BS in Journalism
Public radio has experienced a surge in listenership. With the rapid decline in newspaper readership, radio has become one of the only methods that news can be disseminated to people across a wide socio-economic stratum. The cost of a radio is cheap and most people are spending more and more time listening in their automobiles. Recent studies show 92% of Americans age 12 or older listen to the radio weekly if not more.
With the introduction of cheap digital audio recorders and broadcast quality microphones on most smartphones, it has never been easier for the general public to produce their own short audio stories. This convergence of increased listenership and ease of production presents a unique situation where the general public can participate in journalism in a more structured manner than social media. This all needs to be leveraged with training in traditional journalism ethics and conduct.
This study serves to examine the possibility of making public radio more accessible to locally produced content from the general public through the Social Responsibility theory of the press.