Category Archives: Broadcasting Industry News

Jacobs Media: A Startling Discovery About Autonomous Cars

Bingham Farms-based Jacobs Media Strategies has just released more information from its annual Techsurvey:

Predicted Driver Behavior In Driverless Cars Might Surprise You.

Whether drivers like the idea or not, autonomous cars will one day become a fact of life. When Jacobs Media constructed the questionnaire for its thirteenth version of its annual web-based Techsurvey, the research team included a hypothetical question about a driverless car future:

“The year is 2025. You’re driving in an autonomous car. The technology has almost totally eliminated traffic accidents, leaving you to do whatever you’d like while in the vehicle. Which one of the following do you think you’d do most often?”

Possible options centered around media and entertainment: listening to AM/FM radio or streaming audio, watching video, talking on the phone, working on a computer, reading, or the catchall “all of the above.” To be sure that no activity was left off the list, respondents also were given an “other” choice – the chance to write in something entirely different they’d do in a driverless car than what was listed.

The initial results were predictable, with AM/FM radio leading the way, followed by “all of the above.” But what was surprising was the fact that more than 2,500 respondents took the time to share other things they plan on doing while the car is driving itself.

The “word cloud” below is a compilation of those responses. The larger the word, the more frequent the response:

Sleeping is the lead activity, followed by having sex in an autonomous car. Playing video games and simply enjoying the view also are popular responses. It is noteworthy that drinking and knitting are also mentioned with frequency (hopefully, mutually exclusive activities).

“This goes to show that whenever new technology is introduced, consumers will find a way to adapt it to their needs,” Jacobs Media President and creator of the Techsurvey, Fred Jacobs observes. “Because we serve broadcasters, we were curious to see how the audience might entertain themselves in driverless cars, but obviously, the respondents have a broader definition of ‘entertainment.’”

About Techsurvey13. For the past thirteen years, Jacobs Media has been tracking the media, digital, social, mobile and other habits of radio listeners. These studies have helped identify areas of opportunity for broadcasters as they evolve their business to accommodate changing consumer needs due to the proliferation of new gadgets and entertainment offerings. Techsurvey13 is a web survey, comprised of 51,760 respondents, generated from the email databases of 321 radio stations across North America. It was conducted in January/February 2017.

Mathew Treadwell Appointed MAB Marketing & Communications Manager

Mathew Treadwell

Mathew Treadwell joined the MAB team as Marketing & Communications Manager on June 19.

In his position, Mathew will help to coordinate the marketing and communication efforts of the MAB, MABF, MABPAC and MAPB staffs and best share news of programs, opportunities and successes among organizational members.

“We are excited to add Mathew’s experience and creativity to the talents of our wonderful team,” MAB President/CEO Karole White said. “Our marketing and communications efforts have a direct and important impact on our ability to best serve our members.”

Before joining the MAB, Mathew served as Communications Director at The Peoples Church of East Lansing. His professional background also includes time as Development Director at the St. Thomas More Newman Center in Columbus, Ohio; Communication Director at the Catholic Diocese of Saginaw, MI, where he was the founding editor of FAITH Saginaw magazine; and as a government reporter at the Huron Daily Tribune in Bad Axe, MI.

Mathew earned his bachelor’s degree in journalism from Michigan State University, where he spent many semesters as a reporter and editor at The State News, including a stint as host of The State News Live on WDBM-FM during the early 2000s.

He currently resides in Okemos, where he enjoys spending quality time and sharing in life’s adventures with his beloved wife of 14 years and their four children.

Caroline Beasley Elected As NAB Joint Board Chair

From the NAB Newsroom:

Caroline Beasley

Caroline Beasley, CEO, Beasley Media Group, has been unanimously elected as NAB Joint Board Chair by the NAB Joint Board of Directors. Beasley takes over from Dave Lougee, president and CEO of TEGNA Media, whose term expired.

Jordan Wertlieb, president of Hearst Television, was elected as NAB Television Board Chairman. Emily Barr, president and CEO, Graham Media Group, was elected first vice chair of the Television Board, and Ralph M. Oakley, president and CEO, Quincy Media, Inc., was elected as second vice chair.

