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Tuesday, August 29, 2006

10,000 Signatures!!! 

Sonovista, my friends... its tuesday evening as i write, and i've just sent another update off to my savemsnbconxm announce list... as i mentioned previously, i've gotten very little feedback on my "daily" scribbles... an early comment (positive) from someone at MSNBC who thought i was funny (thanks... i am), and a complete missing of the point from the radio.about.com writer who threatened to withdraw his support for something he hadn't shown any support for (and which would hurt everyone who has signed the petition and not just the nut-job who writes these things... me!)

Anyway, here is today's mailing, sent out just a few minutes ago... we're legitimately up to about 425 signatures, which is great considering how amazingly little mention we're getting... but i was feeling depressed and was going to throw in the towel tonight, when i spoke with my friend sean who said, "don't do it... you're having too much fun... just make more shit up!"

which is always great advice... so instead of giving in, we're amping up the BS... we've gotten 10,000 signatures!!! that's my story and i'm sticking to it (grin)

in the meanwhile time is running down, so if you have any way to help us spread the word (either within or outside of XM), now is the time, por favor!

We'll be talking about this whole thing on tomorrow's Schnauzer Logic podcast (a big episode... #25) which you can reach using the link on the right.

until then, have fun!
cheers
robin
------

To: announce@savemsnbconxm.com
From: Robin Diane Goldstein
Subject: UPDATE: 10,000 Signatures!!! (A Petition to Save MSNBC on XM)

Good Morning... As those of you who have been getting our daily emails know, our campaign has been engaged in quite a bit of controversy... Over this past weekend we secured what we believed to be the names, phone numbers and email addresses of every XM subscriber, and our bank of volunteers began the process of contacting each of them to ask for their support in our drive to Save MSNBC on XM.

Unfortunately, somewhere into the 10th hour of our telephone marathon (or "phone-a-mathon") we began to realize that the list we had secured was not a list of phone numbers, but a list of part numbers from the inventory of Manny, Moe & Jack (The 'Pep' Boys), who also use 10-digits to differentiate the exhaust manifold wing nuts from a 1973 Plymouth Reliant from the barium injected water clips on a 2006 Hyundai Mazera. The volunteers continued to call for another 5 hours after discovering the error, but their hearts weren't in it, and eventually they had to stop.

Fortunately the cause has taken on its own momentum fueled, in part, by the bloggers and writers from Inside Radio and the San Diego Radio News as well as Media Bistro, Lost Remote and The Daily Kos ,and as of Tuesday, August 29, 2006, we have managed to collect:

10,000 Signatures!!!

An amazing and unexpected accomplishment to be sure, especially considering that the number was closer to 400 only yesterday. But we checked and we checked, again, and sure enough, as of right now we have:

10,000 Signatures!!!

Unfortunately, a bug in the software at http://www.petitionspot.com/petitions/savemsnbconxm makes it appear that there are only about 420 signatures (duude!.. which is pretty damn good considering we started this petition drive about a week ago).

But despite what the web page says, our independent auditors can confirm that as of today we have received:

10,000 Signatures!!!

Now, I know that some of the more skeptical members of the media are saying, "How do we know you aren't lying to us about the 10,000 Signatures?", which is an excellent question and to them I can only reply:

Candy... look.. look... its candy!!!

But here is the real problem we're facing, and we need your help (no, really...)

Yesterday I attempted to fax the 300+ signatures and comments we had received, up until that point (before we jumped all the way to 10,000 Signatures!!!) and found that the fax number at XM was busy from about 10am until well into the evening. Now, I'm certainly willing to print out the pages with all 10,000 Signatures!!! and mail them to XM's headquarters, but I was hoping to be able to fax updates directly to XM so that the decision makers could read what each of the signers had to say before they pull the plug. If anyone knows of a way to make sure that the folks at XM get a copy of all the pages of the petition, could you please send me an email?

