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Opie & Jim Norton Discuss Anthony Cumia’s Firing

Opie Anthony Jim Norton SiriusXM Discuss FiringSiriusXM’s Opie and Jim Norton returned from vacation for their first show following the firing of co-host Anthony Cumia from the “Opie & Anthony” show.

Opie commented that he thought that the entire show was gone the moment he saw Cumia’s tweets.

I read Ant’s tweets. And I said to myself I swear to you I said, Oh my God, we’re fired. That needs to be said. There was just something different about it. I’m like oh my God, we’re fired. Cause I think it was just the amount of tweets that he did and they were harsh. I mean they were absolutely were harsh and I understand why cause he was really mad at what had happened. But I knew in my gut that this is not going to go well. We work for a company for as much as we bitch they give us a lot of freedom on the radio. They’ve never really told us not to do anything. It’s all the behind the scenes stuff that drives us nuts, but we’ve had a lot of freedom as far as our radio show goes. But in the culture we live in I’m like this is not good. Man this doesn’t feel right and I said to myself we’re fired. We’re so fired.

He went on to mention surprise that only Anthony was fired as their contracts were connected and putting the rest of the show in a strange position through the expiration of their current deals in October.

Stating why he believed Anthony was fired he stated that he was told that Sirius wasn’t comfortable with the fact that there were so many of them and violence associated with the tweets.

The duo declared their support for Cumia with Opie stating emphatically that he did not believe he should’ve been fired. “As harsh as the tweets were. As much as I had a gut feeling that this was gonna go down. They should’ve rode it out.” Opie felt that had they been able to go on the air the next day after the incident they would’ve figured their way out of the situation because the jokes would’ve been there. He felt the tweets with the lack of jokes hurt their context.

While taking attacks from Cumia’s supporters for being traitors the duo discussed that they couldn’t leave SiriusXM for breach of contract, “It needs to be said that we’re under contract. I don’t think people understand fully what being under contract means and what breach of contract means. We can’t just walk away. Breach of contract is a real issue. We could be sued for millions. It would be a big f***ing problem.”

SiriusXM has also changed the name of their channel to “SXM Talk” and pulled all of the show’s archives with Cumia from being aired.

Listen to the first segment of the show discussing Cumia’s firing here:

INSTANT INSIGHT: Opie and Norton are in a no-win situation. They’re taking attacks from a vocal percentage of their audience not willing to understand why they were being retained and can’t walk away while still keeping the current show going. Opie and Anthony have a continuous on-air history going back two decades that has now been broken for at least the next few months.

The door is never closed completely on the show being resurrected whether it be on SiriusXM in a few months, a subscription podcast, or even a return to terrestrial.

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Lance Venta is the Owner and Publisher of RadioInsight.com and a consultant for RadioBB Networks specializing in integration of radio and the internet. Lance has two decades of experience tracking the audio industry and its use of digital platforms.

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