BOOMERBROADcast

Enjoy, laugh, disagree or simply empathize with those who lived life in THE sixties and are now rockin' life in THEIR sixties, and beyond.

Sirius . . . we have a problem

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Radio is an integral part of daily life for millions of listeners.

Radio is an integral part of daily life for millions of listeners.

Once upon a time I thought paying fifteen dollars a month for a radio subscription was an absurd and wasteful idea. Then we purchased a vehicle that included six months of free access to commercial-free Sirius XM satellite radio and I became a convert—to the extent we now have three accounts, one for each vehicle and one for the house so I can pick it up on my iPad with a Bluetooth speaker. Being able to drive anywhere in North America without having to switch stations in search of a clear local signal was just one of the benefits. The most convincing factor for me, however, was the abundance of excellent programming targeted at women, not available on regular AM/FM radio. My days of listening to CHUM non-stop are long past and I now enjoy and prefer talk shows, particularly interviews with authors, business people, women entrepreneurs and lifestyle aficionados.

Strike 1: Cancelling the Martha Stewart channel.

Strike 1: Cancelling the Martha Stewart channel, including Alexis and Jenny.

My love affair with Sirius XM has now been seriously challenged and my loyalty is at risk of imploding. One by one they’ve dropped my favourite programs and contrary to their mandate, they run advertisements which annoy me to no end when I’m paying for the service. Even though I’m not a huge Martha Stewart fan, I did enjoy her satellite radio station with tons of good information on cooking, decorating, wellness and other chick issues. I particularly enjoyed Whatever, a two-hour daily dialogue between Martha’s bitchy daughter Alexis and Jenny Hutt. The most amazing people used to call into that show to share opinions and observations. Then, Alexis and Jenny had a falling out. Alexis became a mother and soon after, Martha’s entire station was discontinued. Jenny still has her own show but there’s not the same tension or provacativeness.

Strike 2: Cancelling Judith Regan.

Strike 2: Cancelling Judith Regan.

But I always had Judith Regan for two hours every Saturday morning on Stars. Regan is a colourful and smart Boomer in her own right with a successful publishing career to her credit. As well as being the controversial publisher of the never-released “what-if” fictional account of the O.J. Simpson/Nicole Brown Simpson murder story, Regan has and is still publishing extraordinary books. Naturally, many of her interviewees were authors plugging their wares but I loved the discussions and was made aware of many wonderful books I might not have otherwise heard about.

The final blow came last week. My absolute favourite Sirius XM radio show What She Said, which airs daily from 10:00 a.m. to noon on Canada Talks Channel 167 is being cancelled. To say I’m devastated is an understatement. What She Said is the only reason I still subscribe to Sirius XM. I listen to Christine Bentley, Kate Wheeler and Sharon Caddy as often as I can. Christine Bentley is a particularly skilled interviewer and their guests introduced me to a world of thought and inspiration that made my day, every day. Rumour has it the ladies are negotiating with other media sources to continue their show so I’m on standby for the outcome. Damn you, Sirius.

Strike 3: Cancelling What She Said is the last straw.

Strike 3: Cancelling What She Said is the last straw.

Bit by bit the powers that be at Sirius XM have chipped away at quality women’s programming until there’s nothing left. I hate celebrity-centric shows. I have no use for the dozens of sports, NFL, NHL and other jock stations. X-rated humour is not my bag, nor is a steady diet of a single musical performer. If a phone-in pet psychic can get her own show, why can’t we keep What She Said? 

I give up.

I give up.

I understand Channel 167 Canada Talks is going to an all-news format which means the same depressing, boring news stories and interviews with self-serving politicians will keep looping over and over, ad nauseum. If you know of any shows with quality content similar to those I’ve described above that are targeted at smart and informed women, then let me know. Otherwise, I’m going to have to cancel my subscription and I’ll be forced to go back to searching for a strong local signal while I’m driving around. I’m not looking forward to returning to earth from my formerly happy place on satellite radio. On what planet can we not make a business case that justifies programs that appeal to fifty percent of the population? But, who listens to me? I’m just the customer.

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Author: Lynda Davis

As an early Baby Boomer, born in 1947, it seems to me that as we approach our retirement years, Boomers have gone from being the energy driving our nation to slowly becoming invisible. We risk losing our identity as society remains stubbornly youth-centric. And the irony is that Gen Xers and Ys are not the majority; we are. BOOMERBROADcast is my platform for being the voice of Baby Boomers, women in particular. We've generated a lot of changes over the decades but there's still a long way to go. After a 40-year career in the corporate world, I've taken up expressing the observations and concerns of our generation. Instead of pounding the pavement in my bellbottoms with a cardboard sign, I'm pounding my laptop (I learned to type on a manual typewriter and old habits die hard). If you have issues or concerns you would like voiced or have comments on what I've voiced, I'd love to hear from you. We started breaking the rules in the sixties and now that we're in our sixties it's no time to become complacent. Hope you'll stay tuned and if you like BOOMERBROADcast, share it with your friends. Let's rock n' roll! If you would like to be notified whenever I publish a new posting, click on the little blue box in the lower right of your screen that says +Follow→ Lynda Davis

3 thoughts on “Sirius . . . we have a problem

  1. Pingback: Where are real women in the media? | BOOMERBROADcast

  2. I think the problem is this. “Customers” are people between 15 and 45. Anyone else is invisible. Anyone older than 45 is probably a) deaf, b) poor, c) too technologically challenged to operate a radio, or d) wouldn’t want to take time off rocking on the porch or playing lawn bowls to consume information.
    Stereotypes rule 🙂

    Like

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