Friday, June 8, 2012

Who Confesses at The Ticket?

On Friday, Dan McDowell made a passing reference to "my Ticket confession" -- not referring to the site, but to a confession he was going to make.  I don't know what it was, I just missed the reference.  I refer you to the comments to the prior post.

This generated discussion among the commenters as to whether people at The Ticket read the site.  Some interesting speculations, including a fairly authoritative survey by our friend AP, who I think has it sussed out about right. 

Here's what I think:

First, AP's on the money about the JV and board ops.  Krenek dropped a comment here one time that the reason my hits went through the roof on White Elephant Day was that that population was checking the comments frequently to see if anyone had written anything about them.

As for the hosts:

I think some check in with some regularity, and some just take the occasional swim through, as Mike R might say.  I have VERY rarely received an email from a host commenting on a story, sometimes with a correction (never with any supersecret inside station stuff), and almost always with a compliment to the site, and sometimes with a remark that we're on the button here much more than we know, and inviting me to keep up the good work.  Always nice to hear that.

But the most interesting remark came from a JV who dropped me a line about something -- this was quite some time ago -- who said that he'd see the site up on people's laptops around the station and making the point that the hosts have egos and they love to see themselves written about, so yeah, they check out the site.

But, as some of you have said, I don't think they ascribe great importance to what is written here.  With their ratings, can you blame them?  I'm sure they're amused at some of the wrong guesses and perhaps intrigued by some of the right ones.  And interested in what listeners like and don't like.

I also think station hits to this site have gone up hugely since Tech Gate, since this site is saying publicly what they can't say (anymore).  I'm imagining (only imagining) that the on-air guys appreciate it that there's a place where real listeners stretch out and report in detail the deficiencies in the listening experience both before and since the move to Victory.   And say bad things about the CTO that they also can't now say.

I also think they drop by from time to time because of the way this site is pitched.  When I got it rolling, my thought was -- look, I love the damned Little One, I'm not going to run a site that gripes and complains all the time.  I try to keep a positive balance, and to keep it fair, or, when it's not, at least to admit when I just have a subjective dislike of something or other.  I'm delighted to say that most of the Confessors who join us here have picked up on that and also try to look at the station objecitvely.  Man, we have some amazing writers and thinkers who take the time to offer very thoughtful comments.  So when hosts come here, they know they're going to see commentary from me and others that attempts to see things clearly and comment with fairness and a civil tone, and, importantly, not ignoring what's great about The Ticket.

And, of course, there is the rare on-air reference.  I missed Dan's only by a minute -- I was in the car but stepped out just a moment before. You know, that may be the only time that the phrase "my Ticket confession" has been uttered on the air.  The TeeBox has mentioned us a couple of times, but didn't say the name of the site.  I think P1 Steven -- what the heck happened to him, anyway? -- did a shout-out once when BaD was rolling screenless.

Let's not forget It's Just Banter, where this (unnamed) site is occasionally slagged by T.C.

Also, I fancy that some of our commentary shows up in other ways.  I'll give you two examples:  (1) After this site made fun of the All-Pro Foundation ad in which all of the hosts said they used All-Pro Foundation Repair (, future ads say that they all ENDORSE All-Pro.  (2) I regularly bashed Gordon for his George-gay-and-minority-baiting, opining that it was tired, unfunny, and routinely stopped down the show.  (Example:  Well, it has almost completely stopped, much to the improvement of the showgram of Those Who Muse So Gently.  Could be my imagination.

CTO:  Jeff Catlin used to read the site and pretty sure he still does.  He's emailed a couple of times with corrections, and has been unfailingly nice. 

"Is this The Bucket in Dallas?  The Ticket?  Right, Ticket.  Put me through to Jeff Carlin.  Catlin, right.   Hello, Jeff?  This is Stu Leydenjar, Senior Vice President in Charge of Wires and Plugs.  Listen, I'm looking at this website on my electric computer -- these things are great, the station should get one! -- and I'm wondering if you can tell me what CTO and STD means.  Also, who is Mike Rhyner?"

