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[By Kgomotso Moncho]

 

Tuks FM won the 2012 MTN Radio award for community radio of the year, and this is among the many awards the station has bagged. It is one of the leading community radio stations in Gauteng and specifically in the capital city. What it has done exclusively is help unearth bands that now form part of the country’s live and recording music scene. Notable alumni from Tuks FM include Anele Mdoda, Gareth Cliff, Grant Nash, Poppy Ntshongwana and Hlogi Mampuru, aka, Joe Mann (of Metro FM). Marketing Executive at Tuks, Tony Graham speaks to Radiobiz about what keeps the station growing from strength to strength.       

 

 

 

Looking at the history of Tuks FM, what do you think makes it stand out among other community radio stations in Gauteng or the capital city specifically?

 

Tuks Fm has been a part and parcel of Pretoria for the last 32 years, inexorably threaded through the life of the University. While students make up a rather large proportion of our listenership, the largest part of our audience comes from outside the Varsity. A large proportion of them are Alumni. Tuks Fm offers a training ground for the radio industry. So unlike other radio stations that go through years and years with the same line up, Tuks FM is constantly changing as its student staff comes and goes; as their studies end and lives begin. This ensures that there are always fresh ideas and more importantly a constant desire and drive that might be missing from an industry that seems to do the same thing from week to week, and year to year.

 

Not only that but it’s also the youth speaking directly to the youth. Tuks FM also offers the one thing that no other station currently offers: Music for the people who listen to music. Unlike commercial radio stations that play the lowest common denominator music for the broadest audience, Tuks FM has chosen a specific genre of music that speaks to our audience’s core.

 

Which, taken all together, means that for a small little community radio station that broadcasts from the University of Pretoria’s main campus we punch way above our weight when compared to the Commercials. And they recognise that. This is why a huge proportion of our staff moves on to fill positions at commercial stations. They can see the excellence that we offer

 

What is the ethos that the station works with?

 

Our ethos is that all the people who pass through our doors should grow and change and discover who they are throughout their time with us. Tuks FM is not just a radio station that broadcasts awesome music to awesome people. It’s a place where people come to figure out who and what they are. On top of that Tuks FM likes to instil a sense of purpose and professionalism in everyone who comes through our doors. Oh, and Fun. Above all our ethos is to have fun.

 

The station has won many awards including the MTN Radio Award for Community radio of the Year for 2012. Is there a formula to getting this right?

 Passion.

We have a group of great volunteers who give up their spare time, holidays, sleep and numerous other things for us on a daily basis. Our listeners can hear that, and apparently so can everyone at the MTN Radio Awards. If there’s a formula, that’s what it is. Oh, and lots of training and late nights. That probably helps as well.

 

What is special about your programming?

 

It’s the fact that we have so many different voices. With an intake of volunteers twice a year, we’re constantly changing, just like our audience.

 

Besides putting a lot of DJs on the map, I have watched how Tuks FM has also put a lot of bands on the map and the station has become a leader in this. What is the importance of this?

 

Tuks FM has broken pretty much every band South Africa has produced. The Nude Girls, to Fokof to Prime Circle to the Parlotones, and lets not forget Saron Gas (who now call themselves Seether) as well as the Kongos. The importance of this is out of this world! Without Tuks FM there would be a lot of bands still trying to gain a foothold in the market. This means that South Africa would be poorer in terms of the voices being heard.

 

We’re a proudly South African radio station. We always have been. Here’s the thing: Our licence says that we have to play a minimum of 40% local music. That’s never been a problem for us and we always play way more than that. Of course commercial stations don’t have the same sort of terms. They have to play 20 odd percent, which means they limit themselves to only the current popular bands, which are only popular because we broke them and put them into the mainstream market. We on the other hand, are constantly looking for new music that reflects who our Fans are listening to, and who they’re seeing live.

 

 What bands can we look forward to in 2013?

