Thursday, September 29, 2016

Sumner Redstone Urges Viacom, CBS Boards To Explore Merger

Sumner Redstone
As anticipated Wednesday, Sumner Redstone's National Amusements Inc on Thursday urged the boards of Viacom Inc and CBS Corp to explore a combination.

National Amusements owns 80 percent of the voting shares of both media companies, which separated from each other 10 years ago.

The optimal deal structure would be an all-stock transaction in which the stockholders of each company would receive shares in the combined company of the same class as they currently hold, National Amusements said in a letter to the companies' boards.

Reuters reported on Wednesday that National Amusements, owned by media baron Redstone and his daughter Shari Redstone, could contact CBS and Viacom as soon as this week to ask them to form independent board committees to discuss a potential merger.

Here is the complete letter from Sumner Redstone:
Members of the Boards: 
We believe that a combination of CBS and Viacom might offer substantial synergies that would allow the combined company to respond even more aggressively and effectively to the challenges of the changing entertainment and media landscape. 
As a result, we would like both companies’ boards to consider a potential combination of the companies. Our tentative view is that the optimal structure would be an all-stock transaction in which the stockholders of each company would receive shares in the combined company of the same class as they currently hold. 
We therefore request the board of each company take the appropriate steps to consider the proposed transaction. We believe that any transaction should be the result of full and fair deliberation and negotiation, and that any transaction would proceed only if it is approved by each board. None of Sumner M. Redstone, Shari E. Redstone or David R. Andelman will vote as directors on the consideration of this matter by either company’s board, and none will participate in any of the related deliberations. 
To avoid any doubt, National Amusements is not willing to accept or support (i) any acquisition by a third party of either company or (ii) any transaction that would result in National Amusements surrendering its controlling position in either company or not controlling the combined company. We believe moving forward expeditiously, but with due care, is important and we are prepared to be of assistance to the two companies as they explore this possibility. 
Thank you. 
By: /s/ Sumner M. Redstone
Chief executive officer

Report: Les Moonves 'Skeptical' Of Viacom, CBS Corp. Merger

Coming a decade after Sumner Redstone split the two companies from each other, the proposed reunion  of Viacom and CBS Corporation would be effectively an admission that the 10-year-old divorce, which was originally intended to free Viacom’s then fast-growing cable channels from the drag of CBS’s old-school broadcast assets, didn’t pan out as intended.

Shari Redstone
The Wall Street Jounral reportsViacom’s 26 U.S. cable networks—many of which are small or have had significant viewership declines—now look vulnerable in an era when consumers are cutting the pay-TV cord and signing up for slimmed-down bundles of cable channels. CBS, meanwhile, has been a prime-time ratings juggernaut and has boosted its position in the market by carrying big sports events like professional football and college basketball.

Viacom has been struggling with underperforming assets like its Paramount Pictures studio and cable channels MTV and Comedy Central, which has led to a slide in its stock price. The company has $12 billion in debt and has been under pressure to improve its operating performance. Moody’s Investors Service recently downgraded its credit rating to the lowest level of investment grade.

A merger could provide a strong leader for Viacom in the form of CBS CEO Leslie Moonves, a favorite of media investors.

Les Moonves
Ms. Redstone broached the topic of a Viacom-CBS merger with Mr. Moonves several months ago, a person familiar with the matter said. However, there have been no serious talks since then or since Mr. Dauman agreed in August to step down as Viacom’s chairman and CEO.

CBS said Wednesday that, “As we’ve said before, the CBS Corp. will always act in the best interest of all of its shareholders.”

Mr. Moonves has previously expressed skepticism about a merger of the companies, and he said at a recent investor conference that there were no active talks between CBS and Viacom.

People close to Viacom and CBS think Mr. Moonves won’t be sold on a deal unless CBS is valued at a premium to Viacom and he has the same level of autonomy he currently enjoys at CBS. His contract allows him to leave if the composition of the board changes.