You see, I've rarely been involved in this kind of grass-roots venture (I customize poodles for a living), and have been genuinely touched by the comments in the 10,000 Signatures!!! If you go to the petitionspot site you can read some of those that have been posted, and if you do, you'll see that MSNBC is not just another news outlet... very few people are commenting on the news updates but, instead, are loyal fans of the hosts of the different talk shows... talk shows that can not be heard anywhere else (but cable TV, something that almost no one has in their office or car). And, as Brian Mahoney points out out over on Inside Radio, in response to a comment in one of the signatures, which says:,

--- I support this petition because I listen to Countdown & Hardball daily and love Keith Olbermann. If XM drops MSNBC, I will drop XM. I got XM to listen to talk radio - not music - and I will not pay for a service that keeps right wing FOX and cancels MSNBC.--

"That (second) comment has yours truly intrigued-- how many others have signed up with XM or Sirius primarily for spoken word programming? With the exception of Stern on Sirius, I'd always assumed subscriptions were driven primarily by the musical offerings.

We're finding out something important, here, and those 10,000!!! of us who are fond of our XM radios continue hope that XM will find this out, too.

In the meantime, we could use as much exposure as possible, if not to change XM's mind, then to help another outlet see the intrinsic and unique value in MSNBC (especially as we come up on the mid-term elections and regardless of whether you think Olbermann is funny).

We have not yet begun to fight! (But we're well along the road to making stuff up!)

With kindest personal regards
Robin Diane Goldstein, Chairwoman

Sign/Read The Petition:
http://www.petitionspot.com/petitions/savemsnbconxm

Read The WebLo
http://www.savemsnbconxm.com

Monday, August 28, 2006

They're on to us... 

quick update... as of about 11am this morning i have been trying to send a fax to XM's headquarters containing all the signatures and comments received so far... the line has been BUSY continuously (constantly?) since then... my theory is that they're blocking calls from my electronic fax service number so they don't have to hear the Truth (cause, you know, i'm not sure if they can handle the truthiness)

or the line is just busy (can't handle the faxiness!)

but i'm not giving up!

courage(iness)

robin

Saturday, August 26, 2006

Weekend Update - Part 2 - August 26, 2006 

Me? I'm having a great weekend... went to see some baseball today and managed to score a sweet seat behind home plate just under the broadcast booth... and my team won! Then tomorrow I head to the city to go to the museum with my friend who's visiting from Japan... Plus tomorrow night's the Emmy Awards, and some friends are coming over to watch on the big screen (too bad NBC decided not to broadcast the show in HD... maybe I could start a petition...)

On the other hand, our current Save MSNBC on XM petition efforts...? not so much... after the initial round of mentions in a few blogs, and some nasty spam and hate mail (folks angry that anyone would try to change the mind of a corporation), we had only an additional 35 signatures today for a grand total of 326... now i believe in the power of 'small numbers', and this is about 3x as many signatures as anyone expected (given the near impossibility of targeting satellite listeners through the broad nature of the internet)... but i don't think we can realistically expect to change XM's decision on the basis of a few hundred voices... in fact, given the way this has all come about, i don't think a thousand voices would make a difference... not that i'm a conspiracy theorist or believe XM should substitute my judgement for their own...

But I am touched by the thoughtful comments of almost every person who has signed the petition... Satellite radio is serving as a unique mechanism for them to become educated while being connected and once people taste knowledge they don't give it up easily... clearly MSNBC is not everyone's cup of tea, but it holds a place of honour and importance that, I think, probably surprises even the programming staff at MSNBC... read through some of the comments and you'll see what I mean, and why I'm touched and will continue to do what I can to "legally" change XM's mind.

Having said that, and realizing that new signatures are now, literally, trickling in, I've just started to make shit up... No one every got in trouble for lying to the press, right? (Especially in a campaign)... So I'm using my well-tuned bullshit skills to mix a little truth, a little crapola and a healthy scoop of absurdism into my updates... the latest update (sent at about 9pm and addressed "Good Morning") says that we now have hundreds of volunteers who are using a secret copy of the entire XM subscriber database to call every subscriber and register their unhappiness with past and current XM programming choices...

Now, apart from fact that such a guerilla tactic would be of questionable value, morally, legally and tactically (you'd probably piss off as many people as you'd get to your side), if XM has almost 7 million subscribers, and if a painter and a half can paint a wall and a half in an hour and a half, how long would it take for, let's say, 100 people to call 7 million people? (and for extra credit, how much would it cost if even 1/2 of them were in your calling circle?)

