COM 110: Chapter 8


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COM 110: Chapter 8

  1. 1. Chapter 8 Radio programming
  2. 2. Radio programming • Symbiosis: “the living together in intimate association or close union of two organisms”. Mutually beneficial. • Movies & Music • Radio & TV • Radio & the music business
  3. 3. Radio programming • Necessary for radio stations to have the freedom to choose the programming they want to provide to their communities • Section 326 of the Communications Act: FCC has neither the right or power to control radio programming • FCC may enforce rules regarding political advertising, obscenity and indecency • Bulk of radio programming is free from government intrusion • Format freedom
  4. 4. In other countries: Canadian content rule: CanCon, cancon or can-con) Canadian broadcasting policy is defined by Section 3 of the Broadcasting Act, which stipulates that: • radio frequencies are public property • broadcast programming provides a public service essential to national identity and cultural sovereignty • the Canadian broadcasting system should provide a wide range of programming that reflects Canadian attitudes, opinions, ideas, values and artistic creativity, by displaying Canadian talent in entertainment programming
  5. 5. Can-con • • • • • • To qualify as "Canadian content," music must generally fulfill at least two of the following conditions (the MAPL system): M (music) - the music is composed entirely by a Canadian. A (artist) - the music and/or the lyrics are performed principally by a Canadian. P (production) - the musical selection consists of a live performance that is (i) recorded wholly in Canada, or (ii) performed wholly in Canada and broadcast live in Canada. L (lyrics) - the lyrics are written entirely by a Canadian. Under the Commercial Radio Policy, 35 per cent of all music aired each week on all AM and FM stations must be Canadian. In addition, 35 per cent of music broadcast between 6 a.m. and 6 p.m. Monday through Friday must consist of Canadian content.
  6. 6. Other countires: • Other countries employ similar quota systems. • For example, Australian broadcasters are required to broadcast a certain percentage of Australasian content alongside international content. • Similar domestic content quota laws also exist in the Philippines, Mexico, Nigeria, France, Israel, Ireland, South Africa, Jamaica, the United Kingdom, and New Zealand. • In the UK, Ireland, and France, this rule is now a European Union content rule rather than a domestic content rule
  7. 7. Types of programming
  8. 8. Types of programming • Local programming: originating from the radio station or studios, or from areas in the local community • Prerecorded/syndicated programming: obtained by the station through a commercial supplier. Distributed via CDs, satellite, online download or telephone line.
  9. 9. Music Programming • Back in the day, stations employed their own orchestras
  10. 10. Music Programming • Now the majority of music is provided by CDs, computer hard drive, or via satellite
  11. 11. News/Talk station • Locally produced content • National/network/syndicated content • Big personalities like Rush Limbaugh, Dr. Laura, Tom Leykis
  12. 12. Modes of radio production • Local/Live : when radio stations employ their own announcers or newscasters locally and play music that they themselves own • Live-assist: use syndicated programming, but retain some local announcers and DJs as the backbone of their on air schedule • Semiautomation: reliance on syndicated services, occasionally inserts live personalities • Turnkey automation: fully automated stations that create programming based on a format service (usually delivered via satellite) or a computer automated schedule (that is created locally); runs on its own
  13. 13. Voice-tracking • Where jocks can record all intros and outtros to make it sound like they are live on the air, when in reality, they may record from any part of the country, any time of the day, and many days in advance.
  14. 14. Creating formats • Three keys to a successful format: 1. Identify and serve a predetermined set of listeners 2. Serve those listeners better than the competition 3. Reward listeners both on and off the air, so they become consistent customers for the products and services advertised on the station
  15. 15. Music Formatting • Finding the “format hole” • The need to carve a unique niche – one that will deliver a large enough audience to attract advertising to that station • Internal factors: dial location, ownership, signal strength, technical facilities, management philosophy • External factors: competitive market study – what else is out there, can you compete? Of other current formats, are they weak in any ways you can capitalize on?
  16. 16. Getting the radio format
  17. 17. Audience analysis • Target audience: the primary listeners of your station • General demographics: the age/gender area where most of your listeners are • Psychographics: “getting in the heads” of your listeners. What are their habits, interests, needs, desires?
  18. 18. Psychographics and formats • What do you think of CHR listeners? • Modern rock? • News/Talk? • Hot AC? • Country? • Classic Rock?
  19. 19. Hot clock, format wheel, sound hour • Graphical chart that indicates the structure of one typical programming hour • Looks like the face of a clock • Dictates precisely when each major programming element will air (i.e. commercials, live breaks, sweepers, ids, promos, weather, songs) • Usually one format clock per daypart
  20. 20. Format Wheel
  21. 21. Format Wheel
  22. 22. Dayparts • How a broadcast day is broken up into time blocks • Morning drive • Midday • Afternoon drive • Nights • Overnights • Weekends
  23. 23. Programming Terminology 3 main types of info represented in the format wheel: 1.Commercial & promotional matter 2.Music 3.News/talk segments • Too many commercials: clutter • Commercial break, also called a “stop set”
  24. 24. Musical segments • Music is broken down into segments on a format wheel • Subcategories usually correspond to how they are categorized in a station’s programming software (Selector, Music Match) • Currents, hits, golds, power cuts, b-side, oldies --- heavy rotation, lite rotation?
  25. 25. Programming Software
  26. 26. Programming Software
  27. 27. Segues • How one programming element goes into another • IDs, Sweepers, Promos, Live Breaks • Why do you think it’s important to give the station’s name in between every song?
  28. 28. Format evaluation • • • • • • • How do you know it’s working? How do you select songs for your station? Charts: iTunes, Billboard, Radio and Records Call-ins: what listeners are saying Call-outs: stations reaching out to their listeners for research Auditorium tests: “hook-testing” songs for a large group in your demo Focus group study: group of listeners you interact with personally to get opinions • Consultant groups
  29. 29. Fine-tuning the format • Pay attention to ratings, adjust accordingly • Personal People Meter: device that collects data about TV/radio watching/listening by detecting inaudible tones in the content
  30. 30. News/talk & Sports formatting • Mainly four programming elements: news, talk, business & sports • All news • All talk • What kind of talk? Example: Car Talk • What is “hot talk”? Example: Tom Lycus
  31. 31. All news formatting • Three basic elements: news segments, feature segments & commercial matter • Provide network news at or near the top of an hour • 30-minute mark – the bottom of the hour
  32. 32. News/talk formatting • Incorporates news segments, with the remainder of each hour filled with features, interviews and listener call in segments • Talk hosts • May also carry some sports play by play content • Example: WBEN-AM
  33. 33. Non commercial programming • Typically utilizes “block programming” • For a station to be CPB qualified: meets standards met by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting • College radio