WORLD RADIO DAY 2017 (II): Interview with Alison Meston

Welcome back to the World Radio Day in Creating Connections? After the introduction written in the last post, we want to move on and give you a global vision of the project from one of the coordinators. There are hundreds of events in hundreds of countries, and before we start with deeper reflections, we offer you a first-hand opinion from inside. Most of what you can hear in the interview will be used for our future posts. Time to relax, close your eyes for a couple of minutes, and enjoy with the unique rhythm of radio in the following audio.

Ok, we know you did not close your eyes… but multitasking is not a problem for radio at all! There are a lot of  good reflections in the interview, some of them already posted in the introduction, and many others that will be part of the new ones. And we know that it was a bit longer than a tweet. For those less patient with the traditional media, here you have a summary of the key points:

  • The way to measure the success of World Radio Day falls on the number of events organized, the number of participating countries and the repercussion on social networks (official hashtags for Twitter in English, French and Spanish).
  • Despite being organized by a United Nations agency, a team of only two people is primarily responsible for preparing the event. A big network with internal and external people is required to organize all the events, including the important work of the World Radio Day committee.
  • World Radio Day is promoted through membership organizations, website, MailChimp (e-mail marketing), and UNESCO´s Facebook and Twitter accounts.
  • UNESCO works with radio stations in sub-Saharan Africa to ensure they have the best technology possible, but also it promotes the adequate training that allows them to use it in the context of their communities.
  • Radio is still the most followed media worldwide. It is very close to the audience, and it is very useful on crisis periods.
  • Radio is an effective tool against the “social media bubble” by promoting a real time dialogue and debate.
(Click on the image to see the full infographic)

A lot of useful information to engage with World Radio Day and radio as a development tool. This is a place for dialogue and debate in a world obsessed with figures. How long can it survive in the modern world?

We have listened how World Radio Day measures the success following the neoliberal ideal of quantification, a mandatory requirement nowadays for any big event. But, how can you measure dialogue and debate? If social media promotes an standardization of ideas, should we trust the results that we get from them? Can you actually measure the human social behaviour? We will analyze different case studies to find some answers in the next post.

You have listened a ten minutes interview, and you have read the whole post. Come on, let us know your opinion about radio and development in the comments section. Let’s see if new media can also generate a good debate!