We’re Back

Whew. That was a long hiatus, wasn’t it?

As explained in the previous items, various issues affecting your Primary Editorial Voice(tm) are not done yet. But we missed this blog, frankly.

We will not “be back” on a daily basis, and life off-blog may still intervene from time to time. But, overall, we have returned.

We’ll start with some newer stuff, and recap some other things that happened in our absence…most of it in a “Twitter Recap” of items we’ve posted before on our social media accounts.

So, let’s get this going…and if we missed anything, we’ll put it up later…

DON’T DARE DIETER: The last time that rock/talk WMMS/100.7 “Rover’s Morning Glory” cast member Dominic Dieter was making national news, it was because he was injured in a stunt that brought the show’s “Dare Dieter” segment to an end.

This time, it was Dieter’s mouth that did it.

We’ll let the Plain Dealer’s Chuck Yarborough do the heavy lifting:

Dominic Dieter, a member of the “Rover’s Morning Glory” team on WMMS-FM/100.7, has been disciplined by station owner Clear Channel for an off-color suggestion to a father worried about his daughter’s possible homosexuality.

In response to an email from the father, Dieter advised the father to have a friend “screw [her] straight.”

To say there was an outcry from the gay and lesbian community is, well, an understatement.

A sample, from the website LGBTQNation, in a post by GLAAD (Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation) Senior Media Field Strategist Justin Ward:

This is not okay. Not on any level, and not in any context. We trust that the majority of fair-minded Americans will agree. Make no mistake, if this young woman is, in fact, gay – or if she’s simply not interested in having sex with any of her father’s friends, then what Dieter is suggesting is rape.

Fast forward to Monday, after the GLAAD folks talked with Clear Channel Cleveland market manager Keith Abrams. Dieter offered up a recorded apology on Monday’s “RMG”, but wasn’t otherwise on the show. From a transcript:

I regret what I did say. My comments were inappropriate. They were inexcusable, and just downright stupid. And I want to make it clear; there was absolutely no intention to promote physical or sexual violence.

Abrams has his own response to the PD’s Yarborough:

“We take matters of this nature very seriously; his comment was thoughtless and unacceptable, and we apologize to those who were offended. We can assure you the appropriate disciplinary action has been taken, and Dieter has since apologized on air and is fully aware that what he said was unacceptable.

Abrams notes that immediately after Dieter’s Friday remarks, other “RMG” cast members called him to task for it, and that the show (we didn’t hear it) moved into a “productive” on-air discussion about “the acceptance of all lifestyles”, complete with calls from members of the gay community.

There’s no word on the length of Dieter’s suspension. We haven’t listened to the show this week to see if he’s back on…

NOT AT WTAM ANYMORE, THAT’S WHERE: When a cast member of a highly-rated afternoon drive AM radio talk show goes missing…well, that’s by far our most asked question of the hiatus: “Where’s Gohmann?”

That’s Ryan Gohmann, who returned to Oak Tree to join the fun on talk WTAM/1100′s Mike Trivisonno Show…and has now left the program, and left the station once again.

Gohmann left WTAM before back in 2007, segueing from his role as Bob Frantz’s producer to Florida, to become the assistant program director/morning drive producer at Clear Channel sister talk WFLA/970 Tampa.

In 2012, OMW only hears that the answer to the Most Asked Question of Our Hiatus is “Ryan’s decision to leave WTAM was his own decision”. This time, we have no word of an impending or already nabbed new gig for Gohmann, but we’ll let you know if such word pops up…

LEFT SWITCH: Aside from a shoestring effort by LMA operator Gary Richards at Painesville’s WABQ/1460, liberal talk radio has otherwise pretty much been left for dead in Northeast Ohio.

There’s at least a pulse, somewhere.

In a time slot that has seen conservatives Glenn Beck and most recently, Laura Ingraham, Elyria-Lorain Broadcasting talk WEOL/930 Elyria has returned Dial Global syndicated liberal host Stephanie Miller to airwaves on much of Cleveland’s west side.

