Sad news from INN

Sad to hear that the economic situation has resulted in a high-profile casualty in the radio industry, with the announcment that INN is to go out of business at the end of this month (October 2009).

Most importantly this is very bad news for the 16 full and part-time journalists and newsreaders in INN. I know some of them personally, and know the others by voice, and my thoughts are with them at this difficult time.

This news will also come as a fresh worry to many radio stations around the country, unless some other group steps forward to provide a similar service. Irish commercial radio stations are required by law to provide 20% news and current affairs content in their daytime output, and the 4 minutes per hour INN bulletin (6 minutes if you take the sport) is a big help towards this.

The station I work for, Phantom 105.2,  has its own news staff during daytime hours, but takes INN evenings and weekends. Many stations around Ireland rely on INN at all times.

I wonder if someone might step forward to fill the gap. The national commercial speech station Newstalk is one group who would already have the resources to offer this, and indeed the already provide a news feed for at least one other station. It is also possible that an overseas media company may move in to fill the gap.

The INN guys and girls are a great bunch, very professional, and I wish them all the best for the future.