The Dirty Truth About Sirius - Current Users Deactivating at 2x The Rate of New Users

Discussion in 'Stocks' started by ByLoSellHi, Jan 15, 2007.

  1. The Dirty Truth About Sirius Satellite Radio

    Posted on Jan 8th, 2007 with stocks: SIRI, XMSR

    Phil Davis submits: Note to Howard Stern: I know what's wrong with your show -- it's vulgar! I know that may seem kind of obvious to some of you, but I was, and still am, a huge Howard Stern fan. But I can't listen to his show anymore when I'm around people. The lack of censorship has allowed the show to sink to a level of sex and profanity that used to be funny when left to the imagination, but has become embarrassing when described in graphic detail. You can't even risk rolling down you window at a toll plaza with Howard's show on the radio anymore.

    I was hoping he'd grow out of it after having some fun saying f*** a few thousand times but, apparently, the novelty hasn't worn off for Stern. But it has for Sirius Satellite Radio Inc. (SIRI) subscribers, who are deactivating at a rate that is increasing twice as fast as subscriptions are increasing!

    Deactivations for Q2 were 230K vs. 66K (up 350%) in Q205, while subscriptions grew to 830K from 432K (less than 50%).
    While an army of sycophants may whisper in Howard's ear that this is OK and still represents a net gain -- I like him too much not to tell him the truth!

    They are still outperforming XM Satellite Radio Holdings Inc. (XMSR), who lost 528,000 subscribers in Q2 alone, and whose additions are actually dropping. But this isn't about beating XM, it's about Howard getting back to doing a show that made him a national sensation. It's hard to be the "Bad Boy of Radio" when the radio you're on gives you carte blanche to say and do whatever you want.
  2. I have Sirius, but I'm thinking of switching to XM for the MLB broadcasts. You just can't beat having every single baseball game at your fingertips. In hindsight, I think SIRI tied their wagon a little too tightly to the Stern horse. I never listen to his show, I mostly tune in to CNBC, ESPN Radio and music, all which XM has. People associate SIRI with Stern rather than the rest of their content. If they don't merge by baseball season, its on to XM for me!
  3. Ummm, why not just change the station instead of canceling the whole subscription?

    I believe there are hundreds of other channels besides Howard Stern.
  4. I have absolutely no problem with Howard. I used to listen, but it got repetitive. XM has baseball, SIRI doesn't. That's the reason I want to switch, not Howard.
  5. 4re


    I have both SIRI and XM. I got sirius because of Howard but like you I don't find it funny anymore. You could use your imagination more when he was on regular radio.
  6. Howard: The king has been dethroned from his own greed.
  7. fletch2


    Same thing as Opie and Anthony. The show used to be funny (sometimes) when they had to dance around the dirty stuff, and their best stuff was always stuff that wasn't dirty at all. Now it's just not funny when there are no boundaries to push, no lines that they almost sort of don't cross, etc.

  8. blast19


    I'm a Stern fan...have never thought any of the sex stuff was/is very funny. The show is a soap opera...that's the humor.

    People tune in to come back saying "oh, it's so gross" but it's not the raunchy stuff that gets most people to listen. People like the cast of character and the soap opera.

    Howard is a nutcase who goes to therapy like 3 days a week. His neurosis is funny.

    Don't listen if you don't like it. You guys sound like a group of whiney senators complaining about a certain wardrobe malfunction....if you don't like it, DON'T LISTEN.
  9. People don't, that's the problem. Did you completely miss the thread topic?

    Hello, anybody home?
  10. I am so looking forward to the day when Stern is forced to look long and hard into whatever remains of his soul to resolve if being wealthy has earned him respect among the talented entertainers and discerning people of America. I suspect that the worship and affinity he gets from his minions of crass devotees will not be sufficient to satisfy his selfish needs for attention & self worship and acceptance. Further, at a business level, at some point the crassness must reach a point of market saturation where market growth stagnates and crudeness becomes the norm. If patterns hold, it then becomes more counter-culture for subscribers to reach for its opposite - "class". But Stern only knows one thing and lacks the agility to reinvent himself and appeal to anything but the classless. At some point the "have not" and angry class always turns on its king for profiting and taxing their contempt. The smarter ones eventually realize that it makes no economic sense to financially reward those who really have little talent nor contribute to their own economic advancement or quality of life or benefit. Hell, its cheaper to buy a cheap 6-pack and get drunk and laugh.

