Radio is Dying

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Radio is Dying

By: Leah Howard

Ever since I was a kid, the sounds of the radio have filled my house. My parents are frequent radio listeners, and I sometimes forget that radio is still a form of entertainment, at least until I move back in with them for extended periods of time. 

The fact is, however, radio is dying. 

For our grandparents’ generation, it was almost impossible to imagine a home without a radio. To them, the radio provided a place to hear the news, to listen to music and comedy shows, or to provide a sense of escapism. Even if people did not go to the movies or could not afford a television, the chances were that they still had a radio or had access to one. 

Nowadays, radio is comparable to Facebook. When it was invented, it was a new novelty, and everyone had to hop on the new trend. For years, it stuck around and held onto its popularity. Now, the radio feels dated. Many people want their music to be on their own individual terms, with no interruptions or commercials. The radio simply does not offer this the way streaming services like Spotify or Apple Music do. Not only this, but people do not get their news from the radio anymore. They watch the news on TV or get it through their phone. Radio is simply not used anymore for the purposes in which it was intended. 

Since the radio is dying with younger generations, the commercials played on radio stations are much more geared towards older adults rather than teens and college kids. Just from listening to my parents’ favorite classic rock station, I only heard advertisements for grocery stores, local doctor offices, and restaurants. The one novelty out of those three groups that might be appealing to a younger demographic is the commercials about restaurants.

I obviously do not expect a radio station that’s made for adults to advertise things like college bars or clothing stores, but it is definitely interesting to notice this. When apps like Spotify or Pandora have ads, they’re mainly for things like Netflix shows and clothing stores, things that are tailored to a younger generation. 

I think that once my parents’ generation dies off, the radio will be a thing of the past, something we do not use anymore. Gone are the days when you would go on a road trip and listen to the radio. Nowadays, we make playlists tailored to whatever we are doing at that time. I am sure that soon enough, there will be a new way to listen to our music, and we will end up just like our parents with their clinging onto the radio.

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