Nevertheless, within minutes of sending out this bit of silliness, i received my first legitimate response from the press (other than the email from the person at MSNBC who said that what i was writing was making them laugh) and this journalise was very unhappy that i would do such a thing, and wrote:

Don't you think this is an invasion of XM subscribers' privacy?

I would never publicize anyone using this tactic.

Take me off your mailing list
.

Now the first thing I thought was that i had just pissed off a friend of the cause... but when i went to their website i realized that they had published -NOTHING- about the petition or XM's decision to eliminate MSNBC... so their indignation was just more bullshit... (btw, i did write back and say that i agreed that it was an invasion of their privacy, and i respected their decision not to publicize what we were doing, etc. etc., but that i'd be happy to take their name off the list... i wonder if they'll get the joke?)

So here's my bottom line (in case anyone is actually reading this): we live in an age of rampant anti-intellectualism... where ideas are crushed under the weight of spin and soundbites substitute for discourse... MSNBC is not perfect, in any sense of the word, (Way Too Much JonBenet Ramsey this past week, Way Too Much Michael Jackson in the past...) but it does provide a home for the Olbermanns and the Matthews and the Scarboroughs and the Carlsons and others to dig, just a little deeper, than the partisan ramblings on Fox or the toothless reports on CNN (Ted Turner would be rolling in his grave if he were dead)... and as we come up on the first anniversary of Katrina and the fifth anniversary of 9/11 and the first real chance for the Democrats to take control of at least part of one branch of government for the first time in a long time (something that seems, to me, necessary for us to call ourselves a Democracy), XM has a unique power (and therefore, as spiderman would say, a unique responsibility) to increase the diversity of ideas available to their listeners by running the MSNBC lineup... when XM started they were all about taking chances and programming things you couldn't hear on AM or FM radio... but over the past 4 years that programming philosophy has changed and the company has become more risk averse, opting for the safe (Oprah) over the obscure... Now with music, if I don't like what I hear, I can always burn a CD and listen to my own mix of tunes... But I can't go out and create the news (well, not more than a little, apparently!)... and so news outlets should be held to a different standard because its the right thing to do... In the early days of broadcast journalism television didn't look at news as a profit center... they felt that news was a corporate responsibility (and gave the station some cache)... that was, i think, the right way to think about it, and XM, facing the chance, should do the right thing.

That's my point... The rest is all B.S.

I always quote the words of Angeles Arrian on my radio show... I think I'll start quoting them here... they provide a sound philosophy:

Show Up
Pay Attention
Tell The Truth
And Don't Be Attached To The Outcome

Bedtime... Peace Be With You...
Namaste
Mahalo
Good Night
robin

Friday, August 25, 2006

Can someone explain people like -this- to me? 

Sonovista, my friends!

you know, i'm always surprised that some people seem to have an infinite capacity to be jerks... there's a 'poster' over at xmfan.com who has been crapping on every post i've made regarding our little attempt to get XM to change their mind about MSNBC... and when i called him out on it the first time, he said he liked the channel... so go figure...

then, tonight, i made a quick post letting folks know that we've gotten almost 300 signatures in the few days we've been at this (with no real publicity), but no response from XM, and that my gut tells me that this means that the 'story' about low ratings is an excuse (the ratings may be low, but not the lowest of 150 channels), and so there's clearly another reason at work, and here's what the jerk felt the need to write (at about midnight, friday night, his time):

I know what it means. It means nobody listened. 298 signatures out of 7 million (oops make that 14 million since there are about 2 listeners per hh) have signed the petition.

And it has to do with both ratings (the lack of) and money (the cornerstone of any business). How dare they try to make money with this whole thing. Those bastards!!!

