Getting rid of presenters
It’s a sad fact that presenters sometimes have to be dispensed with. Listeners too are occasionally shown the metaphorical door and blocked from listening.
Very few people have exploded on air on 1Radio. One exception was a Whisky filtration unit who went by the name of Musty. That’s not his real name. Musty was, for most of the time, a pleasant and charming guy. A talented musician and a dyed in the wool Nationalist, his shows were eclectic and impassioned. The only problem was that he’d occasionally make his way to the shoutbox straight from the pub.
Whilst most men in a pissed-up state couldn’t find their own front door, he did unfortunately manage to find his keyboard. The result was endless nastiness in the shoutbox, a flurry of hateful private messages and stacks of spiteful, offensive emails that were often politically charged too.
The particularly sad thing was that a few days later, he’d inevitably stumble upon his sent folder and see all the shocking stuff he’d written and dispatched whilst under the influence. He'd have no memory of writing or sending it.
I got a few apologetic emails from him promising that he’d never again open Hotmail whilst fucked up but sadly, it was always short lived.
The predictable cycle of nastiness, followed by apologies, followed by nastiness continued and in the end, I just quietly removed him from the site and locked his account. Sober, he was accepting of his fate but when he got pissed again, he flew into his usual bitter rage.
Behind the scenes, I had to put up with a shit load of offensive comments on Facebook and threatening emails for quite some time. I'd often reply with something equally cutting and the long day wore on.
Eventually, he gave up bothering me and the shoutbox. At the same time of course, you’d see Musty’s friends show up in the shoutbox to try to call me out.
It’s a given that when there’s trouble and someone is removed, there will always be a queue of so-called fans and disgruntled former presenters who show up to complain, slag off the station and it’s owner and generally make a mess of the shoutbox. But, you have to wonder, where was this same rent-a-crowd when the presenter was still with us? Noticeable by their absence is an irony that passes them by. When the presenter would have appreciated them as an audience there was no sign of them. Yet, here they all are now, after the drunken horse has bolted. Meh.
It reminds me of another often repeated strategy. Former disgruntled presenters would often linger silently around the shoutbox and wait for new presenters to show up and then taint them with their tales of woe. I’ve seen a few presenters who are on the fence about their involvement suddenly befriended by someone we’ve previously removed.
Community building. It's a funny old game.
Posted by Tim on Sun 20 Nov at 10:15 and viewed 41 times.