WORLD RADIO DAY 2017 (IV): Communication under analysis

Communicating development in an international organization is not an easy task. You have to create the message very carefully in order to avoid future problems. The political border is always close within organizations as UNESCO that depend on the donations from its member states. Also, the internal competition to create the most relevant project demands an extra effort when coordinating the communication strategy.

World Radio Day has a very strong contact network, and it is supported by the radio industry all around the world. Most of those companies are trying to survive from what Evgeny Morozov called “internet-centrism”, a society that feels the web as the ultimate paradise to find solutions for all their problems.

And the power of WRD has been proved. The image above represents perfectly what an organization like UNESCO should be. An intermediary which uses its power to attract people in the name of social action. All recorded events show us the true strength of a transnational organization.

But this successful achievement was not followed by UNESCO´s channels, as we have seen in the previous post. Therefore we should conclude that social networks did not work well this time if we talk about the official platforms. That would be the most logical analysis. The problem is when statistics and Big Data are stronger than reality, and they have the power to decide whether a campaign was successful or not. That scary situation is common nowadays in many companies worldwide.

As Jill Walker Rettberg says, “data is always something that needs to be interpreted, it is not an objective window on truth”.  So let’s take a brief look at how UNESCO has promoted WRD to see if we can find some connection with the poor statistics obtained.

The World Radio Day website is modern and functional. It is very easy reach the most important sections and the list of events, there are links at the top for social media and it can be read in the five official languages of the organization.

To be honest, it looks much better than the UNESCO´s home page. Only two news were published in there during the event. One about a project in Shanghai and the other one in Sudan. A very poor baggage when we talk about hundreds of different projects around the world, and it can explain the low participation in social networks.

From the eleven tweets published, five were used to promote other projects such as the Global Education Monitoring Report or, mostly, UN Radio. Only three refers to events and the other three are for general promotion of the WRD.

In Facebook we have only found two posts, the one on the 13th, and another three days later to thank the people who were part of the event. On YouTube we can watch the official video in different languages , currently with almost 5000 views in English (a high number for the channel average). Comments are closed.

Finally, on Instagram it was published a photo of the event, with a great result compared to the rest (more than two thousand likes and 19 comments).

UNESCO has not spent too much time promoting World Radio Day, at least not using its official channels. We can say that the UN agency did not have the same level of organization comparing external and internal strategies. Only the website is as solid as the event itself.

We have missed a cross-cutting platform to link all the experiences after the event. A blog could be a fantastic tool to collect experiences from different countries and different people. “Development blogging does not need a designated space, special training, workshops, or degrees, enabling dialogues between those with varying levels of development knowledge and experience, and working in different roles, for example volunteers, academics, and practitioners” (Denskus & Papan, 2013). Maybe for 2018?