The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) established the Digital Audio Radio Service (DARS) in 1992 allowing for the purchase of satellite frequency rights on the radio. Sirius XM, the dominant satellite radio industry, purchased these rights as separate companies before their merge in 2008. Janet Jackson’s controversial Super Bowl performance and Howard Stern defiantly moving his broadcast to Sirius radio were both direct contributions to the popularity of satellite radio today. Once an audience base was established, the satellite radio industry started to attract millions of subscribers. Audiences are willing to pay the subscription fees that allow them accessibility of an almost infinite variety of channels.
For my first discussion question, I asked whether AM/FM radio would soon be a thing of the past or if the satellite radio industry would eventually phase out. One student argued that both industries would remain successful in the future because both audience bases will remain loyal to their preferred provider. I also asked why are people willing to pay a subscription fee when other radio outlets (AM/FM, iHeart Radio, Pandora) are ultimately free. A student stated that her Dad, who travels constantly, can access his favorite stations anywhere in the country through his Sirius XM subscription.
Straubhaar, Joseph D., Robert LaRose, and Lucinda Davenport. "Chapter 6." Media Now: Understanding Media, Culture, and Technology. Belmont, CA: Wadsworth, 2014. N. pag. Print.
"History of Satellite Radio." History of Satellite Radio. SatelliteRadioUSA, 2008. Web. 16 Oct.2014
Woolley, Scott. "Freedom Of Speech On Satellite Radio." Forbes. Forbes Magazine, 06 Oct. 2004. Web. 16 Oct. 2014.