A college student in Wisconsin listens to a disc jockey in Jamaica play the latest rapso (calypso rap) music. A children’s advocacy group unites its geographically diverse members via private broadcast. A radio listener hears an ad for a computer printer and places an order immediately using the same medium on which he heard the ad. All of this is possible with Internet radio, the latest technological innovation in radio broadcasting since the business began in the early 1920s.
Internet radio has been around since the late 1990s. Traditional radio broadcasters have used the Internet to simulcast their programming. But, Internet radio is undergoing a revolution that will expand its reach from your desktop computer to access broadcasts anywhere, anytime, and expand its programming from traditional broadcasters to individuals, organizations and government.
In this article, we’ll explore the Internet radio revolution in terms of equipment, transmission, programming and the alterations in the listener/broadcaster relationship.