Clear Channel, the parent company of nationally boycotted radio host, Rush Limbaugh, is feeling the Bain – I mean the pain. Yesterday after the stock market closed, the media giant released its 1st quarter earnings report, showing a tremendous loss.
Wall Street Journal, May 3, 2012: CC Clear Channel …reported a loss of $203 million, versus a year-ago loss of $143.6 million. (The Limbaugh boycotts began last year in the first quarter) Revenue fell 1.3% to $1.34 billion. Revenue from media and entertainment, the company’s largest segment, was down 2.2%, Operating expenses dropped 3.5%.
Clear Channel Media, is the vehicle used by private-equity firms Bain Capital LLC.
This is very bad news for Clear Channel CEO, Bob Pitman, and President, John Sykes. Surely while frolicking among their good will charities, taking in high salaries, and handing out massive Clear Channel employee layoffs, they saw this coming.Yet they allowed blatant racism, sexism, gay-hatred and bigotry to air on their 600 radio stations. I wonder if all the liberal friends of Pittman and Sikes know the two Clear Channel execs oversee right-wing extreme hate radio with not only Rush Limbaugh, but also Glenn Beck and Shaun Hannity. And I wonder if the hundreds of artists like Justin Timerberlake, Elton John, Pink, Taylor Swift, Greeday, Band Perry… know that, through Limgbauh’s ‘all American’ sister company, iheart radio/iheart Festivals, they are indirectly helping to support Limbaugh’s hate and lies? I would bet those artists don’t know.
Pittman and Sykes would have to be living in another world to miss the massive public outrage against Rush Limbaugh’s show: Especially after Limbaugh called then unknown,college student, Sandra Fluke, a ‘slut’ and ‘prostitute’ when she was advocating for insurance-paid birth control. (See Limbaugh’s attack on Sandra Fluke at the bottom of this story)
(Sandra Fluke/Planned Parenthood)
Since Clear Channel and the FCC, have opted to ignore the general public, as well as Limbaugh’s hate speech, Americans decided to take matters into their own hands, using their greatest weapon of all – the almighty dollar. They would go after Limbaugh and Clear Channel’s main lifeline. The buying consumers went after the sponsors.
Petitions were started by single citizens, as well as large activist organizations. Boycott groups evolved all over Facebook, and a Rush Limbaugh sponsor StopRush Database, was created for the average person to find contact information and air dates of sponsors. Even a ThinkContext browser app/extension is now available to see sponsoring companies, while searching the internet. It’s massive. And it has much to do with the hard work of radio monitors and reporters who track ads on Rush Limbaugh shows throughout the country. Women’s rights organization, UniteWomen.org, and large progressive sites like Daily Kos, AddictingInfo.org, Being Liberal, and Media Matters have fully supported and helped the movement.
At first, about 100 sponsors left after the Sandra Fluke attack. Then a few more left. Some like Angie’s List and Legal Zoom went back to Limbaugh’s show probably thinking the public outcry would die down and people would move on. Instead, the national movement grew and gained in momentum. Everyday citizens, as well as activists, continue to join Facebook groups like Boycott-Rush-Limbaughs-Sponsors-to-SHUT-HIM-DOWN (which now has 54,000+ followers) and Flush Rush. Consumers are taking time to tell sponsors they will not buy from a company that supports Rush Limbaugh.
Sponsors react to that, and over 2,600 companies have pulled their ads due to the boycotts and petitions. Hundreds of more advertisers silently have slipped out. Now we see big losses for Clear Channel. Cumulus Radio has already admitted to losing millions due to the Limbaugh boycotts. It’s doubtful Clear Channel will admit it, but the proof is in the pudding, I mean earnings.
Not only is it clear to Clear Channel and Rush Limbaugh, that the public means business, they are finding out the public IS business.
Thank You, Richard Myers. We Are Finishing This. Rest In Peace.
To Get Involved In The Anti-Rush Limbaugh movements (in addition to the links above): http://www.dailykos.com/…
And/or you can sign this Petition To Clear Channel & Limbaugh Sponsors
Video from Think Progress