SBD/7/Sports Media

TALK RADIO TAKEN TO TASK IN WIP DISPUTE WITH THE FLYERS

          Flyers Chair Ed Snider's decision to sue sports-talk
     radio WIP-AM and host Craig Carton for saying Flyer Eric
     Lindros was suspended for a game for being hungover "took
     the broadcast industry by surprise yesterday," according to
     Carter & Rubin in the PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER.  Jim Borrelli,
     of KC-based Media Professional Insurance, a firm that
     counsels print and broadcast media about issues of libel and
     slander, said that while news/talk radio is the most popular
     radio format in America, "few slander or libel suits have
     been filed against talk-radio stations or personalities." 
     Carter & Rubin note the "big difference" between radio and
     other media is that "there is no editor or fact-checking
     process that occurs before the words go out on the air"
     (PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER, 3/7).  
          NO ACCOUNTABILITY? In Philadelphia, INQUIRER media
     columnist Mike Bruton writes that "For the last few years,
     WIP and its hosts have played fast and loose with rumors and
     innuendo at the expense of the closest available coach, team
     executive, athlete or reporter to stoke listeners and build
     ratings.  It doesn't seem to matter to some of the station's
     talent that the money flowing into the coffers because of
     those ratings is blood money, earned at the expense of
     someone's reputation" (PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER, 3/7).
          PEAS IN A POD: Les Bowen notes that by taking on WIP,
     the Flyers have "closed any gap that might have existed"
     between the team and Lindros (PHILA. DAILY NEWS, 3/7).

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