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Nielsen Releases PPMs For Portland, Vegas, Orlando, 9 Other Markets

Nielsen on Wednesday 09/28/16 Released the third batch of September 2016 PPM Data for the following markets:

    23  Portland Or

    24  Charlotte-Gastonia-Rock Hill NC

    26  Pittsburgh

    27  San Antonio

    28  Sacramento

    29  Salt Lake City-Ogden-Provo UT

    30  Cincinnati

    31  Las Vegas

    32  Cleveland

    33  Orlando

    34  Kansas City

    37  Columbus OH

Click Here to view Topline Numbers for subscribing Nielsen stations.

Fewer Problems Reported During National EAS Test

There’s been no official word yet from the Federal Emergency Management Agency or the Federal Communications Commission about how successful Wednesday’s national Emergency Alert System test was. But, according to InsideRadio, early indications are there were fewer problems than five years ago when the last national EAS test was held. That’s not to say there weren’t a few glitches.

For nearly all of the stations that RadioWorld reached out to, engineers described the audio as “excellent” and “fantastic,” with others describing the video crawl as “clear.”

In Philadelphia several stations had no problem getting the alert tones on the air but rather than air the “this is a test” message, the stations instead relayed an interview about a Sioux City, IA radio station that opted to go all-‘80s music—including a clip of A-ha’s hit “Take On Me”—that was airing on Philly’s “Local Primary” or LP-1 alert station WHYY (90.9). One of the several that aired it was AC “101.1 More FM” WBEB, where program director Chuck Knight says it lasted about a minute until his team hit the release button tones themselves.

What went wrong isn’t entirely clear—the problem may have been at WHYY or further upstream. WHYY didn’t respond to an email seeking comment.  Stations that aired the alert correctly could have grabbed the alert from the LP-2 station—“Classic Rock 102.9” WMGK—or even the CAP server that relies on a web-based message distribution system. But stations also point out the Pennsylvania statewide distribution network appeared to have been slowed.

Meanwhile, posts on social media websites also hinted at some minor problems in a few markets including St. Louis and San Antonio. Figuring out what went wrong will be the job of FEMA and the FCC in the coming months.

FEMA officials said at last week’s Radio Show they expected 4%-5% of stations would run into problems during Wednesday’s national test. But rather than point fingers, officials said the goal was to see where the weak links in the EAS chain remain.

SiriusXM Launching Music Talk Radio Channel

SiriusXM announced today the launch of VOLUME, the first-ever 24/7 talk radio channel dedicated to music -- its latest news, raging controversies, and non-stop debates – as the focus of the conversation.

This new channel will cover all genres of popular music.  VOLUME will deliver a mixture of live daily shows, artist interviews, weekly specials, a music trivia game show, album reviews, and several in-depth docuseries hosted by the most respected, knowledgeable, and passionate people in music today – including artists themselves. VOLUME will debut live October 17 at 7 am.

VOLUME's live daily programs will include Feedback, a three-hour morning talk-show from 7-10 am ET/PT featuring the latest music news, celebrity guests and scoop on trending topics. Lady Gaga will be a featured guest on Feedback's debut program. Legendary DJ Eddie Trunk will host mid-days from 2 pm to 4 pm ET, and Debatable, hosted by MTV VJ Mark Goodman and author Alan Light, will air each weekday from 4 pm to 7 pm ET, and focus on the great debates fans often have about music.

Other featured shows upon launch include Rolling Stone Music Now, the popular weekly podcast from the editors at Rolling Stone that will now also appear on VOLUME.  Author, TV producer and commentator Bill Flanagan will host Written in My Soul, a new series of interviews with legendary musicians including Robert Plant, who will be a guest during the show's premiere. In addition, Melissa's Basement  hosted by Melissa Etheridge where she gathers her favorite singer-songwriters to share their stories and get together at her Los Angeles-area home for musical collaborations. David Crosby will appear on Melissa's debut show on October 18. And journalist and TV producer Elliott Wilson will host Rap Radar Report, bringing some of the biggest names in hip hop together for discussions about the musical genre.

"Sirius XM has millions of loyal music fans nationwide, and now we are giving those fans a place where they can talk about the music they love," said Scott Greenstein, SiriusXM's President and Chief Content Officer.  "VOLUME will have a deep all-star roster of talent bringing that conversation only to SiriusXM.  It's yet another example of SiriusXM delivering unique and exciting content to our subscribers.  Roger Coletti is the Executive Producer of this channel and  his extensive music expertise makes him the ideal person for this ground-breaking channel."

