I think before radio can start to think about claiming a part of the live market, it really needs…
Mark Rock
1

Thanks for the note, Mark.

Any generation will attach a value to a live experience where the “live” part is valuable or essential to the consumption and appreciation of that experience. This is not the exclusive toold fogies like you and me :-). It’s part of human nature.

To be sure, the fact that something happens live does not make it a live event. It just makes it live. I used a number of examples in my piece.

Even — and perhaps especially — for millennials and younger, there is a critical social layer, and if an audio experience carries with it ephemeral social value — if experiencing something with others all at once adds cachet to my social authority — then there is another incentive to experience it in real time. Being “first” to hear something is not truly being “first” — it’s being “first” along with everyone else who’s “first” — and that creates social currency.

As I said, this is apart from the argument about categories of content where suspense is essential, such as live sports.

When your kids get old enough to watch The Walking Dead, ask them how long they’d like to wait to catch up on the latest episode when they go to school and everyone’s talking about what happened last night.

I should also note the obvious: The inability of podcasts to do this because they are designed for another purpose does not make them “bad” or “worse” than radio. In fact, radio falls short of its potential here every day and in many ways. That’s why the piece was less a critique of podcasts and more an invitation to radio.

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