Contrary to the Buggles’ dire prediction, video did not kill the radio star. But the Internet has certainly made radio question its mortality. Satellite broadcasts, podcasting, the growth of less-expensive talk radio — all are terrestrial radio’s survival tactics.
Advertising revenue in Australia’s metropolitan stations has fallen steadily in recent years (paralleling losses in two other traditional advertising targets — print and television). New musical talent doesn’t need radio promote songs when there’s YouTube and Facebook.
New York Times tech columnist David Pogue writes about a website that offers, essentially, “TiVo for the radio.” It’s not available in Australia … yet. But the details remain intriguing.
DAR.fm (as in Digital Audio Recorder) is in its early stages, but already looks like a cool toy. The website lists every radio show on 1,800 AM and FM stations in the United States. Users select what they want to hear, and DAR.fm records it in their own cloud (the service is currently free, but don’t expect that to last). You can listen at the website, on an app phone or — if you have one — a Wi-Fi-friendly radio.
Is this legal? DAR.fm says its on the right side of legal precedent, at least in the U.S. Will it catch on? Heh. Stay tuned.