"VOLUME is sports radio for music fans.  It will be a must-listen for fans to stay connected to the music they love," said Coletti, VOLUME's executive producer, and former radio programming veteran at MTV, VH1, and CMT. "It will be the ultimate place for fans to hear stories, share memories, discover new artists, and uncover the truth about their favorite artists, songs, albums and more. The channel is full of passionate, respected, and entertaining personalities that the audience will love, respect, and trust."

VOLUME will be on SiriusXM channel 106 and available through the SiriusXM app as well as online at  Music fans will be able to join the discussion on social media via Twitter @SiriusXMVolume on Facebook at SiriusXM Volume.

VOLUME's programming line-up will include:

SiriusXM Promoting $5 Monthly Streaming-Only Subscriptions

SiriusXM is now marketing a new six-month streaming-only subscription in the hopes of competing with streamers like Spotify, Apple Music and Pandora.

SiriusXM satellite radio recently announced that it has hit a milestone of having 30 million paid subscribers, but, asccording to Tech Times,  the company isn't resting on its laurels.

SiriusXM has not necessarily been seen as a direct competitor to streaming services like Pandora and Spotify because the majority of its users listen via satellite receivers installed in their cars and homes.

While separate streaming subscriptions have been made available and all radio-owning subscribers to SiriusXM's most expensive "All Access" package have streaming rights, the company has not been actively marketing itself as a stand-alone streaming service that can be used without ever purchasing a separate receiver.

Recently, however, the company has begun marketing a promotion via email to potential subscribers without the mention of purchasing any special radio equipment. SiriusXM is offering new customers a special $30 six-month streaming-only package that will allow them access to all of the company's content via online access and through the company's Android and iOS apps.

SiriusXM offers more than 175 separate channels of programming, including 72 commercial-free music channels in various genres, 15 news channels, 22 talk and entertainment channels and nine comedy channels, as well as local traffic and weather channels.

After the initial six-month offer, subscriptions will renew at SiriusXM's regular streaming rate of $15.99 per month. That's considerably more than the $9.99 price per month charged by Apple Music and Spotify on their paid tiers. Some SiriusXM subscribers, however, have been able to extend their promotional deals with the company upon expiration by calling the company directly and speaking to a customer service representative. In any case, everyone can get the service right now for six full months at the $30 promotional rate, which works out to a bargain $5 per month.

iHeartRadio Announces Return of Jingle Ball Tour

 iHeartMedia will once again celebrate the holiday season across the nation with its annual "iHeartRadio Jingle Ball 2016 Tour Presented by Capital One."

The full artist line-up will be available October 11.

In advance, iHeartMedia and Capital One are excited to announce that Charlie Puth, Daya, Fifth Harmony and Diplo will be performing at select stops throughout the tour.

For the second straight year, Capital One will be the national title sponsor for the iHeartRadio Jingle Ball Tour. As part of this sponsorship, Capital One cardholders will be the first to get exclusive access to high demand tickets through a special iHeartRadio Jingle Ball Capital One Cardholder Pre-Sale in each city.

The iHeartRadio Jingle Ball Capital One Cardholder Pre-Sale begins October 13 at 10 a.m. local market time and runs through October 16 at 10 a.m. local market time or while supplies last.  Tickets will be available at

All other tickets go on sale to the general public on October 17 at 12 p.m. local market time, and will be available at

“After a remarkable first year as the national sponsor of the iHeartRadio Jingle Ball, we are proud to offer our cardholders the exclusive opportunity to once again have early access to pre-sale tickets to the holiday season’s most anticipated concert series,” said Marc Mentry, Chief Brand Officer, Capital One. “We know how much our customers look forward to attending concerts like this, and we are happy to be able to continue to provide unique access to events that customers are passionate about.”

The iHeartRadio Jingle Ball 2016 Tour Presented by Capital One will stop in Dallas; San
Francisco/San Jose; Los Angeles; Minneapolis; Philadelphia; New York; Boston; Washington, D.C.; Chicago; Atlanta; Tampa and Miami/Ft. Lauderdale.

