Tag Archives: INTERNET

World Press Freedom Day

2016 Theme: Access to Information and Fundamental Freedoms – This Is Your Right!

“On this World Press Freedom Day, I urge all Governments, politicians, businesses and citizens to commit to nurturing and protecting an independent, free media. Without this fundamental right, people are less free and less empowered. With it, we can work together for a world of dignity and opportunity for all.”
– Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon

Freedom of Information as Fundamental Freedom and Human Right

Freedom of information can be generally defined as the right to access information held by public bodies.
As it is explained in the UNESCO publication Freedom of Connection, Freedom of Expression (2011): “In so far as freedom of expression is deemed to be one of the fundamental civil rights supporting democratic processes, freedom of information is required in order to ensure that citizens can vote in an informed way, and that they can hold their governments accountable through public scrutiny.”

Furthermore, in the UN Human Rights Committee’s General Comment 34 on Article 19 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR), the connections between imparting expression and access to information is strongly linked to the right for the citizens to take part in public affairs. Journalism has a major role to play in this regard. The right to information is linked to wider transparency in society, as highlighted in the 2015 UNESCO study ‘Keystones to foster inclusive Knowledge Societies: Access to information and knowledge, Freedom of Expression, Privacy, and Ethics on a Global Internet’, mandated by the UNESCO Member States.

The study further underscores the importance of user empowerment to deal with information and communications, such as through Media and Information Literacy. Again, journalism is central to all these aspects. A major obstacle to open access to information is overreach in governmental secrecy. States should be able to keep some information confidential in line with legitimate purposes and processes set out in international human rights laws. However, information from administrative and executive authorities, concerning for example laws and public expenditure, should generally be accessible to everyone. Hence, freedom of information both helps provide oversight over governmental bodies, as well as the possibility to hold them accountable, and this right strengthens the relevance of press freedom and independent journalism.

Since the adoption of the world’s first freedom of information law in modern-day Sweden and Finland in 1766, more than 90 other countries have adopted such provisions. However, there are issues such as whether exceptions are narrowly tailored; whether there is protection for whistle-blowers, and whether there is impact on relevant information held by private entities. Implementation of freedom of information raises issues such as whether the laws are well-known, in terms of high public awareness; whether requests are administered efficiently and whether there are high fees for the requester; and whether information is published by own initiative or released upon request.

Another issue is that even in countries where there are freedom of information laws or legal provisions, journalists may have difficulty in accessing, understanding, and subsequently using the raw data or information. This is where data journalism can play a role in accessing and interrogating data and mashing up data sets to produce results that inform audiences “something new about the news”. Differential access to information along gender lines as well as the gender-disaggregation of information, are additional key issues.

When journalists are empowered to use freedom of information laws to bring hidden information to light, they can amplify their potential to enhance the accountability of institutions as part of the SDG conception of sustainable development. Proactive steps by states to open up records can also greatly help to ensure transparency in public administration.
In these ways, freedom of information is closely linked to a culture of openness and the idea of participatory democracy, both of which are key to sustainable development. It is also important to promote a broad range of cultural expressions in media, in order to develop media diversity and the inclusion of minority groups in the media landscape.

Protecting Press Freedom from Possible Censorship and surveillance Overreach

In the digital age, press freedom is confronted by growing challenges of arbitrarily blocking access to online information, limiting or punishing cyber-expression, and arbitrary intrusions on digital privacy. These developments impact on those who do journalism, on others who express themselves online, and also on those who receive online information indirectly through multi-step flows.
They may also unjustifiably limit the diversity of cultural expression, a principle enshrined in the 2005 UNESCO Convention on The Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions. These phenomena curb both people’s access to information as well as the range of information and expression online. There are serious implications of the increasing number of measures which regulate
Internet content through blocking of web sites and of communications tools in ways that exceed international standards requiring legality, necessity, proportionality and legitimate purpose. These steps constrain the ability of a society to make informed choices about development and democracy, a priority for UNESCO in building the foundations for inclusive, knowledge societies. They may also represent a form of prior restraint, pre-emptively presuming an act of communication to be guilty of an offence rather than testing it in court after actual expression.

An inter-related issue is the challenge of possible surveillance overreaching. The right to privacy is well-established as a precondition for freedom of expression, and for the protection of journalists’ confidential sources. Privacy intersects also with anonymity, and with the use of encryption. An absence of these facilities can seriously inhibit the free flow of information, something that may have particular implications for people seeking to challenge gender inequality as well as for challenging expressions of advocacy for hatred on gender lines.
Where journalistic source protection is compromised, there may be cover-ups of corruption, intimidation and exposure of sources’ identities with repercussions on them. In the long term, this can contribute to sources of information running dry and to self-censorship in society at large.

In this regard, the UN Special Rapporteur on Freedom of Expression and Opinion has also assessed the issue through a 2015 report noting that in situations “where States impose unlawful censorship through filtering and other technologies, the use of encryption and anonymity may empower individuals to circumvent barriers and access information and ideas without the intrusion of authorities”. The report further calls on States to have national laws which recognize that individuals are free to protect the privacy of their digital communications by using encryption technology and tools that allow anonymity online.
The legal frameworks that protect the confidentiality of sources of journalism are essential to reporting information in the public interest. However, these frameworks are under significant strain in the digital age, and there is a need to revise and strengthen them – or introduce them where they do not exist. UNESCO, with the support of funding from Sweden, has commissioned research by the World Association of Newspapers (WAN-IFRA) which explore an 11-point assessment tool for consideration by Member States for pinpointing areas where source protection frameworks can be improved.


