Radio’s Digital Dilemma: Broadcasting in the Twenty-First Century

1st Edition

John Nathan Anderson

Routledge
Published January 29, 2016
Reference - 198 Pages
ISBN 9781138651494 - CAT# Y228746
Series: Routledge Research in Cultural and Media Studies

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Summary

Radio's Digital Dilemma is the first comprehensive analysis of the United States’ digital radio transition, chronicling the technological and policy development of the HD Radio broadcast standard. A story laced with anxiety, ignorance, and hubris, the evolution of HD Radio pitted the nation’s largest commercial and public broadcasters against the rest of the radio industry and the listening public in a pitched battle over defining the digital future of the medium. The Federal Communications Commission has elected to put its faith in "marketplace forces" to govern radio’s digital transition, but this has not been a winning strategy: a dozen years from its rollout, the state of HD Radio is one of dangerous malaise, especially as newer digital audio distribution technologies fundamentally redefine the public identity of "radio" itself.

Ultimately, Radio’s Digital Dilemma is a cautionary tale about the overarching influence of economics on contemporary media policymaking, to the detriment of notions such as public ownership and access to the airwaves—and a call for media scholars and reformers to engage in the continuing struggle of radio’s digital transition in hopes of reclaiming these important principles.

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