As of August 1, 2011 one of Chicago's beloved rock stations, Q101 (101.1 WKXQ) is slated to be converted into news/talk radio pending an agreement reached between Emmis Communications and Merlin Media (alongside Randy Michaels, ex-CEO of previously brankrupt Tribune Corporation). According to a press release dated June 21, 2011, Emmis Communications has reached an agreement for the transfer of three radio stations to Merlin Media in a deal worth over $110 million- two of these stations are staples of Chicagoland radio- 101.1 WKQX, Q101 and 97.9 WLUP, The Loop. HOWEVER, the transaction’s closing is subject to various regulatory approvals and other customary conditions. This means there is still a chance to fight and have our voices heard! We must make the "powers that be" think with their hearts and not their wallets! Radio should be about the listeners and not the shareholders. Corporate America should be supportive of the First Amendment and use their power to facilitate venues for freedom of expression as opposed to dictating what music we can listen to in Chicago. This greed and indoctrination is not only stifling originality and individuality, but it is also taking away jobs from so many "regular", talented people to increase the wealth of themselves and their shareholders. Please take a short moment to add your name to this petition, and give our favorite rock stations a fighting chance; we must fight until the very end!
- Chairman & CEO of Emmis Communications
- EVP, CFO & COO of Emmis Communications
- head of investment group Merlin Media
We, the undersigned, are requesting that you reconsider the re-formatting of two of Chicago's most beloved rock stations, WKXQ and WLUP. As the news reports and blogs have been flooding in with information, it's been brought to our knowledge that WKQX will undergo the most drastic shift into a news/talk radio platform. As you know, these stations have provided thousands in the Chicagoland area a distinct genre of music for many years. There are very few stations available for those of us in this demographic. WKQX (101.1), in particular, has been the ideal medium to let listeners hear new artists, support local talent and engage with incredible radio personalities. WKQX plays an integral role in MANY of our lives. We've listened loyally morning, noon, and/or night just to help us get through the day; at work, at home, and in our cars. Music, to so many of us, is what we live for. By changing the way these two incredible stations are formatted, you're changing the way many of us live our lives. We know that money and politics unfortunately plays a huge role in everything that happens in America today. What we're asking for is that the AUDIENCE gets to have a voice. We're asking for you to consider with your heart the "regular" people; the ones who will lose their jobs, the ones who will be losing a large part of their every day life and the ones who are the future of rock and alternative music. We would like to see, for once, the listeners, the employees and the artists have the opportunity to be heard at an equal level as the shareholders. Again, all we are asking for is that you reconsider and keep the format of these radio stations. This is an opportunity for you, as well, to prove to Chicagoland (and the Nation) that the media doesn't have to revolve around corporate greed. It also gives you the chance to facilitate a music vehicle that promotes originality, creativity and "the next best thing" which could be greatly beneficial to you, as well. Please keep this in mind and PLEASE KEEP CHICAGO'S ROCK STATIONS ALIVE
**At the time the above was written, August 1st was to be the launch date of the new platform for WKQX. Because of the changes already put into place, we are now requesting that you put Q101 BACK on the air with it's original DJs and music genre. Please keep Chicago's Alternative rock station alive!
Thank you for your time and consideration
Michelle Kollross and Joanna Weglarz
Michelle Kollross started this petition with a single signature, and now has 4,171 supporters. Start a petition today to change something you care about.