The Sound Handbook

Companion website for

THE SOUND HANDBOOK

by TIM CROOK

Published by Routledge on 18th November 2011.

For details of the book, please visit Routledge.

Author's profile at Goldsmiths, University of London

 

CHAPTER NINE - Sound Practice and Theory in Internet Broadcasting and Podcasting

 

How sweet the moonlight sleeps upon this bank!
Here will we sit, and let the sounds of music
Creep in our ears; soft stillness and the night
Become the touches of sweet harmony.

(The Merchant of Venice (1596-8) act 5, sc. 1, l. 54)

 

 

Tim Crook reading an extract from Chapter Nine. The recording runs from pages 186 to 191 of the published text.

 


Pages 186 to 187

The Internet and World Wide Web have revolutionised the nature of audio/radio broadcasting.
By having no terrestrial and digital transmission licensing borders in terms of regulation, the Internet
means that anyone can launch and run an Internet radio/audio with modest costs.

For example the Goldsmiths, University of London student radio station Wired broadcasts online more than it does by FM.

Online and podcasting is a method of successful and high profit media commerce. Monocle Radio is the audio companion to the lifestyle magazine 'Monocle' launched in 2007.
The monocle audio operation began as a weekly podcast and is now 24 hours.
The web design and quality of sound production/journalism communicates professionalism and as a result the publication claims podcast downloads in their millions.

Monocle's podcasts and audio-slideshows demonstrate the possibilities and quality of this new platform
for sound information and entertainment. Here is a report on 'Art International Radio' based in New York City.

'Art International Radio is an internet radio station based in the Clocktower in lower Manhattan, a building famous for having been at the centre of New York’s art scene in the 1970s and 1980s. At the helm is Alanna Heiss, who’s been at the forefront of contemporary art in New York City for decades and was the founder of PS1, a centre for art in Queens that’s now part of the Museum of Modern Art. AIR broadcasts art-related talk and interviews as well as an eclectic range of music, and experiments with radio theatre and more ambitious sound-based extensions of art projects. Monocle visited the headquarters to see the operation in action.'

One of the most successful online/internet radio station stories in Britain is the London station Colourful Radio

It started as an Internet audio streaming service in 2004 and is now a free-standing and viable commercial operation on digital and satellite platforms:

'Founded in 2004, COLOURFUL was one of the first internet streaming radio stations in the UK. Having acquired both commercial UK-wide and London-wide DAB digital radio and digital satellite licences in the same year, the station sought to achieve broadcast radio listenership and credibility but in the absence of commercial radio space on both analogue (FM and AM) and DAB platforms, COLOURFUL was forced to launch on Satellite on Tuesday 30th May 2006 as a speech only service.

In 2008, COLOURFUL gained terrestrial DAB digital radio space across London. The station went live on the platform on Monday 2nd March 2009 with the refined format of Adult Urban Contemporary - blending ‘old skool to new cool soulful music alongside speech. Our DAB digital radio platform covers the Greater London area reaching over 10 million people.

COLOURFUL is fronted by a blend of new voices and faces alongside well-known experienced and entertaining presenters, journalists, disc jockeys some having left the big commercial players to join this small, though nimble, outfit.'

It utilizes the podcast option for listeners who want to catch up with programmes missed or a listen-again experience. An example of how this operates is the page for the successful morning 'Breakfast with Bonsu and Juju' Two intelligent and entertaining broadcasters who connect with London's melting pot Metropolis and urban culture.

London and Britain's first licensed radio station LBC, in 2012, has turned podcasting into an income source. Modest subscriptions generate revenue that means time shifted listening is not always free to access.

The Guardian newspaper's embracement of 'new media' has involved a highly acclaimed and much respected development of audio podcasting and use of audio-slideshow . One of its key producers is Francesca Panetta, a former BBC radio producer who is also the lynchpin of the community podcasting website the Hackney Podcast.