Richards runs Miller on WABQ as well, but WEOL does a much better job of rimshotting Cleveland’s western suburbs (and places like Medina) than 1460 does of rimshotting Cleveland’s eastern suburbs. Both boast 1000 watt signals during the day, but WEOL has the considerable advantage of being lower on the AM dial.

Thus, even some Akron area fans of Miller’s show during its run on then-liberal talk WARF/1350 “Radio Free Ohio” have a shot at listening to her on WEOL…through some static. (This is by far not the Radio Battle of the Titans, signal wise.)

WARF, of course, is today’s “Fox Sports 1350″.

Why did WEOL make the change? It’s right on the station’s website:

We made this programming change because we needed to balance our programming in order to better serve both sides—both conversations. We were hearing too often that listeners perceived the station had swayed to the extreme right since two of our daytime talk shows were conservative.

Though it has carried Beck, Ingraham and continues to carry Premiere afternoon driver Sean Hannity, WEOL has been far from defined as “a conservative talk station”.

The noon-3 time slot is filled by another Dial Global talker, consumer advocate Clark Howard. We assume Cumulus Media is pitching the station on its new show with former Arkansas governor, Republican presidential candidate and Fox News Channel weekend host Mike Huckabee, but we don’t expect WEOL to pick it up for the reasons cited above.

Remember, WEOL used to feature news blocks from AP Radio Network News in many of these same time slots…and still airs a news/service non-politically polarized local morning drive show.

Across town, Laura Ingraham is still listed 10 AM to noon weekdays on the schedule of Spirit Media variety WELW/1330 Willoughby, but very few people who can pick up WEOL would have a shot at that east side station.

As far as we know, no Northeast Ohio station has yet picked up Mike Huckabee’s show…though we wouldn’t be surprised to see Cumulus Youngstown market talkers WSOM/600 Salem and WPIC/790 Sharon PA find a place for the in-house program.

MILLER, ON THE CONSERVATIVE SIDE: Another Miller, this one a conservative host, is now being heard in Cleveland.

Dennis Miller’s Dial Global show gains a Cleveland clearance, delayed 9 PM-midnight weekdays on Salem talk WHK/1420. The move bumps Cumulus’ Mark Levin and the local show “Kelly and Company” hosted by Tom Kelly.

Kelly is still on the WHK schedule in his original Sunday 4-6 PM time slot…he added late weekday evenings after WHK sent Michael Savage packing and replaced him with the then-two hour Levin show…

MANSFIELD CHANGES: Just a few months ago, Clear Channel’s Ashland/Mansfield cluster bumped classic hits “My 100.1 and 98.3″, adding the cluster’s 100.1 Shelby and 98.3 Fredericktown as FM simulcasters of talk WMAN/1400.

The 100.1 frequency, a northern rimshot into Mansfield, became the primary promoted signal. 98.3 rimshots Mansfield from the south, from a transmitter site in southern Richland County.

Not anymore.

It’s been officially announced on the WMAN web site…100.1 is going off in a different direction, leaving 1400 and 98.3 as the only WMAN signals.

The announcement on the main WMAN page reads, in big white on black letters:

ALERT: WMAN IS LEAVING 100.1 FM, TUNE TO 98.3 FM OR 1400 AM

The change is reflected on the station’s new logo, which now “leads” with FM 98.3, with 1400 AM below.

Where is 100.1 going?

An OMW reader alerted us to an E-mail from Clear Channel, directing to a new Facebook page:

There, this is one of the messages posted:

A radio station in Mid-Ohio under construction. We will sign on Friday May 4th at Noon.

Though we don’t know if this feed is on the air (we are, after all, well within WNIR’s signal range), a brand new feed for “My 100.1″, listed in the “Oldies” category, is stunting:

Amid the usual “construction” noises of a pounding hammer, liners promise “there’s a new radio station being built right now at 100.1 FM…you’d better listen when it debuts Friday at noon”.

“Pardon the dust,” indeed.

