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Listeners Lie

three-quarters of the “digital radio” audience predict they will continue listening the same amount to AM/FM radio. Seventy-seven percent of respondents said they expect to listen to AM/FM radio as much as they do now

Why are we asking “digital radio” consumers whether they expect they’ll listen less or not to traditional radio – and actually believing their answers?

Doesn’t it stand to reason that introducing new entertainment options ALWAYS cannibalizes those that precede them? They’re not replaced necessarily, but they are certainly eroded. Isn’t that why network TV shares continue to slip? Why would traditional AM/FM be any different?

Are we actually trying to convince ourselves that most folks who sign up to satellite or spend some of their listening time on the Internet will not use ANY significant portion of their existing listening “bandwidth” for these new options?

There are only so many hours in the day, and every entertainment vehicle will jostle for some of those hours. There’s room for all of them, but there’s no question that they will all cannibalize each other.

Arbitron in particular is in a position to actually MEASURE this potential erosion, rather than lean on pointless and misleading opinion research. What I tell you I’m going to have for breakfast tomorrow is irrelevant if you can actually MEASURE what I eat in the morning.

Arbitron should know better.

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