    Time will tell if Stern & Sirius have the good sense to economically hedge against the worst expectation. For Stern that would be taking "himself" seriously and expecting respect in the larger group of talented entertainers. For Sirius the risk is brand name pilfering and loss of identity. You see, I doubt that Sirius stockholders would go for a rename of the company to "Stern Satellite Broadcasting". So management better come up with a way to gracefully back Stern out of the business plan or risk being consumed by it and becoming a one trick dog.

    Demographically I think the entire market is changing. If my observations are correct, this is not going to play well with Sirius's "top vulgarity" business plan. I sense that America is searching for its roots and is rediscovering that "class" matters and is becoming increasingly rare in our culture. That's the rarer and more precious thing. This is the thing that people will spend premium money and where the "vanity" money will eventually migrate to and reward.

    Eventually, even the most anti-establishment and crass mavericks swirling about the toilet bowls of American culture will come to realize that there are few barriers to entry to the ranks of the vulgar. Everyone will try to make a go of it. But there is not enough room at the top for more than only a few kings to make a share in the spoils. After all, cheep laughs and crassness can only go so far toward humoring and recruiting new drones from the ranks of the discontent. In the old days, before Sirius the crassness was being sold at precisely what it was worth; and that price was "free" to those with a lot of uncompensated time on their hands and willing listen late at night. Oh joy, now they can listen anytime - brilliant concept. But back then it was less accessible and lack of supply meant it was "quality crap" (under supply and over demand). It sure beat what that class of listener/follower could pick up for free off the graffiti in the toilet stalls. But now there is supply 24/7 and its become "less special" crap.

    Now, as the minions hooked on "free crass crack" are asked to come hither to digital radio and actually pay to listen it becomes inevitable that at some point the loyalty and humor are bound to fall on deaf or indifferent ears. You see, "the addiction" business model worked well for the drug culture. That creators of that market manufactured and expanded class could be expected to profit since subscribers would pilfer and mug to get the necessary cash to pay for their intense daily fix. But Howard is not that intense anymore and humor is not an emotion that can offset one's self loathing and lack of respect as well as drugs can. Besides, Howard's vulgar ranks are only filled with a collection of minor miscreants, aging flower-power era peacenics and borderline anti-establishment types. No, apart from some that take joy in debasing and mocking women there is generally nothing in the rank and file that is really inherently violent or motivated to work hard for the cheap laughs; and none willing to risk their lives or jail time to roll someone for the cash to get a fix. Besides with all the cheap porno on the Internet there are even fewer that are willing to pay for Howard each month and only so many times one can pragmatically enjoy "oneself" in a given day. And at current consumer debt levels there are even fewer with idle time on their hands to spend more than a few moments in privacy getting it out of their system before they head out to work in the morning.

    Sirius should have had the common business sense to realize that its hard enough to drive to and from work while fighting traffic. And that requires that subscribers keep both hands on the steering wheel. Then there is the fact that everyone is carpooling and there is no privacy in the car. This makes Stern much to impractical for this wanker class of subscriber. Sirius is simply out of touch with its subscribers. It asks too much from them since only a very few will be so ambidextrous and so bold as to be able to fully enjoy themselves to Stern's orchestration while driving in traffic.

    My prediction? It's going to get to be just like cell phone legislation barring cellphone use while driving. It's only a matter of time before Stern's minions eventually succeed in killing themselves behind the wheel (or others) while "enjoying themselves" to his coarse programming. The public will of course become outraged at discovering that grandmother was rammed and killed by a distracted driver at the height of his enjoyment of Stern's show (who investigators also determined died with one hand in locked in a death grip below the belt). So its only time before some special interest group that wants to censor Stern proposes new laws to make it illegal to drive while listening to Satellite Radio. Don't be a stockholder when this happens.

    So, I say, if you enjoy Satellite Radio or are an investor in Sirius (or XM) ban Stern before his minions manage to get Satellite Radio banned from autos. In the interim short Sirius stock and profit as Stern drives the country to his vision of the common man.

    #10     Jan 16, 2007