Washington Post Radio, the short-lived joint venture between the Washington newspaper and the parent company of all-news WTOP-FM, will be replaced next month with a new talk-radio station, Bonneville International Corp. said today.
Starting Sept. 20, Talk Radio 3WT will be broadcast on 1500 AM and 107.7 FM with the slogan, “Left, Right and Whatever We Want.” Syndicated hosts Bill O’Reilly, Neal Boortz, Glenn Beck and Stephanie Miller will headline the new station. Talk Radio 3WT, whose call letters will be WWWT, also will retain several personalities currently heard on Washington Post Radio, including Tony Kornheiser, David Burd, Jessica Doyle and Pat Goss.
Rumors that the money-losing Washington Post Radio was headed for the chopping block circulated for several weeks. The 17-month-old station had lagged in the ratings race, most recently finishing 19th in the Washington market, according to Arbitron.
“Washington Post Radio was a tremendous experiment in broadcasting, and it was wonderful working with The Washington Post, a world-class newspaper,” said Joel Oxley, senior vice president for the Salt Lake City firm Bonneville. “While many advertisers were satisfied with the results the station generated, we just did not garner the Arbitron ratings we had hoped for.”
Bonneville had a three-year agreement with The Post, under which it paid for use of the newspaper’s brand and its reporters.
The radio company said ratings spiked earlier this year with the debut of “The Tony Kornheiser Show” weekdays from 8:30 to 10:30 a.m.
“It was met with such success that we realized we needed to take the station in the direction of personality-driven talk with more opinion and less hard news,” Mr. Oxley said. “Since this did not meet the original version of Washington Post Radio, The Washington Post and Bonneville mutually agreed to end the broadcast alliance.”