While COVID-19 has seen the closure of a heartbreaking number of businesses, including a number of regional and local media outlets, Ian Hamm, the president of the Community Broadcasting Fund sees hope on the not-to-distant horizon for Aboriginal media and community broadcasting.
In commenting on community radio, Ian said: “Community radio, and the importance of it, is growing. Certainly over the past decade and today it’s probably more important than ever.
“Not only in the current COVID situation, that is getting the message out there about social distancing and ensuring that people maintain good hygiene… and doing it in a way that is accessible to community groups.”
According to Ian, during the Melbourne bushfire crisis of early 2020, community radio was the most listened to radio was local community broadcasting. This was due to that medium often being the only medium that provided information specific to community areas.
A Growing Industry
With over 460 community radio stations currently operating in Australia, Ian believes that community broadcasting is a growth industry.
“One of the things that has really promoted that [growth] is that people are just looking for local content. Stuff that’s relevant to them where they live.”
Listen to the full interview above.