L-A Radio: KSWD Slots Cynthia Fox In PM Drive

Cynthia Fox
Entercom Los Angeles’ Classic Rock KSWD 100.3 FM The Sound has announced that legendary radio personality, Cynthia Fox, will be on air during the afternoon drive from 2 p.m. – 7 p.m. PT.

Fox joins Entercom under a multi-year agreement and will be on air among a powerful roster of iconic classic rock radio deejays including Uncle Joe Benson and Rita Wilde. Fox has a longstanding history in rock radio. The Los Angeles native began her career at the age of 18 at the iconic KMET-FM “The Mighty Met” in the 1970’s.

“Cynthia is a true icon of classic rock in the Los Angeles area, so she belongs on The Sound,” said David Beasing, Program Director, 100.3 The Sound.

“Having Cynthia join legendary DJs Uncle Joe Benson and Rita Wilde on The Sound is part of our long-term strategy to deliver the kind of exciting FM rock radio that listeners grew up with,” said Peter Burton, Vice President and General Manager, 100.3 The Sound.

“I am very grateful to be working at The Sound,” said Cynthia Fox. “This is a quality team of talented radio people and I am looking forwarding to sharing what I have learned through music and great teamwork with our listeners.”

KSWD 100.3 FM (5.4 Kw) Red=Local Coverage Area
In addition to KMET, Fox was an on-air personality at the former KLSX-FM and KLOS. During her career, she has interviewed dozens of international superstars including Sting, Brian May of Queen, the Doors, Rod Stewart, Def Leppard, and Nick Mason of Pink Floyd. Fox is a familiar face to viewers of public TV station KCET where she frequently conducts artist interviews and hosts pledge drives.

'Goodbye' To Opie And Jim Norton

This past weekend on Twitter, Gregg “Opie” Hughes, current host of Opie with Jim Norton and one half of former radio show The Opie and Anthony Show, sent out some cryptic tweets that seem to indicate that the show had broadcast its last episode without so much as a goodbye.

“Silly Matt, I don’t do that show anymore,” Opie tweeted in response to a fan, referring to the show he has hosted with Norton ever since Anthony Cumia was fired from SiriusXM in 2014.

According to, there has been rampant speculation for some time now that the show would end in October when its hosts contracts were up, and widespread rumors that Opie and co-host Jim Norton suffer from irreconcilable differences have only helped to fuel that fire. That the two don’t see eye to eye isn’t necessarily a sign that the show is doomed — Opie and Anthony managed to make their show work for years despite the fact that they didn’t get along — but it certainly doesn’t bode well for the show’s future. If the rumors are true, and Opie and Norton are parting ways so unceremoniously after 15 years on the radio together, then that’s a grim sign of just how bad things have gotten behind the scenes.

YouTube Hires Lyor Cohen As Music Head

(Reuters) -- YouTube, Google's video streaming service, has hired former Warner Music Group executive Lyor Cohen as its global head of music as it looks to strengthen its relationships with the music industry.

Lyor Cohen
Cohen, a veteran of the music industry, most recently served as the chief executive and co-founder of the 300 Entertainment record label, which currently includes prominent hip-hop artists such as Fetty Wap, Young Thug and Rich the Kid.

Cohen said in a letter to YouTube employees that he would look to help the music community "embrace the technological shifts we're seeing in music today so we can help take the confusion and distrust out of the equation".

YouTube has had a contentious relationship with the music industry which has often complained that streaming services do not pay artists enough for their music.

The European Commission is also looking at imposing an obligation on platforms hosting user-uploaded content — such as YouTube, Vimeo and DailyMotion — to seek agreements with rights holders "reflecting the economic value of the use made of the protected content".

Cohen will continue serving in his role at 300 Entertainment till Dec. 5, according to a YouTube spokesperson. Google, which has previously made an investment in Cohen's 300 Entertainment, will remain a stakeholder.

Forbes Pegs Trump's Wealth At $3.7B

(Reuters) -- Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump's estimated net worth is $3.7 billion, $800 million less than a year ago, Forbes magazine reported on Wednesday, attributing the loss largely to New York's softening real estate market.

The magazine probed 28 assets or asset classes owned by the New York businessman and found 18 had declined in value, including Trump Tower in Manhattan and his Mar-a-Lago club in Palm Beach, Florida.

