By Gregg Clapper,
Unindicted Big Game Hunter and Political Advisor
A new system of determining radio station ratings is now in place and it has been devastating to liberal talk radio. First, understand that radio ratings are based on a combination of how many listeners a station has and how long they listen. The old system of determining ratings was based on a diary system. A statistical sample of radio listeners was given a diary and asked to write down what stations they listened to and for how long. The new system is electronic. Listeners now receive an electronic gadget that a listener carries. The gadget receives a sub carrier signal broadcast by all radio stations and registers exactly what station is listened to and for how long. No longer can a loyal, enthused listener claim they listen to their favorite radio station 25 hours a day and thus corrupt the ratings. This new system began in Portland this past October. Arbitron ratings are based on 4 three month intervals (winter, spring, summer, and fall ratings periods).
The most recent ratings (October-November-December)from the fall ratings book have recently been released. It’s the first time the electronic devices did the measuring. Because of seasonal differences in listening habits, most radio time buyers, like myself, compare apples to apples. If I want to know how a radio station’s audience numbers are fluctuating, I’ll compare the fall 2008 ratings to the fall 2009 ratings.
What happened to KPOJ? These numbers represent the overall 12 years of age and older total audience share combining how many listeners with how long they listen. It’s called the average quarter hour share (AQH).
Fall 2008 = 3.5
Fall 2009 = 0.9
This means that under the old diary system where a listener wrote down what they claimed to listen to and how long, KPOJ was thought to have 3.5% of the audience listening to them. But when the electronic gadget registered what was actually listened to and for how long, KPOJ’s rating plummeted.
KPOJ’s programming essentially stayed the same during the past year. The only thing that was different was the reporting system. It very clearly shows that KPOJ listeners were wildly overstating the amount of hours they listened. They were lying.
As a point of reference, you may think a 3% share of the audience is very small. It’s not. Portland is the 23rd largest radio market in the United States. There are many radio stations in Portland. Historically, a station could be top rated with as little as 6% of the audience.
What about the conservative talk stations listeners? Don’t they lie too? The numbers say no.
It’s interesting to note that 2 of the 3 conservative talk stations actually increased their ratings under the new system. Apparently, conservative news talk listeners didn’t lie under the old system of writing down what stations they listened to and for how long.
By the way, in reference to the above picture of me and the Alaskan brown bear”¦ I believed him to be a liberal.