It was announced that Joseph M. Di Scipio, senior vice president, Legal and FCC Compliance, Fox Television Stations, LLC, was appointed to the designated network seat on the TV executive committee.

Randy D. Gravley, president and CEO, Tri State Communications Inc., was elected Radio Board Chair by the NAB Radio Board. Mary Quass, president and CEO of NRG Media LLC, was re-elected Radio Board first vice chairman, while Beth Neuhoff, president and CEO of Neuhoff Communications, was re-elected Radio Board second vice chairman.

Kim Guthrie, president of Cox Media Group, was elected to the Radio Board’s major group representative seat.

The Board elections took place at the NAB Board of Directors meeting, held June 20-21 in Washington, D.C.


WBCT Birthday Bash Turns 25

This past weekend (June 17-18) iHeartMedia’s WBCT-FM/B-93 (Grand Rapids) held its 25th annual Birthday Bash country music concert at US-131 Motorsports Park near Martin, Michigan.  The two-day music concert is considered one of the biggest draws for country music fans in the Midwest.

The lineup for this year’s event included Big & Rich, Granger Smith, Jake Owen, Michael Ray, Tucker Beathard, Brook Eden, Parmalee, Luke Combs, Joe Diffie, Trent Harmon and Jackie Lee.

iHeartMedia Market President Tim Feagan was not able to supply the MAB with a final attendance count, but said typical attendance is 20,000 to 40,000 each day of the event.

Alex Jokich Rejoins WWTV-WWUP

Alex Jokich

After nearly five years as a reporter at WWMT-TV (Kalamazoo), Alex Jokich has rejoined WWTV/WWUP-TV (Cadillac) as Morning News Anchor.  She will anchor the 4:30 -9:00 a.m. news segments where she was previously a reporter.

In a Facebook post dated May 30, Jokich thanks “everyone who’s been a part of this chapter in my life! I am leaving here a stronger reporter and a stronger person. West Michigan will forever hold a special place in my heart.”

Jokich graduated magna cum laude from Pepperdine University with a major in Broadcast News and a minor in Sociology. She was also honored as Pepperdine’s “Most Outstanding Broadcast News Graduate” in 2009.   On June 10, Jokich won two Michigan Emmy awards for her work on a documentary at WWMT titled “Devil in the Details: The Doppelganger Killings.”

She will begin her new job at WWTV/WWUP on June 26.

Erin Vermeulen Joins WCSX Morning Show

Erin Vermeulen

Beasley Media Group has announced that Erin Vermeulen will be joining Big Jim O’Brien as the newest member of the WCSX-FM (Detroit) morning team.  She will begin her new position on July 10.

Vermeulen, who began her career at the former 1310 WYUR in Detroit, most recently was heard on the air as a member of the Bill Handel Morning Show at KFI AM 640 in Los Angeles. Previous to that, she worked in South Africa, Dubai, Cairo, Denver and Phoenix.

“Choosing a native Detroiter with a wealth of global experience was a no-brainer for us,” said WCSX-FM Program Director Jerry Tarrants. “Erin will be a great on-air compliment and partner to Big Jim O’Brien.  We’re so excited to bring this combined talent to the air waves of the Motor City.”

“I am so excited to be back home and can’t wait to wake up Motown with Big Jim,” said Vermeulen. “It is a great opportunity to join Beasley Media Group, WCSX-FM and an amazing group of talented people.”

Along with her love of radio, Erin is an intense fan of all things sports and Harley Davidson. On the weekends, she and her husband can usually be found somewhere on bikes enjoying all the beautiful things Michigan has to offer.

Andrea Isom Joins WXYZ/WMYD-TV

Andrea Isom

Reporter Andrea Isom has joined WXYZ-TV and WMYD-TV (Detroit) as a reporter and 7 Action News Investigator.

Recently, Isom was an on-air correspondent and video production producer on the nationally syndicated show “Crime Watch Daily.” She traveled the country telling in-depth, high-profile stories about truth, crime and justice.

