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Participative Radio in Vietnam: Let the audience be part of the show

31-07-2006 (New Delhi)
Participative Radio in Vietnam: Let the audience be part of the show
Old Muong people in the village have
interesting stories to tell
© UNESCO Office in New Delhi
Letting people talk about their things is the key to success of participative radio programmes, as demonstrates experiences of the Ha Tay and Hoa Binh Provincial Radio Stations in Viet Nam that were supported by UNESCO’s International Programme for the Development of Communication.
In Ha Dong Town, only about 30 minutes from Vietnam's capital Hanoi, a group of reporters went to the market to interview women about a topic they thought was relevant and important: Preparing clean and healthy food. However, when trying to interview traders and housewives, answers were given reluctantly and people did not have much to say. The journalists came back with few dull and rather boring interviews.

The next day reporter Huong Lan and her colleagues went to the market again. But this time they didn’t come with a "teaching" topic, but had selected one that the women at market loved to speak about and listeners enjoyed to listen to: about soccer and the World Cup 2006.

As soon as the reporters touched this topic all the women around wanted to tell something. They talked not only about how much fun it is watching the soccer matches, but also made clear that football is not only for men. They praised their favourite teams, told about the most attractive games they had ever seen and many things more. It became clear: women in Ha Dong Town are real soccer freaks. Nevertheless there were also some who didn’t like soccer for one or the other reason. For example the lady who missed her husband in bed in the nights when the games were on television.

Out of all these lively stories and interviews the radio journalists of Ha Tay Radio Station put together a charming radio feature: Women talking about soccer, sharing their feeling and experiences and even enjoying singing the World Cup’s soundtrack. Really appealing, interesting, fun to listen to and radio at its best! This programme was so different from the first one.

So, the lesson learnt: If you want to make participative radio programmes, let the people talk about their things! Don't impose your subject on them.

The feature “Women and Soccer” was one of several produced during the six-days AIBD workshops on "ICT Enhanced Regional Radios" that were conducted in Vietnam's provincial radio stations in Ha Tay and Hoa Binh provinces. By using modern Information Communication Technology (ICT) like MP3 recorder and audio workstations it became possible to easily produce such new and lively participative programme formats on a regular base.

Other radio programmes featured people who work in various trades and crafts as well or a variety of topics that young people are interested in. These programmes allowed common people to have a say and to involve them in making radio programmes. This resulted in lively and attractive programmes. No surprise because people are excited to have their own voices being heard on the radio.

Different town, different story: Hoa Binh is about two hours from Hanoi and has its own characteristics; for example the lifestyle of the minority ethnic groups living in this province. This provided an interesting audience to produce a feature programme about their livelihood and their stories. Hoa Binh Radio now offers within its regular programme for the Muong ethnic minority an opportunity for these people to have their voices on air.

In the programme produced during the AIBD workshop the Muong people talked about the life in their village, where modernity is steadily changing things, and compared past and present times. Beside several interviews the reporters collected many more views and voices and blended them to a colourful vox pop. An old woman beautifully contributed a traditional song, which was well captured with the new MP3 recorders introduced during the workshop. As part of the project AIBD also installed a new computer for the radio studio, which was then used to edit, process and mix the new programme and finally put it on air.

Convinced by the new attractive programmes and by the convenient and easy way to produce them with the new ICT equipment, Hoa Binh’s station management has made immediate plans to provide regular time slots for these participative programmes in the station's programme schedule.

So at the end of the workshop the participants and all people in Hoa Binh province were able to enjoy the new programmes, not only on FM but also through the many loudspeakers of Hoa Binh's public address system.

AIBD conducted the two workshops in Ha Tay and Hoa Binh Provincial Radio Stations with financial support from UNESCO’s International Programme for the Development of Communication ( IPDC). The trainers were Karl Lippe, Engineering Consultant AIBD and Ayu Purwaningsih, Radio Journalist from Kantor Berita Radio 68H, Indonesia.
Participative Radio in Vietnam: Let the audience be part of the show
It is easy to put together the new participative programmes with the new audio workstation
© UNESCO Office in New Delhi

Participative Radio in Vietnam: Let the audience be part of the show Women at Ha Dong market enjoy participating in a radio programme about how they enjoy soccer and the World Cup
© UNESCO Office in New Delhi
Related themes/countries

      · Viet Nam
      · Training of Media Professionals: News Archives 2006
      · Community Media: News Archives 2006
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