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Report Sheds Light on the Turmoil at WHYY

The report states that the radio station has lost half of its journalists since last February.

Eduardo Razo

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A report from the Philadelphia Inquirer shares the turmoil behind the scenes at the Philadelphia NPR outlet WHYY-FM (90.9). The newspaper states that the radio station has lost half of its journalists since last February.

The Inquirer says 34 journalists signed a note to management in February 2021 complaining of inadequate organization, lack of communication, and a priority on shorter stories. “Inspiration, communication, and morale are low, while burnout, siloing, and attrition are high,” the letter said.

A year later, the newspaper reports that half of those journalists have left the company. Since the beginning of 2021, at least 25 newsroom staffers have departed or have provided notice of their intent to leave.

“The desire to retain our talented colleagues was one of the many reasons we formed a union and fought so hard for our first contract,” a statement from SAG-AFTRA read. “But WHYY has not addressed all the underlying issues contributing to turnover.”

After completing interviews with those who worked or are currently employed at the radio station, the Inquirer says ten former and six current employees cited various reasons why they left or plan to go should a better opportunity arise. 

Low pay, lack of advancement opportunities, a directive for shorter stories, and a feeling that management is not committed to podcasts and new approaches to journalism are some of the reasons as to why they have left or are planning to do so in the future.

The Inquirer report points out that WHYY verified 19 newsroom departures in 2021. The station started 2021 with 51 people attributed to the newsroom. That works out to a 37% turnover rate. So far this year, an added six people have departed or are about to leave. That lifts the rate to 49% since Jan. 1, 2021

News Radio

Rich Zeoli: CNN & MSNBC Want Trump to Run in 2024 ‘More Than Anybody’

Zeoli later added the cable outlets wanted Trump to campaign again even more so than the CPAC Dallas attendees.

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An unofficial straw poll was taken at the Conservative Political Action Conference in Dallas Saturday, and attendees overwhelmingly suggested they’d prefer former President Donald Trump be the Republican nominee for the 2024 Presidential ticket, garnering 69% of the vote. Rich Zeoli of 1210 WPHT in Philadelphia surmised those in attendance weren’t the only ones who would strongly prefer Trump run again.

“No doubt CNN and MSNBC took sharp turns left during the Trump presidency, but they’re very excited that Donald Trump won the CPAC straw poll vote,” Zeoli said. “So perhaps he will be running (for President in 2024), and perhaps CNN and MSNBC will get to trash him again.”

Zeoli later added the cable outlets wanted Trump to campaign again even more so than the CPAC Dallas attendees.

“You know they want him to run more than anybody wants him to run. It’s them. For the ratings. That’s what they’re looking for.”

Trump is currently both mulling a 2024 presidential bid, while also considering suing CNN for defamation after the network has characterized him as a “liar” for pushing 2020 election conspiracies.

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News Radio

Carlos Medina Joining XTRA 106.3’s The Morning XTRA

Medina, who earned the nickname “Front Office Los” for his expansion knowledge of sports and statistics, has joined the show immediately.

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Carlos Medina, also known as “Front Office ‘Los”, is joining Tug Cowart and Scott “Rhino” Rheinhold on XTRA 106.3’s The Morning XTRA in Atlanta.

“Carlos’ sports and numbers background make him a great addition to our contemporary and dynamic and entertaining morning show, The Morning XTRA, and will provide insight and entertainment not found on any other Atlanta radio station,” Dickey Broadcasting Company General Manager David Dickey said.

Medina, who earned the nickname “Front Office Los” for his expansion knowledge of sports and statistics, has joined the show immediately. He has also worked as a contributor to Dickey Broadcasting’s 680 The Fan since 2004.

The Morning XTRA airs from 6:00 AM-9:00 AM weekday mornings.

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Jimmy Farrell Named Cox Media Jacksonville VP/Market Manager 

One of the stations that Farrell will be managing includes News 104.5 WOKV.

Eduardo Razo

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Cox Media Group has a new Vice President and Market Manager for its Jacksonville, FL stations. Radio Insight relayed the company’s announcement on Friday that Jimmy Farrell would be promoted from the Director of Sales to overseeing all stations in the market.

One of the stations that Farrell will be managing includes News 104.5 WOKV. After joining the Cox Media Group 19 years ago as an Account Executive in Orlando, Farrell is “honored” to be taking over the role.

“CMG has given me the opportunity to work with the best and brightest in the business, and I’m truly honored to be appointed the next Vice President and General Manager of radio in Jacksonville,” said Farrell. “I look forward to these new challenges and the significant opportunities to come.”

Farrell’s career continued to progress after arriving in Orlando, going from Local Sales Manager at WWKA’ K92 FM’ to General Sales Manager, and most recently as Director of Sales.

“This is an exciting time for CMG Radio, and I continue to be energized by our people,” said Rob Babin, EVP, CMG Radio. “Jimmy is an exceptional leader with a passion for the radio business, CMG, and the teams he leads.

“He has a strong track record of leading sales teams and driving revenue at CMG Orlando and Jacksonville. I look forward to his impact in this new role.”

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