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I am of two minds on the subject of hotlining.

I have worked for PD's who would call me when I was on the air who would call
in with very minor critiques that I found very distracting and annoying.  It
did not help my performance on the air and it did not help my attitude about
working on the station.  I work for one PD who would call in regularly, but
he always handled the calls very positively and professionally.  He would
compliment things that he liked and would offer positive criticismn in a way
that was helpful.  Like anything, I think it comes down to how you handle it.
 The real problem is that many managers in radio do not know how to manage

For the last few years, I have been working only part time in radio.  As a
result, I am not in daily contact with the station.  At two stations I have
worked at, it has  become common for the PDs to call me during my weekend
shift.  Most of the calls are just to say Hi and to fill me in on what's
going on at the station.  I would rather have them call me when I am at the
station than to call me with minor matters when I am working at my real job.

As for Scott's comment about the former BZ GM that would come into the
studio.  When I produced the morning talk show at WGAN, it was common for the
slaes people to bring clients and visitors into the control room when we were
doing the show.  Not only was it distracting for me trying to screen calls
and run the board, it was also distracting for the hosts or guests in the
studio.  After months of complaining about the situation, we finally solved
it when one of the hosts promised to flip the bird to anyone who came into
the control room when the show was going on.  Management didn't believe he
would do it (He would have!), but they did put out a memo saying people
should stay out of the studio unless they had real business that couldn't
wait and that they should give tours to clients after the morning show was

Dan Billings
Bowdoinham, Maine