The Day the Music MIGHT Die

Discussion in 'SiriusXM Soundwave Cafe' started by twufred, Nov 21, 2008.

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  1. twufred

    twufred New Member

    Prognostications being prognostications, a wave of thought eloquently debated on this website makes me think about what might happen if Sirius XM goes off the air.

    Will it just "stop"? Will Mr. Karmazin pull yet another hat trick and introduce an investor conglomerate to inject new $$$ and save our satellites? Or will our radios join 8-track tapes, cassettes and 78 RPM records in the hallowed halls of gadgets whose time has lapsed?

    It's a scenario I would rather not contemplate. I spend much time on the road and enjoy my favorite channels immensely.

    Like DAB, I, too, invested in a Slacker unit and their Premium Service. A "geezer" like me is comforted by the virtually automatic updating Slacker offers. I recently flew from Philadelphia to Seattle and was pleased as the unit captured new songs played on my favorite channels via the wireless network in my hotel.

    Unlike some who write here (and I respect their preferences and opinions), I enjoy the DJs on the various Sirius XM channels. It was what I was raised with and I relate to it as I smile at some of the marvelous wit the announcers put out over the airwaves. Slacker, IPod and other such alternatives do not offer DJs to the extent Sirius XM does. Sixties-on-6 Terry Young's recreation of the former AM radio powerhouse stations that led yesterday's youth to the local sock hop are well-produced and realistic. It was "our sound" just as today's belongs to America's youth and tomorrow's will be property of their offspring. How many of us bayed at the moon and made our first "score" (female conquest for my generation) listening to Wolfman Jack, Cousin Brucie and their contemporaries!

    It is not the thought of losing a few hundreds of dollars I invested in hardware that troubles me. It is losing yet another medium to which my and other generations can feel a sense of belonging to. And it is the blazing reality that the economic shockwave collateral to one of our nation's major ills is now trickling down to such a simple and innocent basic source of entertainment as satellite radio.

    Let's hope the beat goes on.
  2. kryptonite

    kryptonite Well-Known Member

    Here's what I think could happen:

    a) Sirius recovers. Obviously, they're going to continue to lay off a lot of staff to save money. This also hinges on the entire economy and car stocks recovering.

    b) Sirius lays off every DJ and all their music channels go fully automatic. Hey, it could happen.

    c) An investor steps in. Maybe someone with a lot of money like Bill Gates or Richard Branson, or maybe a company like Google.

    d) Contract re-negotiation. Maybe this comes with declaring bankrupty, maybe not. As various contracts expire, that same product could re-sign with Sirius XM for a lot less, now that there's only one company.

    For example, Howard was going to sign with XM, but Sirius stepped in at the last minute, offered him more money, and away he went. Now that there's only one company, this situation probably isn't going to happen again.

    Situations like these could potentially save MILLIONS, although we may have to wait a few years for things to happen.

    e) Sirius owes the banks money, right? What if the banks go under? Would they still have to owe money to a defunct bank?

    f) Non-traditional advertising on music channels. What if the jocks were to promote various products between songs? You'd hear 3-4 songs followed by about 60 seconds of talking about the music with a 15 second live commercial.

    "This channel is being brought to you by _____ company, insert sales jingle here."

    g) Sirius could go under and stop broadcasting, but I think it's further off than people seem to think.
  3. TallGntlmn

    TallGntlmn New Member

    I'll throw one in for argument sake.

    h) The Democrats pass a Fairness Doctrine, all but killing AM radio. Sirius-XM snatches up Rush on an exclusive contract. Millions of Dittoheads who previously would not consider satellite radio come into the fold because it's the only place they can hear Rush.

    Hey, it could happen. Not likely but could.

    I think one of the most likely is advertising by either sponsorship or naming rights. Something along the lines of "Classic Vinyl on Sirius-XM, presented by Infiniti" or "FedEx Roadhouse, classic country." I hope like hell that Mel won't do real commercials.

    If they did the 60 second commercial thing, I would switch the channel as soon as it came on. I'm sure I'm not alone in that. There were a few reasons I subscribed. One of the big ones was the lack of commercials on music channels. If they do pop up, that could be the death knell for my subscription.
  4. kryptonite

    kryptonite Well-Known Member

    Naming rights to channels is a good idea. I wonder if they could air traditional commericals ONLY between 7 PM PT and 5 AM ET, aka "when a lot of people probably aren't listening anyway."

    One of the good things about being able to pause radio is that you can fast-forward through songs you don't like...commericals? :scratch: Step away from the radio for a few minutes and pause it. Get to a 30-second commercial break and FF. Hopefully this would be a VERY LAST resort, but i'd take it over nothing at all.

    Not a regular commercial, but they could have jocks promote products between songs. Does "This hour is brought to you by Mazda. Call 1800Mazda for more info" count as a commercial? What if it's only done twice an hour?

    One thing I don't see is advertising on the website. :scratch:
  5. Jaspear

    Jaspear New Member

    Unless they extend new "Fairness" Doctrine regulations to satellite radio as well. They very well might. It is after all, about power, not fairness.

    Another post on one of these forums speculated that Mel might suddenly make satellite radio completely free. You wake up one morning and all your radios get everything. Radios you deauthorized now work. The catch? Commercials on all channels. You might ultimately decide to not listen, but it wouldn't cost you anything if you did.

