In my humble, and obviously minority, opinion, “streaming” is yet another over-hyped, but under-useful, aspect of this “emperor-has-no-clothes” phenomenon I call the Internet Gadget Age. It’s just another symptom that we are much too connected to the electronic teat (the Arbitron Inc. numbers show an average of almost six hours a day spent suckling). “When are you going to start streaming?” or some variant is one of the most-asked questions on KTRT’s fAcEbOoK page. And don’t get me started about fAcEbOoK.
The truth is, loyal listeners, there are several good reasons why it makes no sense for this wonderful, independent, small-market radio station to start streaming. Right off the bat, it’s VERY EXPENSIVE. The licensing fees and royalties can add up to thousands of dollars a month depending on market size and content. Add to this the fact that it CREATES NO REVENUE to match its costs. We will still have the same amount of businesses in The Valley generously supporting The Root, but no more will be added because of streaming.
Finally, it’s NOT REALLY NEEDED. The station does a good job covering most of the hoots-n-hollers around here. So you need a separate receiver to listen to it? Oh well. So you can’t hear it when you head home? Savor the chance to return; we’ll be here.
Personally, I’d like to see the money that could be spent on streaming put to work buying back-up equipment instead, so KTRT would be ready to quickly fix the next silence like the one we all endured a few weeks ago. Also, I’m a proponent of increasing the area K-Root covers. It’d be nice to bring the gospel of good radio to the fine folks of Omakanogan and Chelan. That would also open up some new potential business territory to the win-win wonder of local radio.
So, be patient, those of you staring at candy-colored screens. I know it’s not the attitude of the moment to wait for what we want, but first things first.
That is all.