When you turn on the lights in your home, do you quickly thank the electric company or power plant? Or the solar panels or wind turbines that provide electricity? Of course not. So why should you credit your source?

Many entertainment-oriented air personalities open a break with something like:

According to an article in this month’s Cosmo…

A new USA Today survey says that…

I saw on HGTV last night that…

We were just on the Entertainment Tonight website during the break and found out…

Starting with the origin of the topic transfers attention from where it belongs (your show) to the source.

Of course, there are times when a responsible journalist should reference the source of news content. It can add credibility, protect the organization from legal liability, or advance a story by involving the source. But those are exceptions. And most of you are not journalists. You’re entertainers.

Don’t Credit Your Source

Now there’s nothing wrong with stealing adopting content from magazines, newspapers, televisions programs, websites, and other shows. I’m all for it. They’re a great source of ideas, inspiration, thought-starters, and content.

Great. Steal the topic, curate it, and turn it into original content.

That Buzzfeed list of things for kids to do at home? Why send listeners there? That’s not going to generate more quarter-hours.

There’s no upside to start a break with:

My wife and I were taking one of those personality quizzes in in Glamour this weekend, and one of the questions was…

The source adds nothing to the entertainment value. Eliminate the source. Here’s another way to get into it:

My wife tricked me into a couples quiz yesterday and I fell for a trick question.

This hook gets to the essence of the topic – the conflict.

  • Hook the audience with a topic.
  • Lead with a provocative comment
  • Engage with banter and conversation!

And the credit goes to where it belongs: your show.


Online businesses make a fortune repurposing content. Buzzfeed, Reddit, and Upworthy find interesting content, curate it, and make it their own. Isn’t that what radio personalities do every day?

The important concept, though, is curation. Reading and commenting on a list or survey is not well curated. Perhaps the reason some feel a need to credit your source the content hasn’t been prepared with a unique angle.

In any case, it diminishes the show.

If you wonder how to put that into practice, check out my show prep service Personality Magnet. Each day, there’s fresh content, curated, and ready to pour personality into it. Get a trial for just $1 to check it out.

Be bold. Don’t credit your source.


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