    Or maybe it would be some sort of a hybrid - a few commercial free channels, some with limited sponsorship announcements, and the rest with traditional commercial spots (Although Mel doesn't impress me as half way kind of guy, if he decided to do this, he would go whole hog, IMO.).
  6. Machinehead

    Machinehead New Member

    You have to be careful when you start talking about Rush Limbaugh. If you take into account the new "people meter" ratings, his numbers are well below the diary ratings.
  7. GoodDog

    GoodDog Well-Known Member

    Nice post, my comments below in bold

    It may be a few months (not years) away
  8. medmondson

    medmondson New Member

    A few months back I read of an encoding break through of sorts that would allow Tivo to sell advertising "space" to fast forwarding. If a user is fast forwarding through a commercial break, then Tivo would pop up an static "drink pepsi" sign or whatever for the few seconds your skipping.

    They can find ways to advertise without necessarily impacting the experience.

    As displays become more advanced (color, more lines of text, etc) I could see them working advertising into that area without having to take actual breaks.

    Also, I think with the combined subscriber base of 20+ million, they can probably improve the type of advertisers they get (How much money can they really bet getting from Beecueticals and Mangroomer?) on the channels that do currently have commercial breaks.
  9. GoodDog

    GoodDog Well-Known Member

    Who sits and watches the radio display? ads there would not work. as far as improving the advertisers, hey they have had years to do that without success there is no reason to believe they can do that now. Genital odor remover spray or car washing sponges anyone?
  10. flap_jackson

    flap_jackson Well-Known Member

    I don't think Sat Rad is going away, just like I don't think Blu-Ray is going away. If either is still living and breathing after this "recession," then they'll stay around.

    If they do die however, I will cry profusely, and what the hell would I do without my talk radio?!? Listening to the Internet feeds of these shows is horrible!:cry:
  11. TacoKid

    TacoKid Member

    twufred -

    That was a very well spoken post. My feelings are 100% the same as yours.

    I've been holding back on purchasing a Slacker unit.........but with Xmas coming up, I don't think I will be able to hold on much longer.
  12. kryptonite

    kryptonite Well-Known Member

    I'd guess that a lot of people LOOK at their display on occasion to see what's playing, but i'm sure no one sits there and WATCHES it.
  13. KTMCDO

    KTMCDO Member

  14. TX WJ

    TX WJ Intelligent Donkey

    I can tell you that the future is not bright for Satellite with the debt that is coming, for that reason I have not invested in a new radio even though I want one.
  15. VinnyM27

    VinnyM27 Active Member

    This going to sound strange (and a bit like something said by Eric the Midget about Natalie Maines on the Stern show) but these kind of articles only make things worse.

    That guy really comes off badly as a fan of satelite radio when he does ABSOLUTELY nothing to defend it and only points out most of its weakness against MP3 technology (BTW, which you have to program...good luck finding rare songs on Napster!) or podcasts (those are great....not!). He even says it's insanely expensive but he has a lifetime subscription (sure) and his family has a whole TWO subs as well. Yet not much on what is great about it, only what is wrong.

    While there are obvious signs of weakness (even Howard, who was insanely cocky year one and two of his contract but is totally quieting down now that he sees this merger was not the greatest idea and that things are getting worse by the day), I would say that all this talk by writers only makes things worse....could the stock get lower...maybe.
  16. Schlep

    Schlep Member

    Good luck finding rare songs on SXM.

    Podcasts are great. There's a bit of something for everyone. I have videogame podcasts (audio & video), movie interviews/reviews, hour and two hour long trance podcasts, etc. 10 years from now, I'd be more willing to bet we'll be talking about podcasts than satellite radio.
  17. jcc

    jcc New Member

  18. DAB

    DAB Mod Emeritus

    Well, if Sat Radio was to fail and I think if it does it would be awhile before the service would just shut down. There will be all sorts of things they would go through legally before that day ever came. But should it, I can tell you that it wouldn't be an iPod / Podcast that would be able to fill in the gap. Lets face it the iPod is great, but it isn't anything like sat radio. While I complain about stale playlist and other aspect of sat radio. There is nothing worse than stale playlist on an iPod and it cost a lot of money to keep it with fresh and new content.

    Now there are some great podcast that I've enjoyed over the years. Some of them have some really cool music even some rare songs that you aren't likely to hear anywhere.

    One thing for sure I can never go back to AM/FM so for me my immediately replacement would be the Slacker premium service using a Slacker G2. I don't want to have to manage my music anymore and with Slacker you simply don't have too. It is just like radio for the most part.

    It is true that right now it simply doesn't look good for Sat Radio. I mean it was going to be tough in a good or fair economy, but now.. well that makes it very, very difficult and the out look for success is poor (not impossible) at best. However, I am an optimist so I will hold on to hope against hope that they continue.
  19. DoublEE

    DoublEE Active Member

    I think the writing is on the wall.
  20. I wouldn't want satellite radio to go away cause how else can you get Live Sports, News and Talk Radio. You have something like Slacker but it only offers music. With all this talk of something happening to Satellite Radio... There is FM stations with HD channels. The HD channels aren't doing much for the FM stations or really adding to their profits. What would happen if we lost FM radio along with Satellite? Probably won't happen though.
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