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Subject: Met broadcasts in Dallas
From: gordon young <[log in to unmask]>
Reply-To:gordon young <[log in to unmask]>
Date:Sun, 4 Dec 2016 18:07:41 -0600

text/plain (80 lines)

This evening I received a post from WRR. Lubbock and other towns smaller
than Dallas can afford the broadcasts but....

Mr. Young:

Thank you for your note and for being a WRR listener.

I wanted to take a few minutes to fill you in on the status of the
Metropolitan Opera broadcasts on WRR.  As you know, WRR has carried these
broadcasts for many years and, like yourself, I'm a big fan of opera and I
understand that any decision on carrying the Met is extremely important to
some of our listeners.

That said, there are two things that all of us at WRR are dedicated to in
all that we do:  1) Working to increase the audience for classical music
and 2) operating in a financially sound manner so that we can continue to
bring classical music to the people of North Texas.  We
take the responsibility of providing "Classical music and the arts for
North Texas" very seriously and never do anything without carefully
considering the effect on the two items I just mentioned.

The fact is, the Met broadcasts cost us dearly, both in lost audience and
lost revenue.

During the weeks that we carry the Met, we lose about 40% of our Saturday
afternoon audience...a disastrous falloff in listenership and one of the
barriers to our growing our overall audience.  We have promoted these
broadcasts heavily on air, via email blasts, permanent ads on our web site
and more.  Nothing has increased the audience for these programs over the
past couple of years.

Also, WRR loses as many as 32 minutes of spot time during a four hour
broadcast.  This is time that we would normally sell to our clients and
thus bring in additional revenues for the station.  In the past, the Met
paid WRR a fee for carrying the performances as partial compensation for
lost revenues.  They discontinued this two years ago.  We discussed their
reinstating these payments for this year and were told that they had no
budget for doing so and that, if WRR didn't carry the broadcasts, listeners
had the alternative to get the performances on the internet stream.  They
did not seem overly concerned to lose broadcast coverage in the fifth
largest media market in the nation.

In addition, we have worked for the past two years to find sponsors who
would replaced the revenue we lose when carrying the Met.  No clients have
been willing to sponsor these performances in a significant enough way to
cover the lost revenue costs and compensate for the loss of audience.

The bottom line is the Met broadcasts cost us listeners and costs us
revenue.  No broadcaster can continue to support programming that is
hurting the station and WRR is no exception.  We've searched for two years
for a way to grow the audience for the Met and sell the show to potential
advertisers, with no success on either front.  We can no longer air a
program that is such a drag on station audience and revenues.

We hope you understand and that you will continue to enjoy the hours of
classical music WRR provides.  We're fortunate in North Texas to have a
station like WRR and I can promise you we will do all we can to keep this
station an enjoyable, uplifting classical broadcast resource for our area.

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