Internet killed the radio star

Reading through the Southgate ARC blog this morning, I came across this interesting post from Geoff Emery, VK4ZPP.

It was funny, because this very morning, JackFM were playing the Buggles track, ‘Video killed the Radio star’ from 1979 (we hear the playback and it seems so long ago). And I was thinking, we probably really did think that video WOULD kill radio. But here I am, 31 years later (gulp), listening to more broadcast radio than I have in years – and seeing a really vibrant and varied radio scene (though as an industry it’s fair to say that it has its’ own challenges). And of course, “internet broadcasting” has become part of radio, as we would have called it in 1979.

So it’ll be interesting to see whether the predictions of doom for amateur radio ring true. My guess and earnest wish is that as a hobby, it will evolve. It may(will) not evolve to everyone’s satisfaction and how many times have we heard the phrase “but it’s not amateur radio” muttered?

The truth is that the hobby MUST evolve to survive. It cannot survive as it was, for all sorts of reasons. That doesn’t invalidate the pleasure that people gain from taking part in the facets of amateur radio that have existed “for ever” – not at all.

Geoff’s choice of title made me think about about the parallels with the music broadcasting world. The need and desire to broadcast will not go away – only the methods will change. And so, I suspect will it be with amateur radio – the underlying principles will remain, but the methods will evolve.

And the other thing is that moaning and complaining about it won’t stop “progress” either. Just get on with enjoying what you do – engaging with other people and showing them what a great hobby this is; past, present and future.

I’m Tim Kirby, G4VXE and that’s what I think, how about you?

Tim Kirby, G4VXE, is a regular contributor to and writes from Oxfordshire, England. Contact him at [email protected].

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