The start of the Disrupt-ion

Comment by Jen Seyderhelm

As a girl more likely to listen to Smooth Vintage, I tuned into Disrupt Radio’s launch today out of curiosity and with no real expectations.

I was pleasantly surprised.

The station has its teething problems. A colleague couldn’t find or hear anything on the app. I couldn’t find the DAB+ station and kept being pointed to a similarly named podcast, but I could listen via the website stream.

The imaging felt fresh. There certainly are a few car advertisers already and the quality and volume of the audio was the right balance for me. Yes, there were drop outs, and ins, but for a first day everything mostly sounded slick.

The best parts I heard today were the people; presenters, guests and welcome back George Donikian!

I imagined that most parts would be prerecorded and packaged, but Libbi Gorr and Sir Bob Geldof must have been live on breakfast. Across the day there were several moments I heard which clearly hadn’t been edited, or cleaned up, and I mean that in the best possible way.

Libbi was talking to Bob about Former Leader of the Labor Party Simon Crean, who died unexpectedly yesterday. Libbi had run into him last week, at the hairdresser. She went to ask Geldof whether he thought about dying and you could feel her pivot in her head over the bluntness of that question. Instead Gorr asked whether such events made him think about mortality. Geldof said he hoped however he went, it was sudden and swift too.

These moments felt like you were sitting in on real, intelligent and interesting conversations, not AI, not a prepackaged podcast but something that has the potential to grow in value and meaning, if they can find a way to get their audience to invest.

It was a smart day to launch with most of the networks on winter break and people likely to twiddle the dial. Social media and publicity have been very quiet from Disrupt today which makes me feel they have more up their sleeves this most important week.

Jen Seyderhelm is a writer and editor for Radioinfo
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