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re: Feedback Appreciated

Posted by Non-Listener on November 01, 2011 at 12:05:58:

In Reply to: re: Feedback Appreciated posted by Benen Tierney on October 30, 2011 at 16:37:52:

Benen Tierney: Hello Non Listener. As manager of CRCfm I feel I should set the record straight on some of your points.
1.CRCfm does not cost the tax payer a fortune to run. There is POBAL funding for a manager and three full time staff. We have split those three full time positions into six part time roles. The cost for each role is €20 more per week than if they were on the dole. Those six people work many extra hours in a voluntary capacity. Much of that work is helping and encouraging others to return to a work environment. This is much of what CRCfm is about.

It is disingenuous to state that the cost of each role is €20 more per week than if they were on the dole. In the real world we calculate our wage bill based on how much the actual bill is, not how much more the bill is than dole payment. This statement presumes that the six part time roles wouldn't be able to get an alternative paid position. You also decline to say how much the station manager gets paid. You furthermore state that much of what CRCfm is about is encouraging others to return to a work environment. I can assure you that if the overheads that are charged to businesses (rates, water, taxes, etc) were reduced, those same businesses would be much more competitive and profitable, and therefore be in a position to recruit more staff. This would be a much more effective way of encouraging others to return to a work environment. The money that CRCfm is given from the public purse has to be paid by taxpayers, it isn't make-believe money.

Benen Tierney: 2. You should conduct your own radio listenership survey, maybe from your customers. It would be interesting to see the result. Our surveys are conducted on the streets of Castlebar and are anonymous. One in four of those questioned stated that they had tuned in to CRCfm at some point the previous day. The sample rate was 200 people which is above average for those type of surveys within a region of this size. The same survey shows Mid West Radio as having almost double our listenership within the 20km radius of Castlebar. Are you one of them? Maybe you feel that they have no listeners either?

Let me put this as simply as possible. It isn't credible for you to claim that one in four said they had tuned into CRCfm the previous day. And to suggest that you have more than half the listenership of Mid West Radio is beyond the ridiculous. I appreciate that you had to manufacture such a survey to justify the amount of state funding you receive, but you are not going to convince me, or any reasonable person reading this board, that those figures are anyway close to being accurate. In the interest of fairness, I will accept your survey as being accurate if you can tell me the following: Which organisation carried out the listenership survey, what qualifications do they have to carry out such a survey, and do they have any links with CRCfm? If you can demonstrate that the survey was carried out by competent professionals, with no links to CRCfm, then I will gladly withdraw my 'Constructive Criticism', but I would bet my year's rates bill that you won't be able to do so (almost €7,000 if you are interested).

Benen Tierney: 3. Christmas Greetings - We contacted all business outlets in Castlebar offering them the opportunity to wish their customers a Happy Christmas this year as we had a few complaints last year that there were only a select few asked to do so. You do not have to avail of this. If everybody wished to take up this offer, we could not accept most due to space restrictions laid down by the Broadcast Authority of Ireland.

The letter you distributed to local businesses states that the request for €99 is the station's biggest fundraiser. It states quite clearly that the €99 is a contribution and a donation. It does not suggest that the Christmas Greetings initiative is a simple commercial advertising proposal.

Benen Tierney: 4. Your point about misguided enthusiasts is all over the place and has no basis at all. As already pointed out, there is little or no cost to the tax payer above what leaving people at home on welfare would cost. Instead, these people have an opportunity to get back into the workplace. In terms of local radio, the programming on CRCfm is of a very high standard, in the main. There is a better variety of programming on CRCfm than on many of the commercial stations in this country.

Your strawman argument simply does not stand up. I have already shown that you do not include the manager’s salary in your figures, nor the substantial running costs. You state that the programming is of a very high standard. If this were indeed true, you would have a substantial listenership. I firmly believe you do not. Of course, your producing evidence that the survey was carried out by competent professionals, with no links to CRCfm will cause me to eat my words. I wait with baited breath for such evidence.

Benen Tierney: 5. That brings me on to your comment about CRCfm not lasting a week in the commercial world. Personally I have spent my life in the commercial world, both inside and outside radio. I managed a business sales team for O2 Ireland for four years and prior to that spent four years working in their corporate business division. I spent three years in the investment world closing deals ranging from €40 to €1.5m and I still run my own entertainment business, which is surviving nicely despite many others in the sector having gone to the wall. Suffice to say, it's a bit more than a week's experience! You should also be aware that CRCfm is a community station with a community licence. This differs greatly to a commercial licence. It serves a different purpose to stations like Mid West but that's something you can look up for yourself. Calling it a day is another way of saying quit and we are not quitters.

I am not suggesting that you quit, but that you either take the opportunity afforded to you by the provision of generous funding to create a radio station with a purpose other than to feed the ego of those enthusiasts involved in it. If this cannot be done, then you should call it a day, or hand that opportunity over to a group of people who would achieve such a goal. To give me your own personal CV is meaningless. I am not questioning the competency of you, or anyone else involved in CRCfm, in mobile phone sales or investments. Rather I would respectively suggest that you are not competent in the running of a successful radio station.

Benen Tierney: Now that you are a little more educated on CRCfm, maybe you should ask yourself what comments you would get here were you to ask the same question we did? Thank you for your interest n CRCfm, but next time read the original post before you comment :)

The arrogance of this statement says so much about CRCfm. You posted onto a public forum asking for feedback. You then get feedback that you don't like, so you publish such a condescending reply. Maybe you would like to write my reply for me. You remind me of a certain Mr. Mitchell who ran in an election recently. He wouldn't listen to constructive criticism either, and look how that ended up.

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