Chuckle, But Dave Charles Thinks Radio Suffers From 'Mice Nuts'

Regular broadcast columnist Dave Charles has made it his mission to put life back into commercial radio that too often has become anemic sounding and lacking diversity which is the very opposit

Chuckle, But Dave Charles Thinks Radio Suffers From 'Mice Nuts'

By Dave Charles

Regular broadcast columnist Dave Charles has made it his mission to put life back into commercial radio that too often has become anemic sounding and lacking diversity which is the very opposite of what the CRTC once ruled was a winning card in handing out broadcast licenses.  What's happened in the past 10 or more years is that a small group of media companies have bought up the key market stations and penny-pinched them to the point that creativity, entrepreneurship, diversity and excitement have been beaten down. Conformity and predictability have been turned into assets for the owners, and leaving audiences foaming at the mouth. DC hasn't given up the fight to make radio dynamic again, so read on.


Radio suffers from mice nuts!

Let me explain. 

Mice nuts are small. 

Radio is thinking small and lacking in courage to try new things these days. I hear this every week on my callouts.  It’s discouraging to hear the stories of revenue losses due to COVID, the loss of great talent due to senseless cutbacks and bottom-line cuts mandated by ownership.

The last stat I saw is that radio tuning in all demos is still at around 92% …that’s pretty dam good considering all of the other platforms competing for your time and brain.

Radio has personalities who are creative and offer you something to think about, care about and laugh about.  We all have our favourite shows.  I find myself listening to CBC more these days because most of their shows have substance and are very well put together.

I’m a huge Howard Stern fan. He’s brash, bold and always finds a creative way to deliver creative comments on anything and everything.  He does some of the best guest artist interviews ever.  For example, Bruce Springsteen was supposed to be just an hour.  Because Howard is so skilled at doing interviews this interview went two-plus hours.  It’s a master class in asking the right questions the right way.


No ‘mice nuts’ ever on Howard’s show.

If you’re doing bad radio in any format, it’s only a matter of time before you become ‘mice nuts’.  Media consumers know where to find the best shows, music streams, and podcasts through ‘word of mouth’ and surfing.  I do it all the time.  Today I’m listening to SABC in Johannesburg, South Africa. 


Because I was in the mood for something lively and exciting and I found it.  

John Perras President of is offering a free radio survey using shortcode texting.  WE’D LIKE YOU TO TELL US HOW WE CAN MAKE YOUR RADIO EXPERIENCE BETTER’.  Text us now at (short code) and take our radio survey.  Broadcasters offered this opportunity said….’ it takes up our promotional inventory’ or ‘We don’t think our listeners will respond without an incentive’ or ‘WIIFM’s in it for me?’ 

Unbelievable but true.

Yet another example of ‘mice nuts’. 

The danger is doing the same old thing the same old way that most definitely creates boredom for your listeners.  Yawning now!!


There is a cure for ‘mice nuts’. 

Take creative risks. 

Try something new because in your gut you know it’s right but you’re worried your content director or Manager won’t like it!  MICE NUTS!!!!

I got into radio many years ago for the new music, the fun and creativity, and the chance to inform, entertain and even engage. It challenges me every single day.  I have to work on new approaches every day and so should you!

But I gotta say, I’m disappointed in radio’s lack of originality, courage, and making good things happen.

AI radio will be a major factor in the radio space very soon.  Is that what you want?  I don’t think so.  The AI radio genie is already out of the bottle and can’t be put back. MICE NUTS!!!!


Radio is and will always be a very personal and creative space.  What you do with that radio space is up to you.

I hope this kick in the ‘mice nuts’ encourages you to make some great radio.

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