Grassroots Radio Conference 2012

Starting Date: 07-26-2012
Ending Date: 07-29-2012
Address

Independent Media Center
Urbana-Champaign, Illinois 61801
United States
Description
Sessions will be a tapestry of workshops, panels, lectures, discussion groups, presentations, demonstrations, hands-on activities organized into under the theme of a track. Below are this year's track descriptions, including a list of a few ideas that came to mind in developing these themes. They are by no means comprehensive, and if these descriptions are getting your own brain juices flowing, propose a session for this year's GRC!

Cue the music! The tracks for the 2012 GRC are:
The Future of Community Radio
Composing for Radio
Hoodies in the Hood: YOUth Power, MEdia Freedom
Nurturing the Organization
Participation & Engagement
Policy for People
Radio for Social Justice
Wired for Change
Re-creation

PROPOSE A SESSION

The Future of Community Radio

Radio is changing. The number of community radio stations is doubling; this growth is fed by increasing interest in local information, music, and connection. Meanwhile, radio must adapt in the digital age as people turn to the Internet and expect participatory communication. On the technology front, local community radio stations have the opportunity to become multimedia community centers, engage global audiences online, deploy mobile studios, and share community wireless internet. On the social front, stations must increase community connection or risk becoming isolated sound booths with individuals talking into the air. This “big picture” track will host ongoing discussions about the challenges and opportunities facing community radio and give participants the opportunity to strategize about the future of their stations and the movement as a whole.

Possible sessions: Model community media centers, integrating radio and public access TV, the vision of community stations as community wireless nodes, community media training curriculum, creating public access computing and training centers, radio stations as community centers, polyfunctional stations as gardens, bike coops, etc.

Composing for Radio

Radio is the medium, but what is the message? Too often we focus only on the technical and organizational aspects of radio. This track focused on the art of making sound and message. The production of radio content is composition and producers of radio content are composers. We will combine critical thinking about the politics of language, music, and radio forms with fun, inspiring workshops on storytelling, slam poetry, audio production, information gathering, music, and more. You will learn how to produce radio, but also discuss in what format and why.

Possible sessions: Acoustic portraits lab, poetry workshop, radio theater, listening sessions, field recording, editing, producing for audio and TV at the same time, podcasting & archiving your work, distributing via social networking tools.

Hoodies in the Hood: YOUth Power, MEdia Freedom

The media has been a whirlwind of reports and opinions, and everyone has something to say or post about "the youth." People are constantly trying to tell you what to do, what to say, how to dress, what your music should sound like, who you are. We want to break that cycle. Hoodies in the Hood focuses on both education and creation-- flipping the script about who we are and explore ways to take control of our own images and share our own stories. Sessions will be designed to empower anyone young in mind, body, or soul to make their own media, claim public space, and represent.

Possible sessions: Radio and slam poetry, addressing age bias, music production, media integration

Nurturing the Organization

Innovation, creativity and inspiration are fleeting without the infrastructure to support them. In this track, we will address the needs of radio from the viewpoint of an organization. We aim to identify often overlooked priorities in station planning and offer ideas on how to build an internal framework that is viable and sustaining. By highlighting these people-powered arteries working off the air, we will bring into focus vital strategies for streamlining day-to-day processes and nurturing the long term goals of a community radio station.

Possible sessions: Fundraising, budgets, planning, volunteer coordination, Board/staff development, facilitation & consensus, conflict transformation

Participation & Engagement

“Community radio is 90% about community and 10% about radio.” -Zane Ibrahim, founder, Bush Radio (Cape Town). While new stations are about to be born, many community radio stations across the country are struggling to stay alive. This track focuses on engaging the community in community radio. How can our radio stations represent and engage the communities they serve?

Possible sessions: representation & diversity, assessing community needs, community advisory boards, engaging local musicians, audience participation in stations, radio stations as community centers, inclusion.

Policy for People

Local and federal media policies are being set that have a profound impact on our ability to communicate and organize. We need to understand these policy struggles and unite to make sure our voices are heard. The track will brainstorm grassroots approaches to participating in policy and highlight timely media policies, such as access to an open Internet, encroachment, public broadband, consumer protections for wireless users, criminal charges on prison calls, privacy and security issues.

Possible sessions: Unlicensed spectrum, encroachment, current media justice campaigns, internet freedom and the role of radio stations.

Radio for Social Justice

The Local Community Radio Act of 2011 creates the possibility of more than 1,000+ new LPFM stations going on air in the next few years. How can this historic opportunity be marshaled to unite and build communities which are excluded in the current media-political system? How can existing stations do the same? This track considers the value and practice of radio as a unique tool for poor communities, communities of color, women, LGBTQLA and other excluded groups. We will look at the existing uses of radio and community media by social movements to discern patterns of success and discuss how radio can be used in the future to build strong, inclusive, organized communities.

Possible sessions: Radio for movement building, radio as leadership development, radio for labor organizing, radio and public health, radio and environmental justice, radio and criminal justice, local case studies empowered by radio.

Wired for Change (no relation to the Ford Foundation)

Engineering: “the action of working artfully to bring something about.” This track invites everyone to get their hands on technology. We will learn the technical aspects of siting, building and maintaining a station as well as expanding on the functionality of a radio station through techology such as internet streaming, remote broadcasting and community wireless. Technology is for everyone - all levels of experience welcome.

Possible sessions: Internet streaming, remote broadcasting & mobile studios, community wireless, automation systems, web based collaboration and curation, towers, antennas, itty bitty transmitters, hackerspaces, skillshares, dealing with encroachment.

Re-creation

Need a break? The recreation track offers a variety of alternatives allowing you to take space, explore Urbana-Champaign and the IMC, be in your body, hear about local social change initiatives, and recharge your batteries by working on creative projects with local artists.

Possible sessions: yoga, bike mechanics, art lubes, dance parties



The GRC is accepting session proposals NOW. Submit one today!
Geographical Scope: National
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