UTICA/ROME -- According to a story on Utica Daily News, the online newspaper owned by Bill Keeler, his wakeup show on WXUR has been cancelled. The story says owner Mindy Barstein wants to put the syndicated Bob & Tom Show on mornings. Keeler was offered the chance to move to afternoons, but declined. Updated 5:20pm with official statement from WXUR owner Mindy Barstein.
In the article, posted early this morning, Keeler is quoted as saying, "I took a radio station that nobody knew about and helped it get a name in this area. As soon as I did, I get canned."
The UDN article says Barstein would not be issuing any public statement or response to media until she had a chance to talk to Keeler. (Note: Barstein has since issued a statement, which appears below.) The article doesn't say how Keeler knew of the changes if Barstein hasn't spoken with him yet. For now, the station will be playing "best of" Keeler shows during morning drive.
In the article, Keeler says it's possible he was dismissed following some disputes with Barstein over financial terms surrounding Keeler's morning show. The report states "the difficulty in the arrangement came over the fact that he was actually competing against the station for local advertising dollars in the morning."
Keeler had been doing his show on WXUR since October 2007. That December, he was moved to afternoons to make way for the return of Don Imus, but in 2009, Imus was moved to sister station WNRS, allowing Keeler to regain mornings on WXUR.
Here's the statement CNYRadio.com received from Mindy Barstein this afternoon.
DATE: December 31, 2010
CONTACT: Mindy Barstein
WXUR, 92.7 FM, The Drive announces that The Bob & Tom Show will begin airing Monday, January 10, 2011. The Bob & Tom Show can be heard
Monday through Saturday mornings from 6 a.m.- to 10 a.m.
Owner and General Manager Mindy Barstein states that “Everyone at The Drive is thrilled to have Bob & Tom return to the market. Bob & Tom were ratings leaders in the market and we look forward to a successful return.”
Barstein also indicated she will be available to the media on Monday for interviews; unfortunately, your editor won't be able to make it there, but we presume there will be coverage by Utica-area media. We'll update our coverage here with links to those reports, if any significant new information arises.
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