Sunday, April 11, 2004

Liberal Radio - What would be better?

Liberal icons Al Franken and Janeane Garofalo are now anchoring new talk radio shows on the Air America radio network. I have always enjoyed the style and persona of these guys but I do not expect that their approach to talk radio will "Take Back America," as the slogan goes. IMHO, Air America is offering stereotyped left wing vitriol that merely mirrors the cacophony of hate speech on the right.

What I am about to write is among the defining principles of GuvWurld.

It is unacceptable merely to find fault without also addressing "what would be better?" This is not a rhetorical question as it prompts the imagination, suggests abandoning apathy, and allows every individual's response to qualify as a vision for benchmarking progress. Any political leader seeking to stake out the high ground on optimism would do well to moderate a debate among divided people on the definition of "better."

So in an era of admitted self-censorship by the media, and at a time when Clear Channel and Rupert Murdoch are exhibiting an agenda that flies in the face of traditional journalistic balance and integrity, what would indeed be better?

The Project-Based Format

Imagine your job title is Project Coordinator. You might call a staff meeting in your conference room. With a dozen, or twenty or even 100 other people, you could then go over goals and objectives, brainstorm on strategies, and dole out assignments. Participants would then go on their way, committed to doing their part. As Project Coordinator, your job would be to track the progress and make sure results get produced on time and under budget. Now, instead of your office staff in a conference room, imagine a global audience listening to a web-based talk radio show where the host is the Project Coordinator and the approach used is called the Project-Based Format.

This approach to radio defines success by its ability to organize actions that generate tangible change.

This is how Progressives will beat the corporate media at their own game - abandon the antiquated journalistic credo of media neutrality, and use the airwaves to organize.

To update Gandhi, we must be the media we want to see.



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