LMiV today announced the launch of websites for five radio station affiliates and outlined plans to roll out another 166 sites. The five beta sites-consisting of stations owned by Bonneville, Corus, Emmis, Jefferson-Pilot, and Entercom-showcase the concepts and network infrastructure behind LMiV.
Little more than eight months ago, LMiV’s five founding companies pledged to redefine radio’s relationship with the Internet by giving broadcasters the opportunity to expand into the electronic publishing arena. With the launch of these sites, the consortium says it is now delivering on that promise.
“For the first time, we’ve made the Internet serve radio’s interests, instead of the other way around,” said Jeff Smulyan, chairman of LMiV and chairman and chief executive officer of Emmis Communications. “These are five unique websites, each developed to fit one station’s personality and audience, each dedicated to helping that station extend its on-air relationships with listeners and advertisers into the digital world. And yet they’re all part of the same network,” Smulyan said.
The beta sites are: News and Talk station WTOP/FM-Washington (www.wtop.com), owned by Bonneville International Corp.; EnergyFM (www.energyfm.ca), a Canadian station owned by Corus Entertainment; Q101-Chicago (www.q101.com), an Alternative rock owned by Emmis Communications; Star94-Atlanta (www.star94.com), a Top 40 station owned by Jefferson-Pilot; 94.7NRK- Portland, Ore. (www.947nrk.com), an Alternative rock station owned by Entercom.
During the beta phase, LMiV will monitor the first five sites closely, working with stations to iron out the kinks, find out what works and what doesn’t, and integrate LMiV’s streaming solution. LMiV has installed the capability for streaming each station’s broadcast signal in both RealPlayer and Windows Media formats. LMiV plans to launch its remaining 166 sites within six months of completing the beta phase.
In addition, each site includes a depth of information about artists and music featured on the station; local concerts and nightlife; local and national news; sports and weather; celebrity and entertainment news; and much more. Content comes from providers such as Muze, Screaming Media, Ticketmaster Online-Citysearch (TMCS) and others. Each beta station also has added substantial local content to meet the needs and interests of its local audience.
“In an incredibly short amount of time, we have negotiated agreements with more than 20 leading content and technology providers and woven it all together seamlessly to create a powerful, flexible network that meets our affiliates’ needs,” said Jack Swarbrick, president and CEO of LMiV. “The result-LMiV Digital Station-will enable our affiliates to extend their success from on-air to online.”