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Community radio content, ideas on a postcard please


 Hello all,

Being in a small town in Ireland, trying to distil what may and may not be useful for community radio listeners and volunteers alike is somewhat problematic.

We are having a public meeting next week and shall at that event post a draft schedule (which I can post on z or send to anyone who may be interested) which wew shall push volunteers to take ownership of and responsibility for.

We have to have a complete schedule in place to lodge with the licence application, so it is quite a serious matter.  There are many criteria to be observed, minimum percentage of talk, local news, Irish music etc. etc.  But frankly it is a little Kafakaesque in that what is permissable is not clear and what is not is also unclear.

However anyone can complain and this complaint must be acted on, with the radio station obliged to answer any complaints in details.  I have been reassured by many in the community radio ‘industry’ that such complaint answering shall fall onto station management to complete.  At least that sorts out what I shall be doing.  

So,the situation is that we are treading softly to begin and we shall take it from there.

What I would be very interested in are peoples views, opinions, suggestions as to what a community radio actually sounds like, day in day out.

Are there any obvious do’s and don’t which people may impart at this stage. I am fully aware that any lesson learned before going on air may help prevent wasteful use of time repelling complaints in the future.

Also has anyone any idea of what works best and not for community radio.  I know the Irish are talkers and gossipers, but this alone will get us in trouble, albeit perhaps in line with our goals.

We are about to embark on a very long journey (hopefully) on a very thin line, ye are more than welcome to join. 

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