How did Talk Radio Get So Politically Lop-Sided?
How did the right get their vice grip of the airwaves, all the while arguing that they were being silenced and censored by a liberal media? This week, we look at the early history of American radio to reveal that censorship of far-right and progressive voices alike was once common on radio. And reporter Katie Thornton explains how, in the post-war and Civil Rights period, the US government encouraged more diverse viewpoints on the airwaves — until it didn’t. Plus, the technological and legal changes that led to conservative talk radio hosts like Rush Limbaugh taking over the airwaves.
This episode is an adaptation of our latest series, The Divided Dial. You can listen to the full series here.
The Divided Dial is reported and hosted by journalist and Fulbright Fellow Katie Thornton. You can follow her work on Instagram or on her website. The Divided Dial was edited by On the Media's executive producer, Katya Rogers. With production support from Max Balton and fact-checking by Tom Colligan, Sona Avakian, and Graham Hacia. Music and sound design by Jared Paul. Jennifer Munson is our technical director. Art by Michael Brennan. With support from the Fund for Investigative Journalism.