Hurrah for John Pellegrini's recent article, "Reinventing Reality" [June 1994 RAP] and taking advertising agencies to task for their conservatism and anti-technology stance! How right he is saying, "...these people are about as creative as glue." I'll take it one step further and say, "...these people don't have a clue!" As a matter of fact, Continuity Director Jon Hale and I have maintained for years that there is a secret international plot within ad agencies to KILL radio Production Directors! Jon and I are going to break away from the station and form our own ad agency called, "The Revised Ad Agency." I'll be Vice President in charge of Revisions, and Jon will be Director of Bizarre Rotation Instructions. I know, I know, how do I really feel...!??
Kark Gruber, Production Director
WHOK-FM, Columbus, OH
Regarding John Nixon's "Verbiage" problem [RAP Forum, June 1994 RAP]. The RAP Forum is a great place to vent the frustrations of the production sweatshop, but we need to be professional and fair. So what if the salesperson wants to use a cute name for copy? Do I detect a gender and age bias? Sales "girl," "stupid old people's celebration," "dumb place," "dumb fair," "know-it-all blonde," "southern valley girl," blah, blah, blah.
First of all, a senior's Golden Years Celebration sounds like an attempt to draw the older demos back into the mall. Not a bad idea considering how most malls are the hang-out place for young non-to-low ticket purchasers. As I grow older, I find myself more intimidated by those mall loiterers in search of a life.
If you want to talk to a Frenchman, you'll communicate much better if you speak French. Talk to seniors like seniors talk to each other -- for the most part -- polite, more formal, sincere, I guess "science talk" if that's what you call formal. If you want to get a feel for the "verbiage" these seniors grew up with on the radio, read Garrison Keelor's "WLT - A Radio Romance."
If KLSY or KIXI presents itself as serving that demographic range and someone is buying the time, I would suggest biting your lip and saying whatever they are paying the station to say. If the time comes that you become known as an advertising guru and are paid for advice, give it. Tell them how they should do it. It's often hard to do only what you are paid to do. Your attitude sounds just like mine before the only time I was fired from a Production Director's position. This business has a lot of idiocy at all levels, jocks and suits. But I sure wouldn't trade it for any other profession.
Mike Bailey, Operations Manager
WPBH-FM, Panama City, FL