Wednesday, February 22, 2012

A Puzzlement.

Driving around on Tuesday, I was listening to WSCR-AM, the Chicagoland sports talker.  Each time the hosts mentioned Twitter, they followed with "I mean a social network". The hosts indicated they would explain these corrections later.
source: Wikipedia
I also happened to be listening when the hosts cleared up the "Twitter, I mean social network" statement. CBS which owns WSCR-AM (among other outlets) sent out a memo directing on-air talent to not reference their Twitter handle. Quoting the memo, the hosts relayed "Twitter is the pipeline, our content is the product" or translated "Only reference the station website to avoid building any brand other than CBS and sponsors".

Ignoring the potential social media marketing disaster (experts can break that down better than me) I am still left with a question. I don't think corporations make decisions based on stupidity, I think corporations make decisions based on greed (I mean decisions based on maximizing shareholder wealth). Therefore, I don't understand the directive to not mention Twitter. What could make a corporation  happier than a cadre of on-air talent building the company brand even when the talent isn't on air? That's free labor, and corporations love free labor. So why the Twitter ban? I think either CBS is concerned about complaints from sponsors (why do we pay for advertising and Twitter doesn't) or CBS is scared the talent will build a loyal following that is portable. A portable and dedicated audience for the talent means the non-compete clause that keeps radio hosts off air between jobs means less. That transfers power (and $$$) to the hired help and corporations hate that.

So was the "no Twitter mentions" directive driven by sponsor complaints, management anxiety or my need for a topic? Have you encountered other examples of insecurity driving bad policy? How did that make you feel?


  1. Hi Barry!

    Thank you so much for linking up to the blog hop! Wishing you all the best in your bloggy endeavors. Cheers!


    1. Thanks for the warm welcome and the same to you, Ms. K.

  2. Thanks so much for following me at feelLOVDeveryday. I appreciate it and right back at you, as I'm a new follower. Looking forward to future posts!

    LOVD tidings,

  3. It does make you wonder, I mean isn't Twitter considered a business network for INCREASING the drive to your site, radio station, TV or whatever?

    1. Twitter is a lot of different things to different people. It seems to me that the potential costs of driving traffic to a talent's T-stream is much less than the benefit derived.