Clear Channel's Pittman Talks Pandora
March 11, 2011

Clear Channel Chairman of Media & Entertainment Bob Pittman spoke Wednesday at the Credit Suisse Investor Conference in Miami, and dedicated much of his speech to explaining the differences between radio and newer digital technologies. According to, Pittman said, "Radio is quite different than playlists or music lockers. Typically people have had their radio they love and they’ve had their music collection. Things haven’t changed. They still have a music collection and they have the radio stations. One is programmed for them, one is where I program stuff myself and look through it and play it and have specific interests."

Pittman took multiple opportunities to differentiate radio from Pandora, noting that "What makes radio different than custom radio – a Pandora-like service, playlist, or music locker, Spotify, etc. – is that radio’s curated and dynamically changes. What that means is we have to do an enormous amount of research every week to understand who that tribe is we’re programming to and what their tastes are. And guess what – those tastes change every week." He continued, "So as you’re getting tired of a certain song, it begins to disappear. As you discover a new song, miraculously it appears and starts being played more and more. And every week, every month, every year the station is constantly changing in reaction to changing consumer tastes."

Pittman added that Pandora is essentially just a "playlist," similiar to what you'd make for your own iPod. "Remember how great it was for a while, but over time you got sick of listening to your own playlist. It burns out. That’s exactly what happens here, because what you’re going to find with Pandora, or even with our service as well, it’s a shortcut to create a playlist. You’re putting in a song. It creates a playlist. It’s a benefit – I’m not knocking it – it’s good, but it ain’t radio. You create a playlist and then the songs are put on constant shuffle, to use the iPod analogy, but it constantly shuffles songs that are the same group of songs," Pittman said. "And if your tastes change or you get tired of that new Lady Gaga song, it’s still there. And if a new song appears, guess what, it doesn’t show up there. So what you do is you go create another playlist – and another one."

Breaking News
CBS Radio Signs Michael Martin To Multi-Year Contract Renewal
SportsRadio 94WIP/Philly Adds Joe Decamra & Jon Ritchie To Middays
October 19, 2016
Frankie C Extends Agreement With KZHT/Salt Lake City
Voncile Anderson Named Beasley Director/NTR Sales In Tampa Bay
In Brief - October 19, 2016
October 18, 2016
Rob Stringer Promoted To CEO Of Sony Music Entertainment
iHeartMedia St. Louis Announces The Debut Of The New Alt 104.9
Entercom Agrees To Acquire Four Radio Stations In Charlotte From Beasley Broadcast Group
Ebro Returns To Portland
Townsquare Media Names John Roberts OM For Tyler-Longview, Texas
Jacobs Media & PRPD’s 8th Annual Public Radio Tech Survey Released
In Brief - October 18, 2016
October 17, 2016
WFLZ/Tampa Names Kruz Program Director
Republic Records Promotes Wendy Goldstein To Executive Vice President
Alpha Media Mankato Names Bob Rose Market Manager
Corey B. Joins WBBM-FM (B96)/Chicago As New Night Host
October 14, 2016
Race Taylor Re-Ups With WPLJ/New York
Andrew Berger Named Imaging Director For KPWR/Los Angeles
October 13, 2016
iHeartMedia Chicago Names New Night Show Hosts
Emmis Announces Agreement to Sell Texas Monthly
Alpha Media Supports Hurricane Matthew Recovery Relief
KFM-BFM Adds Robin Roth To Roster
October 12, 2016
iHeartMedia Connecticut Names Jagger PD of WKSS & WKCI
Emmis Reaches Agreement To Sell Terre Haute Radio Stations
Music News
"Crash" Into Against Me!
Quick Hits: Radiohead, Frank Ocean, A$AP Ferg
Maroon 5 Closes The Top 40 and Hot AC Radio Panels Upon Impact
Jordan Fisher Will Make His Broadway Debut In Hamilton On November 22
Quick Hits: Kanye West, Eminem, Bruno Mars, Gwen Stefani
Pearl Jam, 2Pac & Depeche Mode Lead 2017 Rock Hall Nominees
Green Day Tops Billboard 200 For Their Third Time
Quick Hits: Liam Payne, Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame, Mother Love Bone
Quick Hits: Kings Of Leon, Elton John, Roger Waters
Maroon 5 Debuts New Single Featuring Kendrick Lamar
Louise Goffin To Perform Surprise Concert
Quick Hits: Drake, Depeche Mode
Drake Earns Record-Setting 13 American Music Award Nominations
Solange's A Seat at the Table Is Her First #1 Album
Green Day Announce 2017 North American Tour

Jon Zellner
EVP/Programming Operations

          Question Of
           The Week

FMQB Member Login

Not a member yet?
Sign up Now!
Sign Up for Breaking News!
Enter FMQB E-Tracking!