News station lays off journalists, will play Beyoncé songs instead

Houston Chronicle

Houston news station KROI laid off 47 employees Wednesday and will, for the time being, play only Beyoncé songs, David Barron reports for the Houston Chronicle. The station "aired its last broadcast Wednesday, October 8, 2014," its website says.

[caption id="attachment_273963" align="alignleft" width="460"]Beyoncé in Paris last month, pausing briefly from her war on working journalists.  (Photo by Mason Poole/Invision for Parkwood Entertainment/AP Images) Beyoncé in Paris last month, pausing briefly from her war on working journalists. (Photo by Mason Poole/Invision for Parkwood Entertainment/AP Images)[/caption]

Radio One owns the station, known as News 92 FM. Its employees "were notified shortly after 9 a.m. Wednesday that the news format was being dropped and the station rebranded - for the moment - as B921, playing around-the-clock, commercial-free music by Beyoncé," Barron reports.

The station was ranked 26th in the market as a news station. The Beyoncé gambit is not expected to last: "There was no indication how long the B921 format would continue," Barron writes.

For a pop star, Beyoncé has had a disproportionate effect on media outlets:

  • Andrew Beaujon

    Andrew Beaujon reported on the media for Poynter from 2012 to 2015. He was previously arts editor at TBD.com and managing editor of Washington City Paper. He's the author of the 2006 book "Body Piercing Saved My Life," about Christian rock and evangelical Christian culture.

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