Overall, I suspect that at a bare minimum CTO and hosts will open the site if someone has emailed it to them because it has something of interest to the recipient. 

As far as anonymous commenters go: Yes, I think there are a couple of station guys who post here from time to time.  I think sometimes Confessors think they're the same troll who pops up here from time to time, but I think some of it is legit.  (I also think Richie Whitt posted back when we were having a close look at RaGE.)  Some of the people claiming to be insiders are, I think, and some may be friends of insiders.  (Gypo Nolan, for example.)  And some are frauds.  No matter, even frauds are welcome if they have a respectful take.

The one thing that surprises me a little is that no other Ticket fan sites or blogs have popped up.  I think it's maybe because people who like to write are already posting here, and of course The UnTicket hosts comments as well.  And there's GrubesIsMyLeader.  So maybe we've got the market covered.

In sum:  This site does have some fans at The Ticket, and some curiosity seekers. It's part of the fun of The Ticket.  MTC is not an influential joint, but it has turned into a nice little community of P1's.  Thanks to you all for Shopping at My Ticket Confession.


Anonymous said...

You really shine as a writer with posts like this. I appreciate the "pellucid blog prose". From what you wrote, and based on your interactions with the station, it does sound as if they appreciate and find more value in it than just a mild amusement. Maybe I was wrong about hosts looking at this site as a little more than a joke. I guess TC is the outlier at the station in that regard. Not surprising given his on air interactions, in retrospect.

The Plainsman said...

It is interesting that my hits to the site, both original hits and page views, have tripled since the move to Victory.

I should also tip my hat to Twitter. Occasionally a precious follower will retweet my notice of a new posting, and that always brings in a fresh crop of readers. I believe that this may be one avenue for Ticket guys to become aware of articles of interest.

The Plainsman said...

PS: Gordon has also made reference to this site's strong and closely-reasoned position that Gordon has a man-crush on Steve Doocy.

And his Doocy-baiting, also the target of this site (for the same reason that the George-baiting was -- not objectionable, but a complete and frequent show-stopper), has also greatly decreased.

Don't want to give the site too much credit for influencing content but these were a couple of things I noticed.

Now, when Cumulus finally gives The Ticket a decent signal out of its collection of underperforming blowtorches, I'll take a short bow.

The Plainsman said...

One final thing: If you have heard or recall a reference to this site on the station, do tell.

P1bdogETX said...


The Plainsman said...

Oops, sorry, Steve Doocy is his cousin on the Fox & Friends morning show Mrs. Plainsman watches every morning while I'm trying to listen to The Musers.

Mike Doocy, is what I meant. Thanks for the correction, Dog.

In fact, thanks to all Confessors for their many corrections of my errors and misunderstandings.

P1bdogETX said...

I was thinking in terms of the!

TheDude said...

Regarding Dan's "Ticket Confession" reference... are we not taking into consideration that he was referencing the old Ticket Confession bit?

Anonymous said...

it seems that one (or perhaps a group of) crazy anonymous fan(s) of yours will usually angrily accuse anyone with a dissenting opinion of being the same person. i've witnessed others get accused, and I myself have been accused.

i think the my ticket confession is frequented enough by enough different people that it's asinine to think there wont be multiple, separate, detractors (who may happen to have similar complaints) from time to time. it's not a conspiracy, it's not one guy. it's the internet. there are a lot of people on here. that is all.

Anonymous said...

Anyone hear the Sirois brothers today? It might have been my favorite version of their show I've ever heard. Good sports/goof off mix and not a tinge of gay.

Anonymous said...

Sirois are the reason I started listening on the weekends again.

ausgang said...

Dude: Good point.