 

Who knows? There are a bunch of upcoming bands that we’re currently playing who are definitely going places. But the bands to look forward to are the ones who are still out there, gigging, recording and practicing. But if you truly want to know what bands to look forward to the only thing you can do is listen. Just like we are.

 

Anything you would like to add?

 

We’re not just a Pretoria based radio station anymore. We’re now broadcasting into Jo’burg as well, which means we’re getting commercial station reach. So to the big boys: You can take our staff to try and make your stations as good as ours. But you’ll never be us. So you better watch out, because here we come.

 

 

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Radio 2000’s Online Streaming need not be linear

Posted by radio On February - 14 - 2013 ADD COMMENTS

[By: Kagiso Mnisi]

Radio 2000 now has an internet-only transmission whose purpose is to cast special events and sports coverage. The station  found on a 97.2-100 frequency width nationwide, can now leverage  on a hallmark that has long served as its positioning device- sporting spectacles- via live streams. The AFCON experience has recently fell within this perimeter in the commentary of live matches; the advantageous aspect of this is that there is more instantaneous reach to a wider audience. Other events that stand to benefit in this move are national attention grabbers such cricket and rugby matches. This extension bridges the limitations that come with traditional way of radio broadcasting.

 

The online streaming phenomenon presents listeners with a continuous stream of audio that cannot be tuned forth or replayed, the service has the benefit of accessibility from anywhere in the world. In the case of Radio 2000’s interface, the prominent features are tabs which offer a choice to ‘listen live’, ‘studio cam’ and DJ Blogs. As supplement, there is a continuous update of developing news which in essence is a perpetual feed of incoming information.

 

Other noteworthy aspects of the station’s streaming feat are presidential addresses on matters with a bearing on national interest. If popular wisdom is anything to go by, this will surely guarantee more reservations from opposition on the issue of SABC AS an abyss of spin for the state. Radio 2000’s content is fairly balanced with a crop of what may termed as renegade jocks. They include Ernest Pillay, Just Ice and Angela Ludick to mention a few, whom have had colourful careers at other stations in earlier years. However even with that kind of breed, the dynamics of interactivity are at play on radio and it takes more than streaming to be ahead of the curve.

 

At face value, Radio 2000’s portal is static, brochure-like and barely aligns with the stations more attractive appeal via frequency. It is a well known fact that radio streaming makes for a more effective intervention if coincided with podcasts. This enables the listener to revisit memorable programmes close to their heart at leisure and continue to be brand loyal. Being devoid of this only hurts the station’s its streaming campaign strategy.

 

 

The new internet-only transmission venture is a novel feat and modern day necessity, but it can only be effective with a more dynamic homepage/interface. For greater appeal it should be populated with diverse content that will accompany the live-listening aspect. A veer in that direction will not only appease Radio 2000’s infotainment oriented listeners but also allow it to successfully chart the online terrain.

 

 

 

 

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[By: Kagiso Mnisi]

 

Business shows on radio usually bear the mark of market trends, money advice, socio-economic climate and the obligatory feature of an ‘industry shaker’. But these are just add-ons  in regards to a stations format and style.

 

Radio stations have to be aware of their listener’s preferences and of course advertising mandates. Another bearing for a finance show on radio is its ability to update listeners timeously so that they can be informed about goings on those potential implications on their businesses and livelihoods. So what does the barometer reveal when Talk Radio 702 and 567 Cape Talk’s The Money Show and Kaya PM Bizz are given a focused gaze? The former hosted by Bruce Whitfield abides by a talk radio format and the latter is urban-adult contemporary and has Steven Bacher as its anchor.

 

 

Here’s with the Money Show

It’s a scorching Friday evening and Bruce Whitfield is amid the Business Blunders of the Week segment on his show. The inductee to the hall of shame recently was FNB on its official backdown from an online campaign that angered the ruling party, [http://youtu.be/m7Vyj9b1NyY]. ANC’s Jackson Mthembu said, “the advert content is an undisguised political statement that makes random and untested accusations against our government”.

