WSJ’s Walt Mossberg on Internet and Radio

One of the highlights of this week’s NAB 2006 Las Vegas convention was the keynote speaker at Tuesday’s Radio Luncheon, the Wall Street Journal’s technology columnist, Walt Mossberg. Some of his comments, as reported by Kurt Hanson:

“Internet” won’t be an “activity” in a few years. Currently, we talk about ‘surfing the Web’ or ‘being on the Internet’ or ‘I’m going online tonight’ as a discreet activity we perform on a PC, but in ten years, those phrases will sound absurd. When you watch TV, you may be on the Internet; when you listen to radio, you may be on the Internet. The Internet will not be an activity you do on a PC – it will be like the electrical grid. It will be all around you! I predict that talking about the Internet will fade, as we talk instead about devices, about software, and about services and content.

On the effect of iPods on radio:

“We passed a milestone: There are now 50 million iPods out there. My music tastes don’t fit into the little boxes that Clear Channel in my market has decided I need to fit into. Your job is not just to string together a bunch of songs in a row, but to put on exciting new programming to attract new listeners and beat the iPod.”

I wonder what Walt would say to the upcoming meeting of StateNets, the trade group that represents state networks (like the ones Learfield owns). A co-worker in the office next to mine helps organize the event. I’ll ask if they have a keynote speaker. Props to the NAB guys for inviting Mossberg.