Clear Channel Co-Opts Queer Channel

This story has all the earmarks of a heart-warmer: A bunch of gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgendered employees of media Jabba the Hut Clear Channel conceive of a radio show for GLBT folk and propose it to CC. Clear Channel, or “The Channel,” as we might as well call it, smells money and says, “Okay!”

The result is a thing called “Queer Channel,” a two-hour radio program on KQKE in San Francisco that, according to its mission statement seeks to “educate and entertain the world at large about issues concerning the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgendered Community.” It proposes to do this with celebrity and community panelists.

Feeling warm of heart yet?

I don’t — I don’t trust Clear Channel.

Clear Channel, founded in 1972 by Lowry Mays and Red McCombs, wields considerable influence in radio broadcasting, concert promotion and hosting, and fixed advertising in the United States through its subsidiaries. The company owns over 1,200 high-power AM, FM , and shortwave radio stations and more than 30 television stations in the United States, among other media outlets in other countries. The present head of the company is Lowry Mays and its headquarters is located in San Antonio, Texas.

The term “clear channel” comes from AM broadcasting, referring to a channel (frequency) on which only one station transmits.

In the Clear Channel modus operandi, there are many stations all transmitting the same message. Look for “The Channel” to do for GLBT broadcasting what it’s done for AOR radio and local radio.

“Queer Channel” debuts Sunday, Aug. 7 at 10 p.m. on KQKE “The Quake” in San Francisco.


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