Look, I am no friend of Greg Keane (we have what is know as,”history),but I can only agree to his response to the latest piece of vapidity from the Head of CFM.

We have known, for far too many years, that CFM was to be rationalised into an automated system in order (1) to save a lot of money and (2) appeal to the non-musicality of the management that requires a mechanical approach to radio and a vague and offset attitude to broadcasting in general,It comes as no surprise then that CFM is about to be stripped of its structure and turned into a music machine.It just has taken a long time, that is…

“The decision to adopt digital presentation at Classic FM was flagged in late 2014. Familiarisation “seminars” were held in December of that year and in March 2015. The main thrust of the innovation was supposedly to streamline programming and to make it less labour intensive. Neither seminar assuaged the suspicion that this process (G-Selector) was the thin edge of the wedge in downgrading the network. Despite predictions that it would be “up and running” by February 2015, “programming” positions for the new set up were not advertised until early June. It was clear from the wording that, despite the usual persiflage of management speak, the main criterion for the new roles was the ability to work within a digital format. The interviews were held in early July, and the appointments of the successful applicants were announced a few weeks later. Both successful applicants were from outside the ABC, and neither had any meaningful programming experience. It’s worth mentioning at this point that between March 2014 and September 2015 the network lost, through voluntary retirement, four of its most experienced program producers. Whether some retirements were prompted by the prospect of digitisation or general disillusionment with the direction of the network is anyone’s guess. The contract of another programmer, who had been employed almost continually since 2011, was not renewed beyond the end of August 2015, pending the introduction of G-Selector.   The essence of the process is the choice of music from a digital database which initially consisted exclusively of music already programmed from existing non-digital programs, which had been over a period of many months  “ripped” into the database. What went to air were essentially cannibalised versions of the original programs. Two more people, one of whom also presents programs, were appointed late in 2015. The effect of the new system minimised creative input and because the “programmers” are regularly rotated between programs, effectively eliminated any creative dynamic, symbiosis or personal chemistry of the type that existed between Ivan Lloyd and Emma Ayres or Joanne Mason and Julia Lester, between current presenters and “programmers”. Presenters simply have to make do with what’s sent to them. Most daytime programs are now based on G-Selector, and further plans are afoot to reduce further live presenter involvement. ”  Limelight July 13 2016


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