What's It Going To Take...?

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Re: What's It Going To Take...?

Postby Buckley » Thu Sep 02, 2010 10:56 pm

pave wrote:(As an aside: Blow that all-request thingy out the back door. It's patronizing to the greatest number of audience at any given time. And if someone flips out over hearing their favourite played on the Radio, should we also trust them with car keys?)


I can tell you as the PD for an all-request music service for entertainment centers, that people DO in fact "flip out" over hearing their favourite song played on the "radio", as well as over hearing their name or voice (remember, the public still actually believes, to a point, that radio people are kind of famous, just a more approchable type of famous than an actual celebrity).

That said, it's certainly not going to save terrestrial radio. Letting the public program a radio station is dangerous, because people don't know what they want, and no one wants the same thing. One person would love to hear 3 ACDC songs back to back. Another will turn the station if they hear the intro to "Back in Black". In fact, I don't think music is the answer in general. Look at the highest rated shows in the US. Do you think any station that's playing a few top 40 songs is hitting 10 - 15 million listeners? No, because who cares? You can download songs, listen to them on an iPod, use Pandora or YouTube to select songs to listen to... music is not nearly as engaging as talk, but it's going to have to be either interesting or controversial like the top rated American personalities are. And it can't be something like Alan Cross, I don't know too many people that religiously tune into Alan Cross on the radio, they just download all his stuff on demand. That does NOTHING for the stations. Exclusive content to the radio station that's engaging, that would be a start. Why do I care if a radio station is playing the new Katy Perry song? I can listen to it any time of day the way the internet is, no chance I'm going to wait around to listen to it on the radio (no chance I was going to go out of my way to hear a Katy Perry song at any time but it's just an example). Others have mentioned talent is the answer, they're right. If not pure "talk", then just announcers that are more engaging than what's out there right now, really putting on a "show".
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Re: What's It Going To Take...?

Postby Jack Bennest » Fri Sep 03, 2010 5:24 am

Buckley wrote:Letting the public program a radio station is dangerous, because people don't know what they want, and no one wants the same thing



I can agree with the above quoted statement but would say that a dj at a local dance knows his audience, listens to his audience and programmes for his audience.

Most radio today is programmed by people who don't know the available audience. The programme is designed to get a number for ratings to ensure profit.

Few stations seem interested in the potential audience - now 50% in the plus 40 crowd.

No matter what some people say on these boards about old, tired, bitter ex broadcasters - more articles are appearing in broadcasting mags (written by insiders and experts) saying that radio is missing the point and will continue to die on the short term unless "personality" is brought back to the airwaves.
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Re: What's It Going To Take...?

Postby pave » Fri Sep 03, 2010 5:59 am

Jack points out:
but would say that a dj at a local dance knows his audience, listens to his audience and programmes for his audience.


Quite so, and a lot easier when a couple hundred people are standing right there... ready to go one-to-one with MC Shwantz-Luger. Still. someone's going to start a fight because he plays a CCR-cut. Further, a "Live" event includes a captive audience. Would that it twould that it twer that we could get ourselves one o' them. :sad1:

Meanwhile, whenever I get deeply into this discussion with my peers, one of the first series of points I bring to the chat has to do with the audience. The following are offered as functional, general presuppositions:
1.) We don't know them - individually or as a group.
2.) We do not know what they are experiencing in the moment - individually or as a group.
3.) We do not know what they are thinking or feeling at any given time - ever.
4.) We do not know their desires - at the time or any time. At least, not enough to make a programming decision at the risk of blowing out the others.
5.) We have no authority over them.
6.) They are complex human beings... at some levels. Many of them do not use coat hangers for paddles.

Our responsibilities include: bringing them to our station and having them stick around for awhile and, as absolutely important, generating influential commercial content for the benefit of our hallowed, esteemed, treasured and necessary advertisers.

This would be in order to continue having fun and... continue getting paid.
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Re: What's It Going To Take...?