Say...I've sent 5 emails to MSNBC and they haven't responded to a single one of them so following your logic this would have nothing to do with XM but with MSNBC trying to make money. How dare they!!!


as the little kid who plays a young woody allen in annie hall, says, when introduced to Joey Nichols, "what an asshole"

but i'm at home, alone, on a friday night, too, so i felt the need to reply (but won't rise to any further bait), with the following:

you know, this is the second time you've crapped on one of my posts (and mischaracterized what i wrote)... what's the problem here? you wrote that you didn't want to see the channel go away... and i didn't say it was the most popular... my position is that it isn't the least popular...

do you have a clue about how public polls work? there is a multiplier at work... this isn't voting where every subscriber gets a ballot (and even then, marketing folks are thrilled to get a 10-20% return rate)... 300 signatures translates to 1000's of listeners (perhaps 10's of thousands)... and thousands of listeners for one channel out of 150 is significant... perhaps not significant enough for XM to keep the channel (there are always $$$ considerations), but my thesis is that the original argument that MSNBC doesn't have the ratings is B*S*... there's something else at play... if there weren't XM would have said so to TV Newser...

my guess (a -guess-... not -fact-) is that XM didn't expect to get a significant response... they need the bandwidth for something else that will make them $ and they figured that if the arbitron ratings for MSNBC were showing low numbers, nobody would care... but they're clearly getting some phone calls and some PR and folks signing the petition and now they're just going to sit on their thumbs and say nothing and assume this will all pass and they can do whatever they have planned...

and they can...

some people will leave but most will stay...

but in the long run they weaken customer loyalty... one crappy decision doesn't (usually) destory a company... but over time you piss off a lot of little special interest groups, and one morning you wake up and you're out of business...

but what the f*ck do i know? i'm just one person out of 14 milli... no wait... half those families just had babies!!! i'm just one person out of 21 million customers!

you're right... trying is not only a waste of time... its evil and selfish.

i'm sorry


i should have stuck with "what an asshole"

but between you and me (or me and me, since i don't think that anyone else is reading this), i am having so much fucking fun with this project... not that i think there'll be any actual change, though we live in hope!... but because this has energized my brain... it feels like every neuron is firing and ideas are flying and i have an amazing amount of energy... and its great to know i can feel this way about something, even a silly little project... its a feeling i need to hold on to for the next thing i undertake for my own benefit!

and bed awaits... 300 tomorrow... we're throwing a party!

cheers
robin

Day 5 - Friday Update 

Sonovista, my friends... And welcome to everyone who's interested in helping to Save MSNBC programming on XM Satellite Radio, and to all the loyal listeners of Schnauzer Logic.

First, if you haven't already done so, please click on the link on the right and Sign the Petition.

Second, if you haven't already done so, please call XM @ 202-380-4094 and tell them you're mad as hell, etc etc etc.

Third, if you have any ideas on how to get greater publicity for this campaign so we can reach more people (preferably people who are or plan to be XM subscribers), send your suggestions to petition@savemsnbconxm.com And make sure to tell your XM-subscriber friends at the next SatUp.

And finally, if you've done all that, take a moment to read the "daily" emails, posted below, that i've been sending to an ever-widening list of folks who don't seem to be able to help, but at least have written to say they're being entertained by my rambling prose. That's a good thing, right?

It ain't over until we lose!
cheers
robin

---
Tuesday's Update (sent to the media on August 22, 2006)

Good Morning... As you may know, a petition requesting that XM Satellite Radio reverse/revise their decision to drop MSNBC programming on Channel 130 has been posted on the internet at http://www.petitionspot.com/petitions/savemsnbconxm (the internet & petitions... what a great combination!)

Filtering out the multiple signatures I've received from G.W. Bush and B. O'Reilly (in their multitude of forms and spellings), and other various and sundry cartoon characters (who are, apparently, big fans), as of this morning, less than 24 hours after posting and with no publicity other than a link on the XMFAN and XM411 web sites, there are over 100 signatures, which means...

I have absolutely no idea...

I guess what it means is that people who watch and listen to MSNBC are passionate, and that the programming on MSNBC plays an integral part in the way they get their news. And for at least some of them, MSNBC was a reason to get XM instead of Sirius.

Now I'm a big kid and realize that XM is a business and MSNBC is a business and there may be all kinds of double-secret special reasons behind this programming change that no amount of signatures (even 200!!!) will change... Heck, even Drudge has posted some unsubstantiated rumors (no, really!)...

The point is, if the -only- reason to drop MSNBC from XM is "ratings" then there are some dedicated XM subscribers (and MSNBC fans) with very desirable demographics (I know this because Drudge told me so) who would like it to be known that they are willing to click on a link to let their deepest thoughts be known.