Anon 2:50: There does seem to be a certain someone out there who has, for a few years now, come on here and keeps leaving the same comment over and over; s/he will latch onto a meme and will continue to hammer it for a couple of weeks then disappear, only to reappear with either the same meme or a new one. This person is not very good at disguising his/her writing style, so it's pretty evident when they post. If you've been unfairly accused, I'm sorry to hear it. But you're absolutely right in saying that of course there are those who disagree in a similar fashion with either Plainsman or some of the general sentiments stated on the blog. Again, this one troll's work is fairly obvious. I guess some of us (me for one) get tired of the troll and perhaps get a little sloppy at times when reading opinions that sound close to his/hers. Additionally, it's a bit befuddling (and please don't take offense here) to me why anyone who reads the blog, sees the style that nearly every single entry is written in, and yet wants to complain about it as if said complaint is going to alter the writing style. We all write how we write. It's usually a sign of how our minds work. Some (like mine) take a lot of s-turns, some get straight to the point, others never reach their destination. As well, as it seems with Plainsman, some people are in love with language. If you're one of those who judge Plainsman's writing too purplish or long-winded for your tastes, then I'd say either find (or even found) a blog that's more akin to your aesthetic. And if you're new to the site and wish it was written differently, voice your opinion (once) and then decide on what course of action to take. But please don't repeatedly post "your writing...." comments; you're just wasting your time; Plainsman isn't going to change...and I for one am cool with that.

Kickballhead said...

I concur.

The Plainsman said...

Ausgang: "find (or even found)" -- now that is genius.

I do see posts from time to time where I feel that a critic has been unfairly accused of being our house troll, but as they're usually not abusive I leave them up, even if I think they're misguided.

As for my writing: At the risk of exhibiting excessive self-regard, I will say that I'm a better writer than appears here. It's actually kept me employed, more's the pity. My time available for this site is limited, and, alas, is getting more so. I blast out what's on my mind, maybe read it once for typos and the more obvious infelicities, and hit the button.

So I do understand the writing criticism, and from time to time I think that I should spend more time crafting my sentences, whacking out clauses, eliminating parentheticals.

But I figure: Hell, it works for Sturm.

Anonymous said...

I just wrote out a very long winded comment, and it appeared at first, and now it's gone. This is obviously related to the mysterious comment disappearances the plainsman has already spoke about. Oh well. Tough luck for me.

The gist of it was the following:

People are going to keep complaining if they want to voice their opinion about something. This may surprise you, but it could be *because* they are a fan of the site. Some may do it more rudely than others, but it's human nature. Get over it.

It's really silly to accuse them of being the same person or "house troll" based off of one comment. You may over-estimate your ability to identify said troll's writing style, because you accused me of it and I have no knowledge of this "house troll" or what they have done. I suspect in actuality you have incorrectly lumped many people's comments in the category of being the same person, because you did it to me based off of one comment.

Just like people have continued for years to complain about bob sturm's long windedness, as if they were the first person to realize it, people are going to complain about whatever deficiencies they perceive on this site as well. It's not going to stop. Many of these people might comment once or twice, and be totally unaware that the complaint theyve made has already been stated and addressed before. It's not really their responsibility to check previous articles first. They are just stating their honest opinion.

Also, if you DO suspect a comment is made simply for trolling purposes, it's really counter-productive to respond to these complaints in an angry defensive fashion. that's exactly what a troll would want, and i'm pretty sure anyone regularly using the internet in this day and age should already be aware of that.

I finished up saying I totally respect the plainsman's decision to write however he wants, and I will continue to read and post here because I appreciate the site and the content within it. but it's unreasonable to expect people not to complain when he goes closer to the self indulgent "gordo fake mike rhyner" territory that he sometimes tends to do. Yes, that's my opinion. I shouldn't have to say that because it's obviously MY opinion and not a fact. People on the internet seem to require all opinions to be identified as opinions, for whatever reason.

I also realize that I could have bypassed all accusations simply by registerring a name for myself. Perhaps that was my mistake, but it's not really one I care to correct. Guess I'm a flawed guy. Many others will do the same in the future.

Stay hard

Sorry for the crappy writing style of THIS comment, as I'm not a good writer and don't claim to be. I also had to basically rewrite it bcause my first comment disappeared.

Anonymous said...

by the way, I used a lot of "you"'s in that comment I just wrote. those "you's" are not directed at the plainsman, but more anyone who has taken it upon themselves to angrily accuse people of being the "house troll" or whatever based off of flimsy evidence.

