December 9, 2014
One of the advantages of the Internet and social media is meeting new people you would otherwise never have known.
Like John Rockley, who has worked for the BBC in the U.K., one of the truly great broadcasting networks.
John says what I often try to …only better:
"Local radio at its heart is local ... stupid to say really, eh? But as I blog, the plans are to take away the thing that attracts an audience."
"I presented a shared breakfast show across 3 BBC local radio stations and found it a constricting and bland experience."
"Part of the joy of local radio is that you share the lives of your listeners. You shop in the same shops; you drive the same roads ... but for that programme, I didn't. I was in a box with Schrodinger's cat and as soon as I shared something local I identified where I was broadcasting from and the localness waveform would collapse. It didn't serve anyone properly, and that is going to be the shape of afternoons on BBC local radio."
"Making BBC local radio less local hurts; not just the people who work on the programmes or the audience figures, but the wider reputation of the BBC."
"There's going to be an unforeseen economic effect, too. Local radio supports the economy locally. Just think of the charities with an urgent need of support, the local businesses that want to challenge opinion, show that the local economy is working or just become the stories themselves."
"People listen to radio because of the emotional connection that you build with broadcasters who are able to tell stories. It's not functional, it's emotional."
"If you ask why people choose a station, it's because they like it. They like the personalities, they like the connection, they like the localness."
It seems radio everywhere, at least everywhere English is spoken, is retrenching, at the worst possible time for our survival.
It's not often you find a "radio guy" (or a consultant, for that matter) who makes references to quantum mechanics. John's a very smart man, and probably someone you should meet if you can.