Third World Radio Day on February 13, 2014: Reinforcing freedom of expression, cultural diversity and gender equality
On the occasion of the third World Radio Day, on February 13th, 2014, AMARC is working to increase access to the airwaves for local and community radios. In this perspective, AMARC calls on these radios to use the platform of exchange offered by the International Union of Public Radios and Televisions www.wrd13.com. AMARC joins also UNESCO’s initiative giving support to advocacy for greater gender equality in the media space.
On November 3rd, 2011, at its 36th General Conference, UNESCO recognized the "transformative power of radio" by establishing the World Radio Day every February 13. This date marks the launch in New York of the United Nations Radio in 1946, which regularly give the floor to AMARC.
Since its first appearance more than a century ago, radio remains a powerful source of information and mobilization for education, economic development and social change. In a world where illiteracy and analphabetism affects a quarter of the population, radio is the medium that reaches the largest audience. For Patrice Berger, engineer at the CNRS ( National Centre for Scientific Research) and President of the Office of Radio Broadcasting and Electronic Communications (ORCEL , France), "half the world's population is permanently affected by information-illiteracy and public, associative and community radio remains the benchmark media for billions of people." On February 13 in Paris, AMARC will recall that in this era of new technologies, radio remains the most accessible media, with low cost of production and broadcasting.
Radio plays a pivotal role in emergency communications and disaster relief. It is also one of the most important ways to increase access to knowledge. World Radio Day aims to raise public awareness regarding the importance of radio, to encourage states to provide access to information through radio and to improve international cooperation between radio stations. In some countries, public service broadcasting and community radio are at the forefront of this cooperation.
To celebrate this day, the World Radio Day International Committee (WRD), which includes the main audiovisual and telecommunications organizations among which AMARC, has certified three actions:
1 - Radios around the world are invited to promote the official interactive platform of the WRD International Committee (www.wrd13.com), inviting listeners to deposit short messages, in all languages that they can readily download for broadcast on February 13th.
2 - A classical music concert offered by Radio France to all radios -associative, community, public or private- that can be broadcast freely on February 13.
3 – The WRD International Committee and URTI organize the official party of the World Radio Day 2014 at the Théâtre du Châtelet at the heart of Paris, on February 13. This evening will be followed by a concert by the Orchestre National de France.
4 - UNESCO also encourages broad networks and community radios to promote gender equality and women’s empowerment. Through World Radio Day celebrations around the world, UNESCO will promote gender equality by:
• Sensitizing radio station owners, executives, journalists, and governments to develop gender-related policies and strategies for radio
• Eliminating stereotypes and promoting multidimensional portrayal in radio
• Building radio skills for youth radio production, with a focus on girls as producers, hosts, reporters
• Promoting Safety of women radio journalists
About the WRD
The decision to declare February 13th the World Radio Day was adopted by UNESCO following a proposal by the Spanish Academy of Radio and a consultation process supported by AMARC. Please find further information on the UNESCO Website and on the Official World Radio Day Website.
The main objectives of the World Radio Day are notably to raise the understanding among the public and the media of the value of radio, including in the context of new media, and the value of actively supporting radio; to encourage decision-makers to support, establish and provide access to radio and to provide a networking focus for radio proponents and practitioners worldwide in order to exchange ideas, experiences and resources.