 

The jab from Whitfield was that the bank choked and caved in under pressure when beckoned by the waving finger of the ANC. It is this style commentary that has positioned 702 as the critical media bastion that it currently is. This sticks if scenario planner, Koffi Kouakou’s 2013’s forecast is anything to go by on Kate Turkington’s show when he said “Talk Radio 702 is a potential policy driver”. Whitfield’s show which broadcasts from   6pm-8pm, is also informed by the station’s policy in that it not only informs on market updates but also probes financial issues that affect industry.

 

The Money Show’s host is a decorated financial journalist who focuses on the day’s breaking business news stories, market analysis and opinion; this has it going in-depth into developments than other shows on local radio. 702’s Money Show has remnants which can be likened to Evan Davis’ The Bottom Line on Radio 4, BBC; in that it also has round table conversations with captains of industry to discuss the ins and outs of their respective trades. Bruce Whitfield’s show charts terrains that your ordinary financial news show would not dare, more than it breaks subjects it triggers thought.

 

Other features on The Money Show:

Financial global trends

Business wrap up

Indicators

Podcasts

 

Can Kaya PM Bizz hold its own?

 

After a frantic day of toil and hustle, to be blared at by The O’ Jay’s Money as a cue to Kaya Pm Bizz is sure signal that Steven Bacher is about to treat you to a Alice In Wonderland-like escapade of market oohs and aahs. The soul fuelled intro sets tone to what the listener can expect: a business radio that will have you musing on money matters just as you will on lifestyle. Kaya PM bizz is for the SME upstart who wants what the perks that come with a venture to work for him/her beyond the rigour of number crunching.

 

It is for the move-maker who yearns to make his next crusade all the way to Davos for the purpose of networking. On air between 17:00 and 18:00 Steven Bacher, has held the title of chief financial Guru on the station since 2005. As Kaya’s intent would have it-given the partnership with Afropolitan Magazine-the upwardly mobile black contingent has a well pool of financial knowledge that they can dip into for advice.

 

Other features on Kaya PM Bizz:

Personal Finance

Talking Tech

Business Classic

Interviewing an Entrepreneur every Wednesday

Crossing over every Tuesday to David Crook a South African who is now based in the USA

 

But on any given day of the weekly hustle and bustle, The Money Show takes all the accolades for its holistic approach on matters of dosh. The good thing is that listeners can catch both shows since they air at different time slots, so there is no direct competition as far as listenership goes.  However the two shows might be squaring off again on the MTN Radio Awards 2013, last year The Money Show walked away with the honours.

 

 

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Ligwalagwala FM donates to disadvantaged learners

Posted by radio On February - 13 - 2013 ADD COMMENTS

[Issued by: Ligwalagwala FM]

Ligwalagwala FM ushers 2013 with its yearly and powerful back to school campaign, 100 disadvantaged pupils from various high schools will be beneficiaries of this noble initiative. The uniform will include; shirts, dresses, trousers, socks, jerseys and shoes that will be delivered to them by the station on the week of 18 February 2013.

 

In December 2012 the Breakfast Show hosted by Dumisane “Madumane” Simelane opened its telephone lines to listeners to nominate a school that they felt had children who were in need of school uniforms. The schools that will benefit from this project include; Makhosana Manzini High School Mkhuhlu, Chief Charles High School Empakeni, Thembeka High School Kanyamazane, Zikode Secondary School Gutshwa, John Mdluli High School Mataffin.

 

“The plight of our poor and vulnerable members of our communities will continue to touch and call us to action, as a caring station we saw it fit to ignite hope where there is none in existence, this little gesture from us will go a long way in making a difference in their young lives” said Mr Rio Mabunda, Ligwalagwala FM Station Manager.

