Celebrate UNESCO World Radio Day with Us

WorldRadioDay Community radio is something to celebrate. It brings people together, allows freedom of expression, spreads joy, music and so much more. Celebrate it today, World Radio Day, an UNESCO holiday and global series of events honoring democracy, community, education and cultural ties.

Brown Paper Tickets is doing it up big with a reception and party at Seattle Public Library (Central Branch, 10th floor) from 5-7 pm. Not only are we celebrating World Radio Day, we’re applauding the approval of 13 new radio stations in the Puget Sound, including 5 to serve the lovely city of Seattle and 2 stations awaiting approval.

Join us. Enjoy a piece of radio-tower cake. Listen to inspiring, insightful “lightning” talks from new low-power fm radio stations. Get the details on the broadcast range of the stations.

There’s still time. Register here.

“This is big news for everyone in the Puget Sound area. Nonprofits are about to have a much larger voice on local airwaves,” said Sabrina Roach, a Brown Paper Tickets Doer. Roach was recruited to the Brown Paper Tickets Doer Program after 11 years in Seattle public and community media.

Click on the map below to see all 15 new community radio stations.

LPFM-Map-Seattle-Radio

Roach works on equitable community development through locally-owned communications infrastructure, such as advocacy for an open Internet, municipal broadband and the build-out of low-power FM.

Seattle’s official celebration for UNESCO’s World Radio Day is produced by Brown Paper Tickets as part of our philanthropy-in-action strategy, the Doer Program. We believe in a combination of donations (donating 5% of profits from every sale) and “doing” (the Doer Program) to maximize positive change for communities.

As a Doer, Sabrina Roach chose to support equitable community development by building nonprofit media and communications infrastructure, including community radio and municipal broadband. She led a National Make Radio challenge and she is also the director of “Upgrade Seattle: A Campaign for Equitable Public Internet.” She is also working with a grassroots community advisory group.

Industry trade publication Radio World recently published an article on how our Doer Program supports community radio.

“Like our public libraries and community centers, community radio offers hands-on access and connection, education and entertainment that feeds and strengthens our neighborhoods,” said Roach. “It adds another dimension to public services; it acts like ‘community glue,’ building bridges among unlikely groups of people representing different interests and demographics.”

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Local Radio to Hit Seattle Neighborhood Air Waves

Waves of Puget Sound will soon crash into Seattle neighborhoods. Air waves, that is, will carry hyper-local news, music and community dialogue directly to your home sweet home.

Last October, Brown Paper Tickets publicly introduced between 12 and 15 new neighborhood radio stations that could be added to the Puget Sound FM radio dial by 2016. Join Brown Paper Tickets in helping the voice of your neighborhood build a permanent home on the public airwaves.

Fremont Solstice Parade © Jim CleghornHelp Promote Neighborhood Radio in the Solstice Parade

80,000 people are expected on June 21, 2014 to come out and enjoy the 25th annual Fremont Solstice Parade. This year, you can promote Seattle’s new neighborhood radio stations, meet other radio supporters and enjoy crowds from a new perspective. Volunteer to walk (or rollerblade) in the 2-mile parade with Puget Sound neighborhood radio station supporters as part of the Green Hat Ensemble, a fundraising float that hopes to raise $25,000 (one-third of the entire budget for producing the Fremont Solstice Parade).

24 volunteer spots are available, but going quickly. Sign up to march with the Green Hat Ensemble or call Pamela Burton at 206-601-5191, or email her at burton5308@comcast.net. You can also just show up at 1:30PM on Saturday (June 21) at Fleur De Lis Statuary (39th and Leary). Look for other supporters next to 2 big green hats.

Will Your Community be Served by a Neighborhood Radio Station?

Peruse Brown Paper Tickets’ updated list below of all local radio license applicants to see if there is a station planned for your neighborhood. Want to become part of community radio in your neighborhood? Contact Brown Paper Tickets Public Media Doer, Sabrina Roach.

Why Neighborhood Radio?

“What if you heard your neighbor’s voice on air? Or your favorite local band? Or your barista?,” said Pam Burton of Fulcrum Community Communications, the nonprofit behind the neighborhood radio station planned for North Seattle, and organizer of neighborhood radio supporters in the Fremont Solstice Parade. “Young and old alike are invited to make neighborhood radio. We want everyone to join us in sharing your voices, amplifying what matters to Ballard, Fremont, Greenwood, Phinney, Queen Anne and Magnolia.”
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Community Radio Brainstorm: We Are Not Alone

Brainstorm1Post by Sabrina Roach, Brown Paper Tickets Public Media Doer

As director of Brown Paper Tickets’ National Make Radio Challenge, I helped as many nonprofit organizations as possible learn about the opportunity to apply for a free low-power FM radio license in 2013. This year, I’m assisting applicants in building capacity so they can successfully get on the air and start broadcasting to local communities.

