Unedited: Cliff Hughes explains recent moves at Nationwide

Let me take this opportunity to dissaude Mr Gordon Robinson, and those of likemind, of the opinion that Nationwide News Network (NNN) may be going over a ‘cliff’.

NNN is stronger than it has ever been since its inception almost 10 years ago. 

I did not build this bastion of truth to simply abandon it; instead my vision of NNN has always been to revoluntionise the Jamaican media landscape and we are well on the way. Notwithstanding several bumps and hurdles along the way.

It is for this reason that the NNN team made a series of notable changes in recent months. 

These changes included, and are certainly not limited to, the drafting of a cadre of young talented broadcasters who are well positioned to be the “New Generation of News Hounds”.

NNN also moved  into a larger newly renovated building, the same building that used to house Power106FM.

Does any of this sound as though I will be jumping ship anytime soon?

I recognise that the move to the former Power106FM building on Bradley Avenue and the new show Cliff Hughes On-Line, which airs from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Monday to Thursdays on Power106FM, have caused some amount of confusion to Nationwide listeners and advertisers.

However, let it be known that I am first and foremost a newsman before I am a CEO. I have dedicated my life to empowering Jamaicans to be better informed and engaged citizens of our democracy as long as health permits me to do so. This is what I will be doing.

The opportunity to host a daily talk show puts me in direct contact with my listeners and so far, I have been relishing the opportunity and the feedback has been largely positive. 

It is important to note that Cliff Hughes On-Line does not compete with any of the programmes on Nationwide 90FM. The shows on Nationwide 90FM and my talk show on Power106FM were designed to attract different audiences, and this will always be the case. Therefore, there is no conflict of interest.  It is straight business!

I am confident in the talent on Nationwide 90FM between 10 am and 2pm. They present qualitatively different programmes than what I do on Power 106FM. I know for sure they can hold their own against me and all others.

I am not worried that NNN will lose listeners as the quality of the programmes on the station have been fortified to withstand any challenge. This is evident by the strong support of our advertisers who continue to sponsor these products for their inherent value in reaching their customers.

The hosts and producers of these shows, which Mr Robinson seems to be overly worried about for whatever reasons, are aware that I demand and strive for the best at all times. They understand that we have a duty to our listeners and advertisers to provide programming of the highest quality and we do this every single day.

That is the culture that I have strived to instill as Executive Producer and CEO at NNN. Everyone, including Gordon, who has worked under my leadership, can attest to the fact that I strive to be fair and balanced in all my dealings. My decision to take up the offer at Power106FM, while remaining as CEO of Nationwide 90FM, was accorded the same level of assessment and analysis. 

New media consumption habits and delivery systems through the multiplicity of new communication technologies have made obsolete old notions of competition between and among traditional media systems – television, radio and newspapers. CEOs and their staff must innovate or stagnate. This new, crowded and noisy media communications marketplace is demanding new strategies of doing business.  It is forcing us to re-think who we employ and how we deploy them.  

The ‘old’ newspaper business is in decline. So too ‘old radio and television.’  Therefore, how we compete and cooperate must change. If we fail to do so, we won’t be jumping off a cliff.  We will simply wither away.

To insinuate that I am about to jump ship instead of recognizing the essence of the business strategy behind these recent developments says a lot about Gordon’s understanding of operating a media enterprise in a tough and stagnant Jamaican economy.

To all those who have supported NNN over these difficult years, please continue doing so, as our best is yet to come! I will say to the listening public, you know what it is you want to hear, when you want to hear it and you will ultimately decide. 

Whether you want to tune in and discuss hard hitting issues with me on Power106FM or you may want to listen to At Your Service with Vernon Darby on Nationwide 90FM to get the much needed assistance or service you may need in finding a job or applying for a visa, or listen to Timeline with Dennis Brooks to find out what’s happening across the world on social media or listen to Every Woman with Georgia Crawford to find out the issues affecting women and their families, it is all up to you. 

But one thing is for certain, you will be getting the very best that Jamaican media have to offer, either way. Welcome to the new and emerging world of media.

 Peace and love.

2 thoughts on “Unedited: Cliff Hughes explains recent moves at Nationwide

  1. Karen Taylor

    I think it’s a good move. I agree with you Mr Hughes about changing the old way of doing things. Jamaicans are spending more time online where they are getting their news and entertainment products. Jamaican media managers with foresight have observed this fascination and the popularity of new media, and have put down stakes in the cloud long ago; By all means, command your own piece of the web pie now, and start courting new audiences.

    Fusions and collaborations are not uncommon among small business entities. I believe your day programmes on Nationwide have strong hosts who provide a refreshing take on the old routine that the older stations have been dishing out over decades.

    It’s obvious you are doing the research and staying abreast of the findings.This generation has different values, are largely aural/verbal learners, don’t care about cultural borders and differences, and are hungry for the fast and convenient. WEB 2.0 is the way to go. Don’t see any real competition there. Its a matter of flipping between channels, which people do more readily today to feed their changing tastes and interests.

    Talk show hosts just have to work and push harder to keep the interest of their audiences. The Jamaican listening public are the real winners here as this competition intensifies. May the best hosts/channels win.

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