AMARC objects to the closing down of community radios in Japan

on Monday, 04 April 2016 15:36. Posted in News from the region

logo FMYYApril 1, 2016, Kathmandu. AMARC Asia-Pacific is gravely concerned to learn that Radio FMYY of Kobe, Japan – a community radio station that has played pioneering role in promoting disaster risk reduction has been forced to close down due to prohibitory provisions in the community radio regulation of Japan.

The regulation, following an amendment in 2011, imposes a highly restrictive condition on community radios, according to which a station cannot stop broadcasting even for a short time. In order to comply, community radios are required to make large investments on backup equipment and infrastructure, and remain unsympathetic to difficulties faced by staff members and volunteers. Stations considered to be in violation are dealt with severely.

On March 31, 2016, FMYY returned its broadcasting license back to Ministry of Internal Affairs and Telecommunication of the Government of Japan due to its inability to cope with this severely restrictive regulation. Several other radio stations including those serving tsunami prone areas have met with similar fate.

One of major roles of community radios in Japan is to respond to natural and human-caused disasters. Despite strong demand from community members for community radios, especially during reconstruction and rehabilitation phases of recovery, the prohibitive community radio regulation has posed serious challenge to survival of community broadcasting in Japan.

While community-owned radios such as FMYY are forced off-air, there is a growing trend in Japan for local governments to run radio stations through public-private venture companies. Even though such stations are called community radios, they are neither community owned nor can they be expected to defend people’s communication rights.

Junichi Hibino, Director of FMYY and Treasurer of AMARC Asia-Pacific board and other community radio stakeholders in Japan have resolved to continue their struggle for achieving community radio friendly regulations. “We have embarked on a journey to bring community broadcasting back to citizen’s society. By returning FMYY’s broadcasting license, a serious first blow has been delivered,” Mr. Hibino said.

Commenting on the situation, Ramnath Bhat, Acting President of AMARC Asia-Pacific has called upon the global fraternity of community radios to raise their voices against the unfair conditions being forced upon community radios in Japan. “AMARC members from the Asia-Pacific region and beyond join hands with our members in Japan in their struggle to revive community broadcasting in Japan,” he said.

For further information, please contact:

Suman Basnet
Regional Coordinator, AMARC Asia-Pacific
Kathmandu, Nepal.
Office phone: +977 1 5554811

Global Media Monitoring Project: Who Makes the News?

on Friday, 18 March 2016 12:18. Posted in News from the region

GMMP essential informationThe Global Media Monitoring Project (GMMP) is a worldwide media monitoring, research and advocacy project implemented collaboratively with women’s rights organizations, grassroots groups, media associations, faith-based / interfaith organizations, university students and researchers across the world.

Why it is important: The importance of media monitoring as a tool for change was officially recognized by the United Nations for the first time in Section J of the 1995 Beijing Platform for Action. The GMMP was initially inspired by the concern of women activists to bring the issue of media accountability to the forefront of the debate on gender inequalities. Its subsequent implementation was guided by the concern of researchers to ensure comparable and accurate analysis of data collected in different settings by different individuals. 

What the research findings are used for: The research findings are useful for education, policy advocacy, public awareness, gender-equality/women’s rights activism, media and communication policy development, among other applications. The findings are applied by gender equality organisations, women’s rights groups, education institutions and other agencies.

1995 – 2013: Four GMMPs have been carried out so far, in 1995, in 2000, in 2005 and in 2010. Participation increased from 71 countries in 1995 to 108 countries in 2010, evidencing a growing interest, willingness to engage on issues of gender in the media and commitment to propel change towards media that affirms women’s rights and gender equality objectives. The monitoring shows extremely slow progress in bringing women’s voices to bear in public discourse taking place through the news media. Not only does the news present a male-centric view of the world, it is also marked by gender bias and extensive stereotyping that underpin marginalisation, discrimination and violence against girls and women.

2014 – 2019: A global consultative meeting in February 2013 concluded it was important to convene GMMP 5 in order to ensure continuity in tracking progress towards gender-just, gender-balanced news media. GMMP 5 will reveal persistent and emerging gaps in gender portrayal and representation in not only traditional (print and broadcast) media, but in new electronic media forms. 

GMMP 5 will maintain the spotlight on gender inequalities perpetuated in and through the news media, and the demands for change. It will also update the data to be used for sensitizing new generations of journalists, creating awareness in media consumers, and for media policy and practice change advocacy.

