The Komando Perception Deception (Reprinted)

Originally posted November 14, 2002:

There are lies, damn lies, and statistics.  A number given by itself, without any contextual meaning, can be manipulated in such a way as to make it sound more significant than its actual true worth.

Kim Komando claims that her radio program is one of the top ten “rated” programs in the United States.  The implication of this assertion would have listeners believing that there exists a list of ten popular radio programs and within that list of ten names the Kim Komando Show ranks at worst tenth out of ten.

Written out, the implied list would look like this:


Top Ten Rated Radio Programs

1.   Program “A”
2.   Program “B”
3.   Program “C”
4.   Program “D”
5.   Program “E”
6.   Program “F”
7.   Program “G”
8.   Program “H”
9.   Program “I”
10. Kim Komando


However, this is not an accurate representation of the actual current radio ratings.  The current ratings system looks exactly like this:


TOP TALK RADIO AUDIENCES BY SIZE (weekly Monday-Sunday estimates 12-plus in millions rounded off to the nearest .25 million based upon TALKERS magazine analysis of a national sampling of Arbitron reports supported by other reliable indicators in rated and non-rated markets based on Spring, 2002)

1.   RUSH LIMBAUGH 14.50+
2.   SEAN HANNITY 10.00+
3.   DR. LAURA SCHLESSINGER 8.00+
3.   HOWARD STERN 8.00+
4.   MICHAEL SAVAGE 6.00+
5.   ART BELL 4.25+
5.   JIM BOHANNON 4.25+
5.   DR. JOY BROWNE 4.25+
5.   DON IMUS 4.25+
6.   NEAL BOORTZ 2.50+
6.   KEN & DARIA DOLAN 2.50+
6.   CLARK HOWARD 2.50+
7.   MIKE GALLAGHER 2.25+
7.   G.GORDON LIDDY 2.25+
7.   BRUCE WILLIAMS 2.25+
8.   KIM KOMANDO 1.75+
8.   TOM LEYKIS 1.75+
8.   JIM ROME 1.75+
8.   DOUG STEPHAN 1.75+
9.   GLENN BECK 1.50+
9.   MICHAEL MEDVED 1.50+
9.   DAVE RAMSEY 1.50+
10. BOB BRINKER 1.25+
10. DR. DEAN EDELL 1.25+
10. PHIL HENDRIE 1.25+


By audience size alone, Kim Komando’s show does indeed fall in the list as the eighth most listened to talk radio program.  So her claim that her show is one of the top ten “rated” programs in the United States is true if and only if audience size is the sole criteria.

However, this is not a list of the top “rated” ten programs, as implied in Komando’s original claim, but a list of the top ten program ratings.  Those ratings being 14.50 through 1.25.

If each program in the list was assigned a number based on its location within that list, it would read thus:


1.   RUSH LIMBAUGH 14.50+
2.   SEAN HANNITY 10.00+
3.   DR. LAURA SCHLESSINGER 8.00+
4.   HOWARD STERN 8.00+
5.   MICHAEL SAVAGE 6.00+
6.   ART BELL 4.25+
7.   JIM BOHANNON 4.25+
8.   DR. JOY BROWNE 4.25+
9.   DON IMUS 4.25+
10. NEAL BOORTZ 2.50+
11. KEN & DARIA DOLAN 2.50+
12. CLARK HOWARD 2.50+
13. MIKE GALLAGHER 2.25+
14. G.GORDON LIDDY 2.25+
15. BRUCE WILLIAMS 2.25+
16. KIM KOMANDO 1.75+
17. TOM LEYKIS 1.75+
18. JIM ROME 1.75+
19. DOUG STEPHAN 1.75+
20. GLENN BECK 1.50+
21. MICHAEL MEDVED 1.50+
22. DAVE RAMSEY 1.50+
23. BOB BRINKER 1.25+
24. DR. DEAN EDELL 1.25+
25. PHIL HENDRIE 1.25+


Giving the Kim Komando Show full advantage by placing it first in the list of the three programs tied in the eighth position, her program is at best only sixteenth out of twenty-five.  Which means that there are fifteen radio programs “rated” higher than her own.

Kim Komando is not in the top ten “rated” radio programs, but in truth ranks in the bottom ten “rated” radio programs.

It is, therefore, disingenuous of Komando to make her original assertion without properly qualifying the statement.  Misleading listeners with ambiguities is indeed a poor tactic for garnering ratings.  Perhaps full disclosure would prove a better strategy.


The author would like to thank Michael Savage and The Savage Nation for publishing the ratings used in this article.

This article has been reprinted for historical research purposes.

