Indiana RadioWatch: November 20, 2017

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Nexstar CBS affiliate/WANE-TV (Channel 15, Fort Wayne) changes their subchannel lineup by dropping Antenna TV. Last Wednesday, WANE-TV moved ION Television to their .2 subchannel, and added Laff to their .3 subchannel and Escape to their .4 channel. Katz Broadcasting owns both Laff and Escape. IRW hears that the other network affiliates in town heard from former northeast Indiana Antenna TV viewers, anxious to see Antenna TV on their television sets again.


It was early 2015 when Cumulus Media flipped formats from CHR ("i94") to Classic Hip Hop, as "93.9 The Beat," under PD Jay Michaels. The station performed remarkably well: it soared to first place in their first full ratings period and The New York Times profiled "93.9 The Beat" as an example of success in that niche format.

All of that ended last week, when Cumulus flipped formats to Christmas ("North Pole Radio 93.9.") No word yet on what format will appear after the holidays, and no word yet on the fate of the airstaff lineup. PD Jay Michaels continues programming North Pole Radio 93.9 and sister Classic Hits/WJJK (104.5fm, Noblesville). Of note, they flipped to Christmas before Emmis' AC/WYXB (105.7fm, Indianapolis), which typically goes all Christmas each year. Finally, a ratings observation: Last year, when "B105.7" went all holiday music, they earned a 17.7 share in the ratings.

The Emmis/Indianapolis GM chair hasn't seen too many occupants over the last 30+ years: Christine Woodward-Duncan, the late Tom Severino, Charlie Morgan, and Chuck Williams (ed. note: I hope I didn't forget anyone). Emmis hired Mr. Williams in August 2016 after Charlie Morgan took over Emmis' New York City cluster. Before joining Emmis, Mr. Williams was GM at Radio One/Indianapolis for over a decade. Last Friday, Emmis announced that Chuck Williams left Monument Circle. Emmis also promoted VP/Programming Bob Richards to VP/GM, and promoted DOS/Music Taja Graham to VP/DOS for their Indianapolis cluster. Charlie Morgan brought Bob Richards to Emmis in 2009, after both men worked for what was then Susquehanna/Indianapolis (now Cumulus). Ms. Graham joined Emmis in 1996 and briefly stepped away for another job, before rejoining Emmis in the summer of 2003.

That's all for this issue. Thank you for your continued support.

Blaine Thompson
Indiana RadioWatch

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