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Lecture 7

SCOM 2050 Lecture Notes - Lecture 7: Reginald Fessenden, Phonograph Cylinder, Lee De Forest

Speech Communication
Course Code
SCOM 2050
Evan Layne Johnson

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Chapter 7
Sounds and Radio
The history of Recorded sound
Hand-Cranked device
Recorded on a hollow wax cylinder
Edison May have “stole” ideas from a French inventor (de Martinsville)
The Gramophone and Mass Production
1887: Emile Berliner (German immigrant) -> Recording into a mass medium
He invented the gramophone
It played flat vinyl discs, “records”, which could be mass-produced
Soon many US companies were making and selling record players
By 1919: 2 million gramophones and 107 million recording sold in the US
The History of Radio Technology
Recorded sound coincided with advances in radio technology
Thru the 1800s scientists studied radio
1897: Nikola Tesla filed 1st patents for radio
Guglielmo Marconi filed patents 3 years later and was turned down
But Tesla ran was a poor businessman
Marconi founded a successful radio company in Britain
Today, Marconi is known as the “father of radio”, despite Tesla’s patents being 1st
2 North American inventors -> began transmitting voice over radio
1903: (Canadian) Reginald Fessenden created tech allowing voices to be transmitted
and received
Late 1903: (American) Lee DeForest mode voice and music transmissions much
clearer with amplification (visionary ~BROADCAST)
1920s : USA’s 1st commercial radio broadcast
By 2922, 1 million American homes had radios
Radio as Media Innovator
Radio influenced subsequent media
1st electronic mass medium
1st national broadcast medium
Pioneered advertising in an electronic medium
1st radio commercial in 1922
Created 1st broadcast networks
Centralized corporations for production, distribution, and decision- making
Linked affiliates -> easily delivering audiences to advertisers
Many markets
With radio broadcasts, government regulation was justified
Trustee Principle (2 arguments)
Spectrum scarcity: as a limited public good, the government is justified in
regulating the broadcast spectrum
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