I was aimlessly browsing the net when I again stumbled upon NPR.org, a site we forgot to include in a previous post. It was featuring The Race For Space — the latest album from Public Service Broadcasting (yup, that’s the artist name). Such name made us think about broadcasting nowadays, so we’re discussing it in this post. You can share your own opinions in the comments section below.
Is Radio Dead, Or Are We Still Killing It?
A good number of pundits have long proclaimed radio to be dead. Their arguments usually revolve around consumers’ behavior, but it seems that the radio industry itself is biting its own tail.
According to an article at Antenna, the FM dial in the US is under unprecedented proportions of spectrum grabbing. To the uninitiated, the broadcast spectrum is limited, so the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) limits the signals or stations that any entity can own in an area or market. The ownership cap was meant to prevent monopoly and to promote localism.
However, a loophole in how FM translators are regulated is threatening such goals. FM translators were initially meant to rebroadcast for local, non-commercial stations in areas with difficult terrain. But in 1990, they were “freed” from local stations, and were allowed to be commercially developed. And since they are not counted against the ownership cap, big organizations built networks of such, thereby consuming the broadcast spectrum to its last bits.
Somehow, we still discover new music (specially from local acts) through a few radio stations. But if this trend of greed continues, then it just might really be the end for radio.
Broadcast Your Garage Concert
We loved the live streamed concert of Incubus a few years ago. For a band as big as Incubus, it was easy to pull off because of the ways and means at their disposal. But for cash strapped local acts or budding musicians, even producing a crappy recording could be challenging.
And so, we were happy to discover the Gigcaster — a device that makes it easy for live music to be broadcasted online. But it isn’t available yet — it’s currently listed at Kickstarter, waiting to be funded by ordinary people like you. We urge everyone to support it, because who knows, it might be the best way for your dub music to be heard.