Radionomy.com on Tuesday launched its online radio platform in the US, putting its spin on a market dominated by the likes of Pandora and Spotify.
Unlike online radio services that let listeners create playlists based on tastes in music, Radionomy invites people to become deejays or talk-show hosts of their own programs streamed online for anyone to hear.
"You just need an Internet connection and you can start your own station," Radionomy vice president of business development Thierry Ascarez told AFP. "It is open to everyone."
Radionomy provides simple tools for people to create radio programs and provides a library of music.
The company tends to royalties through a deal with Sound Exchange and asks that for four minutes out of every hour on the air it gets to run ads, the revenue from which is shared with program creators.
"It's totally free and easy to use," Ascarez said. "We give tools to producers to create programming from scratch; you can have music, weather, jingles, talk, news... whatever."
Radionomy launched in France in 2008 and added offices in Belgium, Germany and Spain. The company opened a San Francisco office as part of its drive into the US.
About 50 new stations are created daily at Radionomy.com, with nearly 6,000 of them streaming programs daily.
"Consumers as well as professional creators of content have a growing interest in curation, and the services and tools that enable it," said Gartner Research analyst Michael McGuire.
A Radio Mozart station out of France is among the most popular Radionomy programs, according to Ascarez.
"There is always someone behind the programming; there are no algorithms determining what is played," Ascarez said. "The Radio Mozart producer was passionate about classical music and this was his dream."
Radionomy watches out for offensive themes or content at stations.
Radionomy had already attracted an audience in the United States and thought the time right to cultivate programs and advertisers in the market with improved features and online tools.
"More than 6,000 stations and 92 million listening sessions a month are proof positive of just how consumers respond to the creative freedom and flexibility of Radionomy," said company founder and chief executive Alexandre Saboundjian.
"Now, US consumers get to share, create and discover great new online stations too."
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