 

In 2012 the station was involved in a number of social investment projects, where more schools benefited from school uniforms, orphaned children were treated to a warm breakfast with the Breakfast Show team. The Breakfast Show team also assisted immensely in burying a listeners’ mother. Lender “Mancane” Malope together with the Film and Publications Board and Sibusisiwe Foundation assist disabled children in Witbank by donating mattresses, wheelchairs and toys. The Midday Show and Vodacom closed off 2012 by hosting a Christmas lunch for orphaned children in Elukwatini.

 

In 2013 the station will continue to give back to the community of Mpumalanga in order to ensure that its listeners are empowered.

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SABC joins UNESCO in celebrating World Radio Day

Posted by radio On February - 12 - 2013 ADD COMMENTS

February 13 is a date proclaimed by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation UNESCO as the World Radio Day – a day to celebrate radio as a medium; to improve international cooperation between broadcasters; and to encourage major networks and community radio alike to promote access to information and freedom of expression over the airwaves.

 

As radio continues to evolve in the digital age, it remains the medium that reaches the widest audience worldwide. This multi-purpose medium can help people, including youth, to engage in discussions on topics that affect them. It can save lives during natural or human-made disasters; and it provides journalists with a platform to report facts and tell their stories.

 

UNESCO encourages all countries to celebrate World Radio Day by planning activities in partnership with regional, national and international broadcasters, non-governmental organizations, the media and the public.

Let’s celebrate!

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Zandile Tembe (34) was awarded Best Content Producer for Non Commercial Radio at the 2011 MTN Radio Awards for her work on Ukhozi FM’s Vuka Mzansi breakfast show presented by Linda Sibiya.

Today as the station’s programmes manager she still commands a lot of respect in the industry. When she is not brewing innovative ideas for radio, this driven career woman, is a wife, a mother to four kids and a lover of travel, food and adventure. She speaks to Radiobiz about the love for her work.

 

How did it all start for you?

I have always been a creative. I loved impromptu speech debates at school. I loved reading, writing and TV.  I studied Marketing Management at DUT, but I did not finish the course, so my brother could have a chance at university. By luck and determination I got to work for the MD of Ilanga newspaper as a secretary.  I did not realize it at the time but, working for him as his assistant taught me about the ins and outs of running a newspaper, which is valuable knowledge. While I was there I saw a gap through which the newspaper could garner new readers.  The newspaper went with my ideas and got me to help out in their promotions and marketing section.  I was moved to the newsroom in 2003 where I covered youth stories, fashion and lifestyle.  I joined Ukhozi Fm in 2007 as a content producer for Linda Sibiya’s drive time show.  It was nerve wrecking doing something I had never done before. And in the first year I had no one to show me the ropes.  Linda and I were given the Breakfast show in 2008, taking over from DJ Sbu and Nonkululeko Godana as producer. Those were big shoes to fill, but we set a tone that pushed the envelope and got the biggest numbers. I left the breakfast show at the end of 2011 and applied for the Programmes Manager position.

 

What does your job entail?

As programmes manager I have to ensure delivery of high quality programming aligned with Ukhozi FM’s strategy and target audience 24/7. This is from performance managing, developing and motivating the on air station team to delivering the business obligations required.  

 

 

What’s your take on social media breaking the news first? Is it a challenge to content producers?

It’s a tool and we couldn’t command such a listenership if we saw it as a threat.  We’re still the most trusted source of information. There’s no credibility in social media and it’s an opinionated platform. We have more listeners than twitter followers. I acknowledge the presence and power it has on improving our vision.  We need to use it right, in a way that’s in sync with where people’s minds are.

 

Which show has the highest listenership at Ukhozi?

The first one is the Breakfast show Vuka Mzansi, followed by the traditional music show, Sigiya Nge Ngoma on Saturdays from 9:30am to 12:30pm and then Indumiso on Sundays at 8:30am to 11:30am.

 

Which is the most profitable?

The Breakfast show is.  It varies. Prime time slots are also the leaders.

 

Do you think Chilli M is under utilized as a weekend presenter?

