Ownership and control in community radio : a case study of Highway Radio and Radio Maritzburg.
This research discusses the basic characteristics of community radio in relation to the types of communities they serve. The researcher focussed on Highway Radio and Radio Maritzburg. They are assessed in terms of their commonalities and differences in ownership, mission, governance, organizational structure and administration systems. One of the main differences between Highway Radio and Radio Maritzburg is the mission for which they were licensed and the type of community they serve. Radio Maritzburg was licensed to serve the geographic community of Pietermaritzburg and its surrounding areas. Its main mission is to create peace and harmony in the community, to encourage local artistic skills, to develop family values and enhance community upliftment through entertainment and educational services. On the other-hand, Highway Radio was licensed as a community of interest radio station to serve the Christian community living in Durban, Pinetown and its surrounding areas. Despite Highway Radio broadcasts different programmes to serve the geographic community, its main mission is to proclaim the Gospel of Christ as a principle function of evangelism and to enhance harmony among the churches. Radio Maritzburg broadcasts the programmes in six languages to cover the diversified linguistic groups in the community while Highway Radio broadcasts only in three languages. The concept of diversity in Highway Radio is to accommodate the diversified Christian churches rather than focussing on the linguistic diversity. These two radios are owned and controlled by their respective communities. The communities members are responsible for maintaining the radios in terms of programming, financing, and controlling the stations. In both radios, the communities control the radios through the Boards that are nominated by the respective communities at the annual general meeting.
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