New York Times

New York Times "Press Play" streaming music premiere service echoes NPR feature

Friday, May 31, 2013 - 12:35pm

Earlier this month The New York Times launched Press Play, an interactive music discovery section on its website the premieres new music chosen by editors, streaming albums set to be released that week. It's an interesting offering for a traditional media outlet via its digital presence -- and demonstrates the power of a curated music experience.

Poynter.org brings up the obvious parallel to NPR Music's "First Listen" feature.

"We are getting offered plenty, as you can imagine," Jeremy Egner, a senior staff editor on the Times' culture desk, told Poynter. "We're not having death matches with NPR people over this record or that."

Read more in Poynter.org here.

NYT: Webcasters helping fuel "revival of a relationship between tennis and radio"

Monday, August 27, 2012 - 1:10pm

TennisRadio coverage of tennis matches -- that experience of "listening to the sound of balls being struck, spectators applauding, and an announcer’s description" -- flourished in the 1930s, writes the New York Times. But it "was nearly a lost experience before the advent of the Internet."

Now though, "a growing number of radio-style webcasts have begun appearing around the four major international championships, the Australian, French and United States Opens and Wimbledon."

That includes RadioTennis.com's Ken Thomas, who streams play-by-play coverage of tennis matches to perhaps more than 1,500 listeners online.

"I try to paint a visual picture of the match and its surroundings for the listener," Thomas told the NYT. "I want the listener to feel as if they’re sitting next to me having a beer and sharing a good time."

You can read the New York Times' profile of Thomas and the "revival of a relationship between tennis and radio" right here.

NYT: Broadcasters face "thorny" problem of which service to join

Monday, August 6, 2012 - 12:45pm

TuneIn and iHeartRadioWeb radio aggregators TuneIn and Clear Channel's iHeartRadio have become "symbols for the challenges of adapting to the digital age" for the radio industry, writes the New York Times. The two services -- now "going head-to-head in the marketplace" -- actually have much in common.

Both offer an enormous range of radio station streams (70,000 from TuneIn, nearly 2,000 live stations from iHeartRadio). Both are increasingly popular: TuneIn just today announced it now has 40 million monthly users, while Clear Channel says iHeartRadio has more than 12 million registered users.

"But as businesses they represent two poles of media," writes NYT. Where TuneIn only serves as an aggregator or directory, iHeartRadio has launched its own customizable radio service "modeled after Pandora" (not mention a series of "iHeartRadio Originals" stations, here). And iHeartRadio is only a piece of Clear Channel. That's a trait CC executives say is an advantage.

"The great thing about iHeartRadio,” said Clear Channel Media and Entertainment CEO John Hogan, “is that it is just one of a number of opportunities that we have to monetize the audience." 

Federated Media has just announced they will add their 17 radio stations to iHeartRadio (more coverage here). And iHeartRadio has added a new station dedicated to financial talk radio host Dave Ramsey (more coverage here).

But some broadcasters feel uneasy "about joining a platform run by the biggest player in the market," especially when "Clear Channel has been aggressive in pushing for exclusivity." That includes Entercom, which has joined TuneIn but not yet iHeartRadio. "Sharing our content is a good thing, if the business arrangement makes sense," said Entercom CEO David Field (more here).

TuneIn, on the other hand, is independent. That means it doesn't have the same sort of major media company backing as iHeartRadio, though TuneIn has just announced $16 million in new funding (bringing its total financing up to $22 million).

New York TimesBut that also means TuneIn has a level of "neutrality in the radio business," which the company says makes it a "safer choice for broadcasters." TuneIn CEO John Donham told NYT, "We are not a broadcaster, so we do not have any inherent interest for any broadcaster to succeed or fail."

More and more broadcasters, however, have opted to join both platforms. They aim "to be everywhere they could be possibly be."

"Everybody is looking at this and saying, look, you don’t know where the world is going, and you need to be in a lot of places,” said Emmis CEO Jeff Smulyan. KCRW director of interactive media Anil Dewan said, "Our mission is about getting our content to as wide an audience as possible." Both KCRW and Emmis have joined TuneIn and iHeartRadio.

"It would be better for services and listeners if there were more than two aggregators offering access to every service out there, making it as easy as possible to listen," argues Audio4Cast's Jennifer Lane (here). "And stations, broadcasters and pureplays, should work with all of them."

Though "thorny" problems remain -- including "the possibility of being lost within the aggregators, like needles in enormous digital haystacks" -- the NYT writes (here) that both iHeartRadio and TuneIn can "help [radio broadcasters] reach audiences in the growing but increasingly fragmented world of online radio."

NYT: Clear Channel deal with Big Machine a bet on radio's digital future

Monday, June 11, 2012 - 11:40am

The New York TimesThe New York Times Sunday covered both Clear Channel's new royatly deal with Big Machine (RAIN coverage here) and last week's House subcommittee hearing on "The Future of Audio" (RAIN coverage here).

NYT comments that Clear Channel's partnership "has nothing to do with politics," rather it's all about "digital music, and Clear Channel’s desire to reshape its business in anticipation of rapid changes in the marketplace."

It continues, "For Clear Channel, the Big Machine deal is likely to be a money loser in the short run, because it will be paying the label far more for terrestrial radio play than it will save online. But if the deal takes hold, it could save Clear Channel a great deal of money in the long run and change the economics — and politics — of radio."

You can find the New York Times' article here.

New York Times offers visual on Facebook's mass

Friday, May 18, 2012 - 11:00am

You're likely well aware that today is Facebook IPO day. While that's mostly outside our coverage area, we did want to pass along this cool interactive graphic from The New York Times (please click through to see it in action).

It really puts into perspective the massive scale of Facebook's valuation (compared even to Google, Groupon, etc.).

See the graphic in action here.

 

Since launch of new music and streaming radio service, MySpace "finally has some numbers to brag about"

Monday, February 13, 2012 - 11:00am

MySpace RadioAfter a "free fall," MySpace is reportedly signing up new users again and seeing an increase in traffic -- developments one investor attributes in part to new music offerings.

The New York Times reports the social media service has signed up one million new users since December. Additionally, data from comScore reportedly shows "monthly traffic on MySpace rose in January, the first increase in almost a year." 

December saw the launch of a new streaming radio service from MySpace (pictured). It allows users to listen to a continuous stream of music either from a specific artist or for a genre (RAIN coverage here).

One of the investors who purchased the social network service from News Corporation in June 2011 for $35 million, Chris Vanderhook, says the growth is due in part to MySpace's music offerings and its 42 million track library ("several times more than Spotify or Rhapsody," writes NYT).

Vanderhook plans to continue "emphasizing [MySpace's] role as a music and entertainment hub," aiming "to be the conduit for music and other forms of entertainment that can be shared through other networks."

The New York Times has more coverage here.

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