Press freedom and access to information are essential to democracy and to sustainable development. Journalism helps make this so. Sometimes referred to as a “watchdog” of political and societal institutions, journalism is also much more: it demonstrates freedom of expression for society at large, it puts new questions on the development agenda, and it empowers citizens with information.
It provides a context in which the diversity of cultural expressions can flourish. For all these reasons, strengthening the conditions for journalism is key to developing a culture of openness, access to information and fundamental freedoms. To this end, World Press Freedom Day 2016 seeks to advance the right to information, press freedom, and the environment for journalism to done in safety. It resonates with contemporary global issues and opportunities. In this way, around the world, it should be possible for stakeholders to continue to take the Day to an ever higher level of visibility, relevance, and impact.

Source: http://www.unesco.org/new/fileadmin/MULTIMEDIA/HQ/CI/CI/pdf/WPFD/WPFD2016_Concept-Note.pdf



The media and communications landscape has been transformed in ways that make it possible for envisioning a more engaged citizen participation in journalism. The spread of Internet and mobile telephony has also led to participation in citizen journalism in Africa. Citizen Journalism is a rapidly evolving form of journalism where common citizens take the initiative to report news or express views about happenings within their community. It is news of the people, by the people and for the people.

In Nigeria, citizen journalism is on the increase. More Nigerians are now blogging on the internet, Nigerian bloggers, blog on different areas of interests. Their sites offer alternative source of news and information to citizens. However, the practices of blogging are not without challenges. To determine the challenges confronting internet bloggers in Nigeria, this researcher undertook a convenience sampling of opinions from fifteen bloggers on challenges confronting bloggers in their practice in Kaduna state, which is a region in Nigeria. Analyses of respondents’ responses on the issue revealed the following as some of the challenges they face:

(i) Internet Access:
All respondents identified this to be a great challenge to them. They indicated that acquiring data subscription for use on personal internet wireless modems to enable them go on line cost much. Some indicated that because they sometimes need to leave town for other personal issues and not all areas of the state have access to internet connection offered by telecommunication companies servicing the state, they cannot conveniently update their web pages on the go. Close to that is the poor internet connection. Some stated that poor service delivery by telecommunication companies they depend on for internet connection affects their blogging activities as they are often faced with constant internet connection disruptions. Most of the respondents stated that these problems affected their ability to be on line often.

(ii) Time to update content:
All the respondents stated that they struggle to devout time to blogging activities due to other personal activities that also need to give time to. Some indicated that they have go to work so as to earn a living. Many of them do not manage their blogs with other persons, so bear the sole responsibility of updating their blogs alone. The respondents indicated that due to the time management challenge, their blogs suffer as sometimes the blogs are not updated with contents for days and even weeks. The respondents stated that this affected their ability to be dependable as sources of information to their audiences.

(iii) Creating content:
Most respondents stated that generating content and finding new contents for their blogs is a constant challenge. Some respondents stated due to this, they many times, re-blog contents from other news blogs or other news websites. Due to many of the respondents are not journalists by profession, they barely find time to go after news stories. A study of some of the news blogs showed that many of them had more of news commentaries and feature articles. The respondents stated that as a result of this, members of their audiences are forced to find alternative other sources of information.

(iv) Problem of power supply:
All respondents identified this as the greatest challenge they had to contend with as citizen journalists in the state. They stated that the problem of constant power disruptions is was de-incentive to the practice of Citizen Journalism in the state. Some respondents stated that sometimes due to power disruptions, they were not able to go on-line on their personal computers for days. This also hindered their ability to continually update contents on their blogs as often as they would have wished.

(v) Access to information:
Many of the bloggers especially those that were not journalists by profession stated that getting first hand access to information on news stories or events that occur outside their immediate environment was difficult for them as they did not have the financial resource or time to cover such news event or get more information on such news event or other public issues. As a result of this they resort to monitoring coverage of such issues from major national on line news out lets and other blogs that have the resources and access to such information. Many of the respondents indicated that issues, they at times reported, lacked depth and freshness because the information they were reporting had already been made available by other major news outlets, especially on events out the immediate locality of the respondents.

(vi) Verifying information:
Some of the respondents stated that apart from news events that occur within their immediate environment whose information they can easily verify before publishing them on line; they at times find it very difficult to thoroughly verify information on news events outside their immediate environment before publishing due to constraint of distance and resources. The best they could was to monitor other on line news websites that they considered as reputable sources of information and re-blogged news contents from them. The respondents also sated that it was also difficult for them to cross check facts from these major news sources and they might likely to end up publishing wrong or incorrect information.



The Internet is a global network of computer networks. In more technical terms, this means that a group of two or more networks is electronically connected and able to communicate with one another. In order for this to work, however, the computers have to speak a common language. The common language, called a protocol by computer programmers, that was developed for the Internet is called the TCP/IP protocol. TCP/IP stands for Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol. It is actually a set of protocols that govern how data travel from one machine to another over networks. IP is sort of like the address on an envelope. It tells the computer where to send a particular message. TCP breaks up the information into packets that can be transmitted efficiently and resembles them at their destination (Dominick, 1999).
The year, 2006, marks a time in which the IP television (IPTV) market is moving into the critical second phase of large-scale commercial deployments across many regions. This may vary between carriers and geographies, but as a whole, service assurance and quality of experience (QOE) largely define this evolution. Each phase is tightly coupled with ongoing underlying technology evolution, content acquisition, and scaling the overall number of IP video subscribers (Heavy Reading, 2006).
This study focuses on the potentials of the Internet Protocol (IP) Television in the contemporary media era.

