Howard Kurtz on the Sirius-XM merger and old radio:
n all the very fine stories about the proposed XM-Sirius merger, there was one glaring omission.
The reason these two companies have 13 million subscribers willing to cough up $12.95 a month for something we all grew up thinking should be free is that commercial radio has self-destructed.
All these folks (including me) are paying for satellite because they’re tired of cookie-cutter radio formats stuffed to the gills with commercials. They’re also fed up with focus-grouped music stations that play the same 60 songs until you keep hearing the chords in your sleep.
And local radio stations covering news? There are a few across the country. For the rest, forget about it.
Really, can you think of an industry (okay, maybe American automakers) that has frittered away such huge advantages and sent its customers scrambling for alternatives?