A Push for a Longer Delay

A Push for a Longer Delay
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A Push for a Longer Delay

A notable angle to recent interest in profanity delays is the question of whether the standard radio delay is about to get significantly longer - to allow programmers more control over the content.
The traditional delay of around 7 seconds is long enough for the air talent to react and push a button that will delete the offending material before it airs. Clear Channel said the profanity delay systems it has been installing can accommodate up to 20 seconds of delay, "most useful for programs that will be monitored in-studio 'on the fly,'" according to Clear Channel engineering executive Steve Davis in the company's statement(reported above). Most of those devices are believed to be Symetrix and Eventide products, although an engineering official declined to comment on that question.
Now Clear Channel wants to give its PDs more flexibility. As Radio World Online reported on March 1, a new product from its subsidiary Prophet Systems Innovations, called ContentCheck, is being installed at several of its stations that can allow 5 to 10 minutes of delay.
The Clear Channel announcement suggests that the company is putting a good deal of hope in that approach; it made reference to a need for longer delays, quoting Davis as saying, "For more-sensitive live programs where a monitor outside the studio is preferable, the company is developing an in-house solution which is expected to provide an unprecedented five-minute delay. ... A five-minute delay just isn't commercially available right now, but Clear Channel is putting its money where its mouth is. We've got engineers working around the clock on this solution, and we expect to have a system in place within days."
The Prophet system is in fact in place at the station where Bubba the Love Sponge had worked, according to Clear Channel's Jeff Littlejohn.