Thursday, October 9, 2008

Canadian College Radio Station CJLO Goes AM

I keep hearing about more and more college radio stations that are becoming Internet-only, due to a variety of factors--either because they've lost their license or they are a newer station and have been unable to gain a license to broadcast over the airwaves. Despite all of that, there are some Internet-only stations that still dream of securing an over-the-air license, and today, I read about a success story for a Canadian college radio station that is finally on AM.

According to an article in the Concordia Journal, college radio station CJLO (Concordia University in Montreal) has been an Internet-only campus station for some time now, but as of September 29th, they are also broadcasting over AM. In the article, Station Manager Chris Quinnell makes a strong case for the continued relevance of terrestrial radio:

"...[Station Manager Chris] Quinnell remains adamant that the old-fashioned radio dial is the most effective way to reach people. We’re now on the air, so anyone with a five dollar radio can listen to us. To listen online, a person would need to have a computer with internet access and all the technical requirements to play streaming audio. Computers may be getting cheaper, but there’s still that barrier to listening to us. And it’s not portable,' he said. 'These days, you can buy a relatively cheap MP3 player with a radio built in. So it’s easier to get to people who are walking, jogging, or taking the bus.'"

The piece also discusses CJLO's extensive music collection (12,000+ CDs and 90,000+ mp3 tracks), devotion to local, indie artists, and eclectic staff of students and volunteers from the community.

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