I’m co-facilitating a public community brainstorm tonight, April 17, 2014, at Historic Takoma in Takoma Park, MD. We’ll talk about what’s going on nationally with low-power FM radio and Historic Takoma’s local effort to create low-power FM community radio. Even if they don’t get the radio frequency, they will have a great foundation for any kind of community media project. At the very least, they will have more of a focus on telling their own stories by making their own media.

If your organization was one of the 2,780 nonprofits, colleges and faith organizations that applied for a low-power FM (LPFM) frequency through the Federal Communications Commission last November—and especially if you are one of the 1,137 who’ve already had your application accepted by the FCC—there are many community radio stations already on the air that are happy to share their knowledge and experience with you. One of the best ways to find roughly 250 of them is to join the National Federation of Community Broadcasters. They have a listserve where people trade technical assistance and thoughts on community radio. All questions get answered either by peers or Federation staff. They also have group buys on music royalties and equipment.
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Five Ways Low Power FM Will Power Up Public Radio

ds106-world-radio-dayWorld Radio Day is this Thursday, February 13. It’s the perfect time to talk about how Low Power FM Radio could change the public and community radio landscape in the United States. For the past three years, I’ve been putting a shoulder into low power FM (LPFM) infrastructure development. I have helped to get the word out about the opportunity nationally, assisted nonprofits with their applications, fostered relationships between applicants and identified resources to help them build. I’ve never seen so much enthusiasm for community radio, and my little public radio nerd heart is gleeful about the potential. Maybe some of the ideas are a stretch. I’m certainly showing my enthusiastic idealist colors, but World Radio Day encourages expansive thinking and big ideas. One thing’s for sure, LPFM will have an impact.

UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization) created World Radio Day in 2011 to annually prompt us to think about the transformative power of radio. This year their focus is gender equality. People from around the world are contributing audio and video clips in which they further the discussion about gender in radio and other ongoing structural issues like race and class.

We know we have structural issues in public media. We talk about them at our conferences and participate in trainings at our stations, but the conversation doesn’t get much past working on individual racism and an introduction to white privilege. These inequities require multipronged solutions. One small way to chip away at them is the current LPFM radio infrastructure build out.

Some numbers that illustrate how we’re doing:

Women hold less than 7% of all TV and radio station licenses.
People of color hold just over 7% of radio licenses and 3% of TV licenses.
[source: Free Press]

92.7% of journalists at commercial radio stations are white.
81.5% of journalists at non-commercial radio stations are white.
91.3% of radio news directors (commercial & non) are white.
67.3% of the work force in local radio news are male.
[source: Radio Television Digital News Association 2012 survey]

For reference, the US population is 51% female and 49% male / 72.4% white and 27.6% people of color [source: US 2010 census]
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Seattle! Celebrate the Sound of Tomorrow at the Pike Place Market!

SoundOfTom_FBNext Tuesday, October 15, two very important things are happening:

1. The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) will open an application window for thousands of low power FM radio frequencies (LPFM) across the United States.

2. Sabrina Roach, Brown Paper Tickets Doer, specializing in Public Media, will be producing a lunch to celebrate Puget Sound applicants!

We here at Brown Paper Tickets have been working for two and a half years to get the word out to non-profits around the country about the possibilities that LPFM offers — we see it as a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to shift our media landscape on both a local and national level. That’s why we’ve been collaborating with local public agencies to help support applicants.

All that work has paid off, and on this coming Tuesday, October 15th, we’re bringing together a celebration of the local organizations that could soon be popping up on your radio dial. Consider this your invitation to meet the LPFM applicants in your neighborhood, get your own map of the proposed new media landscape in the Puget Sound, and enjoy some free food while you’re at it.

They’re our airwaves. What’s your vision?

*What: Celebrate the Sound of Tomorrow: A Brown Paper Tickets Neighborhood Radio Party*

*Where:  Pike Place Market Elliott Bay Room on the top floor of the Economy Market Atrium.

*When: Tuesday, October 15th , 2013 at noon.

*RSVP here!

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The FCC Demonstrates There’s Room for More LPFMs on the Airwaves in New Report

On Thursday, January 5th, The Federal Communications Commission released a report confirming that the presence of low power FM stations (LPFM) do not impact the advertising or audience of full power FM radio stations.

Currently there are 838 LPFM stations in the country operating at 100 watts or less and reaching a radius of three to ten miles. In 2007, bipartisan legislation was introduced to increase the number of available LPFMs. It was then that the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) came out strongly against the introduction of what they called “thousands of micro-radio stations to the FM band”. It is possible that several hundred nonprofits will apply for new LPFM licenses when the application window opens in fall 2012 and the NAB has been concerned that they will interfere with full power stations.
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