It's tough in this current day to compete when the big boys are offering cluster packages to advertisers that offer a better cost-per-point than a single-station operator. I think the only way to be profitable is to take a smaller-market approach: by building relationships with enough mom-and-pop advertisers to haul the freight. If you get an agency buy then great but that's not your bread and butter.
Thing is, I'd imagine 'FNX - in ultra-liberal Boston - would have had that routine down pat.
I don't know the terms of separation for those employees, do you? If he just cut them lose with no severance, then shame on him.
I'd like to think he had some severance agreement, even if it was only to save face. Unless as speculated he's selling the paper too.
I did read that he's getting clear out of broadcasting, selling 92.1 in Peterborough, NH (which I don't believe is far from Lunenberg, MA, Sandy Beach fans!) and a number of other properties in NH and Maine. FWIW, I've driven thru Peterborough, most of the flame-throwin' Boston signals like Kiss 108 are easily heard there so hyper-local or some specialty format is the only way to fly there.
This, to me, is one of those instances where no one is cheering and the "bad guy" may well be Mindich himself, cashing out after years of "standing up to the man". Whether CC does any better at serving the local audience is respectfully irrelevant. If enough PPMs pick up the station it's a success, whether we see it as such or not. A station like 'FNX is ultimately the romanticized version of what we all want radio to be. Remarkable that it got to be reality for as long as it did.