Another liner tells listeners they can still find WMAN on 98.3 FM or 1400 AM (yes, voiced by Clear Channel regional operations director and OMW reader Keith Kennedy), and we’ve heard an odd music mix from Michael Stanley to Frank Sinatra in the stunting.

Again, since we hear Howie Chizek instead of a Mansfield-area station on 100.1, we don’t know if this is being broadcast on 100.1 yet.

We assume Clear Channel will scoot the WMAN-FM calls over to 98.3, as they reside right now on 100.1 Shelby…

MOVING ON: After being synonymous with Cleveland radio and TV traffic reporting for a long time, Terry Groden has moved to fill some big broadcasting shoes.

At the peak of his time with Metro Traffic/Metro Networks, Groden was the local director of operations in Cleveland, even after Westwood One bought Metro.

He survived the closure of Metro’s Independence Media Gulch office and continued to do news and traffic embedded at Salem’s nearby facility.

TV viewers knew Groden as the primary fill-in for Metro’s traffic reporters at WOIO/19′s “19 Action News”…first for Rick Abell, and more recently for ground-based Joy Redmond.

He apparently survived the merger of Metro into Clear Channel’s Total Traffic…but Groden has moved on.

OMW hears that he’s filled the big shoes of the late Bruce Ryan as the new education director at the Ohio Center for Broadcasting.

Our best wishes to Terry…

THE TWITTER RECAP

Most of the following has been already shared in brief on our social media presence on Twitter and Facebook. And we’re sure we’ll miss something. But here’s what we’ve noted…with some new information…

CC CUTS: We briefly noted the usual Clear Channel seasonal job cuts, but here is some interesting detail we haven’t shared yet with you.

We told you that we hear a total of 8 employees at Clear Channel’s Oak Tree facility in Cleveland were involuntarily separated from their jobs (now, that’s a way to put it).

On air talent no longer toiling at Oak Tree include long-time WTAM Saturday morning host Bob Becker and classic hits WMJI/105.7-country WGAR/99.5 air personality Jim Hart.

Also out the Oak Tree door: WGAR morning producer Sean Lowery, 40-year veteran administrative assistant Kathy Seman, marketing/promo director Jen Black, and two associated with sports coverage at Oak Tree: Indians radio network senior producer Stephanie Hagele and WTAM “Bob Frantz Show” producer/Browns producer Brian Motsay.

Both Hagele and Motsay got on air references after their dismissals…with Indians Radio play-by-play voice Tom Hamilton giving Hagele a strong on-air job reference in the middle of the Tribe’s opening regular season contest.

Frantz, from what we heard, wasn’t as specific about losing Motsay, but he sounded rather ticked in veiled references to Motsay’s exit in a segment we heard shortly after the job cuts.

And now, the untold story.

Among his duties during WTAM’s evening shift, Motsay ran the local control board for WTAM’s broadcasts of Indians baseball, since Frantz’s show is not on the air during that time. (Hagele, of course, was at the network level.)

OMW hears from a very reliable source that when it came time to relieve Motsay of his duties at WTAM, he was shown the door IN THE MIDDLE OF A WTAM INDIANS BROADCAST.

Now, we realize that he’s just “the local board op” in the case of WTAM, flagship of the network, but a station which gets the network feed (being produced in another studio) like all other affiliates do.

But…couldn’t they wait until the game was over? For continuity’s sake, if nothing else? The concept of sending the guy to the exits mid-game seems a bit odd to us.

Oddly enough, OMW hears that aboard behind the board for the Indians broadcasts this year is the man who once held the job Sean Lowery lost in the most recent Oak Tree budget cuts…former WGAR morning producer Tony McGinty, who lost that job when WGAR didn’t renew the contract of host Jim Mantel (still in North Carolina, we trust). He’s returned to Cleveland after a stint at a station in Maine.

But Tony had nothing to do with any of the activity above – and may be learning of some of it by reading this item. He’s a good guy, and we’re very much glad to see him back in Cleveland…

BROWNS PRE-SEASON GAME ON WOIO: Disgusted with how Raycom Media CBS affiliate WOIO/19′s “19 Action News” aired 911 tapes of a family tragedy back in 2006, Cleveland Browns owner Randy Lerner moved with swift speed to end the station’s contract as the Browns’ local over-air partner…a deal which included broadcasting the Browns pre-season games on “Cleveland’s CBS 19″.

