In a major shakeup for the radio industry, Cumulus Media, the second-biggest broadcaster in the country, is planning to drop both Rush Limbaugh and Sean Hannity from its stations at the end of the year, an industry source told POLITICO on Sunday.
Cumulus has decided that it will not renew its contracts with either host, the source said, a move that would remove the two most highly rated conservative talk personalities from more than 40 Cumulus channels in major markets.
The decision comes after negotiations between Cumulus and Premiere Networks, the division of Clear Channel that distributes Limbaugh and Hannity's shows, broke down due to disagreements over the cost of the distribution rights, the source said. Cumulus is known to drive a hard bargain on costs, and Clear Channel is known to seek top dollar for big names.
As industry insiders caution, Cumulus and Clear Channel have come to the brink before during contract negotiations only to resume talks. But the source told POLITICO that Clear Channel was unlikely to reduce the cost for distribution rights to a level that would satisfy Cumulus.
Cumulus is also expected to move some of its existing talent -- which includes Mike Huckabee, Mark Levin, and Michael Savage -- into one of the slots.
Beer Bryant Alabama Fan In a Hidden Bunker Member since Jan 2012 8792 posts
re: Cumulus planning to drop Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity(Posted by Beer Bryant on 7/29/13 at 6:23 am to Revelator)
I like Levin and Rush. The little time I listen to talk radio it's those two. The internet and wireless technology have changed things a lot, and we're probably just getting started as far as how it effects radio & TV programming. Rush could go to internet only subscription programming and still be widely popular.
Poodlebrain LSU Fan Way Right of Rex Member since Jan 2004 16771 posts
re: Cumulus planning to drop Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity(Posted by Poodlebrain on 7/29/13 at 8:21 am to Beer Bryant)
If the New Orleans market is any clue, then Cumulus is taking a big risk. WWL lost listeners to WRNO when they lost Rush Limbaugh to WRNO, and it is likely they will in other markets. The real question for Cumulus is whether the loss in listeners and local advertising revenues will be less than the savings from replacing Rush Limbaugh and Sean Hannity with their own syndicated programs. It is possible that both Cumulus and Premiere Networks will benefit from the plan.
RCDfan1950 LSU Fan United States Member since Feb 2007 12347 posts
re: Cumulus planning to drop Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity(Posted by RCDfan1950 on 7/29/13 at 8:42 am to upgrayedd)
Free Market Economy. Supply and demand.
That said, given the struggling economy and the Obama attack on the middle class, Rush might want to consider taking a pay cut, like a lot of his supporters/listeners are.
That said, it will give Savage an opportunity to get back in the game. Savage is...Savage...but will be fascinating/entertaining to them who have not listened. In fact...I wouldn't mind Savage over Hannity for a spell. Though Hannity's guests and vigorous political attacks on the left for 3 hrs. a day...does make a difference. Savage goes all over the issue map, from Theology to Politics to Culture in one segment; that is what makes him interesting.