Heads Roll at iBiquity, Clear Channel

Skool is back in session, which means posts to this here page will become shorter and more sporadic (I think, I don’t have a firm read on the class dynamics yet). That being said, here’s a couple of bits of info which seem to back up some earlier prognostications.
This past week iBiquity, HD Radio’s proprietor, laid off 20 people. According to Radio World, these are the first bona-fide layoffs at the company since its founding in 2003 (I would argue they’re the first bona-fide layoffs ever at the company in its nine-year history, since the 2003 departures involved executives, who I don’t believe were exactly given pink-slips). iBiquity’s web site claims the company employs some 130 people; if that number is accurate, that would constitute a corporate workforce cut of an impressive 15%.
Secondly, Under the guise of the inauguration, Clear Channel laid off 9% of its workforce, or some 1,850 people. This may not be the last of the culling at the company. The hardest hit, unsurprisingly, was the company’s radio division. If one of the primary broadcast-drivers of HD-adoption is slashing that hard at its bottom line, then you can guess where HD stands in the company’s list of priorities.
Although HD alternatives continue to stumble around the world, you can now sample one of them live and online. A Digital Radio Mondiale enthusiast in Cologne, Germany has hooked up receiver to the tubes, and you can sample the quality of shortwave DRM yourself (programming courtesy of the BBC and Radio Deutsche Welle). It blows analog shortwave away by miles.