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        Mike Kobes

Research Methods Final Paper

      Dr. Jimmy Roux
Mike Kobes
Research Methods


       Radio is Americas past time for entertainment whether it is listening to

music or pure talk radio. People are saying that radio isn’t being listened to anymore,

and will not be around during the future. It is being said by listeners that watching a

live television broadcast is easier to watch rather than listening for something with

the ear.


       I am trying to figure out if college students still listen to the radio whether its

on their way to school, work or at home on the Internet. I want to know if males or

females, and the age group they would fall in prefer radio entertainment to another

type of media.


       I handed out surveys to random communication classes and asked various

questions about listening to the radio. I than ran a few statistical tests to see if there

was any significance for my findings.
Mike Kobes
Jimmy Roux
Literature Review

                       Today’s Media and Its Effects on Radio

       In today’s society radio still remains at the top of the charts for many music

and talk listeners. The trouble is that as our society grows and moves on technology

starts getting in the way of radios success. With today’s introduction of satellite

radio listeners are given more options for information and entertainment. Those

who listen to satellite radio can listen to their stations practically anywhere and

those who listen to FM and AM stations have a few locations to where they can

listen to their favorite station. People still go to their old television to get their

breaking news or information. The battle between radio and television will last till

extinction. Today’s radio still tops television and Internet broadcast stations and

channels. As technology advances there will be more competition for good old radio.

iPods, mp3 devices and Pandora give others different options that are easier to

listen to their favorite music genre or podcast. With all these things giving radio a

difficult and frustrating battle, radio still remains at the top of the charts for

listener’s entertainment.

       “Respondents seemed to watch television more on weekends than on
       weekdays, but more respondents listened to the radio on weekdays than on
       weekends. In terms of channel switching, more than half of the respondents
       listened to one or two radio channels, compared to only 12% of the
       respondents who constantly watched the same number of television
       channels. Respondents had a tendency to switch TV channels more
       frequently than radio channels due to the ease of using a TV remote
       control.”(Lu Hsu, 2007).
       This study showed that radio compared to television is an extremely tight

battle. Radio dominates the weekdays where television dominates the weekends. In

the case of changing television channels and radio channels, the television wins

because of the remote control. This shows how lazy our society has become as

technology advances. Our society is turning into one that wants to try to be stress

free all of the time.

       Radio in today’s society is listened to more in the morning and early

afternoon where a traveler has a commute home. Television is viewed during

primetime hours where someone visually is giving a viewer the news and


       “For intensive TV watchers in the third cluster, the scores were relatively
       higher than the corresponding scores in other clusters, indicating stronger
       positive attitudes toward the information provided in TV advertising.
       Respondents in the second cluster spent relatively more time listening to
       radio. The negative scores revealed that respondents in the second cluster
       had a more positive attitude toward radio advertising.” (Pg. 3, Lu Hsu, 2007).

       Lu Hsu (2007) found that television information and entertainment was

being given to the younger generations who enjoy all technology and are in front of

a television rather than a radio besides in the car. Information and entertainment

being provided through a radio source was being provided to consumers of the

older male generation. These individuals were brought up with radio as the only

source for entertainment and information. Radio and television are both perceived

differently, but both provide a unique way to send information and entertainment to

listeners and viewers.
       Seeger (2009) found that during times of crisis, the radio is in the public’s

interest. The radio gives the listener the information in the quickest most effective

way. For example, September 11th, the news of such a tragic event was first reported

to our country through the radio. All a radio reporter had to do was press an on-air

button and the quick breaking news is delivered. Television stations needed visual

representation to follow the breaking story. Radio is efficient and timely where

television may be efficient; it lacks the ability to get the news out to the public

immediately. As the future rolls on there are more and more quicker ways to get in

contact with the world.

       “These technologies range from the most common place and affordable, such
       as television and radio, to newer technologies, such as mobile telephones.
       Portable digital phones are now capable of searching the Internet, displaying
       cable television news channels, sending and receiving text messages, and
       standard voice communication. Not surprising, with this array of options
       people tend to scatter among news outlets during times of crisis.” (Pg. 22,
       The PEW Research Center, 2000).

       Even though technology is evolving and becoming more powerful, radio and

television remain very important to our society in times of crisis. When people are

away from their homes, they will turn to the radio during the rest of the day they are

away from a television.

       Seeger (2009) did a study that proves terrestrial radio plays a critical role in

crisis response. Radio has a huge advantage as a strong source of media with the

flexibility necessary to quickly accommodate the uncertainty and emergent needs

created by a crisis.

       Radio was considered as the Golden Age of news and entertainment. It was at

one point in time where radio was the king of all kings. Radio was the answer to our
societies prayers and worries. People may not think that this is true today, but radio,

that gives our society quick and efficient news and entertainment, will never die.

       “One of the earliest radio compilation recordings began with an announcer
       booming out that phrase. He wasn't talking about Lady Gaga radio. Or Justin
       Bieber radio. Or even Rush Limbaugh radio. He was talking about the Golden
       Age of radio, the first communications medium that brought entertainment
       and information--drama, comedy, music, news, and plenty more--right off the
       stages, out of the newsrooms, and into the comfort and intimacy of your own
       living room. It's a concept so far removed from radio as we know it today
       that it might as well have existed in a different universe.” (Pg. 10, Johnson,

       Hampp (2010) came to the conclusion that radio’s audience is still growing

even today. The percentage of listeners of radio was a huge 88% of adults. That

study didn’t include the use of iPods or iPhones. But those who use those devices

hook them up to a car stereo only made up 27% of the country’s population. That

being said, even though we as a society think radio is being taken over by

technology increases, we are not.

