iPod Threatens Broadcast Radio
While Emmis Chairman and CEO Jeff Smulyan thinks satellite won't be a threat to terrestrial radio, he does feel the iPod, and likely all other MP3 players, are a bigger threat. Writing on the Emmis website, Smulyan said, "Despite the buzz surrounding satellite radio, I believe iPods are a bigger threat, because you have a larger number of people with an alternative source of music. That said, I can remember when people were predicting the death of radio after 8-tracks came out. Despite continually evolving technologies, nothing has replaced the local information and local personalities we give our audiences. We know our communities, and we respond to their needs. Over the holiday season alone, Emmis radio stations raised $500,000 for charitable causes in their local communities - I dont see how satellite radio can match that reach. Sirius and XM may or may not be viable businesses, but the reality is that two of Emmis' stations reach more people then the entire satellite industry, and those satellite subscribers still spend much of their listening time with terrestrial radio."
Either this is a bit of realistic common sense regarding the excitement over satellite radio or it will be looked back upon as another clueless comment from a company that doesn't get it. As they say, time will tell and with it, bring a brutal reality for some and a rosy future for others.