On the other hand, if bags of money and small packages of a white crystalline powder have already exchanged hands and there's nothing to be done, would you please let me know so I can close the petition? I have to manually "approve" every entry with a comment (which is almost -all- of them, and worth reading, I must say!), and this is greatly affecting my nap time.

With kindest personal regards
Robin Diane Goldstein

---
Wednesday's Update (sent to the media on August 23, 2006)

Good Morning... remember yesterday, when I joked about our little grass roots effort to save MSNBC on XM and how we had gotten 100 signatures in 24 hours and if we dared to dream we might someday, maybe, hopefully, reach 200 signatures? remember? (hell, it was only yesterday... how much email do you folks get?)

Well, if you dare to dream small enough, your dreams can come true!

As of this morning 208 people have found the moral courage (and just enough control of their index finger) to push a button on a web page in support of our little campaign. Just think of it?! 208 brave Americans (and a couple of Canadians) who aren't afraid to let it be known that they want to listen to the audio from a basic cable news channel on their car radio... Take THAT bad people of the world who hate our freedoms!

But seriously... do you know what this means? It means that we're adding about 100 signatures a day... Now I'm no math wizard (no, seriously... they made me give back the tall pointy hat and the wand-thing with the star on the end), but at this rate we'll have 36500 in one year and and 365000 signatures in ten years and by the year 2086 every man, woman and blorg (shhh... you'll find out) will have signed our petition to keep MSNBC on XM. What do you think the folks at XM will do then, huh?

So we soldier on. Yesterday some very nice folks at The Daily Kos and TV Newser and Lost Remote put a link to our petition on their web pages. And last night I started an online web journal (you might think of it as a web log or "weblo") to chronicle this little quixotic adventure. You can read it over at http://www.savemsnbconxm.com.

And that's it for today... Tomorrow we'll look into what happens if we don't manage to reverse XM's decision... How does a satellite channel get turned off? Is there some kind of big explosion in the sky that we'll all be able to see? THAT would be cool! Or is it just like when the bug zapper on the back porch use to get all clogged up and the lights in the house would dim and there'd be this kind of sweet/smokey smell... Sigh... I remember mama...

Anyway, thanks for listening... Please spread the word... And let us know if there's anyone we should add to our distribution list... Hardball is coming up next...

With kindest personal regards
Robin Diane Goldstein

---
Friday's Update (sent to the media on August 25, 2006)

Good Morning... As we reported in yesterday's update, coverage of our little campaign to save MSNBC on XM has garnered world-wide attention with journalists from over 137 countries (+/-136.5) calling to ask, "Who is Ms. NBC?" and "What is an XM?" and "Does this look infected to you?" We're also pleased to report that our efforts will be the subject of a cover story in an upcoming issue of Atlantic Monthly (the actual month to be determined sometime in 2008).

On a positive note, random people with articulated digits continue to stumble half-naked and vaguely smelling of ObsessionĀ® and Armor-AllĀ® into our website/web-log(weblo)/club house over at http://www.savemsnbconxm.com where volunteers are waiting with blank powers of attorney (power of attorneys?) and a hot meal.

As of today (August 25, 2006), Two Hundred and Eighty Two (282) electronic signatures have been received, almost all with detailed comments.

Some show amazing insight, such as Nevada State Senator Bob Coffin (holy crap!) who wrote:

Unbelievable that you would drop the best political coverage in the nation by losing Chris Mathews and Keith Olberman. Movers and shakers in DC and state capitols all over the country count on them for their political fix. They are not just news but interpreters of the news. They force people to speak forthrightly. You might lose me and my five subscriptions over this. What fools you are becoming!!!!

Some are simply passionate, such as Chyna Bell who wrote:

If XM has to drop a news station, they should drop Fox. Biased, uninteresting news sucks.

And some are merely confused, such as Jason Nathanson, who wrote:

I like soup.

You can (and if you're XM, -should-) read them all at http://petitionspot.com/petitions/savemsnbconxm

But whatever their expression of commitment, one thing is absolutely clear:

After a week of pounding the cyber-asphalt we've gotten only 282 signatures!!! What's up with that? The hippie kid standing outside the Whole Foods last night asking for signatures to Free Nelson Mandella (I didn't have the heart to tell him) had over 500 signatures... -and -a non-fat, soy chai-latte that someone had bought him from Starbucks (a proud partner of XM Satellite radio).

