Chicago’s top 10 media stories for November

The demise after only nine months of The Game 87.7 FM, Chicago’s first FM sports/talk station, topped local media news in November.

The fact that some of the station’s employees first learned their fate from a tweet ("We found out from Robert Feder while we were on the freakin' air,” midday host Ben Finfer told listeners) attracted nationwide attention to the story and prompted calls for other employers to consider how they deliver bad news in an age of social media. Continue reading

V103’s Banks wins afternoons again

Doug Banks again led Chicago’s afternoon ratings race, retaining the top spot overall for iHeartMedia urban adult-contemporary WVAZ FM 102.7 in the Nielsen Audio survey for the period from from October 9 to November 5.

Among men between 25 and 54, Chicago’s two AM sports/talk stations tied for first place. Tom Waddle and Marc Silverman of ESPN WMVP AM 1000 and Terry Boers and Dan Bernstein of CBS Radio WSCR AM 670 posted identical 5.0 percent shares in the demo. Neither show cracked the top 10 overall. Continue reading

Tribune Media turning off The Game 87.7 FM; dropping Johnny B., Garry Meier

Jonathon Brandmeier and Garry Meier (2011)

Jonathon Brandmeier and Garry Meier (2011)

Game over.

Nine months after the bosses of WGN AM 720 launched Chicago’s first FM sports/talk station, they’re throwing in the towel on the ambitious but unprofitable venture. Tribune Media will cease programming on WGWG LP 87.7, known as The Game 87.7 FM, at the end of the year, insiders said Thursday.

Also out, effective immediately, are former WGN personalities Jonathon Brandmeier and Garry Meier, sources said. Brandmeier’s morning show aired on The Game 87.7 and the online streaming site Meier’s afternoon show aired only on  (Update: Brandmeier's departure is not effective immediately. Meier's is.) Continue reading

Dave Hoekstra’s ‘Nocturnal Journal’ joins WGN weekend lineup

Dave Hoekstra

Dave Hoekstra

Dave Hoekstra, the Chicago media treasure and former Sun-Times columnist and critic, is bringing his unique style and wide range of interests to weekends on WGN AM 720.

Starting December 6, Hoekstra’s “Nocturnal Journal” will air for three weeks from 10 p.m. to midnight Saturdays on the Tribune Media news/talk station. As of January 3, the show will move to its permanent slot from 9 to 11 p.m. Saturdays. Continue reading

Score’s Mitch Rosen doubles up at ’XRT

Mitch Rosen

Mitch Rosen

Chicago radio veteran Mitch Rosen, longtime program chief of CBS Radio sports/talk WSCR AM 670, is adding oversight of album adult alternative WXRT FM 93.1 to his duties.

Rosen’s promotion to operations director for the Score and WXRT was announced Monday by Rod Zimmerman, senior vice president and market manager of CBS Radio Chicago. “The two stations have a long history of working together and Mitch’s organizational skills, management style and sales/NTR [non-traditional revenue] focus will help grow the great brand that is ’XRT,” Zimmerman told staffers in a memo. Continue reading

Closing bell tolls for ‘First Business News’ at Weigel Broadcasting

Bill Moller

Bill Moller

After 47 years in the financial news business, Chicago-based Weigel Broadcasting is pulling the plug on “First Business News.” The final broadcast of the weekday morning syndicated news show will be produced December 22.

The latest version of “First Business,” anchored by Angela Miles, Chuck Coppola and Bill Moller under executive producer Harvey Moshman, ultimately succumbed to market forces: Bob Ramsey, executive vice president of local media for Weigel Broadcasting, cited the loss of affiliates for ceasing production. Continue reading