Los Angeles station Indie 103.1 will cease broadcasting over the air on Thursday, according to on-air announcements, but will continue to broadcast via the Web. The station launched five years ago, and broadcast the world premiere of four tracks from Prince's new album last month.
The station alluded to "changes in the way audiences are measured" as a reason for their departure from the airwaves. If this is in fact the case, the station's on-air death can be at least partially attributed to new radio audience measurement system PPM. Whereas Arbitron previously had audience members keep diaries to track their listening habits, the company now has them wear monitors.
The system has led to a number of other stations tweaking their programming, though sources say this is the first case they know where a station has gone off the air altogether.
Indie 103.1 no doubt also faced stiff competition from long-running rock station KROQ and indie friendly non-comm station KCRW.
In a statement, parent company Entravision said it will continue to stay focused on its Spanish-language radio, television and digital media businesses. At press time it could not be confirmed which Spanish format 103.1 would flip to, though Entravision recently rolled out a new regional Mexican format, called "El Gato," and expanded its regional Mexican Jack-type format, called Jose.