Category Archives: December 2018

Bill To Keep Nonprofit Donors Secret Passes Senate

According to a report in Gongwer, Michigan Senate Republicans passed legislation last week that allows nonprofit organizations to not be forced to disclose their donors. Opponents of the bill called the measure a way of hiding who is contributing to political attack advertisements.

SB 1176 passed by a 25-12 vote. The bill prohibits public agencies from requiring any 501(c) designated organizations under the U.S. Internal Revenue Service to disclose donors without permission unless sought through a criminal warrant or through discovery in a lawsuit. This means that the Department of Attorney General or any agency conducting investigations would have to obtain a warrant to access such information about a charity group rather than merely requesting it.

FCC Starts Warning Stations of Noncompliance with Online Public Inspection File Rules

David Oxenford - Color
David Oxenford

By: David Oxenford, Wilkinson Barker Knauer LLP,

On December 6, the FCC has started to email out notices to numerous radio stations throughout the country, notifying them that there are issues with their online public inspection files. The email notices do not reveal what the specific problem is – but instead simply say that there are issues and ask for notice of corrective actions to the FCC. We have been warning of the FCC’s concern about incomplete or inactive online public files for some time, and the potential impact that noncompliance could have on license renewal, which starts for radio stations in the Washington DC area in June 2019, and then moves across the country in this three-year renewal cycle (see, for instance, our articles here and here). Clearly, this is a warning to stations that the FCC is watching their public files, and that compliance problems will bring issues, and possibly fines, if the files are not complete by license renewal time (or even earlier if documents were not timely created).

As we have written before (here and here), the biggest issues will likely be with stations not uploading Quarterly Issues Programs Lists and, for stations that are part of clusters with 5 or more full-time employees, Annual EEO Public Inspection file reports. Look at your file now and make sure that you are in compliance with these and all other public file obligations to insure that you do not have issues that can come back to haunt you at renewal time – or at any other time that the FCC decides to use its enforcement authority to start issuing fines.

David Oxenford is MAB’s Washington Legal Counsel and provides members with answers to their legal questions with the MAB Legal Hotline. Access information here. (Members only access).

There are no additional costs for the call; the advice is free as part of your MAB membership.

Meet Your MAB Board Member of the Week: Scott Shigley

Scott Shigley started his broadcast career in sales at the Liggett owned station in Lansing, WFMK in 1993.

He began his sales management career in 1998, managing stations in Adrian (Friends Communications: WQTE,WABJ, WBZV), Port Huron (Liggett Communications: WSAQ/WBTI/WPHM/WHLS/WHLX), Greater Media Detroit (WMGC- Magic 105.1, WCSX Classic Rock 94.7).

After that, Scott worked in advertising sales at Fox Sports Detroit before having the opportunity to return to his adopted home town of Port Huron in 2011, where Scott assumed the General Manager position for Liggett Communications in July 2014. Scott manages WSAQ, WBTI, WPHM, WHLS, and WHLX.

He is a graduate of University of Michigan and Reading Schools in lower Michigan. Scott is married to wife Christine and they have three children: Kalyn, Isaac and Avery and two grandchildren.

Scott loves to do anything outdoors, especially playing golf, coaching softball and UM football games.

The Robinson Report – 12 Notes

Editor’s Note: The views and opinions of this article do not necessarily reflect those of the MAB. Contact the MAB for information on the MAB’s official editorial policy.

Kevin Robinson

By: Kevin Robinson
Robinson Media

“Music is essentially 12 notes between any octave. It’s the same story told over and over. All any artist can offer the world is how they see those 12 notes.” –Bobby (Sam Elliot) in 2018’s A Star Is Born

The “score,” or audio, to a movie or video piece supersedes the quality of picture.

Read about that here.  View a brief demonstration here.

What you aurally consume and how that puzzle is pieced together is vital.

From hundreds of listening sessions, it’s clear that the vast majority of broadcasters pay little, if any, attention to how their brand can go from good to great.

You know it when you hear it: legendary brands like KFRC (San Francisco),  WLS (Chicago) and  KHJ (Los Angeles).

Programming magician Bill Drake produced his RKO network of brands with a “The Wall of Sound” in mind.

Mirroring Phil Spector’s “process,” Bill was in several of Spector’s Wall-Of-Sound sessions.

Read what legendary brand builder Lee Abrams has to say about it  here.

Market size matters not. Some of the very best “scored” stations are rooted in smaller markets.

For the most part, terrestrial radio allows automation to “score” their station.

The production pieces may have clarity, however air talent (even voice-tracker) can “sweeten” the pieces creating larger-than-life electricity.

Radio Friends, take the lull of the next few weeks and assess the sound of your brand.

Do music ID’s aid in the sparkle and momentum of your brand?

Are voice pieces written with imagination and produced to keep the audience engaged?

Is it tightly packaged with elements that bring real kinetic energy to your brand?

Most importantly: is it “scored” the way you hear it.

Think artist, not technician.

“All any artist can offer the world is how they see those 12 notes.”

