Round 6: AT&T/Cingluar/SBC vs Clear Channel

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Clear Channel dumps 1,000 gallons of white gloss paint on American radio. Once a wild and wooly medium, now you can drive clear across America without having to listen to more than 15 songs on the FM. You still have to change the channel… but give that a few years. See this Salon story on them, “Radio’s Big Bully.”

Of all the carriers, Cingular (now part of AT&T) has been the most aggressively averse to upholding contract law in letting its customers leave without penalty, essentially daring their customers to sue them. Really, it was a nice shell game. Cingular bought all AT&T’s customers, fired the most unprofitable ones, and now AT&T has bought them back. Handy. Previous Cingular, AT&T posts, posts. — BEN POPKEN

Previously: Halliburton vs News Corp, Exxon vs Time Warner Cable, Comcast vs Sony, Best Buy vs Uhaul, RIAA vs United Airlines.


Edit Your Comment

  1. B says:

    I’m voting for at&t because Clear Channel is merely giving people what they want. Besides, Radio is a dead medium, and they’ll be irrelevant in 10 years.

  2. j.a.s.o.n says:
  3. magellan says:

    AT&T + NSA , nuff said.

  4. vinco says:

    And let’s not forget about AT&T’s suspected role in handing over TONS of data to the NSA

  5. lastfm says:

    Both are headquartered in my city of San Antonio. I am biased towards both of them. Why did they have to be together the first round?

  6. lastfm says:

    Wait, both of these are based out of San Antonio. I live in San Antonio. This makes my vote very difficult, because I am so biased towards both of them.

  7. junkmail says:

    Oh man, my wife just got a job with ClearChannel. I’m sleeping with the enemy!!!11

  8. cheesyfru says:

    Wow, that was the toughest one yet. Both are evil, but ClearChannel is more irritating than a problem in day-to-day life. Plus, like someone mentioned above, they’ll be irrelevant soon enough. So AT&T it is!

  9. jaxed says:

    Clear Channel ruined radio.

  10. tadowguy says:

    Clear Channel hasn’t ever sold my radio listening habits to the NSA, as far as I can tell. Anyway, who needs radio when you have iPods?

  11. WindowSeat says:

    Is it that radio is a dead medium or that corporations like Clear Channel are killing it?

  12. mathew says:

    AT&T may suck, but at least there are alternatives. Clear Channel make sure that every radio station in most areas sucks.

  13. infinitysnake says:

    How is clear channel winning this?! At least they aren’t reading my email!

  14. esqdork says:

    Who among us actually listen to the radio? I’m doing fine without Clear Channel in my life but AT&T ruins it every day.

  15. Trai_Dep says:

    Radio wasn’t a dead medium until Clear Channel broke it. That’s the point of their evilness. Those multitude of bands you’ll never stumble across? Those weird-assed new genres burbling up from some odd corner of the country? Fergidaboutit. Won’t happen now.

    Same with the local coverage, local bands. Your radio station’s DJs protesting, say, the blind rush into invading Iraq. Local charity/PR support helping the community.

    Now “your” DJ is the same as every other top-20 city. Literally. “Your” radio station manufactures protect-those-in-power “protests” against artists voicing their opinion (e.g., Dixie Chicks).

    All because a bunch of old geezers in Congress who hate music changed laws to let Clear Channel happen.

    Final kicker: they made their billions from controlling a freaken public resource: our bandwidth.

    On the bright side, iPod wouldn’t have popped if radio had been a viable listening experience. :D

  16. Xkeeper says:

    It’s amazing that the comments are almost uncontested hate for AT&T, yet the polls say that it’s the other way around…

    I call shenanigans.

  17. Trai_Dep says:

    Oh, and Clear Channel owns Premiere Radio Networks, which syndicates Rush Limbaugh and Laura Schlesinger’s shows.

    They’re like the dense matter from black holes of innane, potty-mouth evil.

  18. AcidReign says:

    …..Clear channel is definitely the most evil. 25 minutes of commercials, 5 minutes of content. The only thing I use radio for anymore is Auburn football games that aren’t on TV.

  19. ArntorFTL says:

    Both are horrifically evil (for reasons others have already mentioned.) I voted for Clear Channel – only because a horrible experience I had with Cingular/ATT was actually resolved to my satisfaction. Once. A long time ago.

  20. Jesse in Japan says:

    What the hell is a radio?

  21. says:

    im voting clear channel because they cleverly made it so one person is in charge of a billion different radio stations…hence why people had to start downloading music to get what they really wanted to listen to