Radio may be dying, but not in Akron

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Last week, music writer Chris Parker mused on the changing landscape of local radio [“Radio Nowhere,” January 30]. “Many folks have about as much use for the radio these days as they do for old VHS tapes,” he wrote. Parker says that thanks to influx of new media, from satellite radio to podcasts, fewer folks are tuning into the old school dial, which he describes as “slow, stodgy, and hopelessly outdated.” While this may be true for Angelinos idling on the 101 Freeway, it seems that Rust Belt listeners prefer the old fashion format. On January 24, Inside Radio, the broadcast industry’s leading online publication, announced that “the rustbelt remains radio’s stronghold.” And no other market spends more time with the dial than Akron… Inside Radio claims that the average Akronite spent 23 percent of their media day on the airwaves, preferring to tune into radio for their news before picking up the paper or turning on the tube. Minneapolis, Dayton, and Buffalo closely followed the Rubber City. Cleveland finished at number eight, with its residents spending roughly 21 percent of their time on the dial. Of course, this was excellent news for WNIR 100.1 FM, Akron’s No. 1 talk station. When Punch called Howie Chizek’s show, he proudly claimed that Akron was “kind of like a gas bubble.” We’re pretty sure he meant it as a compliment. – Denise Grollmus

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