The value of his 40 Wall Street property in downtown New York had also declined, according to Forbes, which said it has been tracking Trump's wealth for 34 years.

At the same time, one asset remained steady while seven others - including 555 California Street, the second tallest building in San Francisco - saw their value increase, it reported.

Representatives for the Trump campaign could not be immediately reached for comment.

The report comes as Trump, known as a reality television star as well as for his real estate business, heads into the final stretch of campaigning for the Nov. 8 election.

Trump, seeking elected office for the first time, has touted his business acumen in pressing for change in Washington. He has vowed to rip up trade deals, negotiate with allies to make them pay more for their U.S. defense protection, and have Mexico pay for a wall he has proposed along the southern U.S. border. If elected, he would be the first billionaire to serve as president, according to Forbes.

Details of Trump's wealth are not publicly known because, bucking a decades-old tradition of U.S. presidential candidates, he has refused to release his tax returns. His Democratic rival, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, earned $10.75 million in 2015 alongside her husband, former U.S. President Bill Clinton, their tax filing showed.

Clinton and others, including some prominent Republicans, have pressed Trump to release his returns. They have also raised questions about his net worth as well as his charitable contributions and business ties.

Forbes said its analysis did not place any value on Trump's brand. It also disputed Trump's assertion in Monday night's presidential debate that he reported $694 million in income from last year to the Federal Election Commission. Forbes said Trump mixed revenue and income in the document.
Trump has so far given $54 million to his presidential campaign. His campaign has also paid his companies for office space in Trump Tower and use of his private airline, among other expenses, federal election filings have shown. Politico reported separately on Wednesday that Trump is considering giving more money to his campaign to fund an advertising blitz, citing three sources close to him.

Amid the campaign, Trump made just one real estate deal in the past year: purchasing a Charleston, South Carolina, warehouse that was in foreclosure, Forbes said.

PayTV Providers Could Lose $1B From Cord Cutters

Pay-TV providers could lose nearly $1 billion in revenue as 800,000 customers cut the cord during the next 12 months, according to a new study from the firm cg42.

According to The Wall Street Journal, the results, which are based on an online survey of 1,119 U.S. customers, estimates that pay-TV providers could lose about $1,248 per cord-cutter annually. That’s because the average cord-cutter saves $104 a month—about 56% of their bill—from dropping cable TV.

Some analysts say that if consumers ditch cable TV they could wind up paying even more for the combination of stand-alone high-speed internet and streaming services. But the study found the opposite: that going without pay-TV service yields savings. That’s in part because people tend not to spend much more than $15 on streaming services even after cutting the cord.

A “cord-haver” spends about $187 a month on average before cutting the cord, including cable TV, phone, internet access and streaming services. Meanwhile, a typical “cord-never”—someone who never had a pay-TV connection—spends about $71 on streaming services and home internet combined. The average cord-cutter spends $83.

“The consumer is discovering they don’t need the mean, evil cable company to get the content that they want, and they can get it for a better deal,” said Steve Beck, managing partner at cg42.

A $1 billion loss of revenue is small for the entire pay-TV industry, but it is a warning sign.

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Ex-Fox Anchor's Doctor Backs Sexual Harassment Claims

Andrea Tantaros
(Reuters) -- An ex-Fox News anchor told her therapist that former network chairman Roger Ailes sexually harassed her, two years before she went public with the allegations that the company said she made up, a document filed in court on Wednesday said.

Lawyers for Andrea Tantaros filed a statement in New York state court in Manhattan from the therapist, who said Tantaros spoke to her about the harassment in 2014. Tantaros sued Ailes and Fox News, a unit of Twenty-First Century Fox Inc in August.

Ailes resigned in July after two decades with Fox News after another former anchor, Gretchen Carlson, sued him for sexual harassment. Fox News agreed to pay $20 million on Ailes' behalf to settle Carlson's case in early September.

Several other women have told news outlets including New York Magazine that Ailes sexually harassed them, but none have sued.

Tantaros sued Fox, Ailes and four other network executives, claiming she was taken off the air in April in retaliation for rebuffing Ailes' advances and complaining to top officials.

