[icecast] bit/bytes

oddsock oddsock at oddsock.org
Mon Mar 1 19:25:00 UTC 2004

At 03:55 PM 2/29/2004, you wrote:
>Hi Oddsock,
>Like Clement, I am sure Nullsoft is still "offering" AOL's bandwidth since I
>think Nullsoft is not part of AOL anymore. About the new broadcasting
>methods, is the multicast technology already available? I have heard only
>few providers are equipped with multicast enabled routers.

People have been chasing multicast for many years now, and honestly it's no 
closer to reality than it was 4 or 5 years ago (really, the same points 
were made back then - multicast is a great solution, but limited to certain 
ISPs and not widespread - people have been saying that for 4 or 5 years).. 
So if you ask me, multicast will never happen, so you probably can't count 
on it.

>What about p2p
>streaming, is it really reliable? When I see Peercast's statistics, only few
>stations have more than 10 listeners currently connected... Do you think p2p
>streaming could support an "unlimited" number of listeners or is it only a
>utopia? Anyway, I am not sure many listeners would be attracted by p2p
>streaming until a reliable Applet is available. I mean, I know only few
>users that are ready to install additional software to listen to online

the "listener-bandwidth-sharing" aspects of p2p broadcasting has had about 
2 years now to mature.  I've talked with people at Abacast, peercast, etc 
and they've all said the same thing... "We've got it licked, we have a 
viable solution"...however, it's been 2 years now since it all started 
surfacing, and I don't really think we are much closer than we were to a 
viable solution now then we were back then.  This is not saying that it 
won't EVER happen, but my feelings is that if it hasn't happened (taken 
off) by now, there is a good chance it never will.

o where does that leave broadcasters ? Well, it's fairly simple...it 
leaves them in the same place that terrestrial broadcasters are...you gotta 
make money to offset your operational costs.  Terrestrial broadcasters do 
it by buying up large numbers of stations and selling Ad time to large 
numbers of listeners.  They have other methods as well, but I think that 
one is pretty much the largest.

Internet broadcasters can recoup some of their costs by offering services 
unique to internet broadcasting.  Digitally Imported is a good case of a 
major broadcaster re-couping costs by offering a "premium service" which 
listeners pay for.  And Digitally Imported also uses the technique of 
combining stations into a single offering (similar to the way Terrestrial 
stations buy up other stations).

Additionally, smaller broadcasters (with not as much momentum as DI for 
instance) can also deal with costs by <plug> using open-source  software 
such as icecast, coupled with patent/royalty-free codecs like vorbis which 
provide great sounding streams at half the bandwidth requirements of 


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