Chilli M comes from an English commercial radio background. It was strategic and important to give him time to get acquainted with the culture of Ukhozi, and for him to find his feet and voice. We want him to grow with the station. He’s already started standing in for other presenters, which is a good thing. We did not want to put him under any pressure.

                                                                                                                   

Do you think radio presenters should be given 5 year long contracts?

A presenter should be at a station for as long as they deliver and are relevant to the listener. The numbers should show. We shouldn’t box presenters into thinking they want to be on radio for a long time. Some have other plans. A true radio person will not worry about contracts – they know where their passion is.

 

What advice would you give to students interested in being programmes manager?

Go to school and be learned. You need to entertain and educate your listener. Young people think anyone can be on radio. But you have to have the passion for it. It needs heart.

 

Do you think PBS stations should help community stations by training some of their stuff or is it competition?

I find that there’s competition when we should be sharing. If we started sharing we could fix a lot of things in the industry. I ran a campaign at the end of 2011, where during the last week of the year we took daytime presenters and put them on night time shows and vice versa. In December 2012 we invited aspirant radio presenters from campus and community to co host with our presenters. It was so refreshing and made radio heads see that it was doable.

 

 

How would you like to be remembered if ever you leave Ukhozi?

I would like to be remembered as a person with integrity. Someone who loved what she did. There has never been a day where I left my home feeling like I’m going to work.

 

What are you reading?

Muzi Khuzwayo’s Black Man’s Medicine and Bonnie Henna’s Eye Bags and Dimples. I’m reading with my nine year old daughter. We switch off the TV for an hour just to read. I think it’s important.

 

Who are your influences?

I’m a die hard fan of Ryan Seacrest’s work. He’s a pioneer and as a creative I love what he does. I’m also inspired by Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma. She epitomises power without an emphasis on being a woman.    

 

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Motsweding FM Reality Radio

Posted by radio On February - 10 - 2013 ADD COMMENTS

Kgomo tsa Magadi & Bridal Wars Competition

Motsweding FM will, on 14 February 2013, air its first ever reality radio shows as part of the station’s strategic intent to make Setswana fashionable. The shows are aimed at contributing towards preserving the culture and norms of Setswana. The station also intends to instil pride in the Batswana people by showcasing ways of living by using the matrimonial setting called ‘Patloya Setswana’.

 

The twelve episodes of the ‘Bridal wars’ and ‘Dikgomotsa Bogadi’ respectively, will feature twelve (12) blushing brides and grooms to be, who will battle each other through a series of challenges to win a wedding gown for the contesting bride and a wedding suite for her husband worth R35 000.The grooms to be in the ‘Dikgomotsabogadi’ competition stands a chance to take home cattle worth R50, 000 to go towards paying lobola for his chosen bride to be.

 

It has been a thrilling experience for the production team working behind the scenes to put together both shows, and a life changing experience for all finalists.

Issued by: Motsweding FM

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ECO-FRIENDLY MUSIC FESTIVAL IN JOZI

Posted by radio On February - 9 - 2013 ADD COMMENTS

9th March 2013 sees Rain Productions, Pangolin Productions & Mix FM 93.8 in association with Obikwa and Greenpop, host Johannesburg’s premier Eco-Friendly Acoustic Music Festival: “Rise & Shine”

 

The festival will provide an opportunity for music-lovers to experience the garden oasis that is Sandton Central Park, while enjoying some of South Africa’s brightest musical talents in their acoustic formats. In addition, Rise & Shine, in association with Greenpop, will plant a tree for every 50 people that attend the festival, compensating for the festival’s carbon emissions. Collectively, festival-goers will all be contributing to a small forest taking root.

