Talk shows had always been a major draw among the audience. Topical discussions with valuable inputs of a qualified panel along with audience interaction, coordinated by a talk show host is something that most don’t want to miss out. Such shows talk about topics of general interest like politics and social issues, sports, entertainment, health, finance, current events and many more. Common media such as the television or radio are usually used to air such shows. However, with a growing number of Internet users, talk shows have now found a place in the World Wide Web in the form of Internet talk radio.
An Internet talk radio is a form of radio format that streams live and on-demand talk shows over the Internet. In other words it is a talk show that is transmitted via Internet. Connecting to an Internet talk radio is not difficult either. All it needs is an Internet connection, a head phone/ speaker and a media player installed in the computer of the listener. Once these are in place, a person can listen to both live and on-demand programs. Live programs are those that are broadcasted in real-time whereas the pre-recorded archived programs are broadcasted on demand. The website of the talk radio station generally lists the schedule of all the programs that, if needed, can be referred to by the listener. The reception and quality of streaming depends a lot on the infrastructure of the radio hosting company and more importantly the bandwidth of the computer that streams these programs to the audience. Most Internet based talk radio stations provide online technical support, which can be contacted in case of any difficulties in viewing/ listening the programs.
Though the concept of an Internet talk radio is rather new, it has been gaining popularity rapidly. Since its start in the year 2005, a lot of web based talk radio stations have made their presence felt. The primary reason for such growth can be attributed to its low operational costs and flexibility in its usage. Unlike television studios or radio stations, an Internet based talk radio does not need to have a costly infrastructure to operate. Setting up such a service takes considerably less time and manpower requirements are comparatively low. Ease of operation and low cost makes it a preferable business domain. On the other hand, it’s more appealing to the audience. One needs to have a laptop/ personal computer and an Internet connection to have the Internet radio running. While there are portable televisions and radios in the market, the overall affect of an Internet based radio is far better when it comes to portability.
Internet talk radio stations are all set to become even more popular in the days to come. A combination of speed, flexibility, interactivity, ease of operation and usage makes it a desirable media for all.