From John Scheper, former owner of WHCO:
I am absolutely outraged by this blunderous decision by the management at 550. I owned the "tiny" metro-east radio station that Shaun did games for and orginally had discussions with the management who approved it. I have since sold WHCO to the current operators who are doing a wonderful job.
Shaun's managment absolutely knew about the arrangement and had no problem with it AT ALL.
Somebody at KTRS has REALLY stepped on their own (insert explitive here) this time!
From MB regular Burnout:
I will simply say that if I were in management, and had someone of Shawn's ability, it would take a LOT for me to fire him. And at that, I would have discussed the situation to see if the professional relationship could be repaired.
From MB regular Ruff:
Once again, this so-called News/Talk station further validates its status as 'mentally retarded!' They continue to dismiss people with talent, or those who could be an asset to their particular stations, (Shawn Balint, Howard Morton, James Dolan,) and retain the services of people with no-talent, have no business being in radio or those to self-absorbed to care about the big picture, (Kara Carter, Lauren Ryan, David Solomon, Michael Golde (Good and Terrible) and John Hadley. How on earth do you fire YOUR BEST ANNOUNCER?!. As far as Lauren Ryan goes, I don't know about anyone not having the stones to not fire her. I hear her salary has been lowered to the point that she has to now work TWO JOBS! Let me ask this, what does Lauren actually do besides: Throw people under the bus, lead people on, not know what's going on in the station she's supposed to be in charge of? Back to Mr. Balint, I hope KTFK, KMOX or WBGZ picks him up before too long. You can't let one of the best News Anchors just sit on the sideline.
From MB regular TheDude:
And now some truth and accuracy, children. Shawn's arrangement was with Tim Dorsey. Tim completely signed off on Puffy doing some Friday night and other high school games for a tiny station in metro east. All of a sudden it became an issue when Sean had recorded a late afternoon newscast (and KMOX is amongst the stations that occasionally does this) and someone unfamiliar with this arrangement happened to go looking for him. Then Lauren Ryan threw him under the bus (as she does with anyone as long as she ends up looking good and getting ahead), Victoria Babu throws in her "I just had no idea" and there you have it. \
Shawn did nothing wrong. Tim needs to fill his brother in on all the special little deals he agreed to before someone else gets blindsided. And now KTRS's newsreaders sound that much younger and inexperienced. Nice job everybody.
From Mike Anderson:
Shawn's deal with the station was done almost two years ago and had been honored ever since until it became uncomfortable for or misunderstood by any one of the too many managers above him. Shame on Tim Dorsey for not defending him.
The news department at KTRS has always been fungible and Shawn is the latest victim. Babu is a pretty face who can read a prompter or from a script. Victoria is no more a News Manager than Tasha, The STLMedia Watch Dog. She should stick to personal training and leave radio to the radio folks.
Lauren Ryan, with whom I spent much time in conversation during my years with KTRS, is a good show producer with excellent resources and I admire her for her skills at that.
But Lauren is just not a capable PD of a competitive talk station in this market. How often does she critique content and delivery of the air talent under her wing? What is her background in this position? Does she network with PD's in other markets? Is working under the shadow of a consultant sufficiently "badgeworthy?"
The only reason Ryan holds the gig is that no one has the stones to fire her: she's a woman with a physical handicap and you can imagine what that would cost the station if she took it to court, which she most certainly would.
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