Boy, who didn’t see this coming? Since XM satellite radio merged with Sirius and Mel Karmazin assumed control of both, XM has just gone to hell. While trying to justify the colossal blunder of Sirius giving Howard Stern half a billion dollars only to see the King of All Media But One leave at the end of this year after essentially fleecing the company, Karmazin has resorted to old tricks of cutting corners, firing loyal staffers who, unlike Howard, can’t afford to be out of work, and showing utter disregard for his listeners (or in this case, subscribers).
All the things he promised Congress he wouldn't do, he's done. Isn't that called perjury?
His latest edict is to trash the baseball only channel – once the best sports talk stationl on the air. In protest, my son Matt wrote Sirius-XM a kick-ass letter, which you can read here. The net net is they’ve dumped some excellent hosts and replaced them with a simulcast of MLB.TV. So instead of hearing highlights we’re hearing “Hey, take a look at this!” Instead of hosts taking calls from listeners we’re getting round table discussions featuring unidentified commentators all talking over each and pointing to graphics we’ll never see.
This is good radio? This is an improvement? And they’re asking us to PAY for this? Oh, and by the way, it’s not even commercial free. You’re paying a monthly subscription to ease drop on a television show and suffer through commercials. Do the powers-that-be know that this is a horrible deal and long time listeners and supporters are furious? Of course they do. They just don’t give a shit.
All of the actual game broadcasts you can get from mlb.com. Instead of spending $150 for satellite radio you can buy an app for your smart phone for less than $15, just plug it into your car’s auxiliary, and hear EVERY broadcast (not just the home team’s) all season long. You can load that same smart phone or iPod with all your favorite music and never need the 100 commercial free channels Sirius/XM provides.
And just wait until we can all get internet radio in our cars. The Sirius/XM satellites will just be large useless disco balls floating aimlessly in space – it they’re not that already.