Kevin Robinson is a record-setting and award-winning programmer. His brands consistently perform in the Top Three of the target – often times as the list leader. In his 35 years of radio, he’s successfully programmed or consulted nearly every English language radio brand. Known largely as a trusted talent coach, he’s the only personality mentor who’s coached three different morning shows on three different stations in the same major market to the #1 position. His efforts have been recognized by Radio & Records, NAB’s Marconi, Radio Ink and he has coached CMA, ACM and Marconi winning talent.  He lives in Indiana with his wife of 33 years, Monica. Reach Kevin at (314) 882-2148 or [email protected].

7 Ways to Clean Your Radio Station’s Digital House During Downtime

Seth Resler

Editor’s Note: The views and opinions of this article do not necessarily reflect those of the MAB. Contact the MAB for information on the MAB’s official editorial policy.

By: Seth Resler
Jacobs Media Strategies

As we head into the holidays, this is typically a slower time of year for radio stations. When I was a radio programmer, I used this time to clean my office: throw away anything I didn’t need anymore and file away anything that I still did. It’s also wise to take this time to do the digital equivalent of cleaning house. Here are some things to check on during the holiday lull:

1. Clean up your passwords and logins.
Hopefully, you have the login information for all of your different digital tools compiled into a single master list. Take time to review that list and make sure that it’s up to date. If you have any employees who have moved on during the year, you will want to change passwords or remove their user accounts as appropriate.

2. Figure out what you’re paying for.
Many “software as a service” tools charge a monthly or annual fee. Sometimes, we’ve subscribed to something we no longer need, and we forget about it until the charge shows up on the corporate credit card statement. Look back at the statements for the year and make sure that you’re only paying for the things you really need.

3. Review your social media policy.
Does your radio station have a social media policy? If not, write one. If it does, when is the last time you looked at it? The social media space moves quickly. Review your policy to make sure that it’s up to date.

4. Review the copy on your static website pages.
Many radio stations have website pages that rarely change, such as an “About” page or an “Advertise” page. Peruse these pages to make sure that nothing in the text needs to be updated.

5. Revise your automatic email campaigns.
I am a big proponent of setting up automatic email campaigns to engage with listeners. While this can save your staff a lot of time, there is also a tendency to “set it and forget it.” If you have drip campaigns set up to automatically send out evergreen content, this is a good time to make sure that the content is really as evergreen as you think it is. It may be time to retire that interview with Limp Bizkit or Psy.

6. Check anything that automatically posts to social media.
By the same token, tools that automatically repost content to social media can be a blessing, but you need to keep an eye on them. Take stock of these types of tools. Make sure you understand what they are doing and how you to make any changes if necessary.

7. Update your WordPress plugins.
If your radio station’s website is built on WordPress, any plugins you are using may become outdated over time. The holidays are a good time to update these plugins, but you’ll want to monitor your site carefully to make sure that the updated plugins don’t have any conflicts that can break your site. First, back up your site. Then, copy the live site to a staging area where you can update the plugins safely. Once you’ve updated all of the plugins, spend some time with the staging site looking for any issues. When you’re sure everything is working properly, deploy the staging site to replace the live site. Never update plugins on the live site; you’re asking for trouble if you do.

During the year, we often get so busy that we don’t have the bandwidth to perform maintenance on our digital tools. Take advantage of the downtime to keep things running smoothly at your radio station.

For more assistance on digital or social media, contact MAB Member Services at [email protected] or 1-800-968-7622.

Stop Sounding Desperate and Attract Ideal Candidates with Laurie Kahn at the #MABshow

Laurie Kahn is Creator and President of Media Staffing Network, Inc., the first staffing company to cater exclusively to media sales and associated departments for full time placement, consulting and career coaching for the Agency, Broadcast, Cable, Internet, Digital, New Media and Print industries.  Successfully placing people since 1993, now offers solutions to finding local sellers in all market sizes.

Laurie will present “Positioning and Creating a Culture to Attract, Hire and Retain Employees” at the 2019 Great Lakes Media Show. 

Kahn’s more than 25 years experience in media includes local and national sales positions in both large and small markets; turn around expertise with new formats; and local and national management positions.

Kahn is currently involved with various industry associations and participates at career fairs, colleges and webinars to educate individuals about career opportunities.  Kahn conducts seminars targeting all aspects of talent acquisition, job search and how to grow your career. In addition, Kahn has authored articles appearing in Career Builder, Chicago Tribune, Sales and Marketing Magazine, Radio Ink, Young Money, and Inside the Minds “Staffing Leadership Strategies” to name a few.  Kahn has been featured in Crain’s/Chicago and quoted in the Wall Street Journal. She has also developed courses for women re-entering the work force and has mentored numerous women in media.

Kahn has been an elected member of MIW (Most Influential Women in Media) yearly since 2008 and has received numerous awards for sales and management throughout her career.

She regularly presents workplace topics to industry associations nationwide, including Broadcast Education Association, Chicago Advertising Federation, National Association of Broadcasters, Broadcast & Financial Managers Assn. and the Radio Advertising Bureau.