"The Mic" - HD simulcast in Milwaukee

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Posted by 4DFM on December 15, 2011 at 19:33:09:

From Duane Dudek's Milwaukee Journal Sentinel blog, posted today:

"Liberal talk radio comes to Milwaukee. Sorta."
Progressive radio has come to Milwaukee. Sorta.

There's only one catch: you need an HD radio to hear it.

Clear Channel has announced that it will simulcast progressive - read liberal - WXXM-FM from Madison on WKKV-FM HD Channel 3, effective immediately.

The Madison station - aka The MIC - also streams its signal at its website.

And it can be heard at www.IHeartRadio.com and on the I Heart Radio mobile app, which offer more than 800 stations from 150 cities.

Jeff Tyler, vice president and market manager for Clear Channel in Milwaukee and Madison, said ratings for WXXM seem to rise and fall depending on current events.

The station switched to a progressive format during the election of 2004, after which "listenership died away," said Tyler. The ratings rebounded during the 2008 election and the protests in Madison, he said. But the core listener base, he said, "is passionate."

The station airs syndicated programs by Bill Press, Stephanie Miller, Ed Schultz, Randi Rhodes and Alan Colmes, but also also produces local programing, including union and freedom from religion shows.

Clear Channel works both sides of the aisle, since it also operates conservative talk stations WISN-AM (1130) in Milwaukee and WIBA-AM in Madison.

There are more conservative talk stations and hardly any liberal, said Tyler, because conservative radio "just had a ... 15 year head start".

According to Tom Taylor of InsideRadio.com: "Progressive talk has generally been in a retreat for a while" and Clear Channel recently changed the format of progressive station KKGN-AM - Green 960 - in San Francisco.

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