So we need your help in spreading the word.

If you're XM Satellite Radio, we'd like to ask you to create a promo for our campaign and run it on Channel 130... you can bill us... we're good for the money.

If you're a journalist/webmaster/web-logger, please give us a little front-page exposure and direct folks to http://www.savemsnbconxm.com (Come on... its a slow news day... that guy who did that thing is back in that place and they won't do anything to him at least until Monday)

And If you're MSNBC, be brave... be strong... mommy's just gone to the store for a pack of smokes... she'll be back soon (shhh....)

Anyway, thanks for listening... Please help us to spread the word... And remember the battle cry of one of the faithful who wrote, 'This is about Freedom of the Press"!!!

(uh, no... no its not... its about money... and ego... but mostly money...)

Courage

With kindest personal regards
Robin Diane Goldstein, Chairwoman

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

What was I thinking?!!! 

Ok... here's the deal... over the past year i've been spending more and more time in my car... and i don't know about you, but i go through listening cycles... there was my "Ska" period and my "Bluegrass" period and my "Goofy Morning Show" period and even a period where i listened to a lot of Radio Disney (which is troubling since i don't have any kids)... but, as i said, over the past year i've been spending a lot more time in my car, and have found myself tuning over to MSNBC more and more... i live on the west coast, so with the 3-hour time difference, the MSNBC lineup works pretty well for me from about noon until 6pm... and while i don't necessarily agree with the political point of view of every host (or even any host), the conversations are lively without being shrill... and i think that by-and-large, the hosts are all pretty damn smart without being smarmy...

so i was surprised when about a week ago i heard an announcement on XM during some programming on another channel (maybe it was Opie and Anthony on 202) that there was some new sports programming coming and blah blah blah and

ohyeahweregettingridofmsnbconchannel130sorrybegoodbuhbye...

and i thought, "what the fuck?"... then i heard it again and again and eventually managed to write down the phone number they gave in the spot (i've sent email to XM's customer care group, before, back when their radios were coal powered, and i'm still waiting for a reply)... so last tuesday (the 15th) i called and left a message saying, in effect, "heeeeeeyyyyyyyyy... don't do that!"... then i hung up and felt pretty proud of myself and had a cookie...

so imagine my surprise when, last friday (the 18th), i got a call from "Bud" (i don't remember... could have been someone else) thanking me for my comments and calling to discuss the programming changes.

i shit myself... right there... in my car... with the motor running... actual poop...

i thanked "Bud" for the call and we got into a brief discussion about some of the recent XM programming decisions, and the increase in the number of channels at the expense of audio quality, and blah blah blah... and then i said to "Bud", "i'm surprised you're pulling MSNBC instead of one of the other channels... i have to figure it has a pretty good number of listeners for one of the news stations" and "Bud" said, "no... actually the ArbitronĀ® numbers are pretty small... in fact, since we started running the spots noting the change, we've only gotten about 70 calls or so"...

now i have a wee bit of radio background, and generally you figure that 1 call or letter or bomb threat is equivalent to about 100 listeners... could be more... could be less... with satellite radio and a targeted audience who's probably pretty technologically sophisticated, i could imagine the ratio might be smaller... but taking the best case, 70 calls would equal about 7000 listeners, which is about 1/10% of XM's approximately 7Mil listeners... yup, they made the right choice...

so i thanked "Bud" for the call and cleaned up my car and went inside and had another cookie and fell into a deep sleep...

but then i woke up and thought, "heeeeeeyyyyyyy... i call shenanigans... 70 calls doesn't sound right"... so i started looking around on the internet(s), looking for any mention of MSNBC being dropped from XM... and there was very little... a couple of postings on XMFAN.com and XM411.com and a posting on The Daily Kos from a writer who was lamenting the loss of MSNBC... but nothing else... even the XM web site was silent...

so i thought, "well, maybe there are only 70 of us who really listen to MSNBC on our XM radios, but maybe there are a lot more and XM just hasn't figured out how to count us... yeah... that's it!"

