For this week’s advice, I’m shipping up to my home town of Boston, Massachusetts. Matt Siegel, aka Matty In the Morning, has been the morning show host at Kiss 108 since January 1981. He’s literally been doing the show since I was ONE MONTH old. Generations of Bostonians grew up with him and love him. Many folks have aged out of pop radio but still listen to him – he pulls in ratings and revenue like crazy. Full disclosure he’s never been my cup of tea, but I know many folks that have enjoyed his sarcasm and snark for decades.
Last week, Matty ended up in some hot water over comments he made around Demi Lovato’s announcement of being “non-binary” and wanting to be referred to as not “he” or “she,” but rather “they.” And the brass at iHeartMedia told Matty not to talk about it. Now I’m not going to delve into any culture wars here – there are strong opinions on all sides. For me, the more cut-and-dry issue is what happened Thursday. Here’s the audio, as posted to Twitter. And I’ll warn you – it’s cringeworthy.
Now look, you can argue about censorship and corporate control all you want. And we’ve all had a toxic, abusive boss like this – whether you’ve worked in media or elsewhere. Berating an employee like this was never OK, but there was a time when it was accepted. But this is 2021, not the set of Mad Men. And for Matty to throw a temper tantrum like this, over his co-worker abiding by the direction of her direct supervisor is beyond the pale.
Were you cringing when you were listening? Now imagine how YOUR listener would feel if you did that on your podcast. Some hosts live in the “controversial” realm, and have strong opinions about sticky subjects. And some are snarky and sarcastic. But to be a truly terrible person to someone who is undeserving of such wrath paints you in a terrible light. Whenever you’re recording your show, be mindful of how your words and tone come across to your audience.
And it matters off the air too. Bob Garfield, a 20 year public radio host in New York City was just fired. https://www.nytimes.com/2021/05/23/business/media/wnyc-public-radio-bullying.html
Onto this week’s podcasting news: Netflix is expanding into podcasting – looking to hire someone to be in charge of it. There are also rumors of an offshoot called “N Plus,” which is a HORRIBLE name and hopefully not true. https://www.protocol.com/netflix-survey-nplus-show-playlists
Apple has announced an affiliate program to help with its new subscription service. Like the new Apple Podcasts, it’s got plenty of glitches. I wouldn’t dive too deep into it yet.
Spotify will now work for podcasts on your Apple Watch. Meanwhile, according to PodNews, Spotify’s Anchor platform booted a musician….for using his own music in his podcast.
Some folks use the online file service Auphonic to mix and master their podcasts with AI. They will now have integration with Microsoft OneDrive. https://auphonic.com/blog/2021/05/20/microsoft-onedrive-integration-auphonic/
Samsung was the biggest new US podcast advertiser in April. But BetterHelp is still spending the most money. That’s looking good for May too, which is Mental Health Awareness Month.
Until next week, stay safe and stay healthy – both physically and mentally. And don’t be a jerk.
To connect, find me on my website: www.jagindetroit.com