Saturday, January 17, 2009

Radio Ga Ga

Let's hope you never leave old friend; like all good things on you we depend; so stick around cause we might miss you; when we grow tired of all this visual.
- Queen

In the ever-transient world of broadcast we have seen an increasing trend away from commercial interruptions (this statement should be utterly obvious to anybody reading this that you actually think, if not say, "Duh."). We have Radio XM, TiVo, DVR, Sirius, and numerous other entities that allow the user to bypass any commercial advertising or those frivolous weather forecasts that are only right 70 percent of the time anyway. Thus, we are slowly but surely losing the traditional radio stations with which we grew up. Am I the only one that finds this sad?

I'm not saying we all revert back to traditional radio stations - God knows I've had great times listening to an iPod for an entire nine-hour car ride or being able to pick and choose songs without having to listen to terrible McDonald's or Burger King commercials. However, I think we are missing a certain element to living when we have everything work out so perfectly. We get rid of the possibility of imperfections during our listening experience. And as I always preach, without the presence of imperfection we take the good things for granted. That's just another reason why imperfection is such a perfect thing.

The randomness and imperfection of radio can easily translate to the unpredictability of our daily lives. When we wake up every morning, we can decide on a general outline of how our day will proceed, but we can't pick the little nuances, the tiny, minute details that will riddle our day and change the course of our thoughts and deeds. Similarly, we can turn on a radio station that plays the kind of music we like, but we can't pick the songs the DJ will play. We may turn on our favorite hip-hop and R&B station and hope to hear "Love in this Club", only to hear "Booty Bounce" - do they even play that song anymore? To sum it up: we can pick the station, but we can't pick the song.

Radio XM and Sirius do away with that randomness, that quicksilver feeling of unpredictability. That's a shame, if you ask me (which you didn't). I mean, is it really a good thing to be able to customize everything in our daily lives? Doesn't anybody think that little sense of mystery, of not knowing what's going to come next, is a good thing? I know I'm blowing up radio when I compare it to all these larger aspects of life, but it's all just part of a trend toward customization. Thus, we come to my next post...stay tuned.


Matt Barnes said...

Sounds like someone just wants their job to be relevant. I know PR isn't exactly advertising but in some cases, it is.

I'll take my iPod anyday. This next post better be good. I don't follow for nothin...

(And how about some reciprocation on the following?)

A Freebird said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
A Freebird said...

First off, PR is NOT advertising. In a well-rounded marketing campaign, many times they are a package deal, but they aren't the same thing. I would think someone in broadcast would understand that.

Second off, I know my job is relevant. I don't need to justify it through my personal blog - I have a little more depth than that (I don't buy advertising anyway).

Matt Barnes said...

I stand by my statement about PR, as I feel you have defended it. If my definition is too simple, sorry. In broadcast, it's short and to the point and simple enough so Joe Schmo can understand.

And duh, your job is relevant. I mean, if not, you'd be canned right?