Station Not Many Can Hear Shuts Down

And no, we’re not talking about Media-Com’s Fox Sports Radio affiliate WJMP/1520 Kent.

(Sorry, we couldn’t resist!)

Under scrutiny by the Ohio attorney general, the folks at Written Communications Radio Service have been forced to shut down their radio reading service for the blind.

WCRS operated on a subcarrier of Akron University’s WZIP/88.1, providing reading of the Akron Beacon Journal, the Cleveland Plain Dealer, numerous magazines and original programming aimed at blind listeners. The station’s listeners needed a special radio to pick up the station out of the hidden reaches of 88.1’s signal.

WCRS’ operation of instant bingo games at the former Rollercade on East Market Street is being investigated by attorney general Jim Petro’s office, along with other operational questions. After being forced to shut down the instant bingo, WCRS kept going with regular bingo for a while…until finally closing the door on that as well. The loss of the bingo income led to the shutdown.

There’s talk in the Beacon Journal article about the local chapter of the National Federation of the Blind trying to restart the radio reading service, though we don’t know how likely that’d be. We’re wondering how many folks use the service these days, due to the advent of computer technology…but at least WCRS’ older listeners seemed to appreciate the service and its audio companionship…

Disclosure: As a teenager, your Primary Editorial Voice did some volunteer reading work for WCRS, which was then known as Tri-County Radio Reading Service…

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