The importance of local talk radio

Bob Nelson
Fri Nov 21 12:14:56 EST 2008

The addition of local progressive talk shows to the Boston radio dial is encouraging, as (yes,
"All politics is local", Tip...) the essence of political talk radio is not just what's
going on nationally but what's going on down the street.

On WRKO, Tom Finneran had left-and-right participants talk about the election, locally
and nationally, and Howie Carr was on top of the Wilkerson scandal and toll hike
proposals. Michelle McPhee on WTKK has helped to organize a protest against toll
hikes, on- and off-air, and WBZ's Dan Rea has tackled the local issues as well.
Having local hosts on WWZN will further enrich the conversation (and again remember that
a daily local host was something Clear Channel did NOT do with WXKS and WWZN).

It's important that the local issues get discussed rather than just "turning on
the bird" to save money. And, oh, what's this? A Boston city councillor has
also been ensnared in a bribery scandal?

Thankfully local talk radio is there, and it shouldn't have to take a Fairness
Doctrine or "local origination" law to get it on the air. (Live and local
talk can indeed do well, not just here but elsewhere...WNIR in Kent/Akron Ohio
comes to mind, as it usually tops the ratings...)

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