In magazines with an active letters from readers section, you can almost count on having one "Cancel my subscription!" entry each issue. The problem usually involves: 1. one of the writers displaying too much political bias (this seems to make some readers especially crazy, particularly in non-political publications), 2. too much profanity in an article (shocking!!) or 3. a perceived slight against a reader's favorite artist.
I've always enjoyed the editor's response in Stereophile — they seem to have many creative ways saying "Don't let the door hit your ass on the way out!" Note that I've almost never been sympathetic to these people. As long as the copy is interesting, I don't have to agree with the content. And too much profanity? C'mon, you're kidding...right?
But now I'm pissed off. I got in the car this morning, switched on my Sirius radio, and noticed that the little box went into a channel update. No big deal, as that's happened many times before. Besides, I was there to listen to that last hour or so of Howard Stern.
On the way home though, the gravity of the situation hit me: I couldn't find my favorite channel — Disorder. Hmmm...maybe I just forgot my preset button? Well, I couldn't remember the real channel number so I listened to a CD on the way home, making a mental note to check the Sirius website when I got home.
Turns out that the Sirius/XM merger was going to hit more than just the back offices. The new channel lineup has been announced and the devices have been updated. It's understandable that there would be some fallout from the merger. This is corporate America, after all. But I'm here to tell you, Sirius executive and programming-type people, that you've shot yourselves in the foot, if not the heart.
Disorder was the one channel that set you apart, not only from XM, but from all radio. It was a modern throwback to the early days of FM radio, when a DJ could play absolutely anything. Before the merger, I lobbied for friends to chose Sirius, Disorder being one of the high points of their offerings.