Just got off the phone with Mike Kaplan, the Program Director of Entercom, the company that owns 107.7 The End. We talked about The End's recent Twitter posts, which endorsed religious/racial profiling to combat terrorism (You can catch up on the story here.)
Kaplan, who is on vacation in New Orleans, insisted that the Twitter feed was hacked. He called it "anonymity at its worst." When I asked who Twitters for The End, he said "We have a small staff, and less than half a dozen people have access to that account. Basically, I don’t want to get too in-depth with personnel issues," he said, citing legal obligations to his employees.
When asked what The End's responsibility in this matter is, Kaplan responded, "We’re guilty of being negligent and not paying too much attention around the holiday to our [Twitter] account. It’s a good lesson to learn. We’re going to have a lot of safeguards from now on. We’ve taken measures right here and right now."
Kaplan doesn't know how or when the account was hacked. When I asked how it remained hacked for so long, he said the station is running on autopilot through the New Year. "We unplugged during the Christmas season. We have special programming on right now. I’m in New Orleans, the rest of the staff is in different parts of the country." Kaplan said he woke up early this morning, read his e-mail, and immediately took action to delete the posts and put up an apology. "If you see our [normal] tweets, we don’t engage in this stuff," Kaplan said, meaning political issues.
Kaplan cites the poor financial climate for the lapse in the station's Twitter account. "We’re guilty that we do have a small staff and that we’re not on 24/7. Economically, it’s difficult to manage. I, as a manager, need to make decisions about how we can better adapt at assigning these responsibilities." Will they try to find the hacker? "I don’t know if we’re going to eventually track down who did this. I hope we do."
Slog readers who wrote to the station received e-mails reading as follows:
Apologies for the mixup - Please see the revised Twitter page that reflects the correct information. Thank you for your comments and your listening/following of our station. We hope to be your continued station of choice.