       Internet radio is becoming very popular with today’s day in age. This gives

listeners alternatives to how they receive the news from a radio source.

       “The growth is thanks in part to developments like Apple's acquisition of
       Lala; News Corp.'s purchase of and Imeem; and the continued
       growth of leading radio site Pandora, as well as Clear Channel's iHeartRadio
       and CBS Radio's Last.FM. Yahoo Music and News Corp.'s MySpace Music are
       also considered big online radio players, while satellite company Sirius XM
       has made an increased investment in online offerings to paying subscribers.
       Pandora is still the largest player in the space, recently surpassing the 60
       million registered user mark in July due to the continued success of its
       mobile app as well as its linear ad-supported site.”(Pg. 11, Hampp, 2010).

       This just shows that when people think of radio they think of listening to

stations in an automobile or a household radio device. They tend to forget in studies
that radio has expanded to the Internet, giving listeners the same quick information,

but just at a different location.

       “Radio is a different kind of experience, and I’m not saying it’s not changing
       or becoming increasingly fragmented. It is but not in such a way that
       anyone’s beat it. The reality is that we’ve got a megaphone that connects with
       and talks with people in a very intimate way,” says Granger. “And so even if
       the shape of the megaphone changes, the relationship between an influential
       figure and their loyal audience is never going to end.” (Pg. 4, Cauley, 2010).

       This quote from the article suggests that radio is one of a kind with our

society. It just can’t be beat. Television puts up a good fight for competition, but it

has expanded so much that it has taken over many different locations such as the

World Wide Web. Listeners have a wide selection of choices on where he or she

wants to hear the radio. They don’t have to be glued to a television screen, they have

options, and our society today as studied loves having options that can

accommodate to the viewer or listener.

       Localism is defined as a particular specific place for a certain individual.

There are different radio stations in different areas that people listen to. Yes it is all

the same general news, but it is just being delivered slightly different from station to


       “While most respondents named group-owned stations as those to which
       they listened most frequently, there was a relationship between their
       perceiving radio personalities as local and their preference for the station.”
       (Pg. 12, Hubbard, 2010).

       People will have a favorite, that’s just how our society and culture has

evolved. Listeners pick a station and stick with it. That will be the station they will

always rely on to get breaking information, news and entertainment. Radio
personalities are something that television will never have. Having the ability to

hear or recognize a voice is important to a listener. It’s a person who they trust for

his or her entertainment.

       “It appears that what people find appealing about localism is its reliability
       (Harmon, 1997), and voice-tracking done well is relatable in much the same
       way as real local programming.”(Pg. 14, Hubbard, 2010).

       Today ordinary people can now create programs for audio pieces without

having a license or tower. You can’t just do that with television. Radio is being

helped by the podcast industry because they are giving radio station podcasts for

listeners to subscribe to.

       “Most podcasters work for free. Maybe a few of them will come up with a way
       to make a living doing it. Maybe not. Regardless, a trend is afoot that could
       transform the $21 billion radio industry.” (Pg. 4, Green, 2005).

       This opens many doors for radio listeners. Radio started to fade away once

television came into our lives, but the competition is still there with the creation of

podcasts that can be downloaded to iPods and iPhones. That is just one more way to

listen to a radio station. Television can’t top that.
Mike Kobes
Research Methods

        One hundred anonymous surveys asking questions about if students still listen to

the radio will be distributed to a junior-level public relations class at a private liberal arts

college in Virginia. The junior-level public relations class was chosen because it is a

communications course with a convenient sample of students having a variety of majors

and classifications. There will be eleven, 15 point liker t-type questions ranging from “1”

meaning “always”: and “5” meaning “rarely”. A sample question is “I listen to the radio

on my way to school”. Data from the surveys will be averaged and separated according

to independent variable of sex and classification. Unusable surveys will include those

surveys that are incomplete and/or if the researcher determines that the participants

did not take the survey seriously.
Mike Kobes
Research Conclusions/Results

       After running a few tests, I have come to a few conclusions of why college

students don’t listen to the radio as much as they used to growing up. Television

today is grabbing viewer’s attentions as well as the Internet in a quicker more

efficient way then ever before. I have come to the biggest conclusion, which is that in

today’s society females listen to the radio more than men. This came as a shock

because it seemed that things would be a little more equal, but there was such a

great significance differentiating the two.

       The results with the greatest significance were that college students listen to

the radio on the way to school and on the Internet more than any other medium.

The gender that had the greatest mean was the females. Females seem to be the

ones only listening to public or satellite radio.

       The males were a little different in the results. Males would prefer to listen to

their iPods and get their entertainment from television shows and news broadcasts.

A question that was asked was do you listen to the radio on your way to work or

school. Students responding saying either very little, rarely, or I just plug my mp3

adapter into my cars interface.
Mike Kobes


Cauley, Patrick, Initials. (2010). Radio revolution. Response, 19(3), 36-40.

Green, Heather, Initials. (2005). The new radio revolution. BusinessWeek, 4(3924), 32-


Hampp, Andrew, Initials. (2010). Who listens to radio. Advertising Age, 81(34), 50.

Hubbard, Glenn, Initials. (2010). Radio localism to the test. Journalism of Broadcasting,

       54(3), 407-424.

Johnson, Donald, Initials. (2010). Remembering radio. Collecting Magazine, 19115(9),


Lu Hsu, (2007). Who is listening to radio? Social Behavior and Personality, 35(2), 157.

Seeger, Matthew, Initials. (2009). Radio and its unique role. Journal of Radio, 16(2),


RQ: How Has Today’s Media Affected Radio?

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