I had another post ready to go, but all of my good friends asked me to make a post on Don Imus. Why? Those of you that know me for a while, know that I’ve been a huge supporter of The Rutgers Women’s Basketball Team since about 1986 or so.
Back in my college days, the men’s basketball team was absolutely putrid so the only good basketball to watch was Theresa’s Grentz’s Lady Knights basketball team (yes – they were called the Lady Knights back then). The Lady Knights were so popular that they played after the men so it boosted the men’s basketball attendance.
My college roommates and I sat behind the band, painted our faces, and raised the noise level several decibels at the RAC. We went on road trips with the team, spent a few nights partying with them (one was a late night pizza party at Pattie’s partially funded by my friend Sam N who graduated a semester early and had cash to burn), and generally hung out with them when we could. So, needless to say, we still follow them to this day.
When I first heard about the racially charged comments by Don Imus, my first reaction was – that guy is still alive?
My second reaction was, this guy is a clueless jerk. Why on earth would he degrade these college students, especially after they had such a great run through the NCAAs? At the beginning of the year they looked like they were in for a rough season. (Like the Yankees, we RU women’s BBall fans are accustomed to winning). That was rude, uncalled for, and degrading.
And, like most people I heard or read about it a week later. You know why that is? I know ABSOLUTELY nobody that listens to his drivel. Not one person. Not one person in the past 15 years that listens to his garbage. My parents? No. Friends? No. And don’t forget my friends are now unfortunately in the coveted 30+ age group with money demographic. I commuted for 5 years to Jersey City during prime drive time and none of my fellow commuters ever mentioned him.
Howard Stern? Yes. Opie and Anthony? Outrageous and disgusting, but yes. Mike and Mike in the Morning. Sure – I have them on my first position. WDHA for rock music and then of course the AM static news channels of WINS, CBS, and Bloomberg. WFAN in the morning? Never. WFAN in the PM, sure if you can stand the static you have Mike and The Mad Dog.
Imus? Seriously, I thought he passed away. That’s why I was shocked to see he had advertisers and according to a NY Times article he generates $50 million in revenue each year when you include MSNBC. Also as you probably know, there are several advertisers bailing on him now, which calls into question what were people doing advertising with him in the first place?
CSFB Direct used to advertise with him and thankfully we canceled it years ago due to lack of traffic and results. However, who is listening to him now? His ratings in the DC area are anemic and as far as I can tell in the NYC area he gets like a 2, which is pathetic.
Can he recover? Sure, but I’m not sure why. Was this a stunt to re-position himself to hate-mongering folks? Who knows. I’d say stop listening to him if I could find anyone I know that still tunes him in.
Maybe this will get advertisers to re-look at their sponsorships and figure out why they were there in the first place. Picking on college students in their moment of glory for what he believes are professional gains is wrong. Does he have freedom of speech? Sure, but that has to do with being arrested by the Government, not having advertisers and listeners send him to media purgatory which is where I thought he was in the first place.