This paper has the basic objective of examining the potentials of IP Television thereby reflecting its impact on the media and/or its users.

This research work is best explained based on the assumptions of the Mediamorphosis Theory propounded by Roger Fidler in 1997.
Fidler (1997) cited in Anaeto, Onabajo and Osifeso (2008:191), defines mediamorphosis as the transformation of communication media, usually brought about by the complex interplay of perceived needs, competitive and political pressures , and social and technological innovations. The essence of mediamorphosis, as Anaeto et al notes, is the idea that the media are complex adaptive systems. In other words, the media as other systems, respond to external pressures with a spontaneous process of self-reorganization. Fidler argues that new media do not arise spontaneously and independently; rather, they emerged gradually from the metamorphosis of older media. Like McLuhan, Fidler also suggests that emerging forms of communication media propagate dominant traits from earlier forms.
To Smudits (2002) cited in Baltzis (2004:8), mediamorphosis signifies the major phases in the development of artistic creation distinguished by major changes of the media used to record, reproduce and disseminate symbolic forms.
Despite reservations this term may invoke, it may be applied to artistic communication in general, especially if we take under consideration that from the typography to photography and from the electro-magnetic to digital recording every major change of this kind is related to major changes of the art – as a social practice and a form of communication (Baltzis, 2004). Hence, Internet Protocol (IP) Television is an adaptation of older media technologies as contained in the basic tenets of this theory.

IPTV, or Internet Protocol television, is a relatively new and still evolving technology that AT&T is using to deliver TV service. AT&T is the only national service provider to offer a 100-percent IP-based TV service, AT&T U-verse TV. IP technology means that the TV, PC, home phone and wireless devices can be integrated to all work together, giving one unmatched features, more control and more personalization.

The rapid growth of the Internet over the last ten years has transformed society and changed the way people think about electronic devices. Never before have ordinary citizens been able to instantaneously communicate with anyone in the world almost for free. Never before has it been so easy to publish. Publishing on the Internet is as simple as setting up a web server, thus making the author’s work available to anyone with Internet access (Schmidt, 2006).
Think of Internet Protocol as a “language” that devices use to communicate over a computer network. IP is not the same thing as the Internet. Rather, it’s the same language used by the Internet. IP technology allows information to be sent and received over any broadband or network connection. When all of the devices and services — now including TV — speak the same language, they are able to easily work together in new ways. Programme a DVR from a PC or wireless phone… Display personalized content and applications from the Internet on the TV…Even view a home phone’s incoming call log on the TV screen (AT&T, 2009).
According to Macaulay, Felts and Fisher (2005:4), the internet protocol (IP) is a packet-based-network transport protocol upon which the internet is built. IP packets are encapsulated in lower, hardware-level protocols for delivery over various networks (Ethernet, etc), and they encapsulate higher transport- and application-level protocols for streaming and other applications.
Also, Cooper and Lovelace (2006:7) assert that the IP in IPTV simply refers to Internet Protocol, a networking technology that underpins the Internet and is increasingly used as a lingua franca for communications across data networks in general.

The biggest difference with today’s distribution of television is that users choose which information they want to have everything is not broadcasted as with terrestrial, cable and satellite. Another big difference is that an individual will be able to have a high capacity two way communication and also have the ability to interact with the service provider. For example, a request for a movie can be made from the TV-guide and the programme will be subsequently delivered. Other things that could be provided with IPTV is interactive applications (e.g. video blog) or transactional applications (e.g. TV shopping). Because of the point-to-point connection IPTV offers, every user will be able to view their own individual broadcasts. A user will be able to have VoD (Video- on -Demand) on personal video store where he can decide when he wants to see the movie. The user will also be able to use features like pause, fast forward and rewind when watching a movie on TV. It will be possible to have personalized advertising. It will be easy to decide by oneself, which kind of advertising to see (Martisson, 2006).

To Cooper and Lovelace (2006:7), IPTV – Internet Protocol Television – refers to the delivery of digital television and other audio and video services over broadband data networks using the same basic protocol that support the Internet.
The association with the Internet may suggest that this is simply an extension of the web video experience seen on personal computers and to an extent this is technically correct. It is also an assumption that service and technology providers are keen to dismiss.
IPTV can deliver live and on- demand digital television and video services via set-top boxes and other devices to television sets or other displays, in standard and even high-definition formats, at a quality that is indistinguishable from broadcast television or comparable to a DVD, as opined by Cooper and Lovelace (2006).
IPTV is a different, improved technology than “traditional” cable or satellite TV, and it allows for more flexibility within the network. This is because IPTV enables two-way interactivity, versus a traditional, one-way cable or satellite broadcast network. The two-way IPTV network means viewers have more options to interact personalize and control their viewing experience. IP technology also allows for more flexibility within a home network. With IP, all of the U-verse receivers in a home — no matter which rooms they are in — are connected on the same high-speed home network. This allows people to watch shows recorded from their DVR on any TV in the house. One can also connect gaming consoles, laptops and other devices to a home network using the Ethernet port on the back of the set-top box (AT&T, 2009).
Also, ease of use is one of the IPTV requirements in the digital service provider environment, in the view of MOCA (2008:5). Consumers are accustomed to easy access. When the predominant mode of reception was over-the-air broadcast, “rabbit ears” or a rooftop antenna was all that was needed in metropolitan areas with strong signals. As cable and satellite TV grew, coaxial cable connectors on TV sets provided another simple interface to outlets in rooms with TV sets, as the agency submits.
Still on the potentials or impact of IPTV, Schmidt (2006:3) is of the opinion that IPTV is a robust platform aimed towards the future. It, according to him, eliminates bottlenecks inherent in the present Cable TV network creating and provides low cost path to future enhancement. New service offering can be implemented by changes to the head end, similar to the way the Internet works today. This largely decouples the access network and customer equipment from service offerings allowing new services to be delivered more rapidly and at lower cost than traditional means.
Unlike the traditional TV that transmits through cable, satellite or terrestrial broadcast, IPTV subscribers with high quality interactive TV programmes and other entertainment content over IP networks. In addition to Live TV, IPTV enables interactive video entertainment like VoD (Video-on-Demand), nPVR (Network-Based Personal Video Recorder) and time-shift TV (recording a TV programme for later viewing). At the same time, it is also possible to provide value-added services such as Web, e-mail, game, T-commerce and so on (Hoffman, 2005).
Above all, the emergence of IPTV could have a much greater impact on the traditional television and video market. It will also create a global distribution pattern for programming providers and a more efficient method for delivering niche programme to a worldwide audience, according to Cooper and Lovelace (2006).

