Howard Stern Claims To Be "Victim Of A Smear Campaign"
September 14, 2006
Reacting to recent reports of his alleged demise, Howard Stern stated today that he is "the victim of a smear campaign" by terrestrial radio that is trying to "discredit" his Sirius Satellite Radio gig. Stemming from a post by Bill Tancer of Hitwise titled "Did Satellite Kill the Radio Star?" which cites a decline in Web traffic for howardstern.com, media outlets have picked up on the allegations and started reporting that Stern's career is in decline.
Stern rebuffed the comments today, stating, "I've got more enemies now than I ever have. We are so successful here at Sirius Satellite Radio. I have the entire radio industry fucking with me, hiring publicists to plant whatever shit they can say in the paper to make it seem like we're losers. My enemies are way worse than the government. Big business is my enemy, business people desperate for money. And let me tell you, they are way worse than the government."
Stern then promised to release numbers contrary to the report by Tancer that will show traffic on his web site has not diminished since his arrival at Sirius.
Meanwhile, Stern also discussed XM Satellite Radio/CBS Radio personalities Opie & Anthony, addressing the duo's appearance on The Late Show With David Lettermanin which they discussed the gag order Stern had placed on them while both were employed by Infinity Broadcasting. Stern said he didn't feel their free speech was interrupted, but rather that he shut down someone that was trying hone in on his action.
"I don't care if you badmouth me," said Stern while reminiscing of the past events with O&A. "What I care about is that you're ripping me off blindly and not even being appreciative of [my] career. When somebody is a thief, you put them in jail. I said, 'Put them in jail, let's see how they do when they can't talk about me.'"
This past March was the first time Stern had talked of the behind-the-scenes wrangling with O&A, admitting to it in an interview with Sean Hannity saying, "That's right. I believe in censoring anyone who is my enemy. I believe in censorship when it benefits me."
Stern also said he got a call from Letterman producer Rob Barnett asking if he cared about the O&A booking to which he stated, "I've never interfered in anybody's career" and didn't block the appearance. This news had come out before the appearance by O&A on Letterman's show, to which the duo challenged Stern to block the appearance if he could. O&A say they have been asked back by Letterman's people for a second appearance this December.