Wednesday's filing was in response to one by the company in August in which Fox News called Tantaros an "opportunist" and a "wannabe." It said Tantaros made up the claims in her lawsuit after the company took her off the air for writing a book without the company's permission.

"This blows Fox’s defense out of the water," Tantaros' lawyer, Judd Burstein, said in an interview on Wednesday.

The statement by the therapist, Dr. Michelle Berdy, said Tantaros was "shocked and devastated" when then-senior executive William Shine in 2014 shrugged off her complaints that Ailes had made a number of inappropriate remarks. Shine became co-president of Fox News when Ailes resigned.

"Andrea found Shine's warning 'not to fight this' as both very threatening and extremely disturbing," Berdy wrote.

Tantaros' lawyer on Wednesday also filed court documents asking a state judge to reject a bid by Fox and Ailes to send the lawsuit to arbitration. The judge is scheduled to hold a hearing in the case in October.

A representative for Fox said "we stand by our earlier motion to compel arbitration."

Lawyers for Ailes did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

The case is Tantaros v. Fox News Network LLC, New York State Supreme Court, New York County, No. 157054/2016.

Meanwhile, the attorney for Tantaros said Wednesday the host had turned down a settlement offer in the  “seven figures” and would continue to press her case alleging harassment by senior executives at the 21st Century Fox-owned cable-news outlet.

Yahoo Claim Hack Was State-Sponsored Challenged

(Reuters) -- A cyber security company on Wednesday asserted that the hack of 500 million account credentials from Yahoo was the work of an Eastern European criminal gang, adding another layer of intrigue to a murky investigation into the unprecedented data heist.

Arizona-based InfoArmor issued a report whose conclusion challenged Yahoo’s position that a nation-state actor orchestrated the heist, disclosed last week by the internet company. InfoArmor, which provides companies with protection against employee identify theft, said the hacked trove of user data was later sold to at least three clients, including one state-sponsored group.

Reuters was unable to verify the report's findings. Yahoo declined comment. The Federal Bureau of Investigation, which is investigating the hack, did not return a call seeking comment.

A U.S. government source familiar with the Yahoo investigation said there was no hard evidence yet on whether the hack was state-sponsored. Attribution for cyber attacks is widely considered difficult in both the intelligence and research communities.

The task is made especially challenging by the fact that criminal hackers sometimes provide information to government intelligence agencies or offer their services for hire, making it hard to know who the ultimate mastermind of a hack might be.

Yahoo said last week that it only recently discovered the intrusion, which it blamed on a state-sponsored actor without providing technical evidence. Nation-state hackers are widely viewed as possessing more advanced capabilities than criminal groups, a perception that could benefit Yahoo as it works to minimize fallout from the breach and complete its sale to Verizon Communications Inc.

InfoArmor concluded the Yahoo hackers were criminal after reviewing a small sample of compromised accounts, Andrew Komarov, the firm's chief intelligence officer, said in an interview.

The hackers, dubbed Group E, have a track record of selling stolen personal data on the dark web, and have been previously linked to breaches at LinkedIn, Tumblr and MySpace, Komarov said.

“They have never been hired by anyone to hack Yahoo," Komarov, who is from Russia, said. "They were simply looking for well known sites that had many users."

In an illustration of the confusion about who carried out the hack and why, an NBC News report Wednesday interpreted Komarov's findings as pointing to the Russian government as the ultimate perpetrator.

A Wall Street Journal report, which said that InfoArmor was able to crack encrypted passwords for some Yahoo accounts provided by the newspaper, came to the opposite conclusion.

September 29 Radio History

In 1907...Cowboy actor & singer Gene Autry was born in Tioga Texas.  As well as producing scores of movie oaters & several hit records, he had his own long-running programs on network radio & later TV, owned his own baseball team (California Angels) & Golden West Broadcasting (radio & TV stations.)  Autry is the only person to have 5 Hollywood Walk of Fame stars [film, radio, TV, stage, records];

He died Oct 2, 1998 at age 91.

In 1915...the first transcontinental radio-telephone message was sent.

In 1920...the Joseph Horne Company in Pittsburgh began selling radios for $10 apiece.

In 1926...NBC incorporated.