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8 Responses to “The Komando Perception Deception (Reprinted)”

  1. The Doctor Says:

    UPDATE:

    (Weekly Monday-Sunday cume estimates 12-plus millions rounded off the the nearest .25 million based upon TALKERS magazine’s analysis of a national sampling of Arbitron reports supported by other reliable indicators in rated and non-rated markets based on Spring 2009.)

    1.Rush Limbaugh 15.00+
    2.Sean Hannity 14.00+
    3.Glenn Beck 9.00+
    4.Michael Savage 9.00+
    5.Dr. Laura Schlessinger 9.00+
    6.Laura Ingraham 6.25+
    7.Mark Levin 6.25+
    8.Dave Ramsey 6.25+
    9.Neal Boortz 4.75+
    10.Mike Gallagher 4.75+
    11.Michael Medved 4.75+
    12.Jim Bohannon 3.75+
    13.Doug Stephan 3.75+
    14.Bill Bennett 3.50+
    15.Jerry Doyle 3.50+
    16.Clark Howard 3.50+
    17.George Noory 3.50+
    18.Kim Komando 2.50+
    19.Rusty Humphries 2.50+
    20.Jim Rome 2.50+
    21.Ed Schultz 2.50+
    22.Thom Hartman 2.00+
    23.Don Imus 2.00+
    24.Mancow 2.00+
    25.Alan Colmes 1.75+

    From: http://talkers.com/online/?p=71

  2. Real Facebook Fans Says:

    Terrific post, thanks. Can you expand on the second para-graph in a bit more detail plz?

  3. The Doctor Says:

    Kim Komando falls to # 22!

    (Weekly Monday-Sunday cume estimates 12-plus millions rounded off the the nearest .25 million based upon TALKERS magazine’s analysis of a national sampling of Arbitron reports supported by other reliable indicators in rated and non-rated markets based on Spring 2009.)

    1. Rush Limbaugh 15.00+
    2. Sean Hannity 14.00+
    3. Glenn Beck 9.00+
    4. Michael Savage 9.00+
    5. Mark Levin 8.50+
    6. Dave Ramsey 8.50+
    7. Neal Boortz 6.00+
    8. Laura Ingraham 6.00+
    9. Jim Bohannon 3.75+
    10. Jerry Doyle 3.75+
    11. Mike Gallagher 3.75+
    12. Michael Medved 3.75+
    13. Doug Stephan 3.75+
    14. Bill Bennett 3.50+
    15. Clark Howard 3.50+
    16. George Noory 3.50+
    17. Alan Colmes 2.75+
    18. Thom Hartmann 2.75+
    19. Rusty Humphries 2.75+
    20. Stephanie Miller 2.75+
    21. Ed Schultz 2.75+
    22. Kim Komando 2.25+
    23. Don Imus 2.25+
    24. Mancow 2.25+
    25. Hugh Hewitt 1.75+
    26. Dennis Miller 1.75+

    From: http://www.talkers.com/top-talk-radio-audiences/

    Updated: March 2011

    • The Doctor Says:

      Kim Komando falls to # 23!

      (Weekly Monday-Sunday cume estimates 6-plus millions rounded off the the nearest .25 million based upon TALKERS magazine’s analysis of a national sampling of Arbitron reports supported by other reliable indicators in rated and non-rated markets based on Winter 2012 data. This report is published quarterly.)

      1. Rush Limbaugh 15.00+
      2. Sean Hannity 14.00+
      3. Michael Savage 9.00+
      4. Glenn Beck 8.50+
      5. Mark Levin 8.50+
      6. Dave Ramsey 8.50+
      7. Neal Boortz 6.00+
      8. Laura Ingraham 6.00+
      9. Jim Bohannon 3.75+
      10. Jerry Doyle 3.75+
      11. Mike Gallagher 3.75+
      12. Michael Medved 3.75+
      13. Doug Stephan 3.75+
      14. Bill Bennett 3.50+
      15. Clark Howard 3.50+
      16. George Noory 3.50+
      17. Alan Colmes 2.75+
      18. Thom Hartmann 2.75+
      19. Rusty Humphries 2.75+
      20. Dennis Miller 2.75+
      21. Stephanie Miller 2.75+
      22. Ed Schultz 2.75+
      23. Kim Komando 2.25+
      24. Don Imus 2.25+
      25. Hugh Hewitt 1.75+
      26. Mancow 1.75+
      27. Todd Schnitt 1.75+
      28. Micheal Smerconish 1.75+
      29. Lars Larson 1.50+
      30. Dennis Prager 1.50+

      From: http://www.talkers.com/top-talk-radio-audiences/

      Kim Komando’s market share has not changed in the past year.

      Updated: July 2012

  4. The Doctor Says:

    Kim Komando is still #21 on the list and has increased her ratings only slightly to 1.50+. And is still tied with Bubba the Love Sponge.

    From: http://www.talkers.com/top-talk-radio-audiences/

    Updated: August 2015

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