Now Snyder's put the brakes on the sale, claiming the frequencies WGMS operated at aren't worth the original pricetag of $45 million (plus a Clear Channel station may now be available). While the broadcast industry focuses on the Bonneville/Snyder clash of titans, let's take a look at what irresponsible behavior hath wrought.
- Bonneville switched frequencies between their commercial radio stations WGMS and WTOP, to create. Washington Post radio. The top-ranked commercial classical station in the country (and at one time 6th ranked in the DC Metro market) lost signal power and coverage area. Result: a significant portion of the 400,000+ loyal WGMS listeners either got a poorersignal or none at all.
- After more than three decades, public radio station WETA switched from classical to news/talk in a vain attempt to pump up revenues. Result: listeners who supported the station with pledges felt betrayed. WETA's ratings fall, as do revenues.
- Snyder offered to buy WGMS. Result: Bonneville began laying off staff. Advertising commitments fell into limbo. WGMS' subscription-only Internet radio station Viva La Voce prepared to suspend service.
- WETA's board gave the station permission to switch to classical – if there's no other outlet for it. Result: nothing, for now. WETA's former audience remained unserved.