In the first digital revolution, remarkable development in communications coincided, but failed to converge. As we enter the second digital revolution, the long-heralded marriage of broadcast television with the Internet has begun. Therefore, the emergence of Internet Protocol Television (IPTV) has facilitated the convergence of television with the internet and the next generation of digital video services. This is aided by the rise of ever-faster broadband connections and more efficient compression technologies and driven by powerful competitive forces that are now reshaping the communications landscapes. Hence the potentials of IPTV and its impact on the media its users are unquantifiable.


Anaeto, S. G.; Onabajo, O. S. and Osifeso, J. B. (2008). Models and Theories of Communications. Maryland: African Renaissance Books Incorporated.

AT&T Intellectual Property (2009). IPTV Background. Retrieved October 25, 2011 from http://www.att.com/common/merger/files/pdf/IPTV_background.pdf

Baltzis, A. G. (2004). The Mediamorphosis of the Artistic Communication (Reproduction, Broadcast Internet). Lecture Delivered at the International Seminar of the European research Network. London. Retrieved September 28, 2011 from http://users.auth.gr/baltzis/papers/seminar_04_mediamorphosis.pdf

Cooper, W. and Lovelace, G. (2006). IPTV Guide: Delivering Audio and Video over Broadband. Informitv/Lovelace Consulting Limited. Retrieved October 31, 2011 from http://iptv- report.com/guide/request/download/IPTV-Guide.pdf

Dominick, J. R. (1999). The Dynamics of Mass Communication. Boston: McGraw-Hill Companies Inc.

Heavy Reading (2006). White Paper – Assuring Quality of Experience for IPTV. Retrieved November 2, 2011 from http://download.lightreading.com/wplib/heavyreading/IPTV- QOE.pdf

Hoffman, E. (2005). Internet Protocol Television (IPTV) Basics. Santa Ana: Raptor Networks Technology Inc. Retrieved October 25, 2011 from http://www.raptor- networks.com/pdfs/CD-WP1200.pdf

Macaulay, A.; Felts, B. and Fisher, Y. (2005). WHITEPAPER-IP Streaming of MPEG-4: Native RTP Vs MPEG-2 Transport Stream. Envivo Inc. Retrieved October 25, 2011 from http://www.envivo.com/files/white-papers/RTPvsTS-v4.pdf

Martisson, E. (2006). IPTV the Future of Television? Gothenburg: Chalmers University of Technology. Retrieved November 1, 2011 from http://www.cse.chalmers.se/mtsigas/courses/DCDseminar/files/IPTVrapport.pdf

Multimedia over Coax Alliance (2008). IPTV White Paper. Retrieved October 25, 2011 from http://www.mocolliance.org/industry/white_papers/IPTV_White_Paper(1).pdf

Schmidt, T. (2006). Internet Protocol (IP) Vs Radio Frequency (RF) Television Distribution. Retrieved November 2, 2011 from http://www.tschmidt.com/writings/IPvsRF.pdf


By Babatunde Victor

The music industry has experienced dramatic shocks that will ultimately transform its structure. The transformations have been sparked by new technologies and Internet use distributing music as a digital good. The MP3 audio format and the wide distribution network that has become available via the Internet are driving changes in the recorded music market structure and, thus, are simultaneously having significant impacts on the players in the traditional recorded music value chain (Bockstedt, Kauffman and Riggins, 2005). Therefore, it is becoming apparent that the digital distribution of music is inevitable. Consumers clearly want it – just witness the huge proliferation of MP3 audio files over the internet in recent years. As it was noted in a recent article on the front page of the Washington Post, “millions of Americans are making a daily habit of an emerging Internet music technology that is threatening to upset the entire structure of the popular music business” (Czerwinski, Fromm and Hodes, n.d.).
This discourse focuses on assessing how the internet is affecting music distribution in our contemporary times.

