If you have ever wondered when and who invented the radio, it was Guglielmo Marconi back in 1895. Although James Clerk Maxwell, Heinrich Rudolf Hertz, and Mahlon Loomis contributed to the invention, Marconi was the first one to send and receive the first radio signal. We all know what happened after that and how popular the radio was over the next 100 years or so. But what has recently happened to the traditional radio and why the number of listeners has dropped down by a lot?
The Problem and the Solution
People used radio to hear the news, listen to the greatest hits and enjoy entertaining and educational podcasts back in the day. It still does the same thing, but now it is used by a much lesser number of people. The main issue here is that people can only choose between a couple dozen stations if they are lucky. That’s it, you cannot pick the content, set the topics or listen to the songs you want. The best you can do is find a station that mainly plays the genre of music you enjoy the most and talks about topics you might find interesting.
Do you know what solves this specific problem of not being able to exclusively listen to what you like and want? New technological inventions, with the main one being the Internet. Would you rather find a radio station on your computer or phone and hope that a song you like comes up or would you go on Youtube and play any song you like? It doesn’t even have to be Youtube, as there are hundreds of other websites you can visit in only a few seconds and get the content you want on your screen.
New Media vs Traditional Media
We have already pointed out one of the key differences between the two — being able to selectively pick the content. It’s not only the radio that’s currently endangered, but it’s also any other form of mainstream media, such as TV or newspaper. Everything is digitalized, and although newspaper companies are still printing out the newspapers every day, they have online websites where they are most likely making more money.
Mainstream media won’t just vanish this year or the next one, but it is certain that all businesses are making a transition to the world wide web. Advertisements are mentioned quite often when talking about differences between the two types of media. On the radio, you are forced to listen for quite some time about the products and services companies paid to advertise, while online advertising differs a lot. The ads are more subtle, and a small pop-up covering less than one-tenth of a screen is enough to satisfy content creators, audiences and platforms.
The question is — has Internet been killing the mainstream media? Absolutely not. It is offering something completely new and revolutionary to the mainstream media. As we have already said, newspaper companies are making a lot more money online than they ever did by printing and delivering the newspaper.
Online businesses are easier to start and maintain, which is perfect for those who have always wanted to enter the media business but have never got the opportunity. In the end, nothing is stopping you from creating your own blog, Youtube channel or Twitch podcast, and starting your own media business in that way.