Wednesday, April 14, 2004

Air America off the air?

Air America has been pulled off the air in Chicago and Los Angeles. The owner of both stations (WNTD in Chicago and KBLA in LA) is claiming that AA bounced a check. AA is saying that that is an "outright lie":.

Here's a press release from AA:

Statement of Evan Cohen, Chairman of Air America Radio:

"Air America Radio is temporarily unable to be heard on WNTD in Chicago and KBLA in Los Angeles, but Chicago and Los Angeles listeners can still hear our broadcast on the web at airamericaradio.com and on XM Satellite Radio (channel 167).

"MultiCultural Radio Broadcasting's conduct in this matter has been disgraceful. To shut off a broadcast that listeners rely on without warning and in the middle of discussions is the height of irresponsibility and a slap in the face of the media industry. In addition, it is a clear violation of their contractual obligations, and we are seeking legal remedies against them in court."

Apparently the lawyer for AA was on the Randi Rhodes show earlier to explain what is going on but I didn't hear it. Over on Table Talk I've heard reports that MRBI may be playing hardball with AA in an attempt to force re-negotiation of their contract because AA is actually doing better than expected. I don't know anything about MRBI but with a name like that you wouldn't think they are members of the VRWC.

Here's a report from the Chicago Tribune

Update: The following is a post in the comments section of The Majority Report blog:

Just to repeat this one last time... I'll use small words and keep it to less than a page for all the friends of Mad King George:

The Chicago/LA Situation was just explained on Randi's show. Basically, the owner of Multinational was doing a radio doubledip (selling air time in LA to two separate stations, one being AAR), and AAR has called them on it. In retaliation, Multi closed feeds in LA and Chicago (the latter being illegal, since it's a separate contract).

Multi's owner got his hand caught in the cookie jar, and AAR's gonna nail him. Rock on! Internet feed is just fine, TYVM.

Posted by: Woody at April 14, 2004 04:12 PM

Here's the web page for MRBI.

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