CBS Radio drops Imus
CBS Radio has fired radio host Don Imus, effective immediately, in the wake of the uproar following a racially charged comment he made on his show April 4th.
CBS Radio first suspended Imus for two weeks, after he called the Rutger's women's basketball team "nappy-headed hos" on his radio program.
"Losing Imus will be a financial hit to CBS Radio, which also suffered when shock jock Howard Stern departed for satellite radio early last year. The program is worth about $25 million in annual revenue to CBS, which owns Imus' home radio station, WFAN-AM in New York, and manages Westwood One, the company that syndicates the show across the country," writes CBS News.
Imus had raised $2.3 million for charity during a radiothon on Thursday morning, despite no longer being simulcast on MSNBC.
CBS released the following statement:
CBS today announced its decision to cease broadcasting the Imus in the Morning radio program, effective immediately, on a permanent basis.
"From the outset, I believe all of us have been deeply upset and revulsed by the statements that were made on our air about the young women who represented Rutgers University in the NCAA Women’s Basketball Championship with such class, energy and talent," said CBS President and Chief Executive Officer Leslie Moonves, in announcing the decision. "Those who have spoken with us the last few days represent people of goodwill from all segments of our society – all races, economic groups, men and women alike. In our meetings with concerned groups, there has been much discussion of the effect language like this has on our young people, particularly young women of color trying to make their way in this society. That consideration has weighed most heavily on our minds as we made our decision, as have the many emails, phone calls and personal discussions we have had with our colleagues across the CBS Corporation and our many other constituencies."
Imus in the Morning was carried on 61 stations across the United States and distributed over the Westwood One radio network. The cancellation of the program comes after statements Mr. Imus made about the young women who comprised the Rutgers University Women’s Basketball team, which reached the finals of the NCAA Women’s Basketball Championship this spring.
Moonves concluded: "I want to thank all those who came to see us to express their views. We are now presented with a significant opportunity to expand on our record on issues of diversity, race and gender. We intend to seize that opportunity as we move forward together."