Opie and Anthony
Opie and Anthony began their broadcasting career at WBAB-FM on Long Island in 1995 in Boston. They hosted the infamous show known as O and A radio show (Goodlad, 2003). The duo gained a large following on the FM radio. They were majorly known for dreaming up stunts including public-sex contests for their fans and ticking of celebrities (Hayes, Joy, and Sharon, 2014). They also supported rising comedians. The career of the duo radio hosts came to an end at WBAB-FM after running a prank on April fool’s day about Boston Mayor Thomas Menino. In the prank, they aired that the Boston Mayor had died in a traffic collision (Hayes et al., 2014) The Boston Mayor wrote a complaint letter to the Federal Communications Commission about the prank. The prank was made up of phony sound bites emanating from police officers and news reporters about Mayor Thomas Menino.
I think the management was not justified in firing Opie and Anthony. Whatever they aired was a prank that did not taint the image of the company. The company should have understood that it was fools day and people are allowed to make pranks. I think the duo did not break any rules of the company. They should have been given an opportunity to explain themselves. This tells why they received a letter of offer immediately from Garry Wall. As a manager, I would have reviewed the employment contract to ascertain whether the no-prank clause was included in the contact letter. In addition, I would have given them an opportunity to defend themselves before a disciplinary committee. I think termination of their contract was not the best solution.
After an unfortunate circumstance at WBAB-FM in Boston, Opie and Anthony secured employment contact with WNEW-FM in New York (Hayes et al., 2014). This was a fortunate situation out of unfortunate circumstance. The new employment contract with the WNEW-FM did not contain no-prank clause. The duo did not last in the company for an extended period. They were fired on 20th August 2002 for broadcasting a live eyewitness account of a couple having sex inside the landmark St. Patrick Cathedral. The church pushed the Federal Broadcasting Commission to revoke the license of the FM station (Fitzgerald, Megan, Barry Sapolsky, and Steven, 2009). Opie and Anthony pulled off the airwaves three days after broadcasting the stunt.
I think WNEW-FM was justified in firing Opie and Anthony. It is the responsibility of the firm to maintain their corporate image in a highly competitive industry. I understand that their evening show was highly rated with over 350,000 subscribers. Today, most firms have become irresponsible over their corporate affairs. In this way, WNEW-FM illustrated a good example of corporate responsibility. I think the duo were not competent. They broadcasted a sexual stunt that is against work ethics and moral standards. As a manager, I would have fired the pair. The behavior of the two radio presenters was inconsistent with what WNEW-FM stands for. In this regard, I would not have given them a second chance but to fire them immediately to enhance the corporate responsibility of the company.
SiriusXM and Anthony’s Firing
Opie and Anthony secured another contract with SiriusXM after being fired from WNEW-FM. This followed an attempt by some of their fans to have sex during a radio contest at St. Patrick Cathedral (Fitzgerald et al., 2009). Anthony was fired from the SiriusXM after a bitter exchange with African American woman on Twitter. Anthony made a controversial statement on his Twitter handle which was abhorrent to what SiriusXM stands for (Hayes et al., 2014). The controversial post that Anthony made about the African American woman did not conform to what SiriusXM stands for. In this regard, the company had no any other option but to fire him. Opie and the comedian who were his co-hosts tried to intervene, but the company refused to budge (Fitzgerald et al., 2009). I think the management was justified in firing him since his actions were inconsistent with the work policies of the company. The controversial statement was demeaning to women and more specifically, African American women. In this way, I concur with the company’s decision to fire him.
Anthony violated the company rules by portraying a discriminatory behavior in the workplace (Fitzgerald et al., 2009). The post was uncalled for and dented the image of the SiriusXM. The company fired him because they found that his behavior was inconsistent with what SiriusXM stands for. As a manager, I would have fired him because his actions were against the company policies and work ethics. Such behavior is harmful and contradicts corporate responsibility of the firm.
The Long Slow Death of Opie Show
Opie worked with Jim Norton for three years. The duo never had cordial working relationships. Their controversies started when Opie noted that Jim was talking behind his back. Their tension intensified over comedians whom they hosted in the show. Opie accused Norton of being neutral since he was not siding with his co-host (Hayes et al., 2014). There were many revelations including pot shots, accusations, and personal issues during their shows. Their relationship continued to worsen forcing Opie to quit after three years after Anthony had been fired.
- Fitzgerald, Megan, Barry Sapolsky, and Steven McClung. “Offensive language spoken on morning radio programs.” Journal of Radio & Audio Media 16.2 (2009): 181-199.
- Goodlad, Lauren ME. “Packaged alternatives: The incorporation and gendering of “alternative” radio.” Communities of the air: Radio century, radio culture (2003): 134-163.
- Hayes, Joy Elizabeth, and Sharon Zechowski. “Shock Jocks and Their Legacy: Introduction.” (2014): 199-201.