It seems to have been on the radio for a few months but I heard this show for the 1st time on Thursday on Red Dragon FM. It’s one of thirty-eight stations that form GCap Media’s “The One Network” which in their own words broadcasts the “Best mix of the 80’s, 90’s and now.”
I’ll leave my annoyances with these stations for another post as it’s the Midnight Cash Quiz that’s my biggest grip (even more so than “Late Night Love with Graham Torrington). If you haven’t heard it yet, then I can explain the premise of the show very easily: take one presenter; a format similar to the rubbish concept created by ITV for ITV Play, which has been copied by Sky, MTV, EMAP (for The Hits) and Five on TV; offer cash prizes for giving the answer that matches come obscure and nearly impossible to think of answer that matches the ones on the card and you win a certain amount of money.
I’ve always detested any form of TV that exists purely for profit now it has infested the radio industry; I’m assuming that the Midnight Cash Quiz is broadcast on all thirty-eight stations that make “The One Network” at the same time (it certainly is on Red Dragon for South Wales and GWR Bristol; both of which I can get in Newport; both are part of The One Network). Therefore it’s not only cheap radio, as they can save the cost of thirty-seven presenters, but they even make money out of the premium rate number.
There’s the arguement that very few people listen between midnight and 2am. But I know that there can still be a big number of texts to work with on am overnight shift (especially in Birmingham).
Perhaps the obvious arguement for this is that of providing the shareholders with the maximum profit and having this show does this on the two levels described. Which brings me on to Jack FM and Xu on XFM stations (which are also owned and operated by GCap Media).
But that could be done much more effectively as will probably be proved by Jack FM which is launching it’s 1st station in the UK later this year in Oxfordshire; the simple solution is that of ditching presenters with the expection of the breakfast show, where presenters and competitions are vital for success and market share. At least their decision is based on research that indicates that most people can’t stand some presenters and would rather just have the music. Unfortunately for Jack, GCap quickly reacted to this and are now using it on their XFM brand for their stations in London, Manchester and Scotland with the launch of Xu. It’s cleverly marketed as a glorified request show, making it a very close second to the Midninght Cash Quiz.
Presenterless shows are bad enough; admittedly some presenters are terrible but there is a fantastic solution to this. It’s called the sack.
As for the Midnight Cash Quiz, it’s a blatent money-making scheme that reduces innovation & opportunities for presenters wanting a 1st break.
And Xu; get some decent presenters! It’s far better than having a glorified jukebox!
But wait! You can beat a glorified jukebox! And how can you beat a glorified jukebox that you can only use in London, Manchester and the M8 corridor and coming soon in Oxfordshire? Buy an iPod!