One of the first things you learn in radio is that people hear what they want to hear. Two phone calls to the WOSH Newsroom proved that last week.
The first came from a very angry (and as I found out, confused) woman Wednesday morning. The woman wanted to know why we only had Republicans on to talk about the previous night's State of the Union Address. (On Wednesday morning we had reaction from Senator Ron Johnson provided to us by ABC Radio News--and Congressman Tom Petri joined Bob Burnell for a live interview from Washington as well). I told the woman that the WOSH listening area is represented, for the most part, by Congressman Petri--with most of the rest covered by Congressman Reid Ribble and a little bit by Sean Duffy--all of whom are Republicans. Senator Johnson is from Oshkosh--and the next time Senator Herb Kohl joins us for a live interview will be the first time that Senator Kohl accepts our invitation to do a live interview (not during campaign season).
The angry woman thought there were some "Democratic Assemblymen who probably had something to say about the speech." (No offense to State Lawmakers--but if you want info or reaction to Federal Government matters, you are better off going to Federal Lawmakers). I told her that Representative Gordon Hintz would be joining us Thursday morning for his reaction to Wednesday night's State of the State Address. There was a pause from the other end of the line and then the angry (and confused) woman told me "You know full well that the State of the State doesn't exist. Good bye."
I was left with two thoughts after that "conversation". One: that woman probably votes--and two: I sure hope she doesn't turn on Wisconsin Public Television tonight to see that the State of the State Address actually does exist--I wouldn't want to burst her bubble of "reality".
The second phone call came in Friday morning from an angry custodian who works for the Oshkosh School District. He "had heard" that Bob Burnell "was telling people that school custodians make $50 an hour". He believed he was at the high end of the pay scale--and even with benefits, he wasn't making close to fifty-bucks an hour. He wanted to "set Bob straight" so he could "make a correction on the air."
Because I do the news on a couple of different stations every morning, I don't hear everything that is on the air on WOSH--so I went to the background record to hear what Bob was saying. Bob was telling a story about renting a facility--not in Oshkosh--that required a $100 an hour fee for custodial services--meaning he was paying 50-bucks an hour for two janitors to be on duty during the event. There was NO mention of Oshkosh in the story--and NO mention of the School District either. Yet somebody listening was positive that Bob was telling people that Oshkosh School District custodians make fifty dollars an hour.
I know the public sector is on a self-persecution kick here in an effort to win sympathy from taxpayers--but not every mention of overpriced services is an attack on you. Needless to say, Bob will not be "correcting" something that he never actually said.
Meanwhile, any audiologist or hearing aid providers that would like to capture our "hard of hearing" audience share should contact the Cumulus Broadcasting Sales Department.