Thursday, October 23, 2008

Talker ... busted

Former WRKO talker Reece Hopkins was arrested earlier today on a child rape rap: ["Ex-WRKO host facing child rape charge"].
Last week, when it was announced that Hopkins was let go from WRKO in order to save money [one of eight cuts at Entercom's Boston operations], I wrote on Dan Kennedy's MediaNation that while I thought Reece was mildly entertaining the few times I listened to him, I've always wondered why they hired a conservative black New Yorker for that time slot in the first place. Especially when there are so many out of work - or out of radio work - New Englanders, some of them minorities too, who could have built a base of advertisers to support a local host in that time slot. What was the point if you were just going to lay the guy off after a year? Why was no progressive host hired to even try to see if that might work in between a felon [former Mass. House Speaker Tom Finneran] who is unlistenable most mornings and the pill-popping, drug dealing Limboob [aka Rush Limbaugh]?
As a WRKO listener for more than two decades [granted, off and on in recent years] and even a listener to the station as a boy when it was Top 40, I really have to wonder what the strategy is over there. This move leaves WRKO with two - yup, two - local hosts on weekdays. Every single host on the station is to the right of Attila the Hun! At the same time, over at WEEI, WRKO's sister station, they are hiring sports writers away from newspapers ... to blog!
Gee. If you can't afford more than three local hosts on one of the top stations in the number 10 market, what does that say about your business model? What does that say to a WRKO listener who cares about local topical issues in the cradle of Liberty? I know what it tells me as an on and off WRKO listener. It tells me that they don't give a shit about the listeners at all ... or at least seem to not give a shit.
I don't know if Reece is guilty of this crime or not and I won't comment on that either way.

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