This seminar presentation has the basic aim of examining the effect of the Internet on music distribution.
INTERNET – This is, according to the Encyclopedia Americana, referred to as an electronic conduit through which individuals, organizations, and businesses across the globe view and exchange data in the form of text, graphics, audio and video. It is the world’s largest computer network.
MUSIC – Music is the art by which a composer, through a performer as intermediary, communicates to a listener certain ideas, feelings, or states of mind.
This research work is best explained based on the assumptions of the Mediamorphosis Theory propounded by Roger Fidler in 1997.
Fidler (1997) cited in Anaeto, Onabajo and Osifeso (2008:191), defines mediamorphosis as the transformation of communication media, usually brought about by the complex interplay of perceived needs, competitive and political pressures , and social and technological innovations. The essence of mediamorphosis, as Anaeto et al notes, is the idea that the media are complex adaptive systems. In other words, the media as other systems, respond to external pressures with a spontaneous process of self-reorganization. Fidler argues that new media do not arise spontaneously and independently; rather, they emerged gradually from the metamorphosis of older media. Like McLuhan, Fidler also suggests that emerging forms of communication media propagate dominant traits from earlier forms.
To Smudits (2002) cited in Baltzis (2004:8), mediamorphosis signifies the major phases in the development of artistic creation distinguished by major changes of the media used to record, reproduce and disseminate symbolic forms.
Despite reservations this term may invoke, it may be applied to artistic communication in general, especially if we take under consideration that from the typography to photography and from the electro-magnetic to digital recording every major change of this kind is related to major changes of the art – as a social practice and a form of communication (Baltzis, 2004).

The Internet’s origin dates back to the early 1960s, when the U.S. government began considering the building of a communications system capable of withstanding large-scale disruptions, even in the event of a nuclear war. It was reasoned that the system have no central control or authority, so that were any single part of it destroyed, the rest of the system could continue functioning. Moreover, it was agreed that the system be designed so that even if large portions of it were knocked out of service, the remnants could keep working and that any damaged sections, once repaired, could be quickly returned to service. Ideas formed in response to these requirements focused primarily on packet switching (breaking an electronic data file into smaller units, or packets, and transmitting them separately over the system) and the automatic routing of data (Encyclopedia Americana).
Typically, people who access a medium are regarded as audience members, but the internet has users not audience members. At anytime – or even at the same time – a person may be both reading internet content and creating content. E-mails and chat rooms are obvious examples of online users being both audience and creators, but others exist as well. For example, multiple user domains (MUDs) enable entire alternative realities to be simultaneously constructed and engaged, and computer screens that have multiple open windows enable users to “read” one site while creating another, sometimes using the just read material with ease we can access the web, link from site to site or page to page, and even build our own sites (Baran, 2004).

The advent of the Internet has brought innovation into the distribution of music across the globe in this contemporary time. Therefore, is the birth of the Internet a blessing or a curse to music distribution? This is a pertinent question that this discourse seeks to answer.
The music industry often benefited from technological innovations such as the (digital) CD format. However, the emergence of the Internet and the availability of peer-to-peer (P2P) file transfer are supposed to have caused a decline in global music sales at the turn of the millennium. The illegal copying and distribution of music (“piracy”) through the Internet is often blamed for the recession of the music industry in recent years (Premkumar, 2003; Becker & Clement, 2006; IFIPI, 2005 cited in Jockel, Will and Nawrath, 2007).
In conjunction with the above argument, music distribution through the internet is creating a good market for pirates because of the ease of downloading music by Internet users. Hence unscrupulous persons find it easy to make a living out of piracy thereby breaching the intellectual property rights of artists or performers. Similar to this, the distribution of music via the Internet has crumbled the business fortunes of several marketers or sales executives in the music industry. This is because they are no longer serving as interface between original copyright owners and final consumers.
One major arena where the Internet would find a home is music distribution. Digital technology enables information, software, text, pictures and, importantly, music, to be copied millions of times without the loss of quality, downloaded without the knowledge of the copyright holder and transmitted around the world instantly over networks. It was clear that traditional models for music distribution were about to be overturned (Gower, n.d.).
Therefore, the distribution of music via the Internet has removed the age long barrier of accessibility to recorded music posed by promoters of musical artists. Hence digital technology enables music to be copied millions of times without the lost of quality and transmitted around the world instantly over networks, as mentioned earlier. To this end, the Internet has made it easy for musical artists to place their work online without much ado. This has to an appreciable extent reduced the burden created by the traditional models for music distribution.
In the same vein, the use of the Internet reduces the search cost for both buyers and sellers. With few mouse-clicks, a buyer can search a CD of his favorite artist from a database of millions of CDs. The buyer can also hop from one e-retailer to another to find a lower price. He can sample the music using streaming audio technology before buying the CD. And all these can be done in the comforts of home or office without the hassles of going to a physical store and standing in the checkout lines. On the other end, sellers can also easily track music tastes of each buyer and
provide customized information and better service (Parikh, 1999). This has seriously reduced transaction cost by bringing efficiencies in many aspects of music retailing.
In addition, the use of the Internet for music distribution has greatly helped in promoting artists that are not economically buoyant to seek the service(s) of promoters. The Internet also affords them the opportunity of showcasing their talents with little or no cost.
From the foregoing, it can be concluded that the use of the Internet for music distribution is more of a blessing than a curse in our contemporary time. This is because it has brought efficiencies in many aspects such as: music retailing, distribution, reproduction and promotion. However, the distribution of music through the Internet has slightly promoted piracy. This is because the Internet has greatly removed the barrier of easy accessibly to many works of art, especially music.

Anaeto, S. G.; Onabajo, O. S. and Osifeso, J. B. (2008). Models and Theories of Communications. Maryland: African Renaissance Books Incorporated.

Baltzis, A. G. (2004). The Mediamorphosis of the Artistic Communication (Reproduction, Broadcast Internet). Lecture Delivered at the International Seminar of the European research Network. London. Retrieved September 28, 2011 from http://users.auth.gr/baltzis/papers/seminar_04_mediamorphosis.pdf

Baran, S. J. (2004). Introduction to Mass Communication: Media Literacy and Culture (3rd Edition). New York: McGraw-Hill Companies Inc.

