Soundtap: Building a Network for College & Community Radio
Soundtap: Building a Network for College & Community Radio
Long live independent media! Social web/mobile platform that unites world-wide non-commercial college & community radio.
Long live independent media! Social web/mobile platform that unites world-wide non-commercial college & community radio. Read more
What’s the Problem?
Radio that is free of commercial interest is sadly undervalued, and underheard. It’s human powered, spontaneous, live, creative, and not robotic, algorithmic, or corporate. With that, the schedules are eclectic and it can be challenging to find the right show for the moment. Amazing shows across the country are being presented in many genres, all the time, on hundreds of community/college radio stations hosted by volunteer DJs passionate about the content they curate and share. Listeners need a guide to enjoy non-commercial stations and DJs far and wide, both at home and on the go, with real time show schedules and playlists, show descriptions, and listener recommendations.
As this happens, the world of independent radio will take off to unprecedented heights with on the fly access to a vast variety of incredible shows and content that are currently fragmented into different apps and distribution methods.
- “College radio stations, which have long given a first break to little-known musicians and offered a voice for idiosyncratic viewpoints, are at risk of losing their identity to budget-cutters, a grassroots campaign warns.” - USA TODAY
- “In a world where we can log on and find any song we want, it turns out that many people enjoy letting someone else curate a set list. College radio, free of the demands of profit and playability, is a particularly great source for such serendipity.” “Powerful forums for ideas, college radio stations are vital parts of student and community life.” - NEW YORK TIMES
“Our project offers a mass migration away from commercial radio and provides a social platform for collaboration, recognition and distribution of noncommercial radio programming" says Handan Selcuk.
Our Purpose: Continue to build a platform to enable instantaneous access to brilliantly progressive and creative minds of college and community radio stations around the world. The social and interactive platform provides a forum for the gathering, exchange and transmission of ideas through publicly available airways to global listeners with web access and/or with smart mobile phones to participate in the community for empowerment, education and entertainment.
We are building a searchable, curatable, and shareable library of independent radio streams from around the world.
What is Soundtap?
Soundtap is a community of college and independent radio stations, hosts, and listeners who use our app and web service to discover, curate and promote noncommercial radio.
Most simply, Soundtap is the modern “TV Guide” for streaming college and community radio on your computer or smartphone. Soundtap serves up 800+ (and growing daily) non-commercial streams, mostly in the United States and Canada with a growing number of stations around the world. Our crowd-sourced, individual radio show-level indexing and description service help listeners find the show style that they are interested in.
Soundtap’s platform as a service allows listeners to discover a vast variety of high-quality shows, stations, and DJs. Soundtap provides station managers and DJs with powerful social tools for measuring interaction, engagement, and recognition from their listeners regardless of where they are in the world. Soundtap supports people who care about music, freedom of expression, diverse cultures, vitality of public and political affairs, non-mainstream points of view on local, national and global issues, human rights, environmentalism, peace... hence believes in the value of building a social platform to showcase independent media.
Discovering gems on Soundtap
Did you know that college radio played an integral part in the early careers of artists such as R.E.M., Paper Planes, M.I.A., Outkast, Modest Mouse, Arcade Fire, Deerhunter... Artists need a place to be heard, especially when they are just starting out on the street level and seeking exposure. The community radio DJs, free of commercial interest around the world, are committed to helping brand new talents and connect them with listeners and record labels local and beyond.
Yeah, Long live college radio!
Benefit for DJs and Radio Stations:
Reach and communicate with more audience! Participate in the largest social aggregation of college and community radio stations/show around the world. Allow your stream to be discovered and expand your voice on Soundtap mobile. Develop strong followings that are beneficial to radio station fundraisers. Be part of a network that wants to guarantee the stability and potency of college and community radio.
Benefit for Listeners:
Discover new local bands, brand new music! Hear live performances and debuts of independent tracks. Fly under the radar of corporate autocracy and hear the fresh pulse of new artists. At Soundtap, you have an endless searchable source for the worlds best new musicians, well before they reach iTunes or Spotify.
What have we done so far on our own?
We have built the Soundtap website, mobile platforms for both iPhone and Android, and have hosted College Radio Madness for 3 yrs in a row. Listeners around the world have provided ears for hundreds of thousands of hours of non-commercial radio programming through using Soundtap. Check out media coverage about Soundtap Madness.
