November 9th, 2012 10:48 am | Aaron Mesh News | Posted In: Media, PDX News, Politics

KPOJ Cancelling Political Talk Radio

UPDATED: Fox Sports Radio 620 launches tonight

wolfsonCarl Wolfson

Portland's progressive talk-radio station 620 AM KPOJ is ending all political programming and changing its format to all sports.

KPOJ morning host Carl Wolfson announced the decision by the station owner, Clear Channel Media, on his Facebook page this morning.

To my friends -- Clear Channel informed me this morning that they are moving in a new direction with KPOJ, beginning on Monday. I appreciate the opportunity they gave me for six years to be a voice for progressive causes in our state and nation. I will miss all of my fun friends at work (my excellent producer Paul, remains employed!). I love all of you, my loyal listeners. It has been my honor to give a platform to all of the outstanding groups, volunteers, elected officials and good people who make Oregon so special.
Wolfson tells WW he's grateful for the chance to be on the air, and that KPOJ gave Portland a progressive voice for the past eight years.

"But this is awfully hard," Wolfson says. "I'm very grateful to all my loyal listeners, and I'm sad that the progressive voice is going off the air in Portland."

UPDATE, 2:50 pm: Clear Channel Media officially announced this afternoon that 620 AM will become "Fox Sports Radio 620" starting at 5:30 pm today. It will add national Fox Sports Radio programs to broadcasts of Portland Trail Blazers basketball (moved from fellow Clear Clannel station KEX 1190) and Oregon State Beavers football.

The new Fox Sports programming lineup has posted to 620 AM's website.

Along with Wolfson's show, Carl in the Morning, 620 AM also aired programming from Thom Hartman, Randi Rhodes and Mike Malloy.

Ratings numbers from the past two years show KPOJ trails its talk-radio competitors—and Portland's two sports stations.

From October 2011 to October 2013, according to the ratings tracked by Arbitron, KPOJ fell from a 1.1 share to a 1.0 share of listeners—meaning 1 percent of listeners above the age of 12 were tuned to 620 AM. That's well behind last month's 3.5 share for News Radio KEX 1190 (which airs Rush Limbaugh) and the 5.0 share for KXL FM News 101 (which airs Lars Larson).

KOPJ's numbers also trail KOPB—the public radio station has an enviable 5.5 share—and both sports stations, KXTG The Game (2.5 share) and KFXX The Fan (1.6 share).
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