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The Boston Globe Is Getting In The Radio Business

Much of the former on-air talent at WFNX, which was purchased by Clear Channel, will be moving to The Boston Globe’s new radio station. (John Niedermeyer/flickr)

We assume that since you’re on our website , that means you have some degree of interest in Boston radio. And in the world of Boston broadcasting, there’s big news to report.

You may remember last month when the owners of the Boston Phoenix announced the impending demise of their companion radio station — alternative rock stalwart WFNX. The signal was sold to Clear Channel and most of the staff was laid off. It was a sad day, especially for us in the radio business.

Then on Monday, there were unexpected sings of life. The hugely popular Boston Globe web portal Boston.com announced they had hired some of the WFNX castoffs with the intention of starting up a new web-only alternative rock radio station. A local Internet radio station with actual resources behind it — a pretty much unheard of undertaken.

Not to be outdone, the Phoenix made their own announcement this morning: they plan to keep the WFNX brand going online even after the radio signal goes silent.

Two local alternative-rock Internet-only professional radio stations in one city? That’s definitely unheard of.

Guests:

  • Jeff Moriarty, Vice President of Digital Products for the Boston Globe and Boston.com
  • Jack Casey, General Manager of Emerson College’s student run WERS 88.9 FM
  • Justin Ellis, assistant editor, Nieman Journalism Lab

Other stories from this show:

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  • J__o__h__n

    I barely go to Boston.com since the content left.  The Globe’s site isn’t worth paying for (except for Joan Vennochi).  Boston.com just has crap like photo essays of the best pizza. 

  • Rex

    I listen to NPR exclusively and have no intention of listening to commercial radio. 

    • borf

      No one gives a shit, Rex.

      • Rex

        This sounds like something my friends would say. Thank you.

  • Guy

    If I could get internet radio in my car I’d be happy about this.

    • Christopher Padgett

      Smartphone apps and a car radio with an “Aux In” plug will do the trick for now, guy, but we’re not far from full integration into car stereos.

  • Guy

    I do think a lot of FNX’s strength was in it’s presence at and ability to hype live events, which is an asset that’s harder to track than ratings.

  • J__o__h__n

    I used to love WFNX but stopped listening a while ago.  The playlist wasn’t focused enough on new music (only so much Pearl Jam one needs to listen to) and they hired morons for the morning show.

    • Christopher Padgett

      i was one of those morons! glad to see we left a lasting impression, John!

      • Ed

        Hey!  He didn’t which morons he meant.  It might not be us.

        • Ed

          I accidentally a word…  We probably are the morons.

          • J__o__h__n

            If you are special, it was.  I liked Henry.

          • D-tension

            Hey!

  • Kramer

    WNFX had about 10 listeners.  Maybe 5 of them will listen online.

  • http://twitter.com/edwardboches edwardboches

    If Boston.com pulls off meaningful integration, could be good. Globe needs reasons for younger readers and has the audience to boost WFNX listener base.

  • oaysis

    Are we going to have to pay to listen to the boston.com radio station?

  • dashford

    Internet-provided radio is clearly the way things are going.  Its availability isn’t limited by broadcast strength, and Internet availability is increasingly pervasive.  What’s more, its operational costs are a fraction of those for a terrestrial radio station, and its content isn’t regulated by the FCC.  Admittedly I’m biased (I volunteer for a community Internet station), but there is less and less reason for new and existing stations to hold onto the old terrestrial-based radio model.

  • Roccotherockman

    I have been streaming WFNX for the last five years.  The personalities are the reason.  I can stream alternative music from any number of sources but I can only hear Henry, Julie, and XXII here.  I am overjoyed that boston.com is doing this.  I am already pinging the site every day to see when it will start.

    • Cionaudha

      I have to agree with Rocco!  I’ve been missing my regular lineup of DJs, especially Julie.  I sweardagawd, Julie Kramer is the only person who really understands me.

  • suzyf

    Now what I’d REALLY like to hear is more of WBUR’s Radio Boston, not during the day when (theoretically at least) I can’t be listening.  Why not replace some of those incredibly repetitious repeats of “Wait Wait” with some Radio Boston? That would make sense!

    • J__o__h__n

      Sunday at 11:00 would be a good time. 

  • Greentreesgreen

    i think there was a time when fnx started to get into weird- sexy crap- where girls would show up at the station and on the air take off their clothes- sort of like howard stern (late nineties early 2000)  was that fnx or bcn? i can’t remember- except that i stopped listening around that time-and figured the stations demise would be forthcoming-

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