Web feature broadens KOPN’s reach

Friday, February 2, 2007 | 12:00 a.m. CST; updated 1:31 p.m. CDT, Tuesday, July 22, 2008

KOPN/89.5 FM is expanding its reach with a new feature on its Web site.

The community-sponsored station will soon begin streaming its programming live on the Internet at The live Web stream is expected to run on a continuous basis starting this weekend or early next week.

“The stream is working wonderfully. Quality is good,” said Susan Schneider, a KOPN contributor from Belleville, Ill., who is testing KOPN’s new feature.

Streaming on the Web “allows us to deliver our service to a larger audience, like the listener whose house is behind a hill or works in the basement where there is no signal,” said Julie Baka, director of development for KOPN. “We want to encourage democratization across our nation, like the sharing and discussing of ideas. People need independent media, and we have the ability to deliver.”

KOPN General Manager David Owens said the community-sponsored station will be going off the air periodically in the next two months for as little as an hour to as long as two days to upgrade its transmitter.

“Our main objective is to get the stream up and running for our listeners to have during these blackout days,” Owens said.

No ongoing funding strategy has been developed for the Web streaming costs, which are almost $5,000 a year. Owens said the station hopes the Internet signal will attract new listeners and donations.

“No matter what, we have to preserve our noncommercial status,” Owens said. “It’s very important to us.”

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