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July 28, 2005

Air America falls off charts in Philly

The Philadelphia Inquirer explains:
Here, it doesn't even register a pulse. The flagship show, hosted by author and former Saturday Night Live comic Al Franken, airs from noon to 3 p.m. weekdays on WHAT (1340 AM).

Both WHAT and the show have fallen off the charts, according to radio-rating service Arbitron, meaning there were too few listeners to measure during the second quarter of this year - the so-called spring book. Franken's show didn't start on the station until Aug. 30.

...Measured season-to-season - the most accurate way to assess audience preferences, because listening patterns vary throughout the year - Air America has lost audience in major markets, including New York and Boston, since April, May and June of 2004.

Franken, best-selling author of such anti-conservative tomes as Lies and the Lying Liars Who Tell Them and Rush Limbaugh Is a Big Fat Idiot, chose to go head-to-head with gabber Limbaugh in many markets. This, it turns out, was not such a good idea.

Limbaugh, still the giant among talkers, with 14.75 million listeners on 600 stations, has squashed Franken like a bug.

Franken's ratings have dropped 50 percent in Boston since spring 2004, and he is down 14 percent in New York, where his listeners now number fewer than 188,000.

...In contrast to Limbaugh, who mocks his own pomposity, Franken comes across to critics as angry and not funny.

"Is Al Franken going to be the hottest thing in radio? I don't think so," [Michael Harrison, editor and publisher of the trade publication Talkers magazine] said. "But it's too soon to say he's finished. A lot depends on how dedicated he is to the show.

"And I get the feeling he's not dedicated to radio broadcasting. He's dedicated to politics and his own celebrity. I think he'll drop out to run for office."

Posted in at July 28, 2005 01:36 PM


At least al is not a four time marrage looser hooked on dope.
Air America seems to be doing fine out here in
republican peckerwood land (Phoenix AZ)
Air America does not have to do well in a Liberal city like Boston. I think it is great that it does well in Phoenix.

Posted by: jb at July 29, 2005 09:46 PM

Well, JB...that depends on what you consider 'doing fine'. AAR is heard on KXXT in Phoenix, who finished #4 out of 5 'News/Talk' stations in the latest ratings book and #20 out of the 30 or so stations in the Phoenix market. See for yrself at radioandrecordsdotcom...

Posted by: dl at August 4, 2005 07:55 AM

Monitoring Air America Radio [TM] so you don't have to.


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