Bockstedt, J. C.; Kauffman, R. J. and Riggins (2005). The Move to Artist-Led Online Music Distribution: Explaining Structural Changes in the Digital Music Market. Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences, Big Island, Hawaii.

Czerwinski, S.; Fromm, R. and Hodes, T. (n.d.). Digital Music Distribution and Audio Watermarking. Computer Science Division, University of California, Berkeley.

Encyclopedia Americana (International Edition). Vol. 15.

Gower, A. S. (n.d.). Music Distribution and the Internet: A Legal Guide for the Music Business. Retrieved September 23rd, 2011 from http://www.ashgate.com/pdf/samplepages/Music_Distribution_and_the_Internet_Ch1.pdf

Jockel, S.; Will, A. and Nawrath, U. (2007). “Consumer Preferences towards Commercial Music Downloads”. In Journal of Media Business Studies. 4(3): 1-19. Retrieved September 23rd, 2011 from http://www.jombs.com/files/2007431.pdf

Parikh, M. (1999). The Music Industry in the Digital World: Waves of Changes. Institute for Technology and Enterprise. Retrieved September 23rd, 2011 from http://www.ite.poly.edu/musicwave.pdf


The internet has served as the universal language of the virtual world since the beginning of the digital era. The internet can be described as a global system of computer networks that use the Standardized Transmission Control Protocol and are usually interconnected. Some of the great benefits of the internet over communication networks are its global presence, easy accessibility and wide scale-scale communication. Since the presence of the internet can be found almost everywhere across the world.
The internet greatly offers rapid communication on a global scale. It delivers an integrated multimedia entertainment that any other mass media cannot offer. The boundless communication it provides makes the internet an important medium of communication. The internet is named after the Internet Protocol, the standard communications protocol used by every computer on the internet.

The internet can powerfully leverage one’s ability to find, manage, and share information. Never in human history has such valuable resource been available to so many people at such little cost. The internet has imparted on every aspects of human endeavor and has brought dramatic changes in them. One human invention that the internet has greatly imparted is the Radio.
Wikipedia (2011) states that Radio is the transmission of signals through free space by modulation of electromagnetic waves with frequencies below those of visible light. Electromagnetic radiation travels by means of oscillating electromagnetic fields that pass through the air and vacuum of space. Information is carried by systematically changing (modulating) some property of the radiated waves such as amplitude, frequency, phase or pulse width. When radio waves pass an electrical conductor, the oscillating fields induce an alternating current in the conductor this can be detected and transformed into sound or other signals that carry information.

It seeks to examine how the Internet is affecting Radio.

Kozamernik and Mullane (2005) state that traditionally, audio programmes have been available via dedicated terrestrial networks broadcasting to radio receivers. Typically, they have operated on Amplitude Modulation (AM) and Frequency Modulation (FM) terrestrial platforms but, with the move to digital broadcasting, audio programmes are also available today via Digital Audio Broadcasting (DBA), Digital Radio Mondiale (DRM) and In-Band On-Channel (IBOC).

However, this paradigm is about to change. Radio programmes are increasingly available not only from terrestrial networks but also from a large variety of satellite, cable and, indeed, telecommunications networks (e.g. fixed telephone lines, wireless broadband connections and mobile phones). Very often, radio is added to digital television platforms (e.g. DVB-S and DVB-T). Radio receivers are no longer only dedicated hi-fi tuners or portable radios with whip aerials, but are now assuming the shape of various multimedia-enabled computer devices (e.g. desktops, notebooks, PDAs, “Internet” radios, etc.).
These sea changes in radio technologies impact dramatically on the radio medium itself – the way it is produced, delivered, consumed and paid-for. Radio has become more than just audio – it can now contain associated metadata, synchronized slideshows and even short video clips. Radio is no longer just a “linear” flow emanating from an emission mast – audio files are now available on demand or stored locally for time-shifted play-out. It is convenience for the user, rather than the broadcaster-imposed schedule, which matters now.
Baker (2009) states that traditional radio, the oldest of the broadcast media structures, is used to competing with emergent technologies like net-radio. Television posed the biggest threat to traditional radio when it was introduced in the 1950s. Traditional radio refocused its attention away from formats taken by television and strengthened its alliances with the music industry.