The Guardian's audio podcast on Peterloo by Francesca Panetta and Tim Hinman gained a Sony Award nomination in 2012.
'When on 16 August 1819 over 60,000 people gathered in St Peter's Fields, Manchester, to demand parliamentary reform, the army charged the crowd – killing some 11 people and injuring up to 700. A Times reporter had been arrested, so a young cotton merchant and part-time journalist, John Edward Taylor, stepped in to file a report. "Peterloo" – as it was dubbed – became a national scandal, convincing Taylor that the city needed a new liberal voice. Two years later, on 5 May 1821, he founded the Manchester Guardian.'

This was part of a series of 'Days in the Life at the Guardian.' that are featured on the multi-media organisation's web platform.
6 November 1908 The Suffragettes.
7 February 1958 The Manchester United Munich air disaster.
17 June 1996 IRA's Arndale bombing of Central Manchester.

Jon Gaunt is a UK based presenter who has been fighting a freedom of expression battle with the country's regulator Ofcom over their criticism of him in a reprimand for a Talksport interview he conducted with a local government politician over smoking and foster parenting . He lost his contract at the station and for a while he presented on an Internet radio station hosted by the popular Sun newspaper . His judicial review challenge has been unsuccessful at the High Court and Appeal Court . Whilst he has been supported in his legal action by the civil rights organisation Liberty, others are happy that a 'Fox News' and Glenn Beck style of US shock jocking does not develop in Britain.
All his podcasting at the Sun was not regulated by Ofcom though the former Press Complaints Council (a voluntary self-regulatory body not set up by Parliament) did assume a regulatory role for the online dimension of newspaper publications. The key fact is that the Sun did not have to apply for any licence to set up its online 'radio' service with Jon Gaunt, and his method of communicating polemics and handling interviews was not subject to any 'oversight' from anyone outside the Sun, though it was still subject to primary UK media laws.

Page 188

Since the publication of The Sound Handbook in November 2011, there are limited signs of Private Eye Magazine making large-scale forays into sound podcasting. It is very much a publishing business that sees the Internet (perhaps rightly so) as requiring payment for its journalism and entertainment.
It does though have an entertaining and expanding page of short sound podcasts, performed by Lewis Macleod, that skilfully promote the content of the fortnightly printed magazine.

Nigel Warburton, a British philosophy academic and author, has certainly pioneered podcasting in his teaching and thousands of philosophy students throughout the world are greatful and familiar with his soft and engaging voice bringing clarity and explanation to some of the most complicated ideas in the subject.
He has even made a podcast on the subject of podcasting.

Andy Bull's Multimedia Journalism is an excellent textbook published by Routledge with a sophisticated and comprehensive companion web site.
The key chapters to consult are Chapter 4: Audio and podcasting, Chapter 10: Still pictures and audio, and Chapter 16: Editing and presenting audio and video news bulletin and longer magazine-style programming.

By buying the book you can register and login for the companion web site materials that are continually being updated and added to.

Page 189

Using Windows Movie-Maker guide from Microsoft

Editing and using Apple iMovie software from Apple

Youtube- entry page to open an account

Vimeo- entry page to open an account

Soundcloud- entry page to open an account

Audiboo- entry page to open an account

Audacity- entry page for shareware download
Now on version 2 (March 2012)

Tutorials on using Audacity

NCH Wavepad Audio Editing software- basic free sound editing programme for many platforms including touch-screen iPad.

Microsoft demo on making audio slideshows using Movie-Maker

Communities in Cyberspace edited by Marc Smith and Peter Kollock 1997-8 resource at UCLA, Los Angeles USA
[warning page contains broken links]

The Radiocracy conference in Cardiff 2000 resulted in the publication of a special edition of The International Journal of cultural Studies. The abstract to Dr. Martin Spinelli's journal article is available online.
Dr. Spinelli was responsible for the comprehensive, creative and outstanding documentary series exploring radio and poetry 'Radio, Radio' all the episodes of which are available on ubuweb- 'a large web-based educational resource for avant-garde material available on the internet, founded in 1996 by poet Kenneth Goldsmith' and which offers visual, concrete and sound poetry, expanding to include film and sound art mp3 archives.'

