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Old 16-02-2012, 20:21
Martin Phillp
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Radio Today reports that kmfm can reduce it's 6 breakfast shows on 7 stations to one after Ofcom approved their application.

http://radiotoday.co.uk/2012/02/kmfm...reakfast-show/

It's something that kmfm should have considered a while back considering the might of the all powerful Heart.
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Old 16-02-2012, 20:31
latet8
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Radio Today reports that kmfm can reduce it's 6 breakfast shows on 7 stations to one after Ofcom approved their application.

http://radiotoday.co.uk/2012/02/kmfm...reakfast-show/

It's something that kmfm should have considered a while back considering the might of the all powerful Heart.
yes agree perhaps now someone will be on live overnight from 1-6 making it live mon - fri perhaps weekends too
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Old 16-02-2012, 20:32
Peace100
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7 local stations for Kent can now have one Breakfast Show......we must feel for the large number of staff who will be out of work.
Time will tell but Ofcom have now set a precedent surely and this option will very likely be taken up by other radio groups.
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Old 16-02-2012, 20:42
Bundyman
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7 local stations for Kent can now have one Breakfast Show......we must feel for the large number of staff who will be out of work.
Time will tell but Ofcom have now set a precedent surely and this option will very likely be taken up by other radio groups.
Yet another Ofcom cave in then.

I despair of this weak, toothless regulator. Their dreadful decisions have spelt the end of local radio in the UK & the end of many peoples careers.

Don't suppose Ofcom care about any that though, as long as the owners can do as they please & run them cheaper.
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Old 16-02-2012, 20:45
Mapperley Ridge
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Yet another Ofcom cave in then.

I despair of this weak, toothless regulator. Their dreadful decisions have spelt the end of local radio in the UK & the end of many peoples careers.

Don't suppose Ofcom care about any that though, as long as the owners can do as they please & run them cheaper.
I despair of your bog standard replies.

Unless, of course, you've had access to KMFM's complete books, and can explain why seven small scale breakfast shows can be commercially viable in this market?

No? Didn't think so.
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Old 16-02-2012, 20:56
Bundyman
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I despair of your bog standard replies.

Unless, of course, you've had access to KMFM's complete books, and can explain why seven small scale breakfast shows can be commercially viable in this market?

No? Didn't think so.
I don't need to.

The viability of it is totally irrelevant really.

They got the licences by promising to do certain things, if they don't want to do them any longer the licences should be re-advertised. They shouldn't be allowed to just drop key licence requirements without the public being allowed a say in the matter
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Old 16-02-2012, 21:00
RadioKnower
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I don't need to.

The viability of it is totally irrelevant really.

They got the licences by promising to do certain things, if they don't want to do them any longer the licences should be re-advertised. They shouldn't be allowed to just drop key licence requirements without the public being allowed a say in the matter
Of course if The Wyre and The Severn had changes to their output, it was always "sad but understandable" so why is it different when it's a group you don't have a connection to?
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Old 16-02-2012, 21:03
dpb
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7 local stations for Kent can now have one Breakfast Show......we must feel for the large number of staff who will be out of work.
Time will tell but Ofcom have now set a precedent surely and this option will very likely be taken up by other radio groups.
The precedent was set a couple of years by the changes brought about by "Digital Britain" - a few operators have been operating shared programming across a number of licences for a while - including Media Sound in Sussex which is a similar grouping to KMFM (although all with different brands).
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Old 16-02-2012, 21:10
Bundyman
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Of course if The Wyre and The Severn had changes to their output, it was always "sad but understandable" so why is it different when it's a group you don't have a connection to?

I don't have any connection to any group & i don't agree with The Wyre & Severn being allowed to drop independant shows any more than i agree with KMFM being allowed to do it & i didn't agree with the old GCap stations being allowed to do it either

I'm guessing UTV would only buy The Wyre & Severn if they ditch the local content. Maybe if Ofcom had said no, someone else would have bought them & kept some local. There were reports that other parties were also interested, but iguess MNA took the best deal for them.

Sadly in 2012 it seems that Ofcom are going to finally wipe out UK local radio.
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Old 16-02-2012, 21:13
Martin Phillp
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Unless, of course, you've had access to KMFM's complete books, and can explain why seven small scale breakfast shows can be commercially viable in this market?
They currently have six as Maidstone and West Kent were allowed to merge their breakfast shows.

As the market has changed, it makes perfect sense to have one countywide breakfast show which can compete against the James and Charlie show on Heart, while keeping the advantages of having the local frequencies to add relevant information.
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Old 16-02-2012, 21:58
Mapperley Ridge
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They currently have six as Maidstone and West Kent were allowed to merge their breakfast shows.

As the market has changed, it makes perfect sense to have one countywide breakfast show which can compete against the James and Charlie show on Heart, while keeping the advantages of having the local frequencies to add relevant information.
Martin, I know it makes sense and you know it makes sense. Forcing a group the size of KMFM to do six separate breakfast shows might well have bankrupted the lot.

All of this, of course, against the background of the regional newspaper industry facing its biggest shit storm in a generation.