The Soundtap team is passionate about inspiring, entertaining, and empowering the world’s daily habits of discovering, curating, and sharing free-form radio programming and that is something we have been doing everyday since our birth! We know trust takes time to build, and so does building a genuine community.
We have come this far and with your help we are primed and ready take Soundtap to go further!
Where are we headed?
Soundtap 2.0 includes:
- Comprehensive discovery and recommendation algorithms to find new shows based on your location and interest.
- Archiving of shows for up to one week for on-demand listening of your favorite shows.
- Email and Push Notifications for when shows are about to go on air. - Comments Platform listeners and DJ's, allow current listeners to meet and interact with each other and the program creator.
- Comprehensive DJ Stream Management dashboard for webcasting, scheduling, playlists, and community interaction.
- Analytics for key metrics including: most popular stations, trending shows, and new shows. Comment, like, and share live shows.
- Open API Playlist track-list submissions for real-time song identification metadata.
- Promotion space for events and bands that are featured on local stations.
- A new tagging system and discovery index.
- Donation portal to assist stations with fundraising.
The vision and energy at Soundtap is contagious, and we’re so excited to be part of all that is to come.
Become a backer for our campaign and allow the next generation of our service to come to life to guarantee a future for global college and community radio!
WHO IS OUR TEAM:
Lead Programmer: Adam: Founder at @Apollo Vibes @Soundtap. Machine learning and infrastructure at @Google. BSE in CS at Michigan, MS in CS at Texas. NSF Graduate Research Fellow.
Lead Organizer: Handan: Worked at @Cisco @General Electric • Studied at @Berkeley, @SJSU, Diverse business background with entrepreneurial drive. Internet / Music Enthusiast.
Assistant Programmer: Sujay: Studied at @UPenn, Functional programmer, Reverse Engineer, Data Artist.
Assistant Organizer: Trip: Studied at @Vanderbilt, @Stanford, Former WRVU and KZSU DJ.
If you like college and community radio and want to guarantee a future for exploring and discovering noncommercial radio shows and music streams, please consider getting one of these great prizes for supporting our project. Soundtap is at the center of the college and community radio movement and this is our call to rally together and make our voices heard!
The Soundtap team met in Palo Alto, California in 2010. Three founding friends worked out of a garage in the backyard of a shared living space with the goal to develop and ship a free stream indexing service. It was truly inspiring to spend two years living with project collaborators and creating a stable and beautiful online radio platform and mobile app. Since then, our users have grown exponentially and are demanding new features to make listening to and discovering new music even easier.
We are a close-knit, passionate team focused on supporting local communities of artists and DJs on the world stage. We are fortunate to have created a platform for active community radio to be able to share and grow our independent culture via technology. Your support enables our development team to take a significant leap towards a next-generation music streaming app.
800+ stations served * 10K registered users * Millions of minutes streamed - with all daily growth.
Our project offers a mass migration away from corporate radio and brings the power of the airwaves back to the people. By supporting college radio, we are allowing one of the last vestiges of non-corporate funded media to continue operating.
Music and radio is a common bond between everyone, like sports or the weather, but better! It’s a way that people can feel connected.
This project is unique because we focus on live and streaming content. It’s much more broadcast-based than a Spotify playlist or a Soundcloud mix. We are tagging, aggregating, and allowing on-demand streaming of radio shows. Anytime you tap in you will hear an Actual DJ sharing his or her curated music playlist, live. There's actually another human on the other end, and they are using their own artistic discernment to expose you to new and interesting content that you’re sure to love.
How you can be involved:
- Make a donation. Become a backer of this campaign.
- Share this campaign with your social networks.
- If you are a DJ or a station manager, please promote our campaign to your listeners.
- If you are a blogger that cares about the future of independent radio, give us a shout-out!
Soundtap Angels List Profile: https://angel.co/soundtap
Video Production: http://startmotionmedia.com
Thanks for checking out our project! Your contribution will help guarantee a future for college and community radio.
Risks and challenges
We have several developers already onboard from our previous versions, and with your funding we are confident that we have all the required elements in order to produce Soundtap Version 2.0. We have an excellent organization and record keeping: all rewards will be fulfilled, including our follow through with detailed app and platform development plans for the new features in Soundtap.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (45 days)