Dennis Haarsager's rolling environmental scan for electronic media. "Somebody has to do something, and it's just incredibly pathetic that it has to be us." --Jerry Garcia "Wish I didn't know now what I didn't know then." --Bob Seger
Sirius Satellite Radio [Tuesday] announced that it has surpassed 800,000 subscribers, and remains on track to achieve one million subscribers by the end of the year. ... Link: Sirius Radio Passes 800K Subscriber Mark.
Radio spectrum plays a vital role in broadcast media and telecommunications, as well as being essential to emergency services and air traffic control. ¶ Regulator Ofcom is now planning to loosen control of the spectrum, allowing it to be traded on the open market for the first time in 100 years. ¶ It hopes this approach will lead to greater efficiency and more innovative uses of radio frequencies. ... Link: BBC News.
James Duderstadt is one of the most tech-savvy people ever to occupy a university president's chair. He's now President Emeritus of the University of Michigan and their University Professor of Science and Engineering. His address to the EDUCAUSE 2004 meeting with the above title is available here. --Dennis
I'd like to give a strong recommendation to listen to the address that David Weinberger gave recently to an audience at the Library of Congress (and C-SPAN). Dr. Weinberger is currently a fellow at Harvard's Berkman Institute for Internet & Society and is the author of Small Pieces Loosely Joined and co-author of The Cluetrain Manifesto. His web site is the Journal of the Hyperlinked Organization. I learned from the intro to this speech that he has also worked as a joke writer for Woody Allen. The first half of the speech is especially relevant to modern digital distribution considerations, but there is interesting material in the second half as well as the introduction and Q&A. --Dennis
The Station Resource Group, public radio's "think tank," has posted Tom Thomas' ppt slides for a presentation to Western States Public Radio, 11/15/2004. Thomas is co-CEO (with Terry Clifford) of the SRG. His presentations are always provocative and very well documented. This one begins: There will be more... • More content available over • More channels from more sources • Put to more uses by more people • In more places on more platforms. --Dennis
Static is out and streaming is in. Well, almost. By next year, satellite and digital radio could come to Canada, bringing about another revolution in the way we listen. ¶ We're about due for a radio shakeup. Every decade or so since radio hit full stride in the 1920s, the medium has found a way to reinvent itself to suit the times. ¶ With its latest update, radio is poised to beam into Canadian cars and homes via satellite - offering crystal-clear, commercial-free music, news, sports and entertainment radio. ... Link: Montreal Gazette. Thanks to the Radio and Internet Newsletter. --Dennis
Starting March of next year VOOM will expand its current 39 high-definition channels to more than 70 high-definition channels covering the full continental U.S. ¶ "The increase in VOOM's HDTV channels from 39 to more than 70 will allow us to continue to provide more high-definition video services than any other cable or satellite provider," said Tom Dolan, CEO of Rainbow Media Enterprises. "Our plan is to simultaneously add nearly 200 standard definition channels." Mr. Dolan continued. ... Link: Designtechnica News.
Video-on-demaned has reached a critical mass, and advertisers have taken notice. ¶ ...[V]ideo-on-demand has grown to provide both paid and free content of all sorts, so far without advertisements. But Fox Cable Networks and Visa plan to test the ad waters in January. ¶ The trial will be "Behind the Mysteries," a show ... on the National Geographic Channel before becoming a free on-demand offering. The channel has been offering free video-on-demand content since October 2002, but has never included commercials. Viewers who choose "Behind the Mysteries," however, will see either 60-second Visa spots before and after the program or Visa commercials throughout. ¶ "Video-on-demand is starting to get to a tipping point, in that the total universe of video-on-demand homes in the United States is about 17 million," ... Link: The New York Times.
As an unsigned band, the Shazam has never gotten the perks enjoyed by acts attached to major record labels. ...¶... But this week, the Shazam and seven other relatively unknown acts will get a shot at the kind of exposure that only the major record labels can provide, after being recruited for an experiment by Universal Music Group. Universal, which like other record companies has heavily relied on profits from sales of CD's, has signed the artists to a digital-only label. Starting Tuesday, it will release songs through services like iTunes from Apple Computer, Rhapsody from RealNetworks and MSN Music from Microsoft. ¶ The move says a great deal about how record companies are grappling with the Internet, which has toppled established techniques for promoting talent and threatened the industry's economic structure. After years of dithering over how to sell music online, the major labels are eyeing digital sales in some cases as a first step on the road to the larger marketplace. ... Link: The New York Times.