Postby pave » Sat Sep 04, 2010 3:55 am

The reason I offer the (above) points, by the way, is in order to also point out how, no matter what station is being monitored nor from what source the communication is originating (live, v/t or commercial), the exact opposite presuppositions are in play.

If not quickly, then certainly over time, this completely unconsidered strategy has being having a grave affect on our impact, our credibility and our fortunes.

The disturbing irony is in that this affect continues even though Talent has been thoroughly shut down or moved out.

The best has not been kept.

The worst has been kept and continues to be paraded under an assumption they are presenting a worthy, important and useful, stand-alone element.
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Re: What's It Going To Take...?

Postby pave » Tue Sep 07, 2010 9:22 pm

As I listen - thanks to the web - to any number of stations across the country, I am struck by the same on-air, presentation similarities.

The bulk of the material I am hearing being continuously spewed on the airwaves sounds like it is coming from people who haven't read a book that didn't have, as part of it's title: "....for Dummies".

Now, I do appreciate that the Talent may often be comprised of intelligent, fully-developed human beings, but I rarely get to hear much evidence of that.

Plus, and this is the key of my premise about broadcast communications: Based on what I am hearing, no one that I can identify has put any time or effort into considering the manner in which they are communicating.

There is content... and there is process.

Who among us, I wonder, has actually considered the following process elements of any vocal, on-air communication:
* Mono/stereo. That is: location in space. Is this an important distinction?
* Qualities: Volume, pitch, tempo, rhythm, pace, duration, intensity.
* Variations: looping, fading in and out, moving location, direction
* Other background sounds?

Then, there is a whole other and more important set of process-distinctions. Those being: the actual construction of any given communication.

With these comments as a teaser, I submit we will be obliged to consider these matters - sooner would be better.

The alternative is to continue re-varnishing and relocating deck chairs.... just before determining that throwing them overboard is still a viable option.

My dad used to say: "You can only buff a turd to so high a gloss."

I argue that we may have the shiniest pieces of crap in the communications field.

Unfortunately, the exercise does nothing for the odour.... or peoples' responses.
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Re: What's It Going To Take...?

Postby Howaboutthat » Tue Sep 07, 2010 10:02 pm

Oh good... the pave show is back.
Houston, We're dealing with morons!.
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Re: What's It Going To Take...?

Postby mightymouth » Tue Sep 07, 2010 11:14 pm

Howaboutthat wrote:Oh good... the pave show is back.

Um, Um, Um....
Last edited by mightymouth on Tue Sep 07, 2010 11:21 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: What's It Going To Take...?

Postby mightymouth » Tue Sep 07, 2010 11:15 pm

mightymouth wrote:
Howaboutthat wrote:Oh good... the pave show is back.


Loquacious
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Re: What's It Going To Take...?

Postby pave » Fri Sep 10, 2010 9:31 am

As Howaboutthat and I have settled our (only perceived) differences, we can carry on.

My position is quite radical (relatively) and it pains me to imagine the work it will take to be innovative enough to turn this turkey (Radio) around.

I am satisfied that no less than a complete re-training in the arts of communication will be required for Radio to move into an otherwise doomed future.

The only element from history which I support is that of Personality Radio. And even that, to my mind, has some serious provisions.

A rational manager would appreciate how opening up the airwaves to creative, but still questionable Talent would be a recipe for disaster.

However, a well-trained Communicator could do Magic. A less creative but still well-trained communicator would still be a tremendous asset to a station - far greater than the controlled, contrived and constantly innocuous drivel that Talent is forced to deliver in contemporary Music Radio.

This is no easy task. It does take knowledge and practice to become a superior communicator.

More importantly and before any of this can be undertaken, management will have to consider and begin accepting the idea that Radio Communications is not a dead, carved-in-stone concept.

There would be expenses. But the returns......
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Re: What's It Going To Take...?