Shortly after coming to a settlement with WOIO, the games landed on Gannett NBC affiliate WKYC/3, which has been the Browns pre-season partner ever since.

So, why is the team’s August 10th pre-season game slated to air on “CBS 19″?

Blame London…the London 2012 Olympics, that is. The games will take over the airwaves of NBC from July 27th through August 12th, and that includes the airwaves of WKYC.

Good Karma sports WKNR/850 “ESPN Cleveland”‘s newest addition, now-former Cleveland Plain Dealer sportswriter Tony Grossi, explains:

The home team controls the date and time of preseason games, but the Lions were locked into Aug. 11 because of their own logistical issues and declined to move the start time to the afternoon to accommodate WKYC.

The Browns declined to have the game aired on a delayed basis. WKYC, which is contractually obligated to produce the broadcast, had to offer the game to a competing station. It worked out an agreement to air it on WOIO Channel 19.

Note the date: it had originally been thought that the Browns/Lions pre-season tilt would be on August 11, but the final NFL pre-season schedule puts it on the 10th. That doesn’t do away with the Olympic conflict, of course, so we’ll assume WOIO will still air the game and the Lions are still unwilling to move the time.

“CBS 19″, of course, still airs nearly all of the Browns’ regular season games due to its CBS affiliation.

But if the team visiting Cleveland Browns Stadium on Any Given Sunday is in the NFC (the Browns and most of their opponents are in the AFC), the game will be seen on Fox – locally, Local TV LLC Fox affilate WJW/8.

That applies this year to the opening game against the Philadelphia Eagles, and the December 16th contest with the Washington Redskins, if it’s not “flexed” into Sunday Night Football on NBC. (Stop, we can hear you laughing from here!)

The other non-standard game is the Thursday Night Football game on September 27th, when the Browns play at Baltimore on NFL Network. All of the cable/satellite games are sold to local affiliates in the two teams’ market, and we don’t know who will buy the rights to that game yet…

TONY: And yes, after being kicked off the Plain Dealer’s Browns beat due to a controversial tweet about Browns owner Lerner, veteran sportswriter Tony Grossi moved over to become a columnist for ESPNCleveland.com, the website of Good Karma sports WKNR/850-WWGK/1540.

Grossi does not have a show of his own on WKNR, but spent a lot of time on the station as a guest in the run-up to the recent NFL Draft…

SPEAKING OF GROSSI’S LONG-TIME HOME: The Plain Dealer and its Cleveland.com have entered a “partnership” with WKNR’s new competitor, CBS Radio sports WKRK/92.3 “The Fan”.

We can’t find any online references to the deal from either organization’s website…we found out about it because midday co-host Andy Baskin (“Cleveland’s Baskin and Talking Phelps Heads” or whatever they call the show now) mention it briefly.

At very least, it appears to involve regular appearances by Plain Dealer/Cleveland.com sports staffers on the 92.3 airwaves…

SPEAKING OF 92.3: New voices on “92.3 The Fan”‘s weekend schedule include Baskin’s co-worker in Scripps ABC affiliate WEWS/5′s sports department, Mike Cairns.

“19 Action News” sports anchor/reporter and former WTAM/1100 sports staffer Mark Schwab has been heard on the “Fan” weekend schedule often as well.

And WKRK has lured a name from…Erie PA.

Mike “Chico” Bormann was most recently heard on now-Cumulus sports WRIE/1260 “The Score” in that Northwest Pennsylvania market…and signed up for what appears to be a weekend-only gig at “92.3 The Fan”.

Though “Chico” has 10-plus years in the Erie market, he’s a native Clevelander, so it’s a homecoming for him.

And we’re wondering, based on past experience in other markets, if when Cumulus took over the Erie cluster from former owner Citadel, they kindly offered Bormann an opportunity to keep his afternoon drive gig…at minimum wage.

