Obama On The Air



I’m writing this on the morning of January 20, Inauguration Day. In the background, I keep switching between NPR and a variety of commercial stations, listening to the stupendous array of coverage this historic moment is accruing.

It is not just here in the States that the excitement is raging. All over the world, people are paying more attention to this passing of the torch than any prior election I can think of. Of course, radio is at the forefront of the coverage. Andy Carvin and others from NPR are actively Twittering the proceedings in addition to the ongoing radio coverage, showing once more the evolution of radio into the digital medium. (Follow Andy on Twitter at @acarvin.)

But that’s not all.

The BBC reports that in Northern Ireland a radio station in Moneygall has changed its name temporarily to “Obama FM.” “It’s kind of a tenuous link – it’s his great, great, great grandfather from Moneygall,” station director Alan Swan said.

Barack Obama made his last radio address as President-elect on the 8th of this month. As he prepares to take office, that final address has been transcribed and posted in a number of places. Here is a link to the transcript on the Los Angeles Times website. (I chose the LA Times because they also include the YouTube video of this address.)

As the unprecedented crowds stand in the utter chill of Washington, D.C., waiting for history to be made, the coverage via Internet-driven media is staggering. Of course, along with that comes the realization that the digital infrastructure may not be up to the challenge. Additional cell towers and broadcast vans are still being rolled out as the mobile companies attempt to prepare for the stupendous amount of text and pictures that have already begun to inundate their infrastructure. Speculation on how long it will take Twitter to become overloaded and display its legendary “Fail Whale” has been rampant since at least last night. Nicholas Deleon over at Crunch Gear has the latest.

This brings me to my favorite thing about radio:  it is not part of that particular discussion. As long as there are transmitters, there is no need to worry about bandwidth or cell tower issues. Granted, if you are streaming your radio signal, you may experience problems but broadcast is blithely unaffected.

Today we make history, and today radio is the single most reliable and easily implemented way of sharing it.

See you Thursday!

Photo courtesy of Neeta Lind, used under its Creative Commons license


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One Response to “Obama On The Air”

  1. Alan Swan Says:

    Hi George,

    Thanks for the mention!

    Best wishes for the blog


    Alan Swan
    i105107 – (Obama FM)

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