Recently I have become concerned that the very reason I originally signed up for Sirius has already begun to slip away. The beauty of Sirius Satellite Radio was that paying subscribers were finally able to get truly uncensored talk radio, a product that until recently was not available anywhere else. Just like XM, it now seems that Sirius is changing their stance on what they tout as “uncensored radio.”
While listening to the Bubba The Love Sponge Show this week I began to notice there were long breaks, extra commercials, and tons of old bits being played. It was clear that something was going on, but what could it be? After returning from some of these extended breaks the hosts of the show made some comments that were pretty clear. Not only were they running bits by the guys at corporate for permission, the over thinkers were actually preventing them from running their bits. They weren’t bleeping them or hitting the dump button, it was even worse, they were killing their bits before they even hit the air.
Bubba was on fire right out of the box today making sure that everyone knew that he finally got a good night sleep because “Sirius corporate has me back on the rattler.” For those of you who don’t know, the rattler is Bubba’s cornucopia of pills which he uses for stress relief, being able to sleep, and a little pick me up every now and then. Continuing on he made sure to let the fans know that they should “bookmark the website because you never know when we might get fired” saying that as long as the fans can keep in contact via the web they can follow him wherever he might end up like “102.5 the bone in Tampa.”
I am sure a lot of this is Bubba posturing and trying to get some leverage when it comes time to negotiate his new contract the end of this year but I also think that, what some might call his creative license, is being revoked. I have no problem with some corporate entity laying down rules and regulations but when those rules prohibit the very thing that they say sets them apart from regular radio they are going to far. Go ahead and lay down a nice big set of rules for your “shock jocks” but don’t call yourself “uncensored” and don’t be surprised when subscribers stop renewing their subscription.
The powers that be over at Sirius need to wake up and realize that uncensored talk radio is what sets them apart from all the other competitive ear candy. Don’t get me wrong, Sirius has some exceptional music programming but uncensored music is something all of us can get by firing up a CD, Computer, or iPod. If they forget that they are going to wind up like every other failing radio station across the nation.