Mashable post contemplates impact of news aggregation apps on NPR

By Ben Mook

In a post Tuesday on Mashable.com titled “Will Public Radio Survive Music Streaming Apps?,” Scott Pham, digital content editor for NPR member station KBIA, ponders how news aggregation apps such as Swell will affect public radio stations:

Promising mobile apps like Swell and AGOGO launched this summer, representing a new challenge to legacy media companies like National Public Radio. These apps create new listening experiences for consumers of talk and news because they tie together segments of audio into customizable and curated streams.

AGOGO combines podcasts with segments from NPR, the BBC, audio from videos and text-to-speech versions of newspaper articles. And Swell has been dubbed the “Pandora for news.”

I’m a producer at an NPR member station, and these are frightening words in my world. Pandora dealt a massive wound to our cousins in music radio. The advertising dollars Pandora sucked up will likely never return to the table for terrestrial radio. That’s just the new reality.

Within four hours of going live, the post had been shared on various social media platforms more than 700 times.

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