We live in an age where science fiction is quickly becoming science fact. Dick Tracy's 2-way wrist TVs are Apple Watches. Automated smart homes are plentiful. Cars are now able to drive themselves. And in those cars, riders no longer need to depend on a deejay to choose their music for them; these listeners build their own radio stations, on the spot, out of any music and conversation they want to hear, all at the touch of a button that is fully connected to Wi-Fi, the internet, and unlimited cell data plans.This research will examine digital radio's impact upon traditional radio in the current media environment. It will first take a look at the history of radio, specifically examining radio's reaction and adaptation when a new form of competitive media moved into the mass communication environment, and how radio fared in the face of that competition. The research will then look at uses and gratifications for both traditional and digital radio, which will be analyzed using media niche theory. From this, we will ascertain the niche breadth of each medium, as well as how much overlap exists between the two, and finally, which medium achieves niche superiority over the other in terms of gratifications observed.



College and Department

Fine Arts and Communications; Communications



Date Submitted


Document Type





radio, streaming, on-line radio, podcasting, niche theory, uses and gratifications

Included in

Communication Commons