iHeart embraces podcasting, uh-huh

Tom Taylor’s newsletter mentioned that iHeart/Clear Channel has signed a deal with a podcasting company to move into offline distribution. This morning, iHeartRadio emailed me information. Here is the podcast info for Sean Hannity:


It is pretty pathetic that iHeart has no idea what a podcast is. With a podcast, your software informs you that a new episode is available, and depending on the settings, optionally downloaded. You might also have a mobile device like an mp3 player set up to transfer the podcast via bluetooth or a USB cable. With the podcasts on the device, you are free to listen when and where you want without need for internet access. You typically can back up or fast forward, and change the playback rate to save time. Podcasts typically do not have the network ads or local news/weather/traffic breaks.

What iHeart is actually offering is a show archive. Listening requires an iHeartradio account. Do you really want iHeart spamming your Facebook friends?

It is more evident that Hannity carries the least content of the national syndicated talk shows. After stripping out the local breaks and ads, his three hour show has a run time of only 95 minutes.

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15 Responses to iHeart embraces podcasting, uh-huh

  1. TheChairman says:

    He’s competing with Noory and Jones for highest ratio of fluff-n-bluff per hour.

  2. CC1s121LrBGT says:

    Its a sinister organization. I was on their website to check out a stream from Australia which was geoblocked to the USA. I saw a section for comments and someone was complaining that the station would not stream on his Roku. The iHeart response was for the potential listener to resubmit the issue via Facebook.

    They have been more interested in creating walls and obstacles and building their database on their users (through linking the listener to the listener’s Facebook data in this case, through registering users and other tactics as well).

    It is no surprise to me that that are unable to pay their bills – when you run a radio station and your first priority to to prevent people from listening, you will not be a successful radio station.

    • Fred Stiening says:

      Tom Taylor is reporting that Cumulus has their prepackaged bankruptcy ready to do. By converting debt to stock, perhaps NASDAQ will not boot them

    • Fred Stiening says:

      The stock in Salem and Townsquare is at a 52 week low in a stock market that has been going up.

      Maybe K-Love should sell stock.

      • Fred Stiening says:

        Spanish Broadcasting System just received their Going Concern warning from their auditors indicating Chapter 11 will happen if they can’t restructure their debt. Revenues were down 9%. That might be due to Donald Trump.

    • CC1s121LrBGT says:

      Per this list of the top 10 wealthiest talk radio hosts, #10 is Tom Joyner at $30 million, #1 is Howard Stern at $550 million. I’m no socialist, but just as it was clear that overpaying for “eyeballs” caused the dotcom bust, overpaying for chit chat is a cause of the radio bust. https://www.therichest.com/expensive-lifestyle/money/the-10-richest-radio-personalities-in-the-world/

      The same can be said for overpaying for music talent. Taylor Swift is talented and doing well for someone under 30 years old. Radio plays her (and pays her) all the time and she now has an estimated net worth of $240 million.

      • CC1s121LrBGT says:

        “Your Favorite Radio Hits May Go Silent
        Songwriters threaten to withhold their music if stations don’t give them a bigger share of revenue. ”

        from https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2017-11-22/your-favorite-radio-hits-may-go-silent

        • Fred Stiening says:

          The story didn’t do a very good job of distinguishing the Composer / Lyricist roayalties (via ASCAP/BMI/SESAC) vs the zero amount paid to the performers for “over the air” airplay vs the SoindExchange royalties being paid by everyone (including radio) to all the artists for digital streaming. It’s a complicated subject and music discovery moving away from radio changes the playing field. IHeart has the clout to cut side deals outside the consent decree framework that pay for over the air in exchange for lower digital streaming rates. The possibility of being forced into mandatory royalties for performers may well have been why CBS bailed on radio.

          • CC1s121LrBGT says:

            > “It’s a complicated subject and music discovery moving away from radio changes the playing field.”

            Absolutely. In the 1960s, the federal government prosecuted artists representatives (mostly record companies) for paying radio stations and their employees for playing music, now they prosecute stations that don’t pay artist representatives. Radio made a lot of money in the 1960s, radio loses a lot of money today.

            The world is full of extremely talented musicians of all genres of music. The difference between someone making millions and someone just getting by is the promotion process. There are still a lot of sneaky backroom, smoke-filled room deals. Look at the recent news from Hollywood executives that make these decisions for the movie industry and you will get an idea of a part of that process.

  3. Parrott says:

    $240 million eh ? That’s more than ‘Jed Clampett’.
    Speaking on streaming, the Global Star radio network is using ‘Voscast’ now. its like S2.Voscast.com then a number for the station I guess. You all ever heard of voscast? VLM still plays it, so thats good.
    Thats GSN compared to GCN that Alex Jones uses, but GSN carries alex also.
    I avoid the ‘heart’ , but it must be easy for stations to sign up to be streamed by them, I think some salems are streamed by ‘heart’, meh.

    • CC1s121LrBGT says:

      “Weeeell, doggies!”

      I think all the Salem stations are available in the iHeart app but they are actually streams by streamtheworld.com . Most of the iHeart owned stations are now streamed by ihrhls.com (I would guess that the ihr refers to iheart radio… not sure about the hls part of the naming) https://www.whois.com/whois/ihrhls.com

      • Fred Stiening says:

        Your assumption is correct, however someone else may still be doing the streaming. If you have a server named streaming123.xyz.com, that server can be run by a third party, but from a security perspctive still belongs to the xyz.com domain, therefore can share cookies with the main xyz.com web server and restrictions by the user to not share data with third parties are ignored.

        • CC1s121LrBGT says:

          Agreed. There are complexities on multiple levels. The verb “streams” can be associated with the owner of the content, the owner of the radio station, the owner of the streaming service provider, or the operator or administrator of any of the above. Even a single streaming vendor such as xyz.com may redirect streams to subcontractors in a way transparent to everyone outside their particular arrangement.

          In this case, streamtheworld.com is a large streaming vendor that streams for many companies in addition to Salem. They have clients in Canada, as well as non-commercial station within the US.

          iHeart’s apps mostly include its own stations, but also include Salem’s and a number of non-commercial public radio stations such as WNYC, NYC’s main NPR station. Most of the NYC streams are from a server named http://www.wnyc.org but some are from a server called iheart.wnyc.org. That second server may or may not be run by iHeart and may or may not be collocated with their first server. There are all kinds of redirects possible and differences in maintenance and ownership possible. As long as it streams, I am happy. 😉

          • Fred Stiening says:

            It gets even more complicated, which I learned the hard way. Using DNS games, server123.xyz.com may return a different IP address (or more) depending on your geographic location and/or internet provider – resulting in the radio station testing their own stream and believing it is working – while listeners are getting errors.

            The streaming companies that survived are the ones who are proactive and search for problems before the listener is aware of them.

            • Parrott says:

              Killer. I never knew that the streams were that complected. I guess they must stay ahead of the russians ?

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