RAIN 3/15: One year in, UK's online radio aggregator Radioplayer heralded as a triumph

Paul Maloney
March 15, 2012 - 11:40am

You many know Radioplayer (see RAIN coverage here) is the online aggregate of radio in Britain, 315 streaming audio channels and on-demand content. It's a not-for-profit cooperative co-owned by the BBC and (most of) the UK's commercial radio industry, launched one year ago this month.

Today Radioplayer boasts seven million monthly unique users. And it represents a victory in successfully transitioning traditional media to an online platform, compared to television in the UK, says Emma Barnett, The Telegraph's Digital Media Editor.

"Where British TV companies have failed... the radio industry has genuinely managed to build a successful aggregator through clever cooperation and by focusing on the product, rather than the potential new revenue streams," she wrote. "British TV content crucially still doesn’t have a single web player."

Each participating station is given equal prominence in the player, and each displays their own advertising and content. And there is total autonomy for each contributing station. Radioplayer managing director Michael Hill credits the platform's success to "its fairness, openness and its not-for-profit status."

Radioplayer also generates revenue (which goes back into developing and improving the player) by licensing its technology. Two such improvements are the coming mobile app and an app for Internet connected television systems (more here).

Read coverage from The Telegraph here.


Michael Schmitt
March 15, 2012 - 11:40am

Liz AielloRAIN Summit West 2012 will feature not only the biggest names in Internet radio, but also top experts from broadcast radio, device manufacturers and other web services. To highlight this, today we're pleased to announce the addition of Liz Aiello, Jake Sigal and Darryl Ballantyne to the conference's agenda!

Liz Aiello (pictured right) most recently was VP of Programming for Merlin Media LLC, building New York’s first all-news radio station on FM. She's also served as SVP of Broadcast at Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia, has worked with Howard Stern and spent 17 years with ABC. Aiello will speak as part of the "Innovating the News/Talk Format Online" panel at RAIN Summit West 2012.

Jake SigalRAIN Summits veteran Jake Sigal (pictured left) is Founder and CEO of Livio Radio. Sigal founded Livio Radio in 2008 -- the company offers several devices for tuning in to Internet radio around the house and especially in cars. Sigal will participate in RAIN Summit West's discussion on "The Connected Dashboard."

Darryl BallantyneDarryl Ballantyne (pictured right) is CEO of LyricFind Inc. -- the largest legal, licensed lyrics database in the world, with millions of licensed tracks available and thousands of lyrics sublicensing clients. LyricFind provides lyrics to services like The Echo Nest (more here). Ballantyne will be a panelist for our "It's Who You Know" discussion.

You can find RAIN Summit West's full agenda and list of speakers right here. The Summit takes place Sunday, April 15 in Las Vegas. More details can be found here.

Be sure to register soon! Seats are going fast.

Michael Schmitt
March 15, 2012 - 11:40am

Turntable.fmInnovative web music service Turntable.fm has reached licensing deals with the four major labels, "allowing it to leave the legal gray zone it had been operating in and expand into international markets," writes the New York Times. We reported in September that such licensing discsussions were underway (here).

"Basically this means we’re legitimate," said the company's chairman Seth Goldstein. Turntable.fm apparently had planned to operate under a DMCA license, like those used by non-interactive webcasters. However, these latest deals, directly with the copyright owners, are likely more similar to deals services like Spotify, Rdio, and MOG have entered.

Turntable.fm allows users to essentailly act like a radio DJ, playing hand-picked music to other users in real-time. It incorporates many social and game-like elements too (RAIN coverage here).

The New York Times has more coverage here.

Paul Maloney
March 15, 2012 - 11:40am

Listener Driven Radio has introduced a new tool which monitors the online exposure of news items in local markets, so for news, talk, and sports producers and talent can see what's "getting buzz" locally.

The product, LDR.TopicPulse, scans online news sources, local blogs, and social media like Facebook and Twitter to generate and continually update a report of trending topics on a local, national, or topical basis.

"We are passionate about innovation and using technology to make broadcast programming better," said Maureen Lesourd, Chief Revenue Officer at LDR.

Listen Driven Radio is software platform for music broadcasters to enable "crowd-sourced" programming, now used by more than 125 stations internationally. Find out more about the LDR.TopicPulse product here.