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Weekly News From the President:National Federation of Community Broadcasters 2017 Conference

 A big thanks to the National Federation of Community Broadcasters for inviting me to speak at their national conference in Denver last week. Some of the challenges facing community radio are different from those of PEG, but some of the similarities are eerie.

For example, look at this “innovation“: It’s a public place where community members can get training in how to create media.

Only it’s audio and podcasting, not video.

I saw this and felt a little like I had woken up in an alternative reality. But this type of community engagement and training is where some people see public radio going – creating relationships with creative communities to build meaning. Only here, the membership is $35 a month, not $35 a year. It is selling other earned income services.

Note too that the project doesn’t self-identify as “community media”.

There are lots of community media centers around the country who are now teaching or producing podcasts. It’s a huge growth opportunity that we talked about at the ACM National Conference in Minneapolis two weeks ago. I’d like to suggest that your organization can be building that media future for our communities if you choose. Don’t get hung up on titles and categories, and think about what’s possible.

 

Sincerely,
Mike Wassenaar
President & CEO
The Alliance for Community Media