I'm sure that when the Kent Messenger Group acquired the stations and expanded they didn't want to network their breakfast show any more than anyone else. In fact, I know this to be the case from a very reliable source. And no, I won't name them on a public forum. Suffice to say they know far more about the long term situation than most people here.

But hey - why let the facts get in the way of another chance to bash OFCOM?
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Old 16-02-2012, 22:18
FM_Bandit
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Yeah, leave Mapp's Ofcom buddies alone!
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Old 16-02-2012, 22:29
airwaves
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Wonder which one of the morning presenters it will be however? Or maybe it will be a breakfast team consisting of a couple of people like Heart.

Despite the fact it will effectively be one station when these changes make effect, it sounds as though they will all still be run as seven separate licences when they might as well merge all the frequencies and stations to eradicate annoying re-tuning in the car when you drive around the county.

As mentioned above the money saved could bring back some of the specialist programming that made kmfm different and worth tuning into. An overnight presenter would be a good start.
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Old 16-02-2012, 22:39
Martin Phillp
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Wonder which one of the morning presenters it will be however? Or maybe it will be a breakfast team consisting of a couple of people like Heart.

Despite the fact it will effectively be one station when these changes make effect, it sounds as though they will all still be run as seven separate licences when they might as well merge all the frequencies and stations to eradicate annoying re-tuning in the car when you drive around the county.

As mentioned above the money saved could bring back some of the specialist programming that made kmfm different and worth tuning into. An overnight presenter would be a good start.
Breakfast is the most important show of the day, while currently hires 7 presenters on 6 breakfast shows. It's harder to market those shows individually, when you can do that with one breakfast show.

I'd hazard a guess as they're saving costs that one of the existing presenters will be offered the countywide gig. Those presenters are pretty eclectic from the heritage Johnny Lewis to younger skewed Mike Russell, the male/female duo on Ashford and the solid Benedict Smith on WK/Maidstone.
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Old 16-02-2012, 22:39
Bundyman
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Yeah, leave Mapp's Ofcom buddies alone!
How anyone who cares about radio can defend Ofcom is beyond me
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Old 16-02-2012, 22:41
Bundyman
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Despite the fact it will effectively be one station when these changes make effect, it sounds as though they will all still be run as seven separate licences when they might as well merge all the frequencies and stations to eradicate annoying re-tuning in the car when you drive around the county. .
They'd need a frequency audit to do that which Ofcom won't do, but yes there are some areas now where Ofcom cave ins mean it would be better to have one frequency instead of loads of different ones.

In 2012 though we don't do sensible things like that.
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Old 16-02-2012, 22:54
Martin Phillp
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They'd need a frequency audit to do that which Ofcom won't do, but yes there are some areas now where Ofcom cave ins mean it would be better to have one frequency instead of loads of different ones.

In 2012 though we don't do sensible things like that.
I often wondered why a SE regional wasn't offered instead of the ludicrous situation where sallie licences were offered instead.

If you look at the majority of these small scale licences with AC formats in London and the South East, they're either being supported by a parent group or bankrolled by someone with deep pockets i.e. Radio Jackie.
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Old 16-02-2012, 23:18
Mapperley Ridge
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How anyone who cares about radio can defend Ofcom is beyond me
Ahh yes. The commercial viabilty of a station is totally irrelevant to how many breakfast shows you can have.

As is the financial state of the industry of its parent group.

Yeah - why would nasty OFCOM give the station a chance to survive when it could just revoke 7 licences?
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Old 16-02-2012, 23:42
Bundyman
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Ahh yes. The commercial viabilty of a station is totally irrelevant to how many breakfast shows you can have.

As is the financial state of the industry of its parent group.

Yeah - why would nasty OFCOM give the station a chance to survive when it could just revoke 7 licences?
It's the principle & you know that.

Radio exists in a bubble because there are few frequencies.

The deal was that those who won licences kept them for 7 years before they were re-advertised & they made promises they were expected to keep

Ofcom & the dreadful Digital economy bill have removed all that to the point where existing operators can now do pretty much as they please, new blood is locked out, employees loose their jobs & careers always to the cry of costs & listeners loose their localness and get no say.

I guess in your world allowing Global & GMG to sack hundreds, take away local & merge stations wasn't a bad thing either. Was that all about costs as well?

As i've sad before it's time we stopped this rubbish halfway house regulation.

Either force operators to stand by the licence agreements or sweep the lot away &let them do as they please. Have a frequency audit, move them around & let new operators in.

That would also save the taxpayer money and would have the benefit of cutting out pretty much all of Ofcoms role.
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Old 17-02-2012, 00:03
Pete McIntosh
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It's the principle & you know that.

Radio exists in a bubble because there are few frequencies.

The deal was that those who won licences kept them for 7 years before they were re-advertised & they made promises they were expected to keep

Ofcom & the dreadful Digital economy bill have removed all that to the point where existing operators can now do pretty much as they please, new blood is locked out, employees loose their jobs & careers always to the cry of costs & listeners loose their localness and get no say.

