| |

Bloggers get blacklisted

An interesting story has developed that has now moved out of the blogosphere and into the mainstream media. It involves a tale of bloggers getting blacklisted at Western New York’s most popular AM talk radio station, WBEN AM 930.

After reading BuffaloPundit’s first posting on his discussion with WBEN’s program director, Tim Wenger, I really didn’t think too much about it. So they didn’t want regular guests on one show that don’t like their other show hosts. That’s his call. Even though the criticism didn’t come while the bloggers were ever on air, we have to assume that at least some of the people listening to the show will go to the bloggers’ sites, simply because they’re semi-regular guests. It would almost be like Bauerle writing bad things in his blog (oops – maybe we shouldn’t bring up that failed experiment) about Sandy Beach.

I was ready to dismiss the whole incident as just some hurt feelings between the new media guys and the old media guys, but then there was this update from BuffaloPundit today, following a Buffalo News story by Stephen Watson. Turns out that Wenger went and lied to a news reporter when asked directly about why they weren’t being allowed on the show. Now, come on. How stupid do you have to be to try and get away with something like that when the people at the heart of the debate are always itching to expose old media BS like this? From my perspective, Alan (BuffaloPundit) and Chris (BuffaloGeek) have far more integrity and honesty than some behind the scenes guy at an AM radio station, so I have no doubt about anything they’ve said about the issue.

I’m a semi-regular listener of WBEN. Mostly, I listen on my way to work in the morning to hear the local news and on my way home to catch a bit about what Sandy Beach’s topic of the day is. Honestly, I care more about the traffic reports than the AM show’s recap of what Business First has written in the last few days and what’s in today’s USA Today. Occasionally I’ll tune in to Bauerle while I’m at work, but ironically only if another blogger makes a mention that there’s an interesting topic being discussed. I used to listen to him more, but frankly I can’t stand the repeated rhetoric about cats and that idiot Doug Hagmann. Sandy Beach is more tolerable, but he does have a habit of hanging up on guests that don’t agree with him, which lend a lot of credibility to the “thin skinned” accusations made by Alan, and “no comment”-ed by Wenger.

Wenger screwed up. Instead of utilizing Kevin Hardwick’s show to help bridge the gap to the online audiences, many of which far more articulate than half the people that typically call into WBEN’s shows, he’s alienated them. WBEN has frequently failed when trying to make inroads into the internet. Their brief brush with blogging never really got off the ground. They had to take down their message board because they couldn’t keep it from being hacked. They haven’t figured out that podcasting shows like “Hardline with Hardwick” would greatly increase their audience, especially since that one is doomed to the churchgoers time slot. No, instead they’ve chosen to ban the people that have figured out how to reach online audiences, and utilize their network of fans for the good of the station. Sounds like a case of “If you can’t join them, beat them.” With a stick.

Similar Posts

One Comment

Leave a Reply