The London Review of Breakfasts

"Hope is a good breakfast, but it is a bad supper." (Francis Bacon)

Wednesday, June 04, 2014

Global Breakfast Radio

Global Breakfast Radio is a month old today. You may have spotted it when I discreetly added a link to the sidebar, but if for some reason that passed you by, it's here.

What the hell am I talking about? Global Breakfast Radio is an internet radio station made out of other radio stations, always broadcasting from wherever it's breakfast-time right now. It's a collaboration between me and the sound artist Daniel Jones, and maybe isn't really that much about breakfast at all.

Press play on the website and you'll constantly follow the sunrise, dropping in on one radio station after another for ten minutes at a time before randomly moving on to the next. You might hear college radio from Canterbury, news discussion from Lagos, rock & roll radio from Anchorage, crackly Spanish music from Montevideo, and so on, all the way around the planet.

Since Global Breakfast Radio launched we've been surprised by how many places people are listening from. It's done really well in the UK and US but is also pretty big in Japan and Russia. Listeners from 135 countries have tuned in, including in the US Virgin Islands, Myanmar, Togo, and Zimbabwe. Hopefully you’ll enjoy the sunrise images in the background, and the local weather data pulled from networked weather stations across the globe. For the former we had to filter over 10,000 creative commons-licensed sunrise images sourced from Flickr. It was interesting and gruelling: some people will tag anything with the word ‘sunrise’.

For more in-depth writing about the project, I recommend this brilliant piece at the Guardian TV & Radio blog, and these interviews at Wired UK and The Line of Best Fit.

And if you like your background material meta then there's some breakfast radio on the subject of breakfast radio that went out a couple of weeks ago on BBC Radio 4’s Sunday morning show, Broadcasting House.

Seb Emina
4 June 2014


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