Monday, April 03, 2006

Accountability, Pavee Lackeen and a new 3CR radio show

What do you get if you combine the earlier Pavee Lackeen film review with the recent BBC Accountability posting?

Well, BBC Three Counties Radio are launching Rokker Radio - a two hour weekly show from 5-7pm every Sunday night "produced by and for the travelling community" in their region. (Rokker means talk in the Romany language.)

Answering back against some sadly predictable local criticism, the presenter Jake Bowers explained:

"around 80% of the travelling community live a static existence and all of these people pay for their licence too ... Rokker Radio will be the only programme for traveller communities on UK radio, and I think it will be the first time since the 1930's that the BBC has broadcast programming which is actually produced by a rural ethnic minority"

Cheaper and more analytical than TV, radio is an ideal medium to explore special interest groups. Sounds like BBC 3CR should be commended for this positive move - which will pick up listeners and inform a much wider audience than just the travelling community.

Of course, podcasts can afford to focus on even narrower interest groups (down to the granularity of a single teenager in his bedroom) - though the listener investment is greater. You'll buy a radio a lot cheaper than an MP3 player!

If you're interested in finding out more about the Romani language, check out the University of Manchester's [romani] Project and their excellent Romani media links page.

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