It’s just a guess on our part…we don’t know if that actually happened in Erie. But it did happen at Cumulus Toledo, where such an offer was made to former WTOD/1560 morning host Tom Watkins…

ANOTHER QUICK 92.3 ITEM: The CBS FM sports talker has returned to a popular smartphone app.

TuneIn, which has versions for all the major mobile platforms, used to carry CBS Radio stations as a part of its aggregation directory – which also appears at TuneIn.com.

CBS recently asked TuneIn to remove its stations, but the two sides apparently didn’t stop talking… CBS and TuneIn recently came to a deal adding all the company’s spoken word stations (news/talk/sports) to the TuneIn directory.

That brought “92.3 The Fan” back to TuneIn within hours of the announcement.

But those looking to listen to WKRK’s sister stations (WDOK/102.1, WQAL/104.1 and WNCX/98.5) on a smart phone still need to turn to CBS’ Radio.com app (iOS and Android) or the CBS Cleveland app (ditto).

We are a big fan of TuneIn on the official OMW Smartphone, an Android device. Not only can you pick up just about all the non-Clear Channel stations (they’re on iHeartRadio), and record those stations on the Pro version of TuneIn…you can also change the kind of stream, picking whatever the station offers.

We often switch to the AAC feed, which is brighter and more “open” to our ears than MP3 streaming…

THIS IS NOT THIS: An apparent contract end bumped the MGM-owned movie digital subchannel This TV off of WUAB/43.2, a subchannel of Raycom Media’s MyNetwork TV affiliate WUAB/43 “My 43 The Block”.

The network made a quick landing on WBNX/55.3, a subchannel of Winston Broadcasting’s CW affiliate WBNX/55.

But don’t expect it to return to Time Warner Cable anytime soon. A TWC spokesman says there are “no plans” to bring This TV back to TWC. We’re guessing because subchannel carriage is tied to the host channel, since WUAB quickly got “Bounce TV” (43.2 now) added to cable carriage…

Y-TOWN FLIPS: There are some recent format changes we haven’t tracked in the Youngstown radio market.

Whiplash talk WYCL/1540 Niles moved back to a full simulcast of sister standards WHTX/1570 Warren “Fabulous 1570″. But in the process, WYCL midday talker Louie b. Free’s show survived (his checks, after all, do clear), and is now heard 10 AM-2 PM on the newly combined “Fabulous 1570/1540″.

Jim Davison and Laurel Taylor, under the JL Communications banner, are still LMAing both stations from Whiplash owner Chris Lash. (And all are OMW readers, well, at least Jim and Chris are.)

Bernard Radio talk WGFT/1330 Campbell quit yakking at some point. It’s now “Oldies 1330″…

AND SINCE WE PROMISED: The latest voiceover clients for long-time OMW reader Chuck Matthews:

Alaska Integrated Media sports KUDO-AM/1080 The Ticket Anchorage/AK

Appaloosa Broadcasting sports (ESPN) KRKI-FM/Rapid City SD

Cookeville Communications sports (FSN) WPTN-FM/The Eagle Cookeville TN

Great Plains Media sports (FSN) WZIM-FM/The Ticket Bloomington/Normal IL

El Dorado Broadcasters’ rocker KXFM/San Luis Obispo

Chuck says he’s doing VO work for all the stations, and producing his work for KXFM. “Radio imaging available on retainer or barter via Benztown Branding/Cumulus Media Networks,” Chuck tells us…

6 Responses to We’re Back

  1. joey harper says:

    FYI: 91.3 The Summit, WAPS has an app for IPhones, now. Apps for Droids available by June

    • Thanks, Joey, and it’s always nice to have a former cast member of “GameRadio” here at OMW. :)

      We listen to “The Summit” via TuneIn…we still download the individual station apps, but prefer TuneIn overall. It also carries all the WAPS HD sidechannels…

  2. yekimi says:

    At last! Fresh meat [well, some of it's old but that's ok] to satisfy my radio geekness.

  3. Ann V. says:

    We missed you!

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