Transition From FM to Internet Radio
SacTV.com "Video of the Day" review by
Alex Cosper on March 24, 2012
In 2000 I began my research on not just Sacramento radio history, but the advent of internet radio as well.
Local radio veterans Dennis Newhall and Tony Cox shared their perspectives on the past, present and
future of radio and the internet. The clips presented here amazingly stand up as accurate projections
on the consequences of generic corporate programming versus the emerging world of wider choices online
for music and talk. These interviews provide not only a retrospective of FM radio history, but also serve
as an overview of the ups and downs of both radio and internet presentation at the turn of the 21st century.
Dennis Newhall programmed rock station Earth Radio at KSFM in the 70s, before it shifted to dance music
and became FM 102. He says he allowed jocks to create their own music mixes and that pre-programmed playlists
would not have worked for the station back then. The standardization of radio programming since the 1980s
has led to less listener loyalty, but the solution to regaining the community spirit that FM radio once
delivered clearly points to internet radio. Tony Cox, who worked on air at KROY AM in the 70s and KROY FM in the 80s, observes that internet radio
doesn't cost $20 million like a tradition station did at the time. Internet radio potentially can also be more niche-oriented
and serve an audience with richer content than any given radio station. Read more about Sacramento radio history
at Playlist Research.
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