My local radio station, KUOW (yes, I’m a member), just sent notice to their usual weather guy that he wouldn’t be appearing on the show Weekday any more. They had him on to talk weather–which he is really, really good at–but had asked him several times not to veer off into other subjects, including Math education, which is something of an important subject for him, since he’s suing the local school district because of their choice of text books. They’ve had him on the air other times to talk about it, but they asked him, during those weather segments, to stick to the weather.
Last week he took it upon himself to “set the record straight” regarding something a previous guest (now off the air) had said about UW admission policies, and the Weekday folks told him enough was enough and he wouldn’t be a guest any more.
There is a predictable minor outrage among listeners, including Facebook pages to “like” and letters to sign, and they hosted a call-in discussion about it on a different show this afternoon.
What so many of those callers didn’t seem to understand is that, when a news show covers a topic like Math education (or whatever) they will often try to have opposing viewpoints. If a regular guest continues to offer one side of an argument without the other side having a chance to present their case, it starts to look like the station is taking sides. They don’t want that.
It sounds to me as if Mass became so comfortable in his role on the station that he felt free to offer up whatever opinions he has that seem relevant. He was warned not to do it, didn’t listen, and now he’s not going to be on the air. I don’t see what the big deal is.