Less than one week after The News-Sentinel reported on a budding dispute between WOWO radio and some of its conservative listeners, the afternoon local talk-show host at the center of the story was absent from the airwaves Friday afternoon, replaced by a syndicated program.
Whether the change is permanent remains to be seen, but sources indicate it will be.
Director of Programming operations Gregg Henson, who replaced Pat Miller in the 3 p.m. - 6 p.m. time slot last month and made no secret of his intention to attract a more inclusive audience, was replaced Friday by Sean Hannity, the nationally syndicated host previously aired at 6 p.m.
Henson in recent days had openly criticized by name some local conservatives, who responded with a flurry of e-mails targeting WOWO advertisers and, in one case, declaring "war" on the station dominated by conservative talk radio, includinng Rush Limbaugh's program.
WOWO did not respond to requests for comment, but one source indicated Henson would not be back on the air. Miller, who was relegated to a Saturday show after Henson took over, has also lost his program, the source added.
Henson told The News-Sentinel last week that he wanted the station's afternoon show to appeal to a broader audience than "niche" listeners the evangelical Christian Miller had reached, especially after the station began simulcasting its AM signal on a sister FM station recently.
Local blogger Dan Turkette, in fact, suggested Henson had posted a series of critical posts on Facebook about Allen County Right to Life Director Cathie Humbarger, but Henson denied any involvement.