I guess in your world allowing Global & GMG to sack hundreds, take away local & merge stations wasn't a bad thing either. Was that all about costs as well?

As i've sad before it's time we stopped this rubbish halfway house regulation.

Either force operators to stand by the licence agreements or sweep the lot away &let them do as they please. Have a frequency audit, move them around & let new operators in.

That would also save the taxpayer money and would have the benefit of cutting out pretty much all of Ofcoms role.
Evening Bundyman

Perhaps, as Head of Music at Media Sound, I can put a different slant on this for you. We decided to network our breakfast output across four stations in November 2010 - those are four stations with four different names. Our breakfast show contains split travel updates for each TSA, split news, split events listings....even split weather. Our technology allows our presenter to deliver split links or talk to any individual station at any given time. During the recent wintry weather we delivered split school closures too. Our current breakfast show is no less local in content than it was 2 years ago when we had four separate stations delivering four separate shows.

I can also guarantee that such a decision wasn't taken lightly - it's not about lining the pockets of our shareholders with massive dividends, it was about securing the future of four relatively small licences at a time when trading conditions are as tough as they have been for many years.

The licence of one of our stations has recently been up for renewal - it is now being fast-tracked as no rival bids were received. It's all very well stations handing licences back but if nobody else out there has the resources or ability to deliver something in its place then that area simply loses a local station - how is that going to save the local radio model you seem so passionate about? I admire your passion but your knowledge and understanding of the costs of delivering a decent local radio service in the current economic conditions seems to be lacking.

But don't take my word, why not have a listen tomorrow morning for yourself?
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Old 17-02-2012, 01:05
wckartist
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[quote=Martin Phillp;56607648]

As the market has changed.[/QU

I love how they always roll these few words out to justify making the cutbacks

Shame some people in the industry cant get off their backsides, and put a bit of effort in to make things work, rather than roll over and become defeatist.

For those who think there may be an overnight jock, well cant see it personally if your main slots are being slashed so fiercely.

Looks like a fair few decent broadcasters are going to find the going hard to get other gigs, and thats a real shame.

I'm with Bundy on Ofcom, can you imagine any other industry where you could basically say " we want to do as little as possible", and get away with it?
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Old 17-02-2012, 04:44
simon243
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I'm with Bundy on Ofcom, can you imagine any other industry where you could basically say " we want to do as little as possible", and get away with it?
Yup.

London Underground - closing ticket offices and, according to the unions, reducing the frequency of track inspections.

Airlines - introducing self service and online check-in so the need for staffed check-in desks at the airport is virtually eradicated.

Banks - closing branches, cutting staff and relocating call centres and back office work to India to save money.

I could go on.

More or less every industry has cut jobs and costs, often to the detriment of consumers. That's the reality of modern business.

Why should commercial radio be any different?
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Old 17-02-2012, 08:42
SouthCity
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I don't have any connection to any group & i don't agree with The Wyre & Severn being allowed to drop independant shows any more than i agree with KMFM being allowed to do it & i didn't agree with the old GCap stations being allowed to do it either

I'm guessing UTV would only buy The Wyre & Severn if they ditch the local content. Maybe if Ofcom had said no, someone else would have bought them & kept some local. There were reports that other parties were also interested, but iguess MNA took the best deal for them.

Sadly in 2012 it seems that Ofcom are going to finally wipe out UK local radio.
Nobody else would have bought those stations with the previous regulatory requirements - they were unviable and should never have been advertised as small-scale commercial stations in the first place. Small-scale commercial radio is an interesting experiment that has failed. That's the issue that Ofcom had to address in 2010, having access to the financial figures for these small stations.

Isn't it better to have Signal 107 as a station for Wolverhampton & Shropshire than nothing at all on those frequencies?

The KMFM decision is a formality - Kent is one approved area so under the rules they are are permitted to broadcast one service across the county (as Heart does). The "application" was merely a box-ticking exercise.
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Old 17-02-2012, 08:46
Mapperley Ridge
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I can also guarantee that such a decision wasn't taken lightly - it's not about lining the pockets of our shareholders with massive dividends, it was about securing the future of four relatively small licences at a time when trading conditions are as tough as they have been for many years.

The licence of one of our stations has recently been up for renewal - it is now being fast-tracked as no rival bids were received. It's all very well stations handing licences back but if nobody else out there has the resources or ability to deliver something in its place then that area simply loses a local station - how is that going to save the local radio model you seem so passionate about? I admire your passion but your knowledge and understanding of the costs of delivering a decent local radio service in the current economic conditions seems to be lacking.
Thank you for that reply. So Bundy - someone who isn't from a big group, hellbent on making staff redundant and lining the pockets of shareholders gives you an inside view of the reality.

I think it's time you apologised.
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Old 17-02-2012, 09:17
PhilH
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It's sad for the people who lose their jobs. But the cold hard reality is that radio stations do not exist solely to employ people. No commercial business does.

At worst, they have to stay viable. At best, they have to maximise profit. What both situations have in common is that they won't employ more people than they need to. Have you seen the unemployment figures recently?

Radio isn't a special case, much as we'd love it to be.
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