Traditional radio has always had a history of adaptation, ensuring its survival to present times. As Marshall McLuhan (1964: 259-268) argued, because of radio’s speed and portable reception, it commanded a particular mobile attention of listeners, which other media did not. In the late
1960s David Sarnoff, a visionary employee of the first radio company (Marconi),acknowledged that traditional radio’s survival would be severely tested amidst the arrival of new structures like the personal computer and internet technology:
The computer will become the hub of a vast network of remote data stations and information banks feeding into the machine at a transmission rate of a billion or more bits of information a second … Eventually, a global communications network handling voice, data and facsimile will instantly link man to machine – or machine to machine – by land, air, underwater, and space circuits. The computer will affect man’s ways of thinking, his means of education, his relationship to his physical and social environment, and it will alter his ways of living.
Today the competitive threat of other new media technologies has become more serious as traditional radio faces an increasingly crowded media market place. While other digital radio platforms (iPods, satellite radio, HD Radio) have taken charge, none has managed to garner the global audience that net-radio has.
Net-radio, which is audio streaming over the internet, began as an emergent technology in the early 1990s when the internet descended from the military domain into the commercial realm to become the World Wide Web (WWW). David Black (2001: 403) said that net-radio’s history is divided into two parts.
The first stage of net radio history is what Black (2001: 401) calls “internet radio 1: internet radio in internet history”. He argued that in the early 1990s net-radio was a new cutting-edge, progressive medium.Net-radio, also known as internet radio, web radio, streaming radio and e-radio, is a far more complex, networked technology than traditional radio.
Traditional radio is a structured and linear system of mass communication that is domestic in scope whereas net-radio is associated with a non-structured, non-linear system of digital-networked information technologies that is international in scope. The popularity of net-radio stems from the fact it is a hybrid technology that both updates and globalizes traditional radio.
Net-radio is a global technology whose audio streams may be delivered live or archived to be accessed on demand; but in both cases audio files are initially created for alternative programming and delivered to an audience of more than one.
There are two types of net-radio: radio online and net-only radio. Radio online consists of regulated, traditional radio broadcasters with existing audiences, which have incorporated the internet as an adjunct service.
In contrast, net-only radio, which webcasts exclusively over the internet, is generally unregulated. Net-radio, in both forms, draws its powers from five distinct characteristics of the internet and digitalization: (i) It is a multi-media digital platform of converging print and audiovisual texts; (ii) It is interactive; (iii) It is a global medium; (iv) It provides on-demand access to a 24-hour database; and (v) It is a network of networks in a close-knit, virtual online community. Net-radio’s characteristics mean that its’ “user defined personal involvement” and interaction defines its global consumption practices and audience profile (Friere 2008: 97). In contrast to the “traditional discourse of radioness”, the real revolution of net-radio lies in its radical mode of personal audience address (Friere 2008: 97).

Net-radio has definitely arrived, but is seemingly confined to technology-rich countries in the Western world. Net-radio consumption is a centre-periphery issue because the northern hemisphere is the centre of the industry and the southern hemisphere is the periphery.
Today net-radio is no longer an emergent technology. It has been streaming for nearly sixteen years. Both types of net-radio are examples of alternative media because they stream over the internet and encourage what Chris Atton (2002: 27) called “alternative sites for distribution” to the mainstream media. Atton’s claim is backed by research undertaken by Wen Ren and Sylvia Chan-Olmsted (2004) who conducted content analysis of web content from 176 radios online and net-only radio stations in North America.
Ren and Chan-Olmsted (2004: 6) found that both types of net-radio have different audience functions to mainstream media: radio online is an “information provider” while net-only radio is a “communication facilitator”.

Radio over the Internet differs from other delivery media in three ways:

1) It is a relatively new way to experience radio via a computer device. The consumer uses a new interface (screen, keyboard, and mouse) and is able to search and select different content according to the station name, country of origin, genre or style, as well as viewing the currently played programme (“Now Playing”). The station’s frequency (as in FM or AM) or multiplex (as often in DAB) is irrelevant. The users can shortlist their preferences by compiling personalized
favourites lists. In addition, it is possible to generate a virtual station schedule according to one’s preferences. An “on-demand radio” is also offered by many traditional broadcasters on their websites; this allows the user to click and play the archived programme items which were broadcast via conventional terrestrial channels during the previous seven days or so.

2) Internet Radio (IR) widens the choice of service providers. These can be traditional radio broadcasters, new (Internet-only) stations, portals or independent users.
3) Radio content on the web can differ from radio broadcasting that has evolved over the last century. Whereas on terrestrial networks the choice of stations is relatively limited, there are thousands of IR stations. It is often possible to choose from a list of most popular stations or to find a station which is playing a particular song from a “Top 50” list. Since computers can use hard disc memory, it is possible to time-shift the play out.
One of the fundamental differences between Internet Radio (IR) and conventional radio is the absence of barriers to public transmission. Consequently, even a small local station can potentially become a global player, or at least an international station.
Since 1995, most traditional broadcasters have set up websites in order to provide complementary information for their listeners and viewers. These websites can provide a variety of textual and pictorial on-line services, as well as on-demand audio or audio/video clips associated with news events and live (continuous) reproduction of existing radio and television programmes.
For conventional broadcasters, IR could usefully complement existing on-air broadcasts. IR works best as a narrow-cast medium targeting a small number of concurrent users. Should this number increase to more than a thousand (or several thousand), the Internet streaming servers are generally not capable of providing the streams economically.
In other words, IR is only really useful if it is kept relatively small.
IR is best suited to niche content, such as education, specialist music, and programmes aimed at ethnic minorities, which may be of interest to a relatively small number of people. Often it is considered too extravagant to use scarce spectrum for such programmes. Internet Radio (IR) can offer a solution for communities scattered across the world. For example, there may not be
enough fans of gypsy music in a given part of the world to justify a local broadcast station, but if we add listeners around the world who are interested in this kind of entertainment, the potential audience will look a lot healthier.
While it is easy to introduce a new IR stream for niche radio programmes, it is more difficult, if not impossible, to find spectrum for new FM stations, particularly in some large agglomerations where spectrum is already very congested.
The scalability of IR is a major issue. When audiences are relatively small (e.g. several hundred concurrent listeners), the required bandwidth – and thus the cost – is reasonable. However, when audiences increase, the operational costs may escalate. In a way, a station may become a victim of its own success. A peer-to-peer (P2P) approach may help reduce the distribution costs. Multicast is also an option, but it requires multicast-enabled routers which may not be readily available everywhere.
Also, multicast excludes on-demand delivery.
Internet Radio (IR) is inherently interactive. IR websites are places for listeners to interact not only with the station, but also with each other. These interactions are usually achieved through text messages, e-mail forums or chat rooms as well as, in a growing number of cases, audio and video messages. Indeed,
Theoretical Explanation
This research work employs the assumption of Rearviewmirrorism propounded by Marshall McLuhan in 1964.
McLuhan’s (1964) concept of “rearviewmirrorism”, which described how a new technology copies the one it is destined to supplant, is important to draw on when comparing traditional radio and net-radio. In a McLuhanistic sense, in order to understand a radical new media technology like net-radio, inventors first relied on preconceptions formed through listeners’ experiences of traditional radio and then attempted to address weaknesses of the old and supplanted new strengths onto the new medium.
Net-radio “rearviewmirrored” traditional radio when it first began by adopting conventional formats, like news, talkback and so on. However the implication of “rearviewmirrorism” has meant that net-radio needed to establish its own distinct characteristics, rather than “looking behind” and mimicking traditional radio, in order to compete in the complex, multimedia global environment.

