Longtime conservative radio host John Ziegler sat down with Glenn Beck Thursday evening to explain the fundamental weaknesses of the talk radio industry and American political commentary more broadly. He cited the growing influence of audiences on content creators as a reason for the growing difficulty of finding accurate sources of information.
"The business model has been broken for quite a while now. And when a business model breaks, people tend to do strange things out of desperation. And the reason why the news media used to be substantive was not because the audience really wanted substance. ... It was because there [were] only a few channels. And you could afford to be substantive, because the audience had no choice. And having a TV station or a radio station was a license to print money. That's no longer the case. So now you have the tail wagging the dog in the media, where the audience is dictating where the hosts go with their content. And in my view, that's really what happened in this last presidential election, specifically with regard to the Republican primary process.
Beck then shared lessons from his decades of experience in talk radio and political television and his struggles to push back against network executives who made bizarrely specific demands regarding the form and content of his programs.