In 1923, the Radio Corporation of America (RCA) acquired control of WJZ in Newark, New Jersey, from Westinghouse, and moved the station to New York City. The same year, RCA obtained a license for station WRC in Washington, D.C., and attempted to transmit audio between WJZ and WRC via low-quality telegraph lines, in an attempt to make a network comparable to that operated by American Telephone & Telegraph.

AT&T had created its own network in 1922, with WEAF in New York serving the research and development function for Western Electric's research and development of radio transmitters and antennas, as well as AT&T's long-distance and local Bell technologies for transmitting voice- and music-grade audio over short and long distances, via both wireless and wired methods. WEAF's regular schedule of a variety of programs, and its selling of commercial sponsorships, had been a success, and what was known at first as "chain broadcasting" became a network that linked WJAR in Providence, Rhode Island and AT&T's WCAP in Washington.

Since AT&T refused access of its high-quality phone lines to competitors, RCA's New York-Washington operated with uninsulated telegraph lines which were incapable of good audio transmission quality and very susceptible to both atmospheric and man-made electrical interference. In 1926, however, the management of AT&T concluded that operating a radio network was incompatible with its operation of America's telephone and telegraph service, and sold WEAF and WCAP to RCA for approximately one million dollars. As part of the purchase, RCA also gained the rights to rent AT&T's phone lines for network transmission, and the technology for operating a quality radio network.

On September 13, 1926, RCA chairman of the board Owen D. Young and president James G. Harbord announced the formation of the National Broadcasting Company, Inc., to begin broadcasting upon RCA's acquisition of WEAF on November 15. "The purpose of the National Broadcasting Company will be to provide the best programs available for broadcasting in the United States. ... It is hoped that arrangements may be made so that every event of national importance may be broadcast widely throughout the United States," announced M.H. Aylesworth, the first president of NBC, in the press release.

In 1930...Lowell Thomas made his debut on the CBS Radio Network replacing Floyd Gibbons.

Lowell Thomas
In 1930, he became a broadcaster with the CBS Radio network, delivering a nightly news and commentary program. After two years, he switched to the NBC Radio network but returned to CBS in 1947. In contrast to today's practices, Thomas was not an employee of either NBC News or CBS News. Prior to 1947 he was employed by the broadcast's sponsor, Sunoco. When he returned to CBS to take advantage of lower capital-gains tax rates, he established an independent company to produce the broadcast which he sold to CBS.

He hosted the first-ever television-news broadcast in 1939 and the first regularly scheduled television news broadcast (even though it was just a simulcast of his radio broadcast), beginning on February 21, 1940, on NBC Television. While W2XBS New York carried every TV/radio simulcast, it is not known if the two other stations capable of being fed programs by W2XBS, W2XB Schenectady and/or W3XE Philadelphia carried all or some of the simulcasts

In 1930...New York City College offered its first course in radio advertising.

In 1940...the radio quiz show "Double or Nothing," was first heard on the Mutual Radio Network.

In 1946...The radio detective series "The Adventures of Sam Spade" starring Howard Duff, made its debut. The show ran for 13 episodes on ABC in 1946, for 157 episodes on CBS from 1946 to 1949, and finally for 51 episodes on NBC from 1949 to 1951. Steve Dunne took over the title role in 1950.

In 1953...comedian Danny Thomas, who many now remember as Marlo’s dad and Phil Donahue’s father-in-law, debuted in the family comedy Make Room for Daddy on ABC-TV. Danny had negotiated a deal that would allow him to retain an ownership interest in his programs, an arrangement so successful that it allowed him to give something back to the world, in the form of his philanthropic efforts to build St. Jude Children’s Hospital in Memphis. “All I prayed for was a break,” he once told an interviewer, “and I said I would do anything, anything, to pay back the prayer if it could be answered. All I needed was a sign of what to do and I would do it.”

