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Vulgar Opinions: Our Garbage Media Part 2 (NSFW)

11/14/12

I didn’t want to write this until I had a chance to hear the audio in question, but I have been unable to find it.  I have instead talked to a number of people who heard the segment in real-time (and had a lengthy discussion with Phil on the topic) so I’m going to move ahead anyway.

Apparently several days ago, Andrew Peters went on WGR’s morning show to talk about the lockout where he (predictably) defended the players.  Whatever he said incensed Mike Schopp so much that he called Peters “embarrassing and pathetic” on Twitter (without mentioning him because why be better than random internet trolls when you don’t have to).  Shockingly, the former NHL enforcer didn’t take this well and shot back.

Again, I don’t know what exactly Peters said, but I have trouble believing it warranted the moronic hyperbole of being called “embarrassing and pathetic,” when it was likely merely “a point Mike Schopp disagreed with.”  Unfortunately, I can’t fault Schopp for keeping to the script that has made him and Bulldog (apparently) worth keeping on the air.

  1. Make the most moronic and unfounded points, using language to demean anyone that might disagree with you.
  2. Screen for the stupidest callers you can find.
  3. Belittle them on the air OR call them names and hang up on them when they start making sense.
  4. Act like all your listeners are like this and you’re the lone voice of reason and logic.
  5. Profit.

I started listening to Schopp and the Bulldog a lot last year because I wanted to hear about hockey and there are no other options in Buffalo.  Eventually I had to scale back to game nights only, and then again to Rob Ray’s segment only because of how much of their show depends on the formula above.

As many of you know, I moved to Seattle in early September.  I’ve been listening to their AM guys in the morning every weekday for about a month.  In that time I have yet to hear them:

  • Say something that is complete and utter bullshit AND/OR statistically false.
  • Say something that is debatable opinion at best and act like it’s gospel.
  • Hang up on a caller.
  • Call a caller names.
  • Put a caller on that is either atrocious on the radio, drunk, or making a bullshit counterpoint just for the sake of hanging up on them and acting superior.

Now granted Seattle is a much larger city with a greater pool of talented hosts to draw from and has more professional sports teams than Buffalo, but 710AM also had the presence of mind to take a former professional athlete and put them on the air because at least they’ve been there and can speak from experience.  (It’s Brock Huard, but still.)  The worst thing WGR could have done was let their meathead duo ridicule one of the few professional athletes in Buffalo that would be both willing and able to become a decent radio host.

Why can’t it be any better?  The list of former professional athletes that make a home in Buffalo is pretty long.  You can’t find one that’s a good enough talker to be put on the air so fans have a reason to trust them beyond “I have a journalism/communications degree and like being an asshole?”  (Wait, are those even two different things?)  Doesn’t it scare WGR that their listener base is old dumbasses that need to be told what to think about hockey by people that have never played?  The newspaper business is dying, what is WGR going to do when their listeners figure out that it’s 10 times more enjoyable to listen to blogger podcasts (who by the way are steadily closing the gap in the only thing traditional media can boast over them, access).  Or that you can go on Twitter and find ten bloggers that are better at tracking prospects than the likes of Jeremy White and Paul Hamilton, and are doing it all without fancy degrees or getting paid?

After moving from the area, it is mind boggling how bad the Buffalo media is.  You don’t realize it when the in-state competition is Syracuse and Rochester and the only thing anyone knows about NYC radio is how god damn annoying Craig Harris Carton is.  (Note: I’ve watched their show on MSG.  Despite Carton’s voice having a Rebecca Black quality of obnoxiousness, it’s better than anything in Buffalo.)  It’s a damn shame because as much as the people of Buffalo deserve a talented hockey team, they deserve talented people talking about their hockey team.

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