Isom is a familiar face to Detroit viewers. From 2004-2015, she was a reporter at WJBK-TV, the Fox affiliate in Detroit. She also worked as a reporter at WDAF in Kansas City, Missouri, WDTN in Dayton, Ohio and WETM in Elmira, New York.

“Through my work on ‘Crime Watch Daily,’ I have grown tremendously as a person, a journalist and a storyteller,” said Isom. “As a reporter with the 7 Action News team, I will be able to deliver long-form stories about people, issues, tragedies and triumphs in a unique, memorable and engaging way. I pride myself on being a voice for the voiceless and telling stories in a way they haven’t been told before.”

“Andrea’s investigative experience and unique style of storytelling will be a great addition to the 7 Action News team,” said Mike Murri, Vice-President and General Manager of WXYZ and WMYD. “Andrea was a favorite of Detroit area viewers as a reporter at WJBK and as a national reporter at ‘Crime Watch Daily.’ I know they’ll welcome seeing her work on 7 Action News at WXYZ and on TV20.”

Isom was born and raised in Cleveland, Ohio and holds a bachelor’s degree in journalism from Ohio State University. She will begin with 7 Action News on Monday, June 19.

Pete Bowers Retires

(L-R) WBFH alum Ed Borus and Pete Bowers at the Retirement Celebration held June 3, 2017.

The MAB Foundation has learned that longtime broadcaster and educator Pete Bowers has retired from Bloomfield Hills High School.
In 1976, Pete Bowers started the radio broadcasting program in Bloomfield Hills Schools. He has been the general manager of WBFH and the teacher of the electronic media courses for over 40 years.

MAB President/CEO Karole White said that Bowers “was an important figure in broadcast education and a big reason so many of his students went on to successful broadcast careers. Bowers was a big help to the development of the student outreach of the MAB Foundation.”

Under the direction of Bowers, WBFH has won multiple national awards over the years.  The MAB Foundation has presented the station with its prestigious High School Station of the Year award in 2016, 2015, 2013, 2011, 2010, 2008, 2006, 2005, 2004 (tie) and 2003.

A retirement celebration was held for Bowers at Andiamo’s Restaurant in Bloomfield Hills on June 3 and featured guest speakers from district administration, school board members, former WBFH students and current Biff students followed by comments from the Guest of Honor, Pete Bowers.

As part of the celebration, the WBFH on-air studio was named the Pete Bowers Studio in his honor.  A video of the retirement celebration is available here.

Mojo In The Morning Expands to Toledo

(L-R) Spike, Mojo and Shannon

Detroit-based morning show Mojo In The Morning has expanded its footprint once again and will begin airing on iHeartMedia’s WVKS-FM (Toledo, OH), effective June 19.

The show originates at iHeart’s WKQI-FM in Detroit and is hosted by Mojo, Spike and Shannon.  This past January the show added the Grand Rapids market to its network of stations, airing on iHeart’s WSNX-FM.

“I’ve personally been a long-time fan of Mojo in the Morning and we’re excited to expand his show to 92.5 KISS-FM,” SVP/Programming Scott Sands said. “This show is fun, engaging and will provide a daily blend of entertainment not currently heard on the radio in Toledo.”

Heather Park Joins WXYT

Heather Park

CBS Radio Detroit’s 97.1 The Ticket (WXYT-FM) has announced announced that Heather Park has joined the “Jamie and Stoney Show” as co-host. The “Jamie and Stoney Show” airs weekdays from 6:00 -10:00 a.m.  Park joined the show this past Monday, June 12.

Jimmy Powers, WXYT-FM Program Director said, “Heather’s experience with the Detroit Tigers and WWJ-TV combined with her personality make her the perfect fit for the ‘Jamie and Stoney Show’. I look forward to the evolution of the show with the addition of Heather.”

“I’m excited for this opportunity! Jamie and Stoney make such a great morning show team and I can’t wait to join them to bring a new female voice to mornings in Detroit,” said Park.