Good Riddance to BusRadio

It is with no small sense of satisfaction that I note the passage of BusRadio, a hare-brained idea that, for about the last three years, force-fed advertising into school buses under the guise of “safety” and then crowed to its potential sponsors about the size of its “captive audience.” Details are sketchy, but late last month the company suddenly called it quits, citing adverse market forces.
BusRadio, above and beyond the ethical issues it raised, always seemed to me to be a little bit sketchy. And after several school districts – followed most recently by the FCC – took a closer look at the modus operandi of the business, it would seem investors dried up. And for good reason. Continue reading “Good Riddance to BusRadio”

The Wheels on BusRadio Go Round, Fall Off?

A recent Counterpunch article on BusRadio, the secretive yet insidious company which desires to hard-wire school buses into a closed-circuit radio network chock full of targeted advertising, highlights the company’s struggling fortunes: recently the school board in Jefferson County, Kentucky rejected an overture from BusRadio after mass protest from parents, students, and citizens. Continue reading “The Wheels on BusRadio Go Round, Fall Off?”

BusRadio Gets Deceptive

The ethically-deficient crew behind BusRadio, looking to take the captive marketing of kids in school “to the next level,” have now put the most damaging of its marketing materials behind a “members-only” firewall. This after a slew of unfriendly press exploring its business model, which is to pipe advertisements for sponsors into school buses. Though BusRadio’s hyped its launch in a few Massachusetts school districts this fall, one has already backed out following parental backlash.
Queries to now display a splash page, and access to requires a username and password combination. It is extremely difficult to obtain a combination via the sign-up form (more than 85% of all requests are rejected). This content is apparently restricted to “sponsors” (read: ad clients). However, is now chock full of information that heralds BusRadio’s efficacy at keeping kids quiet and in their seats. Continue reading “BusRadio Gets Deceptive”

Drive-Time for Schoolkids

As if Channel One, which force-feeds kids adverts masquerading as infotainment over a closed-circuit TV system hard-wired into schools, wasn’t bad enough. BusRadio hits the children up with ad-patter on their way to and from school. And since the kids most likely to be found on a school bus skew younger than Channel One’s target demographic, one might say BusRadio softens students up for later Channel One exposure (the companies are not linked in any way that I can tell, except for the exploitation fetish, born from BusRadio founders’ earlier success in this regard). Continue reading “Drive-Time for Schoolkids”