jonathan's blog

Schedule grid for radio conference

Here it is! This weekend schedule (pdf) outlines community radio summit events for Sept 15-17.

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Static: Government Liars. Media Cheerleaders, and the People Who Fight Back

Static: Government Liars, Media Cheerleaders, and the People Who Fight Back
by Amy Goodman and David Goodman [Hyperion]

The second collection of essays by Democracy Now! cohost Amy Goodman and brother David picks up where the first one let off—bringing to light some of the dirtiest deeds of the Bush administration and its corporate cronies, and detailing how a compliant corporate media system bears responsibility for allowing crimes against democracy and humanity to continue. As such, it's not always a pleasurable read. But the Goodmans and Democracy Now! have been virtually alone on shining a national spotlight on stories such as the US-assisted overthrow of Jean-Bertrand Aristide, and extraordinary renditions and torture flights such as that endured by Canadian Maher Arar. As storytellers, the authors provide a highly useful record of how these things took place, including the true interests at stake, the failures of media oversight and democratic accountability, and the grassroots women and men who have met government abuses with courageous resistance. -jl

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Grassroots Urban Arts Media discussion joins radio conference lineup

Our conference lineup is coming together nicely. Special conference events include a presentation on grassroots urban arts and media democracy, with a host of local hip hop artists, presenters and activists moderated by The Stranger's Charles Mudede.

Also at the conference, Pete Tridish (Prometheus Radio Project) and representatives from Pineros y Campesinos Unidos del Noroeste (PCUN) will introduce the region's newest community radio station, KPCN-Woodburn. Jeremy Lansman, pioneering founder of Seattle's legendary KRAB - and many other community stations from St. Louis to Anchorage - will speak on the history of community radio in the Northwest. We'll have special film screenings of the Seattle-produced documentary Pirate Radio USA, and a new barnraising documentary by Pepperspray Productions.

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An interview with Susan and Daniel

Oregon-based radio journalist Sue Supriano interviews RTM's Susan Gleason and Daniel Hannah on her program Steppin' Out of Babylon.

Homegrown: Engaged Cultural Criticism

Homegrown: Engaged Cultural Criticism
by bell hooks and Amalia Mesa-Bains [South End]

Anti-racist, anti-patriarchal cultural criticism, as practiced by hooks and Mesa-Bains, is a vital form of media literacy and a survival strategy for young African Americans and Latinos. In an invitingly freewheeling conversation, the authors explore how capitalist-directed cultural trends and marketing undermine our capacity for liberating self-development, particularly among African American, Latino and women. Mesa-Bains and hooks provide characteristically insightful deconstructions of, for example, the iconization of Frida Kahlo, the debate over Ebonics, and purportedly anti-racist films such as Crash and Traffic. For Mesa-Bains and hooks, all of our cultural activity (including media consumption) should eschew passive consumerism to provide opportunities for radical resistance to oppression. -jl

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Photos from the PCUN Barnraising

The Low-power FM barnraising at PCUN in Woodburn, Oregon was a great success; Many inspiring people came together for a weekend of hard work and mutual aid, working together to build the Northwest's newest community-run radio station. Reclaim the Media has established a Flickr group to share photos from the weekend; check it out at

KRAB co-founder Jeremy Lansman to speak at conference

Community broadcasting pioneer Jeremy Lansman will speak about the history of community radio networking in the northwest as part of our upcoming summit. Lansman cofounded Seattle's legendary KRAB radio in 1962 (with Lorenzo Milam and Gary Margason), and went on to launch numerous other independent stations across the country from St. Louis to Kasilof. Portland's KBOO, which Lansman helped get on the air in 1968, is the region's last remaining member of the "KRAB Nebula," a community radio network in whose footsteps we are now trying to walk.

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Regional community radio networking. What's it all about?

Community Radio Networking: A Regional Approach in the Northwest

The challenges facing community radio in today's media landscape are substantial and numerous.

Community radio stations, including the many noncommercial stations operated by college and high school students, lack both the resources of commercial stations and the network support of NPR-affiliated public stations. Yet in many cases, these stations are providing their communities with unique and high-quality services. Community radio is one of the last true wilderness areas of broadcasting, where young people, local artists and citizen journalists can experiment as they redefine and reinvent good radio. Community radio embraces, rather than marginalizes, public affairs and cultural programs focused on social justice issues, or the particular concerns of youth, immigrants, working people, women and people of color. Community radio is also home to some of the most inquisitive and courageous journalism being produced today.

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Network Proposal: Content Sharing via Audioport

Content Sharing: a Proposal to Collaborate with the Pacifica Network

Without a central, technologically-enabled way for stations to collaborate and share programming, the idea of a "network" remains somewhat abstract. Thinking along the lines of "build it and they will come," building a content-sharing tool seems like a good early step for network development.

There are already websites that audio producers use for distributing sound files, including Indymedia sites,, Pacifica's site, Public Radio Exchange etc. In seeking a solution for the NW Community Radio Network, we're considering several factors:

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Getting ready for the Woodburn barnraising

Reclaim the Media is getting excited for the barnraising next weekend in Woodburn. Oregon. Our pals at the Prometheus Radio Project return to the northwest to help the union and social services organization Pineros y Campesinos Unidos del Noroeste (PCUN) launch their new LPFM radio station!

We're looking forward to seeing a whole bunch of old friends and meeting a bunch of new ones. I don't know how many folks have registered to participate, but this is Prometheus' 10th radio barnraising, and the weekend-long events (in which volunteers attend workshops, mess around, and learn how to build a radio station by actually doing it together) have a reputation for being madly fun. I expect it will be big.

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The media's job is to interest the public in the public interest. -John Dewey