Well, not quite yet...ten business days from now will be the final day of the Media Network Weblog serving Radio Netherlands Worldwide.
Andy is without a doubt, the most skilled and well known radio journalism professional to have ever walked the planet. No one could even attempt to fill his shoes and do it the way Andy did things. Shortwave America knew as early as last year that Andy had made solid, confirmed plans to retire but chose to let Andy make the announcement himself before commenting on Andy and his career.
This was a simple act of respect towards Andy, who had earned his respect amongst all of us by way of his hard work, dedication, integrity, and his outgoing personality. You can read the full story announcing Andy's retirement here.
As much as Andy will be missed, the fact is that radio and the world of tracking radio media are in a state of change. The sad part of this is that the business Andy loved so much was the same business that forced Andy's hand in choosing his early retirement as evidenced by his own statement " Due to the new mandate of RNW effective on 1 January 2013, it will no longer be possible for the organisation to provide coverage of international media news."
Keith Perron of PCJ Media made a statement at the 2012 SWL Fest on the new frame of mind of radio management in that they are younger, they are inexperienced, and have never worked in a studio, never produced a show, and have never been in the shoes of those who have performed field work. What this statement says in its spirit and meaning is that these younger managers of the corporate world have absolutely no clue what radio is, how powerful radio is, and how they are affecting radio for the worse.
Radio is the original "social network", be it amateur radio and other two-way HF / AM / FM radio services, or the shortwave broadcast service. This author was interviewed by Ted Randall back in February on his "QSO Show" airing on WTWW.
Ted made a very true statement in that conversation..."You know who's making these decisions, don't you?" "Governments! and we all know what happens when governments make the decisions". Ted also pointed out that the Tecsun Corporation makes 30,000 shortwave receivers a day, and the audience is out here.
People WANT to know what is happening on an international basis with shortwave broadcast services, and really, shortwave is one of the last places that you can find international news items that the main stream media does not or will not cover. If you listen to shortwave and then compare what you hear to what is found in the MSM, very little of that shortwave news you heard is ever covered and when it does get covered, the spin that is applied to it is absolute rubbish!
Andy Sennitt has always been a genuine person, and this business has no idea as to the gem they have thrown away. Andy started on the Media Network Radio Show in 1981 and quickly became a leader in his field, gaining the respect of his peers and anyone else he worked with. Andy says this in his retirement press release: "In April I shall be writing a series of articles reflecting on the changes in international broadcasting since I started appearing on the Media Network radio show in 1981, and looking ahead to the coming decade. The articles will be published on the RNW English website."
Andy asks only one thing of his audience at this time: "If you have any memories of RNW or other international broadcasters that you would like to share, I will be pleased to hear from you at MediaNetwork@rnw.nl and I’ll try to include them in the articles." Andy also says it will take him some time, but he will get back to those who have written in to him.
At least RNW has agreed to allow the Media Network Weblog to remain on their own site as a searchable archive going all the way back to 2003. Andy states that his last day at RNW is April 26th, 2012.
Thank you, Andy, for all the decades of hard work, for how you have paved the way for all of those who have come up in your shadow with the proper attitude, focus, and love of radio. You will always be among the greats in the radio world, and I consider myself privileged to have been one of the people who were influenced by you.
All of us wish you big returns for all of the great things you have done. May you have the best of life, always!