Recently a reporter asked me how common independently-owned commercial radio stations were. I told him that they were a dying breed and another example of this disappearing category is talk radio station WYBG-AM in Massena, New York. After 57 years on the air, the station shut down on June 30. Its owners still hold out hope that someone will save the station by purchasing the license so that it can potentially resume broadcasting.
According to Watertown Daily Times, local owners Wade Communications (Curran E. Wade and his wife Dorothy M. “Dottie” Wade) have held the station’s license for 27 years and made attempts to sell the license. The article states,
Mr. Wade said a number of factors figured into the decision to close the radio station. As the only live and locally owned and operated radio station, he was handling 99 percent of the sales, was traveling about 700 miles a week and will turn 79 years old in two months. A transmitter problem in 2013 kept the station off the air for two months, from October to the beginning of December, and Mr. Wade said it never recovered from that. ‘It’s hard on small businesses,’ Mrs. Wade said.”