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People Produced Commercial Radio

This is pretty amazing. It’s a new radio station that will play audio from listeners who send it in over the internet on 1550 AM in San Francisco. It means a whole bunch of new people-produced media will be going out over the mass media airwaves, and that will change people’s idea about what makes for ‘real’ radio. Mass media becomes more accessible and people feel more like they can be a part of pop culture. Sure, it’s a Viacom thing, and that means there’s some weird downsides (you can’t download shows after you listen to them and they’ll probably censor some political ideas), but in general it’s a big step forward. We’re not interested in holding a grudge against big media corporations, we’re just interested in how to take advantage of tools that let people make mass culture for themselves, and usually that means getting corporations out of the way. So if Viacom starts moving out of the way on their radio stations, that’s a big improvement. And if the major record labels started acting like indie labels, that would be great too (but don’t hold your breath).

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