When investing in my first satellite radio in 2005, my only regret in choosing Sirius over XM was the fact that Sirius did not have a channel comparable to XM’s film soundtrack channel, Cinemagic. Fast-forward to this past November. Sirius and XM have merged and announced their new combined channel lineup and lo and behold, Sirius subscribers were now going to be able to listen to XM’s Cinemagic. OK, it was going to be repurposed to air Christmas music for the holiday season, but starting in January, I would be able to add the option of listening to movie soundtracks into my already eclectic listening habits.
Well, that didn’t last long.
Last Tuesday, January 6, I tuned to Cinemagic channel 81, only to find that it had been unceremoniously yanked, replaced with a rotation of short promotional spots for a 70s disco/dance music-themed channel to premier on the 15th. A call to Sirius’ automated listener request line yielded a prerecorded voice stating, “Sorry that channel does not exist,” when I tried to input Cinemagic’s channel number. This, despite the fact that there still exists a page for the channel on Sirius’ website.
The next call I placed was to Sirius XM’s media relations department, who in turn referred me to Pat Reilly in their programming department. An email inquiry sent last Wednesday asking whether Cinemagic was going to be relocated on the Sirius lineup or if it was gone for good has not been answered.
Now I’ve been a Sirius subscriber long enough to know that they occasionally change their channel offerings based on programming availability and subscriber feedback. But only giving us a channel for five freaking days?! That’s strikes me as more than a bit ridiculous, especially when the channel is pre-empted to ballyhoo its replacement a full week before that replacement signs on the air. I would wager that many Sirius listeners who would enjoy the channel never even got to sample it before it disappeared.
Come on, Sirius. You say that you’re the “best radio on radio.” Prove it, and give Cinemagic a home.