Monday, August 04, 2008

If It Ain't Broke, Don't Break It

My favorite radio station was sold recently and the new owner seems to want his own very clear stamp on it. He even changed the call sign so it would include his initials. Well, it’s his candy store and he can do what he wants, but it doesn’t sound good to me.

He’s also making some programming changes that don’t ring right with this long-time dj (and at least one of the management people who I spoke with). The station has its niche audience and serves it well; trying to hold that demographic and also reach out to another can be a disaster.

I remember an instance which involved me, an internal publication I wrote and laid out, plus my boss and a friend of his. It had to do with something that wasn’t broke and which they proceeded to break. You can do that when you’re the boss.

It was a very successful, informative, well-read piece of work, with graphics used here and there, white space enough to keep it from being too visually heavy. People snapped it up as soon as it came out and some weeks you couldn’t find a leftover.

Boss & Friend decided it had to be done differently so people would want to read it. From the jaws of victory, they snatched defeat. Gone were the graphics, the layout, the bright writing. Instead of not finding leftovers, you found almost the entire run laying around the distribution points. I was just the writer and layout artist; it wasn’t broke but they went and broke it. My new place is much better.


Anonymous RuthC said...

To tell the truth, I haven't paid close attention to what's going on at that radio station, but I have heard there are to be changes, and I'm afraid that I'll be on another search for the music I love.
One of these days it's going to be a losing battle.

August 07, 2008 11:05 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Why the big secret? What was the name of the publication? And what is your favorite station?

August 08, 2008 9:41 AM  
Blogger Tom Carten said...

There's no big secret; the piece is about not breaking something that's not broken. Finer details are irrelevant to the point I was making.

FYI: My favorite station is the former CHWO in Toronto, very recently renamed as CHMZ, available online at; it programs to adults.

The publication, as noted, is an internal "house organ," as they are called, and of no particular interest to anyone outside that organization.

August 08, 2008 1:59 PM  
Blogger Tom Carten said...

I might add that I have written for, edited, published, etc., quite a few of these for various organizations and companies. I'm good at it and most places have left me alone.

August 08, 2008 2:01 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The CRTC in Canada is ''da man''. God with a shave you might say. They recently approved a HUGE change on TQS, a Québec TV station and, believe it or not, they flushed the entire news room! (Effective in three weeks). This station is now runing flicks 24/24 mostly.

Two brothers inherited a wad and decided they wanted to buy the station. Out goes the union, the newsroom etc.....and like the idiots they are, the CRTC ( Canadian Radio-Telvision Commission or something like that accepted it.

One might have a tendancy to ask oneslf about who some people might know in the right places.....along with related questions which might pop up ..CJV

August 08, 2008 3:21 PM  

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