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Q: internet-based French radio ( Answered 5 out of 5 stars,   3 Comments )
Subject: internet-based French radio
Category: Reference, Education and News
Asked by: gnossie-ga
List Price: $12.00
Posted: 27 Aug 2005 02:24 PDT
Expires: 26 Sep 2005 02:24 PDT
Question ID: 561063
I am a student of French.  I want to improve my listening
comprehension in the language by by listening to French using the
"radio," meaning the internet.

I don't want music, you see.  I want news, or talk radio.  It can be
liberal, conservative, world-news based, whatever.  It just has to be
spoken stuff.

What I basically want is my computer to stream a bunch of French talk
at me (preferably about current events), while I try to decipher and
half-pay attention to it while I'm doing something else.

I know for example that the BBC has a BBC Afrique website where you
can get news in French, and this service certainly approaches what I'm
looking for . . .

. . . though with this website in particular there are several
problems:  the news is all centered around French Africa (which tends
to get a little boring), and plus the broadcasts repeat themselves
about every thirty minutes.

No, I'm looking for something that will automatically renew and
update, that'll stream, and that'll basically change its content 24
hours a day.

I am aware of some sites and services here and there that offer
services along these lines, but my demand is great:  I am looking for
hundreds of hours of just talk talk talk that I will only listen to

The thing is:  I don't really want to pay money for this, and I don't
want to have to go through the trouble of downloading mp3's.  (Though
I will pay money if somebody has a particularly excellent service to

There's gotta be something out there, some sort of audio site
connected with "Le Monde" or "Le Soir" or something.

Can anybody help me with suggestions?

Two notes:

1.  I prefer the French of Paris over Belgian, North African, etc.

2.  I am not looking for lessons on French or "French as a Second
Language"-type broadcasts.  They must be natural, real French,
something that real, literate French people might listen to.  My
French is good enough by this point that I don't require anything
specially watered-down for me.
Subject: Re: internet-based French radio
Answered By: secret901-ga on 27 Aug 2005 03:45 PDT
Rated:5 out of 5 stars
Hi gnossie-ga,
After looking around at the Radio France website
(, I think I found what you're looking for. 
Radio France is the French national broadcaster, so I trust that they
will use Parisian French.  They do stream all of their programming
online.  Just follow the following links and click on the "Écouter"
option for live web streams.

France Inter: the main station, for the general public

France Info: Current events and interviews

France Bleu: local stations (choose each locality)

France Culture: cultural station

Le Mouv': for young people
(Click on the play button that looks like a triangle on the left below
the box that says "Le player se charge")

FIP: musical station with road and cultural info interspersed.  At :50
of every hour there is a short news bulletin.

France Musiques: music station

In addition, you can listen to Radio France International, the French
international radio broadcaster.  Just click RFI Monde in the écouter
menu on the left of their homepage. They seem to be having some
temporary problems when I tried them though.

I trust that these pages will be enough to get you started.  If you
have trouble listening to any of these stations, please let me know
before rating this answer.

Have fun immersing yourself in French,

gnossie-ga rated this answer:5 out of 5 stars
Wow.  You sure did a lot of typing for all that.  I am busy exploring
a lot of the links you supplied, but in the meantime I thought I would
at least get the rating out of the way.

Subject: Re: internet-based French radio
From: secret901-ga on 27 Aug 2005 02:57 PDT
Try Radio France Internationale (

Subject: Re: internet-based French radio
From: secret901-ga on 27 Aug 2005 03:05 PDT
Also try the national broadcaster, Radio France
(  They must have an online stream
Subject: Re: internet-based French radio
From: le_gritche-ga on 28 Aug 2005 17:32 PDT
Being french, I almost never use web streams as it is easier to just
use a regular radio, but anyway I can comment a bit about the radio
channels secret901 provided.
"France Info" is a news radio, it gets really boring after 1 hour of
listenning per day, as they keep repeating news flash between little
chronicles(?). News flash amount for about a third of the talks.
Another factor is that they broadcast only music from another state
owned radio during the night (1 to 5 AM Paris time) so avoid the
corresponding time in your time zone.
I just don't listen the other channels enough to comment about them,
except maybe that "France Inter" as a dull reputation among young
people, as do "France Culture" but that one is really good when then
pick up a cultural theme that fits your tastes.

I will add the radio I listen the most, it's called BFM (Business FM)
and it's privately owned by the media group RMC (Radio Monte-Carlo).
As the name says, it's mainly about business, economy, politics and so on.
They broadcast debate, interviews of people, news flash, stock news flash.
If you can accomodate the short news flash rehearsed every 15 minutes,
you can listen this radio all day long, as they broadcast unique
programs about 16 hours a day. They fill the night with repeat
programs from the day and from week-end (when the programs are more
diverse : technologies, wineology(?)...)
They provide really quality programs, they have some editorial bias
towards liberal economy (liberal in the French meaning, not the
american one) and they have won a really selective competition to own
one of the future 16 HD TV channels.

Sadly, they use a low quality stream (16 kbps) as you have to pay for
the broadband one (need a mobile phone with taxed text messages to
My favourite program is friday morning 10h-12h (Paris time), it a
debate headed by Philippe Manière (editorialist in an economy news

You speak about Le Monde and Le Soir, they are newspaper and as such
favor the written news over everything, don't expect a radio from them

Little off-topic: Le Monde is probably the best you can find online,
try if you want more of a left-wing bias (French
left-wing, you would call that communism in the USA hehe) or for a right wing bias.

If you want TV online, you can use as they broadcast
the 8h, 13h and 20h news online (and probably more) here : (jt=journal télévisé)
There's also Euronews, at it's a public owned channel
subsidized by Europe, as they broadcast their programs dubbed in
French but also English, German, Spanish, Italian, Portuges and
They stream some of their programs online too.

For the sake of pluralism I have to add TF1 at
it's privately owned, I hate them, thay are bloated with advertisement
(online and on air) and provide some dumb and populists programs.

Sorry I couldn't add more online talk radios, I listen only to BFM and France Info.

Bon courage.

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