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Chriss Scherer Scherer has been the editor of Radio magazine since 1997. His experience in radio includes work as chief engineer at stations in Cleveland (WMMS-FM, WHK-AM, WZJM-FM, WJMO-AM...more

Kill an Idea Before it Grows

I’m watching a discussion thread on one of the many e-mail lists I monitor. This thread is about adding FM receivers to cell phones and distributing emergency alerts to mobile devices. Part of this discussion includes using RBDS (such as GSS Alert FM or Via Radio) to distribute the emergency messages.

There are some good ideas being posted, but there are many more comments stating that it’s all a bad idea:

  • “Listeners may not want to receive alerts on their devices”
  • “How will the FM receiver know to listen to the right channel to get the alert?”
  • “Phone users will complain about their Ipod or phone switching when they don’t want it to.”

    While these are valid concerns for a final implementation, it seems the idea is being killed before it even has a chance to be explored. By all means, let’s ignore technology improvements and by no means implement them for the greater good. Let’s leave radio exactly the way it was in 1948!

    Yes, I’m being sarcastic.

    First rule of brainstorming: There are no bad ideas. Accept everything and then put them together. Design a system and then consider the drawbacks. Then alter the solution to address the perceived shortcoming.

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