Therefore as net-radio developed and audiences grew, by 2000 it encompassed new levels of innovation with new music formats, multicasting and interactivity, thereby providing users with more choices and power over their listening programs. This was a significant departure from traditional radio formats where listeners were restricted by the station manager’s formats and music selection. The internet’s built-in feature of interactivity, converging multimedia, narrowcasting of specialized music genres and global access provided characteristics to net-radio that traditional radio has always strived for but never fully achieved (Priestman 2002: 229).

Kozamernik and Mullane(2005) state that the comparatively low entry barriers for broadcasters have led to a proliferation of Internet Radio sites. This has increased the importance of promotion and product differentiation. However, public service broadcasters enjoy a significant competitive edge. They benefit from both strong brand recognition and the ability to cross-promote across Internet, radio and TV networks.
In order to promote their Internet services, broadcasters must communicate the all-important web addresses to listeners.
It is not the aim of this article to explore marketing techniques, but suffice to say that broadcasters can achieve this in a variety of ways: during live programmes; in advertising campaigns on radio, TV, the Internet or in print; and with e-mail marketing campaigns, press releases and give-aways. Where Internet Radio really comes into its own is as a marketing tool in its own right. Radio is an “experience product” which the consumers must sample before they become regular listeners.
There is evidence from the BBC and others that Internet Radio players can boost listening figures for traditional radio by encouraging listeners to experiment and discover new programmes.
In addition, some shows already have as many “catch-up” listeners online as they do for the original live broadcasts.
One way that the BBC encourages users of its radio player to discover new shows is by providing links and lists of the most popular programmes by topic and genre. It is likely that later versions of the player will offer a suggestive service, along the lines of the “if you liked that, you may enjoy this” feature of Amazon and Q-Magazine. As things stand, the BBC claims that its player adds millions to the overall listening figures.
Internet Radio is also a useful platform for collecting data and for building communities of dedicated listeners. Message boards and chat rooms create communities, with the added benefit that in order to register; listeners must fill out customer profile forms and give their contact details. Information gathered in online competitions can also contribute to listener databases for the purposes of market research.

The Internet has opened up a new possibility for radio enthusiasts. During the last ten years or so, Internet Radio has been a major focus of technical innovations and operational experiments. Now Internet Radio has become a mature medium with its distinctive characteristics. There are many tens of thousands of Internet Radio stations worldwide, ranging from big portals down to small local and individual streaming stations.
The main assets of Internet Radio are its global reach, interactivity and personalisation. While today the users need a computer device and a broadband connection to access Internet radio stations, in future they will be able to enjoy it on a number of portable wireless devices. Internet Radio will become ubiquitous.
Internet Radio has proved to be most successful if associated with conventional radio broadcasting over terrestrial or satellite networks. Nevertheless, many standalone Internet Radio stations have reached a break-even point to become commercially successful.
Internet Radio redefines radio content. Not only does it introduce new music and speech formats, but also can embellish them with text, graphics and video. It allows users to listen to a wide selection of audio items when and where it is convenient. These on-demand radio services may dramatically affect the pattern of listening and listening habits.

Andrea J. C. Baker .(2009). Comparing the Regulatory Models of Net-Radio with Traditional Radio. International Journal of Emerging Technologies and Society.Vol. 7, No. 1, 2009, pp: 1 – 14.
Atton, C .(2004).Alternative internet, radical media, politics and creativity.Edinburgh University
Press, Edinburgh.
Black, D .(2001). Internet radio: a case study in medium specificity.Media, Culture & Society,
vol. 23, pp. 397-408.

Friere, A (2008). Re-mediating radio: Audio streaming, music recommendation and the
discourse of radioness. Radio Journal: International Studies in Broadcast and Audio
Media, vol. 5, no. 2 & 3, pp. 97-112.

F. Kozamernik and M. Mullane.(2005) An Introduction to Internet Radio.EBU Technical Review No. 303, July 2005. http://www.ebu.ch/departments/technical/trev/trev_303-octoshape.pdf.

McLuhan, M (1964). Understanding media: the extensions of man. Mentor Books, New York.
Priestman, C (2002). Web radio, Focal Press, Oxford.
Ren, W & Chan-Olmsted, S 2004, ‘Radio content on the World Wide Web: comparing radio
stations in the United States’, The Journal of Radio Studies, vol. 11, no. 1, pp. 6-25.
Sawhney, H & Seungwhan, L (2005). Arenas of innovation: understanding new configurational
potentials of communication technologies. Media, Culture & Society, vol. 27, no. 3, pp.