open source radio

Another video download from Beyond Broadcast 2006 Reinventing Public Media in a Participatory Culture. The panel session ‘The future of digital community.’ The first speaker Brendan Greeley talking about radio open source.about:

Open Source is a conversation, four times a week on the radio and any time you like on the blog. We designed the show to invert the traditional relationship between broadcast and the web: we aren’t a public radio show with a web community, we’re a web community that produces a daily hour of radio.

Orginally kicked off with a message board in the 90s the show has moved to a blog. The blog comes first in the process of bringing people to the radio show. The presentation questions how you filter or make sense of the scale of information available on the Internet and make that applicable to a public radio platform. They chose a blog and suggest that blogs are a version of “talk radio.” They favoured the structure of a blog because they could guide the discussion and include participants contributions in that process. The show is therefore structured like a blog. To promote traffic; conversation; interaction; community with people (i.e. getting others linking to their blog) they follow a process where they examine a person’s blog carefully then email them questions asking them for opinions and ideas on specific topics. I found this interesting in terms of promoting more substantial types of content in the broader blogosphere. The approach involves time, focus and analysis with the content on a specific blog. Overall the radio open source system relies on open access for the listeners to engage. As they describe:

we rely on our listeners and readers…“the people formerly known as your audience” to help us produce the show. At its most basic, we look for this production help in the comment threads of this website. Every time we have an idea for an hour of radio we post it to the site. That show may not go on the radio for another month, but we immediately start reading comments — suggestions for guests, questions for guests, suggestions for ways to frame the show or reading material — and following up on them.

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