Postby Jack Bennest » Fri Sep 10, 2010 11:43 am

pave wrote: a complete re-training in the arts of communication will be required for Radio to move into an otherwise doomed future.


Couldn't disagree more!

Needed is regulation that promotes ownership of a non corporate nature.
What is needed is leadership at the top in understanding the medium as an entertainment form rather than a bottom line business model (cut and slash)
What is needed is people who understand leadership, talent, personality and the theatre of the mind.

To me this scientific analysis is hocus pocus
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Re: What's It Going To Take...?

Postby Howaboutthat » Fri Sep 10, 2010 12:02 pm

Jack Bennest wrote:Needed is regulation that promotes ownership of a non corporate nature.



While you're at it, why not wish for candy floss that doesn't rot your teeth!

I think we can all agree that regulation in Canada is a joke. Quite frankly I can't see that changing, at least in my remaining lifetime. In fact, I expect it will deteriorate to the point where there are 3 big broadcast owners, which evetually will lead to them breaking up and starting over, much like the phone mergers in the States.
When THAT happens, there will again be competition and room for experienced broadcasters. The problem is that the experienced broadcasters of that time, will be the ones just getting into the biz today.
Houston, We're dealing with morons!.
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Re: What's It Going To Take...?

Postby pave » Fri Sep 10, 2010 12:22 pm

Jack opines:
What is needed is people who understand leadership, talent, personality and the theatre of the mind.


Yes, Jack --- that, too.

But all that would do is take us back to those less-competitive, halcyon days of yore when the alternate media was uninvented and staff-expenses were choking horses.

As to Theatre of the Mind: There wasn't really a whole wack-load of that even then. Not in the on-air, Jock presentation and not out of the Creative Department. Some, to be sure, but not enough to establish a benchmark. More in one day then than can be heard in a week now, I would agree.

Nevertheless, besides all the worthwhile goodies you mention, a modern Radio station will have to be comprised of better-educated communicators. Creativity and style would also be appreciated by an audience and valued by an ownership. But, not until after the numbers and revenues head Way Up North.

Plus, I offer the reminder: Anything can be "hocus-pocus"... until it's understood. Then it becomes pertinent and useful information.

Further, the fields of psycholinguistics, transformational grammar, the distinctions of surface and deep language structures and the patterns of language used in clinical hypnosis all have had applications for decades.

But, for the vast majority of us in Radio, this may be... All News - Right Now.
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Re: What's It Going To Take...?

Postby pave » Tue Sep 14, 2010 8:13 am

As this thread is mostly about me diggin' me, I will continue by offering an example of an absolutely common yet gross travesty in our (Radio's) standard communication model.

First, it is agreed that - as the speaker/communicator - we have absolutely no authority over any listener. At no time. Not ever. Never. We are not cops or their parents or their bosses. We are not from the gummint and we're not there to tell them what to do. No. We're not.

BUT... WE DO! And we do it almost all the time - almost every break and in almost every commercial. We tell them what to do! Outright!

I will pause while ardent, interested readers rush to their radios or click to confirm the assertion.
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Re: What's It Going To Take...?

Postby Jack Bennest » Tue Sep 14, 2010 6:49 pm

pave wrote:As this thread is mostly about me diggin' me.


Without knowing you well Pave - sometimes I am not sure whether you are having fun with us, fun with yourself or we are just the balloons you toss around your bedroom before popping them with a sharp needle.

I believe if we are or try to be too intelligent - you suffer the fate of spending a lot of time in the corner talking to yourself. :bootyshake:
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Re: What's It Going To Take...?

Postby pave » Tue Sep 14, 2010 7:09 pm

Steady on there, Jack. Whether I'm a smart guy or just pretending to be one, I'd appreciate trying to stay focused on the (above) assertion.

Do we or do we not go out of our way - mostly as a broadcaster's habit - to make demands of our audience for behaviours?

The next challenge would be - although somewhat as a rhetorical question: What might be the cumulative affect of that strategy?
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