I think the plainsman deals with his criticism just fine, as well as with trolls. When he responded to me with "",, I got the point perfectly that he is aware of this and doesn't care about my opinion in this regard. That's totally fine, and if I WAS a troll, it would be precisely the kind of response that would disappoint me, because he didn't get angry.

Stay hard

The Plainsman said...

Now see, those last two Anonymous comments -- no problem whatsoever. I know the site is a little, uh, colorful sometimes, a little "look at me" with the prose. So if I get called on it, yeah, I can 'fess up. Even the people who don't care for the prose check back in.

That's good confessin'.

The Plainsman said...

But we're getting a little off-topic. Does anyone else have any thoughts on interaction between this -- to my knowledge, the only long-form blog on The Ticket -- and the station?

The fact that we haven't heard much on this tends to confirm my suspicion that the site is not a big deal to the station or CTO, other than as an intermittently entertaining diversion. As an administration advisor said when asked whether it was appropriate for President Reagan not to have been awakened during an aerial engagement between US and Libyan jets: "When an elephant swats at a fly, it's a crisis for the fly, not for the elephant."

Don't ask.

The Plainsman said...

Dude: I had never heard that "Ticket Confessions" clip before or even knew that there was such a bit. Thanks for posting.

On balance, I think Dan was punning on this site, not on the old bit.

But thanks for fishing that out of the vault.

Anonymous said...

Yah I totally forgot about that "my confession" bit... I also agree though, with the plainsman, that the way dan said it, the way he emphasized the "MY" in "my ticket confession", was a subtle nod (whether positive or negative) to this site.

I still doubt he reads it though. I think he knows of it through e-mails or what he has heard from the "JV" as they are referred to here.

Shaggy said...

There is another blog that popped up recently--

and if you don't want to be lumped in with other previous commenters, just choose a frickin' name and stick with it. You don't have to "register" it or anything. Just fill in a name of your choosing and continue to use the same one.

The Plainsman said...

Hey, I'd never seen that site before. Very nice. Ticket Tribute Guy seems more technically-oriented than I am, and seems to have some radio-industry knowledge as well. Check it out.

ausgang said...

Anon, you seem like a decent chap/lady. But there's no need to get so defensive. I guess there's no getting across the point to you that moaning about Plainsman's style of writing is like bitching about the Pope being Catholic: it (or he, in the Pope's case) just is what it is and there's no getting around it. So either you sift through it or you move on. No shame in that. Rail against an opinion of Plainsman's; say you think the blog is too slanted toward this or that. That's the sort of actual criticism that you speak to.

I said that it's fine to criticize the writing style, once. Like you wrote, many readers are new and for them this is all fresh meat. Fair enough. But once the criticism of style is made, move on, unless it's addressed by someone else. Would you agree that our world is based far too much on style over substance these days? Isn't that a bad thing? I think so.

As to the Grumby Anon Troll. First off, I didn't accuse you of being the troll. I was merely telling you how the accusation hurled at you might've come about. So let's get our facts straight before we fly off into Imputation Land. Indeed, I even apologized to you for the person(s) who did accuse you. Secondly, said troll is pretty easy pickings to spot out. Because, by your own words, you seem to be a new reader/commenter, you most likely have no idea about the troll in question. Sooner rather than later I've no doubt you'll "meet" it. When you do, you will know it. And it will present itself under various names and anons.

Shaggy is right. Make up a name. It's easy! It's fun!

Finally, with regard on how to deal with trolls: 'Preciate ya pal, but there's more than one way to skin a mule.

P1bdogETX said...

This comes from a poster on RADIO-INFO. Perhaps this could be useful to AP and DP.

As has been occurring gradually across the country, the heritage Cumulus stations (that is, not including the Citadel acquisitions) have been converting their streams from in-house "live Cumulus streaming" to StreamTheWorld. As mentioned in a previous post, this will offer AAC streaming for the first time on the Cumulus streams as well as making them compatible with iTunes.