Finally, GMMP 5 will be linked to key 2015 processes including the 20 year review of progress made in implementing the Beijing Platform for Action for the Advancement of Women (Beijing +20), Post 2015 development agenda debates, and the World Summit on the Information Society 10-year review.

GMMP Network: The GMMP network's membership spans over 100 countries in every continent across the world. The network includes gender and communication groups, women’s media associations, women’s grassroots groups and researchers in academia who participated in the previous GMMPs of 1995, 2000, 2005 and 2010.

Source: Who Makes the News / GMMP

Photo: © GMMP

Call to participation “Communicating Development”: an international audio series

on Tuesday, 15 March 2016 09:45. Posted in Opportunities

Radio broadcaster in Yei Sudan WernerAndersonAs part of their continued partnership, the Office for Corporate Communication of the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and the World Association of Community Radio Broadcasters (AMARC) join forces again this year to facilitate the production of 40 audio pieces by producers and community radio journalists. The international audio series “Communicating Development” aims to facilitate access to best management practices, increase public education and encourage dissemination of scientific knowledge.

“Communicating Development” will focus on various themes such as nutrition, food security, health, biodiversity and climate change adaptation and mitigation. Producers and community radio journalists are invited to send a proposal on the following themes:

  • International Year of Pulses: Nutritional value of pulses; markets (production, consumption habits and trade); recipes;  health; (impact of pulses on) food security; (impact of pulses on) food sovereignty, etc.
  • Zero Hunger: Food security; efforts to end childhood stunting; sustainability of food systems; improvement of conditions for smallholder farmers; prevention of food loss and waste.
  • Climate change: Climate change mitigation and adaptation; local, regional and national effects; local, regional and national response; resilience; food security; biodiversity; etc.  
The audio pieces will be featured on a dedicated page on AMARC’s website and on FAO’s website from March to December 2016. They will also benefit from a visibility campaign in the network of partners, members and on social media.

What is AMARC looking for?

  • Documentary, reportage, interview, roundtable, storytelling, etc. (format is flexible)
  • The audio production must at least 10 minutes long and ready for on-air broadcast.
  • Productions in local languages are welcomed (a translated script is required).        

This audio series also aims to illustrate the diversity, the originality and the quality of AMARC’s international network of producers and community radio journalists.

Community radio journalists and producers are encouraged to submit a proposal to before March 30, 2016. Please state your name, radio, country and add the details of the subject you wish to discuss in your production.    

All selected producers and community radio journalists will receive a financial compensation.

If you have any questions, please write to  

We hope for a large participation! Join us in communicating development!

Photo: © Werner Anderson

Who is listening to community radio? New listener research coming mid-2016

on Monday, 14 March 2016 09:33. Posted in News from the region

CBAA onstackstemplateIn 2015, the CBAA undertook a tender process for the National Listener Survey. We are pleased to advise that this process is now complete and provide you with some further information about how the survey will be administered in 2016.

The National Listener Survey is a survey of the community radio listening habits of Australians. It provides invaluable feedback to stations about trends, listeners and the sector itself and can be used for service planning, reporting to funding bodies and pitching to potential sponsors.

After ten years, the Survey had evolved to maturity and the CBAA undertook a thorough and open tender process to ensure that listener research better meets that needs of stations, stakeholders and the sector as a whole. The tender process included working with highly regarded and experienced media/marketing/research professional Peter Cornelius, who in turn consulted a range of stations and sector stakeholders, and the invited several of Australia’s largest research organisations to tender.

From 2016, McNair Ingenuity Research will continue to deliver the National Listener Survey program. The new program will pair best learnings from the past with exciting new developments, including new reporting formats and more opportunities for stations to derive value. Key differences in the new program include:
  • Substantial cost reductions for stations, achieved by requiring three year sign-ups from participating stations.
  • The CBAA is now a central hub for the NLS, owning the data (instead of the research provider) and co-ordinating participation.
  • Greater transparency on research processes and outcomes
  • New reporting formats, with potential software reporting options being explored
  • More opportunities for stations to derive value through additional research offerings (including sentiment-based surveys)

The CBAA is also working with McNair Ingenuity Research to develop a template listener survey that stations can administer themselves. This DIY Survey will be designed to gather insight on listener preferences and habits, providing detailed information that stations can use to inform programming and planning.

If you would be interested in finding out more about how this program can work for your station, please contact our Policy and Research Adviser Joel Pringle.

Source: © Jon Bisset, Community Broadcasting Association of Australia (CBAA)

Photo: © Community Broadcasting Association of Australia (CBAA)