Internet radio is an audio broadcasting service on the Internet.
You may have also heard of it as: web radio, net radio, streaming radio, e-radio
Simply put, it is radio on the Internet!
... What it is
Internet radio is of two kinds:
Associated with traditional (terrestrial) radio stations
How is it different from other streaming services? Like traditional radio, Internet radio is very different from:
'On-demand' file serving and Podcasting: Here, you download instead of stream
Advantages & Disdavantages:
Internet radio involves streaming, which means that listeners have a continuous 'stream' of audio. But, they have no control over the content being broadcast.
But why use Internet radio?
What you listen to does not occupy space on your hard drive
Convenience in terms of access - anywhere, anytime
Internet radio has no geographic limitations
Unlike traditional radio, Internet radio is not limited to audio.
The cost of getting “on the air” is less for an Internet broadcaster
Internet radio can appeal to niche listeners
But, with such awesome-ness, comes great resposibility - to the people and the government.
Anywhere, anytime You can even make your own radio station online:
But, there are catches:
Some sites are available only for users in specific countries
Problems with regard to device connected to the Internet
Free vs. pay for access models
Why is it so popular?
So what exactly makes people flock to online radio stations?
Increased 3G coverage and sales of Internet capable phones
Internet Radio Proliferation
More than 8 in 10 Americans are online from any location
Weekly Internet Radio audience increased 50% from 2005
At-work streaming increased an average of 43% each year from 2000 to 2005
Radio web site visitors are highly loyal, with two-thirds of station web site visitors visiting weekly, and nearly a quarter visiting daily
41% visited a website due to an ad
57% of weekly internet radio users reported listening while purchasing goods at a website
Source: Arbitron Inc./Edison Media Research, 2006
2008 World Internet Users and Population Stats Source: Neilsen Online, December 31, 2008
Copyright Issues: Open source software like FreeMusicZilla will extend the problem with P2P and streaming
Tie ups with cellular service providers
MP3/MP4 audio manufacturers
More people responding to ads that are relevant to them
Major Internet Radio Stations
Others include www.music.yahoo.com , www.shoutcast.com
Music Genome Project "Since we started back in 2000, we've carefully listened to the songs of tens of thousands of different artists - ranging from popular to obscure - and analyzed the musical qualities of each song one attribute at a time. This work continues each and every day as we endeavor to include all the great new stuff coming out of studios, clubs and garages around the world."
Is also available as an application on phones with 3G coverage
Great intuitive software
Excellent audio quality
Easy to use and register
Good user interface
Thumbs up/down button allows the user to rate selections
Very few advertisements
The recommendation algorithm is great
You can share stations with your friends
You cannot make playlists
No option to search for songs/artists
There is no guarantee that you will hear a specific song again unless you bookmark it
Good user interface
Music for Android-supporting phones
You can make your own playlists and share them with friends
You can access your friends' playlists and also see what they have been listening to
Unlike Facebook and other social networking sites, Imeem does not show friends' news feeds
It allows you to search for music/artists
You can upload your own audio files
The recommendation algorithm is not that advanced
It has a great music recommendation system called the 'Audioscrobbler.'
Good user interface
It is a stand-alone, small software that you download to your computer
You can add songs to a playlist, but may not be able to play the whole song
It only recommends the station where the song is playing
You can love/ban artists
Users can create custom radio stations and playlists from any of the audio tracks in Last.fm's music library
It has very high quality sound
These recommendations are very genre-specific and relevant to the user
Internet Radio Timeline
Source: Penn State University
Long story short:
Copyright Arbitration Royalty Panel (CARP)
Determines appropriate royalty rates, methods how those rates are enforced and how the royalties are distributed
Makes decisions for specific types of copyrighted media like radio, cable TV and digital audio
The Copyright Royalty and Distribution Reform Act of 2004 replaced CARP with the Copyright Royalty Board
Copyright Royalty Board (CRB)
Judges are appointed to serve staggered six year terms
Evaluates circumstances of royalty rates for copyrighted materials
Sets appropriate rates according to US law
Is responsible for the increase of royalty rates for internet radio
This increase called for the proposal of the Internet Radio Equality Act
Internet Radio Equality Act
Introduced to the Senate on May 10 2007 to decrease royalty rates
The legislation appears to have been abandoned in committee, as of July 19, 2008
The old royalty rate of $.000768 per song is set to increase incrementally until the rate reaches $.0019 by the year 2010
Traditional radio broadcasters pay only publishing royalties and no performance royalties.
October 1998 : US Congress passed the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) Results: Performance royalties are to be paid for satellite and Internet radio broadcasts in addition to publishing royalties
June 26, 2007 : Day of Silence Many US Internet broadcasters shut off their audio streams or streamed ambient sound, sometimes interspersed with brief public service announcements.