Direct streaming URL format to use to plug in to various media players:

for 48 kbps 44 kHz stereo AAC -
for 48 kbps 22 kHz stereo -
for 48 kbps 22 kHz stereo - (Windows Media Player compatible)

Working example:

For the DFW market this affects KTCK-AM, KLIF-AM, KLIF-FM + KPLX-FM.
The former Citadel stations (KSCS-FM + WBAP-AM) have used the StreamTheWorld platform before + after their acquisition by Cumulus.

The Plainsman said...

Great stuff, Dog. Many thanks.

Anonymous said...

had no idea about ticket tribute. Awesome!

And no, i wont be using a name. Don't really care that much. I said my piece about the whole thing and there's nothing more for me to say about it. One of the nicer parts of being anonymous is I can drop out of a convo without feeling compelled to continue it because of my "online persona"

as long as plainsman gives us the choice, i'll stay anon :)

Anonymous said...

Well, as long as you said your "piece." So basically you're saying that having the option of making a string of coherent thoughts or a consistent oeuvre is something that you're just not that comfortable doing. Well, okay. Whatever floats your boat, buddy. For someone who doesn't "care that much" you sure have gone out of your way to make your opinions known...about the station, the site, and its contributors. Food for thought.

Anonymous said...

We have a meeting once a week to discuss this blog


Anonymous said...

Krenek, if this is actually you (it would seem a tech guy from a number one rated station in a top 5 market would know to type in his name in the 'name box' rather than select anonymous then type his name at the bottom of his comment like a 2 year old), you are a jack a of the highest order. Somehow, I don't think it's you.

Anonymous said...

Ticker guys are "tech guys"?

Krenek said...

Thanks, Mom

Is that better?

Jubbinator Anal Sounds said...

Krenek, what do you guys think about all this?

Krenek said...

It is very entertaining and appreciated.

Anonymous said...

Much, Krenek.

Your Mom

Krenk's Mom said...

You should rap more! I love you, sweetheart.

P1bdogETX said...

So, is the unticket over with in regards to archives? None of the above mentioned streams are compatible with their operations?

If so, let's mourn and adjust our schedules to not miss any important segments.

The Plainsman said...

"Entertaining and appreciated." I'll take that, even if it isn't Krenek.

Although I would have preferred "Insightful, prescient, damned near clairvoyant, showing extraordinary sensitivity to the nuances of the daily broadcasts, full of valuable advice for hosts, JV, and CTO alike which is even now in the process of being implemented, entertaining, and appreciated."

6/11 Community Quick Hits said...

"Hey fatties, why don't you get off your asses and run 15 miles? No thats right, you just don't care enough." Today Corby went on a fat person rant after reading the stats on the fattest cities in the US, with Dallas being 3rd (I think?) on the list. What makes this nauseating is that Corby does this from his mindset of "I am better than these people, I run marathons, and since they can not be as bad ass as me they deserve my wrath."

Look, I get it, he is the Snake and that is what makes his on-air persona worth a big contract. But the guy is a serious ass hole. Often times he is a good example of the lily-white American that he so often criticizes. He is a family man with kids, a wife, a mortgage and he goes to church on Sundays because his wife makes him do it. But on the air he rejects his wife, says he does not believe in God and says that kids are "dream killers". Maybe its all a bit, but I think radio is Corby's way of dealing with the Chris Chris attitude he has at heart.

Anonymous said...

Because going on air as a middle-aged guy with a wife and kids who goes to church every Sunday and never says anything outrageous makes for some great radio.

If you want that, there are plenty of other options out there.

odbf said...

Bob and George do pretty well with out being outrageous and abusive.

Anonymous said...

Corby isn't the Bob or George of their respective shows. He's the Gordo of the Hardline. Would anyone want to listen to Gordo if he was the perfectly nice person he is in real life?

Shaggy said...

You WAY overblew that Corby rant. It was incredibly mild.

ap said...

@P1BDogETX (I think)

I didn't think it would be that easy, to be honest - From what I'd read, iHeartRadio was supposed to be using an RTMP stream whose URL changed every 5 minutes. The links provided are surprisingly straightforward, if they do indeed work. The format of the audio (ASF, MP3, WAV, whatever) doesn't really matter, and I downmix most of the audio I grab to 64kbit mono anyways.

Thanks for the links!