so with coffee in hand, i set about to create a campaign to Save MSNBC on XM Satellite Radio... first i stole a lot of little head shots from the XM and MSNBC websites of the various MSNBC personalities... then i stole the MSNBC logo and the XM logo and threw them all into photoshop and came up with a really crappy badge (you can see it on the right hand side of the page)... i do graphic design for a living (sometimes) and my dearly departed dad was an amazing commercial artist and this little logo/badge thing just sucks ass and would have killed him if he were still alive! but it had that 'grass roots' quality that so many powerless ventures seem to have... the hopelessness seeps right through... so i figured we might as well go with it...

then i registered the domain www.savemsnbconxm.com (or NAMBLA) and thought, "so how do we save MSNBC on XM?" and after a few minutes of holding my breath and getting light headed, i knew the answer immediately... we don't... no... i mean, we create a petition and then get signatures and then the owners and management of XM Satellite Radio realize the error of their ways and the little house is saved and grammy can live there the rest of her days...

yeah... right...

but i had created a crappy graphic and spent $12 for a domain, so i was committed... i went looking at the various online petition sites (did you realize there are more than one? and that there are, like, 1000's of petitions on an insanely twisted array of topics? personally i think you have a better chance of becoming a successful entertainer by winning one of those "reality" shows than you do in changing anything with a petition, but who am i to doubt the wisdom of the founding fathers... if they saw fit to grant each and every one of us the right to petition the government, then we damn well have the right... no, the obligation... to petition a corporation!

yay

so anyway, i created this petition over on petitionspot.com (complete with an amusing proclaimation and the crappy graphic) and set the whole bloody process in motion...

what i didn't do was provide a way for this whole venture to benefit -me-... you see, i'm a former broadcaster who's currently a podcaster and would love to increase the size of my audience from the 1000 or so it is now... i -should- have routed all the traffic to the petition through my website (schnauzerlogic.com) or show blog (schnauzerlogic.tblog.com), but i am so guileless that it never occured to me to benefit from the (minimal amount of) work i did to put this all together... cest la vie!

the other thing i failed to do was to understand how petitionspot works... you see, i have to manually approve each and every 'signature'... which was kind of cool for the first 10 or so... but today my damn mac sounded like a pinball machine, pinging and dinging every few seconds as another signature came in...

every time a bell rings...

but then another thing happened... i started to get a few hate messages (?!)... yah... i know... people manage to get angry over the stupidest things!!! i mean, why should you care if i want to keep a favorite station on the air... its kind of like a bad relationship where the husband screams at the wife, "YOU BETTER NOT CALL THE DJ AND REQUEST YEllOW SUBMARINE BY THE BEATLES AGAIN OR I'LL KILL YOU"

except in that case i'd agree with the husband...

so i figured that maybe i would write about this little experiment and see what happens... XM has said they're pulling the station on September 4th, so we've only got a few weeks before the deadline (again, whatever that means)...

and since i started the petition its gotten mentioned over at the Daily Kos and TV Newser and Lost Remote and some other blogs and as I write this around Midnight west coast time, there are 200 signatures (which, if we use Radio math, would equal about 20,000 listeners)... so i think i'll keep pinging the folks at XM and MSNBC letting them know how its going, how you doin', what's new, how are the kids, didja see the game last night... you know, that kind of stuff... and see if i get any kind of response at all...

so far i've written the two heads of programming at XM, Eric Logan and Lee Abrams and Hugh Panero and have heard nothing (although its possible that they're not getting reception if they're indoors away from a south-facing window)... i've also written to a whole host of folks over at MSNBC and was surprised to get a very kind note from someone over there at least acknowledging what we're doing (and saying its given them a giggle... which is always the point)...

tomorrow i'll send an update with the latest numbers and copy of the petition and include a larger distribution list... and then i'll do it again... and again... and again... mostly because i'd like to get some kind of acknowledgement from XM about why they're doing this... i have some theories, but i'm tired and need to get to bed...

in the meanwhile, i'd welcome any advice about how to get the attention of the 'right' people or, in the alternative, a bribe to get me to stop all my futile gestures (i'm not very smart or proud)

and if you're even slightly amused by this all, then please check out my show, Schnauzer Logic...

and, as i always say at the end of my show,

Show Up
Pay Attention
Tell The Truth
And Don't Be Attached To The Outcome!

cheers
robin

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