BBC reveals radio social networking website

The BBC has launched a social networking website for radio listeners, letting audiences to its 10 national radio stations share recommended output with their friends.

The service, called Radio Pop, allows listeners to tune in to the BBC's online radio streams, tag, or "pop", their favourite programmes and share their preferences with others in their network.

The site automatically tracks online listening to the stations while a user is logged in, presenting them with graphs, charts and lists showing their most listened-to and most recommended stations and shows.

In a post this afternoon on the BBC's Radio Labs blog, the head of research and development at BBC Audio and Music Interactive, Tristan Ferne, said the site was still in its infancy.

Ferne said: "Radio Pop is an experimental prototype -- we're doing this to learn things about radio and social software.

"We don't yet know how long it will remain live and we make no guarantees as to its reliability or performance but we will do our best to make it better over time."

The launch follows a year-long trial involving 90 BBC staff. The data gathered following its public launch will allow the broadcaster to send targeted promotions to listeners and better analyse their radio listening habits.

The BBC -- like the commercial radio sector -- is currently reliant on quarterly radio listening figures from industry measurement body Rajar.

If Radio Pop went mainstream, it would give the BBC instant access to data detailing which programmes are popular and how listeners use word-of-mouth to recommend radio content to others.

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