The invention of the online radio in South Africa
The creation of the internet or online radio was born from our common interest in computer and digital technology, which began in the late 1980s. At the cross-section of computers and sound, is where we first discover the potential for online radio.
This page will explore the conditions which allowed this change to occur.
In 1987, researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute for Integrated Circuits IIS in Germany developed the Motion Picture Experts Group-1 Audio Layer 3, commonly referred to as the MP3. This was one of the first successful attempts at creating a format that could store sound waves digitally. The breakthrough was effective and practical, as the MP3 took up very little memory or space on early computers.
In addition to the creation of the World Wide Web in 1989-1990, this opened the floodgate for many online entrepreneurs to begin hosting audio on websites. By converting radio waves into a compressed form suitable for digital devices, individual websites could broadcast music from computers.
Where did internet radio begin?
The first radio station to broadcast its programs on internet radio is WXYC in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. WXYC, a traditional radio station out of Chapel Hill, North Carolina. This announcement came with little fanfare by listeners. The quality of early online radio was poor and difficult to access. Bandwidth speed was a halting issue for primitive computers and most used phone lines in order to connect to the Internet.
Gradually, technology caught up with consumer demand. The internet became accepted as a popular form of communication globally. Mp3`s were officially approved as the new storage medium for computer files by the Motion Picture Exects group in 1992. Progressive Networks founded the RealAudio website in 1995. It was the first online radio that offered AM-radio quality sound online and in real-time.
How did online radio begin?
RealAudio’s success only prompted the maintenance of this new medium. Sonicwave.com introduced the first internet-based radio station. A station that did not stem from a traditional physical radio station, in 1996.
However, all did not progress in the online radio world. In 1998, the Clinton administration passed the Digital Millenium Copyright Act. The Act developed the copyright procedures and guidelines that all Internet radio broadcasters had to abide by the law specifically forbids internet operators from allowing professional recordings to be available for free digital download without the permission of the copyright owner. Therefore, Copyrights office, record labels, and internet radio operators had debates on what webcasters should pay in royalties.
Above all, these parties eventually decided to pay a rate of around a fraction of a penny per song. The value was dependent on the number of times a song was played. The audience size of the radio stations. Most of the controversy surrounding online radio revolves around the music industry. And also, the profit that a station may potentially make by featuring an artist’s music.
The growth of online radio. Internet radio continued to grow, as a result, more citizens began switching from traditional radio to a similar version online. The online radio format not only allows everyone eases of accessibility no matter where they live but also does not confine them to the scheduled programming of their neighborhood station
In conclusion, radio websites, and now even smartphone apps allow listeners to tune-in to stations all over the country at any time. Americans can effortlessly access programs and stations worldwide, as Marconi once did with his primitive radio machinery. This freedom from station scheduling is discussed more in the podcasting section. As a whole, Internet radio has given us the freedom to become even more globally informed thinkers.