Nor is it Homer Nods, but We that Dream". Which is Pope's way of reaching across the years to say that you suck. The obit ran in the print edition on Friday, and online a few days earlier. There were quite a few good obituaries in the print edition this week, some about people arguably more important than all the members of NRBQ put together. To sum up, you suck. Oh yeah, what do you call someone who likes to drink beer and hang out with musicians? A drummer. - ZombieWoof (1/22/12)

Dave's response: NRBQ's "Me And The Boys" was a WHFS staple, back in the day.....

Thanks for the tip about WLS-FM. It sounds GREAT! Songs listed on the web site, and great music, real live human jocks on the weekend, listen requests on the air, radio like it should be. Revolution The Beatles 10:23pm The Love You Save Jackson 5 10:20pm Blue Suede Shoes Elvis Presley 10:18pm The Rubberband Man Spinners 10:14pm CALIFORNIA DREAMIN' MAMAS & PAPAS 10:12pm Brown Eyed Girl Van Morrison 10:09pm I Saw the Light Todd Rundgren 10:06pm Who Are You The Who 10:02pm When Will I See You Again Three Degrees 9:59pm The Joker Steve Miller Band 9:56pm Give a Little Bit Supertramp 9:52pm Bits and Pieces The Dave Clark Five 9:50pm I Can't Hold Back Survivor 9:46pm The Love I Lost Harold Melvin & The Bluenotes 9:42pm OPUS 17 (DON'T YOU WORRY 'BOUT ME) FOUR SEASONS 9:37pm The Loco-Motion Grand Funk 9:34pm Sweet Little Sixteen Chuck Berry 9:31pm Jumpin' Jack Flash The Rolling Stones 9:28pm Rock the Boat Hues Corporation 9:25pm Get Ready Rare Earth 9:22pm Five O'Clock World The Vogues 9:20pm Maneater Hall & Oates 9:16pm Piece of My Heart Big Brother & The Holding Company 9:12pm Hold Your Head Up Argent 9:09pm Drive My Car The Beatles 9:06pm Listen to the Music The Doobie Brothers 9:03pm I hate to say it, but even better than BIG was in its heyday. We need an uptempo personality oldies station in DC again. Cumulus has got a winning sound there. I know we've got talent like this here . . .(1/22/12)

So is Chris Gordon permanently co-anchoring the weekend morning news on NBC4? And if so, is this considered a promotion since he was previously the field reporter for legal issues. And has Sarah Simmons been officially named the permanent early morning anchor for FOX5? She's been pulling that shift for awhile, but hasn't been included in the picture promos. (1/22/12)

Hey Mailbaggers, I need a recommendation for a good table top radio (self contained tuner, amp, speakers, not components). I'm thinking about an HD radio, or an internet radio, or a straight up AM/FM. Anything that combines all three? Or, two of the three? Anything you really like, or to avoid? (1/22/12)

Is all this fuss about Hillary Howard related somehow to the FiOS Channel 1 coverage of "It's Academic" that I accidentally saw today, Saturday, January 21? I have confusion. -Chainsman (1/22/12)

The mention of John Landecker kindles memories of WIBG in Philadelphia before he went to WLS.. And it's also a neat radio story. The folks at WIBG knew he was a personality jock when they hired him, but they installed the strictest non-personality top forty format you can imagine in an effort to combat WFIL. John was given the name Scott Walker, and the only bow to his personality was their willingness to let him also call himself "Big-O-Fatso-Scottso-Walker" - or maybe he was just mocking them. In the end, they got rid of nearly all of their air staff, but kept him -- and suddenly one night he was John "Records" Landecker and a wonder to listen to. As he reminded us on the air, "Records" truly is his middle name - it was his mother's maiden name. And when I had the pleasure of visiting him at WIBG, he was using a control board with no volume controls - everything was controlled by compression. --Dave Arlington (1/22/12)

Dave's response: I love the story about how they got the WIBG calls for the old 990 in Philly. Before it flipped to "top 40" in the late 1950s or early 1960s, it was a religious station, and the "IBG" stands for "I Believe in God".....

I believe all of the hate on WBAL is more about WNEW than anything. You never heard anything on this site about WBAL and in bad light at that until the WNEW-FM announcement, and now suddenly people posting on this site want to bash them 24/7 is way too coincidental, IMO. Meanwhile I could bash 99.1 endlessly for all the stupidity that surrounds that WTOP wannabe. WMHX in Hershey has had many bouts as a Country station once as Z107. However Cumulus now has 3 country stations between the York, Harrisburg, and Lancaster markets. It's good to see that 101.9 has finally gotten an HD2 signal featuring Classic Hits, now one could only hope it lands on that 106.1 translator signal that CBS supposedly has. (1/22/12)

Dave's response: Honestly, I believe that Baltimore news talker WBAL is probably going to feel more ratings pain from the new WNEW than WTOP will because the new 99.1 will have a great signal into the Baltimore market (better than its DC signal), Baltimore has no current fulltime all-newser, and the new CBS station is FM, while WBAL is still a grunky AMer. WBAL needs to flip to a fulltime all-news format (or at least do news from 4 AM to 7 PM weekdays) and somehow get on FM - pronto.....

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