Masters Files Lawsuit Against Dial Global
Masters claims Dial Global is a monopoly and is alleging anti-competetive actions. "This is a sad but necessary day for us. But the steps we take today are for the sake of the entire community of independent spoken word syndicators, and independent radio networks who depend on outside sale representation for their very financial survival." Masters is the CEO of Talk Radio Networks (TRN). He says he has initiated the filing of a federal action against Dial Global. Dial Global could not be reached for comment as of yet. Information on the lawsuit was discovered early Tuesday morning.
Masters also says, "We have broad shoulders and stand for those who fear to stand for themselves. Our companies were initially Dial Global’s most important clients. We brought some of America’s most respected brands to Dial Global in their early days. We gave them long-term agreements and the most important quality necessary for business, our trust and good faith. However, sadly, today we begin the fight for the ethical soul of radio’s independent spoken word syndication markets – on both the sales and content sides. Our goal is to see a healthy, newly reformed marketplace where all independent spoken word syndicators can compete on an even plane.
Masters says, "Once an active monopoly achieves control in the national institutional advertising marketplace for spoken word radio, it is able to “pick and choose” which companies it will allow to succeed on America’s airwaves in the spoken word space, and what companies it will cause to fail, in both cases to its own benefit. Today, we reluctantly are forced to bring this action, as the largest group of independent spoken word syndicators/networks in the United States. In doing so, we hope this signals a beginning of the end to active monopoly and anti-competitive actions within radio’s independent spoken word syndication markets."
A release from TRN also noted that, "The plaintiff companies note in particular that the recent destruction of CNN radio (which was on over 1,100 radio stations in the US and had been operating for over 20 years), going into a presidential election, in favor of its immediate replacement by a branded news operation, at the election of its sales representatives, is a telling example of the threat posed by the ability of a small handful of unelected Wall Street executives who have achieved sufficient dominance in one sales market to force changes in the separate independent spoken word market, and the threat posed to other independent spoken word syndicators absent prompt corrective actions. As Masters noted with concern: “The sudden death of CNN Radio News, after 20 years, and in a presidential election year besides, is a veritable canary in a coal mine for independent spoken word syndication in radio.”
The plaintiff companies note that this federal action is also necessary to prevent the formation of a second generation monopoly over intellectual property rights within the independent spoken word syndication market. If one company is permitted to continue to monopolize the sales representation function, it can use that monopoly (which acts as a primary funding source and cash flow “lifeline” for its core customers – independent radio syndicators and independent radio networks) to form a second generation monopoly which will use the first monopoly to ultimately wipe out most of today’s national independent spoken word programmers, syndicators, and networks and replace them with its own programming.
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