|Co-owner and operator Mark Lucke at KHIL-AM, which is in danger of closing after broadcasting in Willcox, Ariz.|
(pop. 3,500) for 60 years. Tanya Tucker listened to the station as a child. (Guardian photo by Cassidy Araiza)
"Small-town radio is fizzling nationwide, as stations struggle to attract advertisement dollars," Weingarten writes. "As station owners are forced to sell, media conglomerates snap up rural frequencies for rock-bottom prices, for the sole purpose of relocating them to urban areas. In a more affluent market, they can be flipped for a higher price. With limited frequencies available, larger broadcasters purchase as many as possible . . . in a race not dissimilar to a real-estate grab."