LOS ANGELES — Clear Channel CEO Bob Pittman says that the radio company will extend the ad-free environment on the custom section of its iHeart Radio online service for at least a couple more months, saying that a consumer backlash against ads on its online competitor, Pandora Media Inc., serves as a "cautionary tale."
Pittman told The Associated Press that negative listener reaction to Pandora's in-stream ads has convinced Clear Channel that they are disruptive and annoying.
In November, Clear Channel said iHeart Radio would be free of ads through April 1, but Pittman said this week that the company would push back the introduction of ads until it figures out a way to make them more "compatible" with the user experience.
Pandora did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
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