Wednesday, February 13, 2013

UAE: Millions to tune into World Radio Day tomorrow

Dubai: World Radio Day will be celebrated on Wednesday for the second consecutive year as billions continue to tune in to the earth’s biggest media platform.

The event is held to raise awareness on radio’s role in bringing masses together over the airwaves, says Unesco (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation).
Millions of people in remote parts of the world, as well as big city dwellers, depend on radio for their daily news and entertainment. It is the only link with the outside world for many isolated settlements.
Radio is said to be a cost-effective and practical communication tool, with a larger audience than any other media. Technology has consolidated radio’s reach to smart phones, tablet computers and other devices on the go.

But in the nostalgic days before the onset of the digital revolution and television, radio took centrestage in family rooms and offices worldwide. It was where news broke and people huddled around to catch their favourite show.
That is still the case with many people today.
Unesco marked February 13 as World Radio Day last year following an initial idea by the Spanish Academy of Radio.
Radio’s evolution
Unesco says on its website: “As radio continues to evolve in the digital age, it remains the medium that reaches the widest audience worldwide. This multi-purpose medium can help people, including youth, to engage in discussions on topics that affect them. It can save lives during natural or human-made disasters; and it provides journalists with a platform to report facts and tell their stories.”
In Dubai, market leader Gulf News Broadcasting is planning to highlight the occasion on air. “We are planning to speak to Unesco, raise awareness about radio. It’s got the biggest reach in the world — bigger than TV, newspapers and the internet,” said Nawied Jabarkhyl, news presenter and journalist, GN Broadcasting.
“In remote parts of the world, mostly in Africa and Asia, people rely on radio for their news and entertainment. Radio’s much easier, it’s on the go. People in the UAE mostly listen to it in their cars. I think, generally, people like to have the radio on in the background.”
“Everything in radio has to be current, especially news. It’s got that live element of broadcast media. That’s very challenging — and exciting too.”

(Source: Gulf News)

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