In 1957...MLB Giants play last game in New York airing on WMCA 570 AM NYC

In 1961...Radio/TV Personality Bill Cullen does last show at WNBC 660 AM NYC

Bill Cullen 1954
Cullen's broadcasting career began in Pittsburgh at WWSW radio, where he worked as a disc jockey and play-by-play announcer or color commentator for Pittsburgh Steelers and Pittsburgh Hornets games. In 1943, Cullen left WWSW to briefly work at rival station KDKA before leaving Pittsburgh a year later to try his luck in New York. A week after arriving in New York he was hired as a staff announcer at CBS. To supplement his then-meager income, he became a freelance joke writer for some of the top radio stars of the day including Arthur Godfrey, Danny Kaye, and Jack Benny;  he also worked as a staff writer for the Easy Aces radio show.

His first venture into game shows was in 1945 when he was hired as announcer for a radio quiz called Give And Take. Between 1946 and 1953 he also worked as announcer for various other local and network shows, including the radio version of Mark Goodson and Bill Todman's first game show, Winner Take All, hosted by Ward Wilson; Cullen took over as host four months later when Wilson left.

After a brief stint at WNEW-AM in 1951 he later hosted a popular morning show at WRCA radio from 1955 to 1961. His last regular radio job was as one of the hosts of NBC Radio's Monitor from 1971 to 1973.

In 1970...character actor Edward Everett Horton died at age 84 due to cancer.  He had an active 50 year career from the silent era of movies to running roles in TV’s F Troop and Dennis the Menace series, as well as narrating The Bullwinkle Show.  He’d also hosted NBC Radio’s Kraft Music Hall in the mid 1940′s.

In 1973..Shooting at KGO San Francisco.

Jim Dunbar
A deranged young gunman fired three shots at Jim Dunbar's head while the talk show host was conducting a radio interview, shortly after 10 a.m., at KGO's studio at 277 Golden Gate avenue.
Although the gunman was just a few feet away when he fired, the bullets were deflected by a bulletproof glass window between the studio and the sidewalk outside.

Dunbar shouted to an aide to telephone police as the gunman ran inside the station's offices. "Hey, will you guys call the cops on that? . . ." his listeners heard Dunbar say. "Whew! I just had a man take a shot at me."

Once inside the station, the gunman shot Ben Munson, 47, an advertising account executive for KGO radio (He died from the wounds). Then, with several executives in pursuit, the youth passed Dunbar's view twice before heading for Hyde street.  The young man shot himself in the head outside Hastings College of the Law and died two hours later at San Francisco General Hospital.

The station said Kwong believed "KGO radio was controlling his mind."

In 1992...First FM HD Radio broadcast: WILL-FM, Urbana, IL.

In 2012...KZOK Seattle radio personality Donny Bonaduce received a painful bite on the cheek from a female fan who had asked for a kiss.  It happened at a Tacoma casino where Bonaduce was to emcee a concert.  The onetime star of TV’s Partridge Family was treated with antibiotics and did not press charges.

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Report: ESPN Mulls Breaking Up Mike & Mike has learned that ESPN executives are exploring moving Mike Greenberg—one half of the long-running Mike & Mike radio show on ESPN Radio—into a new role as the lead host of a television show that would air between 6–10 a.m on ESPN.

According to SI's Richard Deitsch, the new show would potentially have elements of SportsCenter—which currently airs at that time—as well as a traditional morning show. Such a move would put an end to end to Greenberg’s on-air partnership with Mike Golic, which began in October 1998. Mike & Mike currently airs weekdays on ESPN Radio from 6–10 a.m. ET and is simulcast on ESPN2.

An ESPN spokesman declined comment on Wednesday morning.

The current early morning SportsCenter group has faced significant ratings challenges this year, through no fault of the talent on set. Consumer choices are heavy in the morning, including sport-specific shows such as NFL Network’s Good Morning Football, a newcomer that has drawn 100,000-plus viewers per show. Such talks regarding Greenberg and other scenarios for ESPN and ESPN2 between the hours of 6–10 a.m. ET are happening because ESPN management has undergone significant changes in the last few months in the programming and production department.

If ESPN does break up the Mikes, they would have a large hole to fill on the audio side given the Mike & Mike show has been a revenue-driver for the division for a decade-plus.

It’s also the signature show for ESPN in many radio markets across the country. Some at ESPN have postulated that Golic would join his son Mike Jr. (who also works at ESPN Radio) in some sort of Golic & Golic show. But it seems a long shot that such a new show would immediately become ESPN Radio’s signature flagship morning show.