 

Tickets are available at www.ticketbreak.co.za at R150 per person, with the option of paying an additional R100 for a ‘Green ticket’, whereby Greenpop will plant a tree on your behalf somewhere in Africa.  A certificate with the co-ordinates of your sponsored tree will be sent to you once its toes are in the soil. The line-up includes Shadowclub, Tidal Waves, Naming James, NakhaneToure, Yo Grapes, Chiba Fly, Phoenix Smith, Some Grow Young, Shotgun Tori, and Jeremy Loops – a founding member of Greenpop.

 

In addition to the world-class music on offer, festival-goers are encouraged to arrive at the park as early as 8.00am for a Yoga session included in the ticket price. With the Gautrain within walking distance from Sandton Central Park, guests from as far as Pretoria, Centurion, Midrand, Benoni&Rosebankare encouraged to join in the festivities. The festival concludes at 6.00pm and the Gautrain runs every 30 minutes until 8.30pm on the day.

 

Festival-goers driving to the event are encouraged to car-pool and to park their vehicles at Sandton City from where it is a gentle 500m stroll to the park. Saturday parking is a flat-rate fee of R10 for the day. This outdoor production aims to showcase – through entertainment, enjoyment & experience – what can be achieved through a collective awareness.

 

“The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago, the next best time is now” Chinese proverb

 

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INNOVATE AFRICA LAUNCHING ON CNBC AFRICA

Posted by radio On February - 9 - 2013 ADD COMMENTS

CNBC AFRICA, Africa’s largest business television news channel, will be launching a new fortnightly show titled ‘Innovate Africa’ sponsored by Neotel. The show, which will premiere on 12 February at 9:30pm CAT, is hosted by CNBC Africa’s Natascha Jacobsz.

According to the Southern African Innovation Network, South African inventors have a lot to be proud of. Some of these ingenious creations have appeared in magazines, via online education platforms or on television documentaries. Innovate Africa will showcase a wide range of topics that will uncover some of the hidden innovative projects aimed at releasing untapped potential in Africa.

 

“These brilliant people have indirectly touched the lives of so many, both at home and across the globe,” says CNBC Africa Chief Editor, Godfrey Mutizwa. “Innovate Africa focuses on Africa specific technology innovations & inventions, highlighting Africa’s technology success stories.”

The first episode highlights Africa’s inventive spirit and looks at solutions to some of Africa’s greatest challenges.

Don’t miss ‘Innovate Africa’ on Tuesday, 12 February at 9:30pm CAT on CNBC Africa, channel 410 only on DStv! 

Issued By: CNBC Africa

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The survival of Community Radio

Posted by radio On February - 7 - 2013 ADD COMMENTS

[By Kgomotso Moncho]

The slogan that usually describes the essence of community radio is “for the people, by the people.” This is simply because community radio stations are designed to serve the communities they are based in. What sets them apart and defines them is that they are controlled and driven by a non-profit entity and are run for non-profitable purposes. This means any money that they make from their service goes back into the station.

 

This is the reason why community radio tends to work with volunteers. Those who get paid, do it for the passion of radio and their community, as well as to acquire training and the skills needed for commercial and public service broadcasting. So how do community radio stations generate revenue, you might ask? By nature community radio struggles to access advertising and other forms of financing because stations are limited in how they can use advertising or sponsorship to raise funds.

 

Many rely on donations (local and international), government funding, grants, sponsorships, advertising, events, or by a combination of all of the above. According to the ICT Regulation Toolkit (www.ictregulationtoolkit.org), “In Colombia, the Universal Access and Service Fund (UASF), Compartel, is managed by the Ministry of Communications, and has a joint programme with the Ministry of Culture and a special government fund for Development Projects known as FONADE. The fund provides partial financing for community radios under a programme called “Comunidad”.

 

Currently, Compartel has financed between two to six community radios in approximately 25 departments of Colombia. Compartel receives its money from a levy mainly targeting telecommunications operators, though commercial broadcasters must also pay into the fund. The UASF in Peru is only occasionally funding pilot projects that have some community radio element, but are focused on the Internet.

