NPISAIPD: National Public Internet Streaming Audio with I-Pod Downloads. Lets face it, when the National Public Radio CEO, Vivian Schiller, basically talks about doing away with radio in the next 5 to 10 years, what are they going to call the network? I suppose they could just say “National Public Media” or something like that. With radio’s current trajectory, she might not be wrong.
Of course all of the NP
R affiliates that kick large sums of money up the chain to the network may have something to say about all this. After all, they are the one heavily invested in transmitters, towers, STL’s and all the other equipment, buildings and real estate required to transmit radio signals. Not that I particularly dislike NP R, I think they have some fine programs, but much of it is syndicated and this is where radio is falling apart. Non-local radio stations will perish. Only stations that offer something different and not available through other sources will survive and thrive, voice tracking and syndication will become the kiss of death.
This also leaves a bit of a problem for NP
R itself. Much of its revenue (more than 50%) comes from network affiliation fees with member stations. If they intend on short circuiting those stations cutting them out of the programming loop (Schiller says no but we’ll see), they are going to have to figure out how to make up that lost revenue. If I were an NP R member station, I’d surely be looking at my network affiliation agreement and looking for ways to replace some of that content with something local. That would be planning ahead.
Local news, local music, local arts, local sports, local weather, local content. I can find out what is going on in China, Israel, India or almost any place around the globe with a few key strokes on the computer. I can’t find out what happened at the local town board meeting, what the county legislature is up to, or whether the school budget passed. All of those things have immediate affects on my taxes and therefore my family finances.
Local radio. Fill in the void left by dead newspapers. That is what radio stations need to do, go local or perish.