Richard Berry at the Centre for Research in Media and Cultural Studies at the University of Sunderland specialises in the practice and academic research of podcasting.
He has a forthcoming book to be published by Polity Press.

Dr. Stephen Lax is Senior Lecturer in Communications Technology at the Institute of Communications based in the University of Leeds.

Page 190

Dr. David Hendy is Reader in Media and Communication at the University of Westminster
He is currently researching and writing a book for Oxford University Press due for publication in 2014 with the title 'Media and the Making of the Modern Mind'.

Radio B92 from Serbia in English on the Internet

Archived BBC online news article on B92's shutdown from 1999

'This is Serbia Calling: Rock 'n' Roll Radio and Belgrade's Underground Resistance' by Matthew Collin published by Serpent's Tail in 2001.

'This is the story of a courageous group of young people living under Milosevic's repressive rule who waged a ten year battle for freedom, armed only with a radio transmitter, some rock'n'roll records, and a dream of truth, justice and another kind of life. They called themselves Serbia's 'lost generation'; the government called them traitors, spies and terrorists. Despite police raids and state censorship, they refused to be defeated, and kept on broadcasting their message. This is Serbia Calling chronicles a decade (1990-2000) in which B92, an extraordinary radio station, through its use of rock music, email and the Internet, kept alive the voices of dissent. The book ends with the fall of Milosevic and B92 going back on air.'

Review of the book by Alexei Monroe at Central Europe Review

Page 191

Dr. Richard Collins
His page at the Open University where he was Professor in the Department of Sociology

The Open University Course 'Understanding Media' DA204 was launched in 2006, but is now discontinued and no longer
offered as a course. However, the 4 textbooks published to accompany it are still in print (as of March 2012)
Creative Commons open access to the course materials 'The celebrity in the text'

In March 2012 the Dawn and Drew Show podcast was still being created and communicated.

It is now styled as 'podcasting since september 2004, dawn miceli and drew domkus, two ex gutter punks who fall in love, buy a retired farm in wisconsin (then move to costa rica (and back)) and tell the world their dirty secrets... always profane, rarely profound. We hope to get 2-3 shows out per week, but with dawn now being a rockstar with Rasputina, that's not always possible.'

'Dark Compass, the Chronicles of Rowland Cutler, a podcaster' has been transformed into a music platform.

The Catholic Insider podcaster is represented in Wikipedia as 'Father Roderick Vonhögen (born 5 April 1968) is a Roman Catholic priest from Amersfoort, Utrecht in the Netherlands who works as a new media broadcaster and television presenter of programming related to Catholicism and pop culture.'

Some of the podcasts are hosted and archived

His podcasting resulted in an archived BBC online article by Coline Grant in 2005 '
Catholic podcast makes waves'

Graham White's dramatisation of BS Johnson's 'The Unfortunates' was transmitted by BBC Radio 3 in 2010 and 2011and has an archived page on the BBC Radio Three site
It won an innovation award at the inaugural BBC Radio Drama awards in early 2012.

Graham also described the writing and production process in an accompanying blog.
He explained 'The lack of a fixed order is suggestive of the way memories occur, and the book becomes a meditation not just on friendship and loss, but also on the nature of memory and writing as our hero struggles to recall everything in order to 'get it all down' as he promised his dying friend he would.'

Documentary extract from YouTube where BS Johnson explains the genesis of his novel.

The web pages that provided the interactivity for Mike Walker's 2003 'The Dark House' are still accessible on the web. But the actual audio drama is not. Mike Walker explained 'We were creating a new kind of drama - a drama of complicity, in which the audience could, must, share the fears and dashed hopes of each of our characters in turn.'

 

 

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