 

Ghana’s UASF, GIFTEL, is authorized to fund community media projects that combine Internet and community broadcasting “France is said to have a special fund for local community broadcasters sourced by a special tax levied on radio and TV advertising expenditures and paid by advertisers. Qualified stations can receive partial funds to assist with the initial installation, to subsidize some of their operational costs and to subsidize equipment purchases. Community radio stations must however fulfill certain criteria which determine if and how much funds they receive. These include the community stations’ capacity to secure some local funds, and the quality of their programming. Conditions include a ceiling of 20% of advertising of their total annual turnover, and broadcasting four hours of local programming daily.

 

In some countries like the United States, Chile, Mexico and Brazil, governments impose advertising restrictions on community radio stations which maybe absolute or up to a certain ceiling. Botswana is unique in that community radio stations are allowed to accept national and international donations only in the first years of the station’s establishment.

 

In South Africa there is no government funding, but there are a number of agencies set up to give financial support and startup capital for independent media initiatives. There’s the Media Development and Diversity Agency (MDDA) – set up by an Act of Parliament – Act 14 of 2002 – to enable “historically disadvantaged communities and persons not adequately served by the media” to gain access to the media. Beneficiaries are community media and small commercial media. The MDDA has helped start a few community radio stations. 

 

Bush Radio, the country’s oldest community radio station, is perhaps a good example of how a community radio station can operate with the help of international donations.  In his paper on Community Radio As Participatory Communication in Post-Apartheid, Anthony A. Olorunnisola reported that “Bush Radio’s audited financial statements for the years 1998 through 2000 show that consistently, more than 50% of the station’s revenue generated through grants donated by local and international funding agencies. In 1998, when the station had an income of R461k, 53% of the sum (R248k) accrued from grants. Also in 1999, R1, 075k (or 70.3%) of Bush Radio’s total income of R1, 5m accrued from grants.

 

In 2000, Bush Radio posted an annual income of R1, 2m. Though the amount represented a budgetary decrease for the year, R1, 027k (or 81.8%) of the sum were grants donated to Bush Radio by funding agencies.” He goes on to point out that when compared to grants, Bush Radio’s advertising revenue consistently decreased as a percentage of total income in the years covered by the audited financial records. He gives two connected reasons for the radio station’s dwindling advertising revenue: “One is Bush Radio’s unmatched success in securing large sums of grant income from local and foreign agencies. Second is Bush Radio’s reputation for socially conscious advertising revenue generation. For instance, as a demonstration of its support for a healthcare message dedicated to the eradication of Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (FAS), Bush Radio enforced an advertising policy that shuns alcohol promotions. Also by editorial choice, Bush Radio carried no tobacco advertising.” Other community radio stations are self sustaining getting by and growing with the help of advertising, sponsorship and events.

 

Tshwane FM (formerly known as TUT Top Stereo) is one such station which has grown from being a campus radio to being a recognizable community voice in Tshwane radio. According to the station manager, Jeremy Thorpe, the station which runs from the premises of the Tshwane University of Technology (TUT), is not subsidized by the university. The station has become synonymous with certain music events that take place in the capital city like the Pens Down Party, just as Tuks FM has become synonymous with the Tuks Rag event as well as the annual New Year’s party. With the advent of the internet linked with radio, community radio stations are able to have companies also advertise on their radio websites.

 

There are success stories of how community radio stations are growing and self sustaining, but when Bush radio almost closed down due to financial problems in 2011, it caused a great deal of alarm. And this prompts the question: is the way community radio model working? What almost happened to Bush radio proves not and Sonnyboy Masingi, chairperson of the National Community Radio Forum, says this did not only happen to Bush Radio, but it is widespread in the community radio industry.

The recession left a huge impact and some big advertisers are after bigger audiences, so this remains a problem. Masingi’s suggestion to the Mail and Guardian is that, ““We need to start a conversation about how government can provide space through municipalities at no cost to protect these vital institutions,” he said.

 

 

 

 

 

  

 

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