Boyles falsely claimed Spanish-language radio stations comprise top four in L.A., "dominantly" No. 1 in Denver

››› ››› MEDIA MATTERS STAFF

On his January 31 broadcast, 630 KHOW-AM host Peter Boyles made the false claim that a Spanish-language Denver radio station has "been lionized" and has "become -- and dominantly" the top-rated station in Denver, and that the four top-rated stations in Los Angeles are Spanish-language stations.

During the January 31 broadcast of his 630 KHOW-AM show, host Peter Boyles falsely claimed that the four top-rated radio stations in Los Angeles are Spanish-language and that a Spanish-language station has "been lionized" and has "become -- and dominantly -- [the] number-one radio station in Denver." He made the claim to support his suggestion that Denver will become a predominantly Spanish-speaking city. However, according to fall quarter 2006 ratings released in January by the media and marketing research firm Arbitron, the top Spanish-language radio station in the Denver-Boulder market is ranked third overall. And in Los Angeles, of the top five radio stations, only two are Spanish-language. One of the stations is rated No. 1; the other is tied for second with an English-language station.

Arbitron ranked the stations by Average Quarter-Hour Persons (AQH) share, or percentage of the market share of listeners 12 years and older tuned in for at least five minutes during a 15-minute period.

Boyles asserted, "[A]s we say all the time, what you're witnessing in California is 18 months from being here." He then erroneously claimed that "in L.A. today -- I think the top four radio stations in the ratings -- one, two, three, four, and five, or one, two, three, and four -- are Spanish-language radio stations." Moreover, Boyles falsely claimed that "there's a station now, and it's been lionized here in the city, God bless them. I mean, it's not about anything other than they don't speak English. They have become -- and dominantly -- [the] number-one radio station in Denver. They don't speak English. Soon it will be two -- one and two."

Boyles did not indicate the source of his information, although a January 24 article by Dick Kreck and Elizabeth Aguilera in The Denver Post carried a headline that misleadingly referred to the Denver Spanish-language station KXPK-FM, as "[t]op-rated." In fact, as the article notes, the station was top-rated specifically in two important (and mostly overlapping) listener categories: "The fall 2006 ratings, released this week, show KXPK 96.5-FM first among listeners ages 18-49 and 25-54, radio's two most-watched listener categories." The Post also noted that "[i]ndustry experts attributed the increases, up almost two rating points from KXPK's spring figures, to two factors: Arbitron has broadened the reach of its polling, and popular morning-show host Eddie 'Piolín' Sotelo moved from KBNO 1280-AM to KXPK two years ago." The article also stated, "There are seven Spanish-language stations among Denver's 40 or more outlets."

Contrary to Boyles' assertion that KXPK "dominantly" tops the Denver radio market ratings, Arbitron's fall 2006 ratings show KXPK ranked third in the Denver-Boulder market with a 5.5 AQH share. The top-rated station, KOSI-FM, has a 6.2 AQH share; the second-rated station, KQKS-FM, holds a 5.8 AQH share. Both are English-language stations.

In the Los Angeles market, Arbitron's fall 2006 ratings show Spanish-language station KLVE-FM first with a 4.9 AQH share, followed by another Spanish-language station, KSCA-FM, which is tied with English-language KIIS-FM for a 4.5 share. Rounding out the top five are English-language stations KFI-AM and KOST-FM, each with a 4.1 share.

From the January 31 broadcast of 630 KHOW-AM's The Peter Boyles Show:

BOYLES: Also, we're going to speak with Congressman Duncan Hunter this morning. I'm a huge Duncan Hunter fan. Duncan Hunter. We need more Duncan Hunters. 52nd Congressional District -- they say CD -- in California. I'm a huge fan of his work. And he's been standing up strong against the illegals. And they -- he lives in El Cajon. And, as we say all the time, what you're witnessing in California is 18 months from being here. And, in California today -- or, in L.A. today -- I think the top four radio stations in the ratings -- one, two, three, four, and five, or one, two, three, and four -- are Spanish-language radio stations. Now there's a station now, and it's been lionized here in the city, God bless them. I mean, it's not about anything other than they don't speak English. They have become -- and dominantly -- number-one radio station in Denver. They don't speak English. Soon it will be two -- one and two. Things happen incrementally. They come up inch by inch by inch by inch. And we talk about these things all the time. You know, "press one for English, press two for English" -- those kinds of things. And it isn't something that happens overnight.

A tip from reader B.D. contributed to this item. Thanks, and keep them coming.

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