TAMPA (FOX 13) - Popular radio host Bubba the Love Sponge Clem was back in front of a microphone today -- not to host his show, but instead to apologize for trying to tamper with ratings.
Clem was accused last week of trying to influence a participant in Nielsen's radio ratings program who had approached him.
"It's with deep regret and embarrassment that I face you directly and say that it's true," Clem said Tuesday.
Nielsen calculates its ratings by putting listening devices that look like pagers called "portable people meters" on people in a household. Each person represents thousands of listeners in a given market. Those people are meant to be kept secret, and the panelists are changed every 18 months to avoid unusual behavior.
The ratings company has since said that Clem's attempt was unsuccessful, but the radio station won't be included in the September 2015 ratings report.
Yesterday, Clem's parent media company said it "strongly condemned" the act.
Clem, who had been off the air since the accusations first surfaced last week, said Tuesday it remains unclear what the future holds for his show.
“I don’t know what the future of my program is gonna be, but I can assure you that if I’m allowed to continue to broadcast, that I am sorry, embarrassed and never will attempt to do anything this stupid.”