Peoples' Voices, Peoples' Empowerment: Community Radio in Asia and Beyond (2012)

Peoples' Voices, Peoples' Empowerment:  Community Radio in Asia and Beyond (2012)
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Edited by: Kalinga Seneviratne
ISBN: 978-981-4136-17-4
Year: 2012
Pages: 346
Price: US$ 27.00

The book discusses the role and expansion of community radio in Southeast Asia, specifically the Philippines, Thailand, Indonesia, India, and Nepal. Louie Tabing, the founder of Tambuli Community Radio describes the Philippine media as a system of 5Ps: profit, propaganda, power, politics, privilege and/ or prestige. He argues that is applicable to most countries in Asia, and the clamour for community radio has been driven by a desire to giving a voice for the "voiceless" masses. Thus, in recent years, community radio activists have been able to open up Asia's airwaves for community radio broadcasting - sometimes without official government sanction. In Thailand, when the government called for applications for community radio broadcasting licenses over 6000 applied. In Indonesia, the arrival of the "Reformasi" era after the downfall of Suharto, triggered the rise of 1000 community radio stations all over the country though most of these are unlicensed. Nepal, on the other hand, has over 100 community radio stations; while the Indian government slowly opening up the airwaves for community radio broadcasting, it is predicted that within 5 years there could be over 4000 community radio stations operating across the sub-continent. Thus, community radio in Asia is now well on the way to becoming perhaps the mainstream communication medium for both rich and the poor, and the urban and the rural populations in Asia. This book is thus a timely look at how the community media movement has developed across Asia in the past 2 decades with insights from practitioners and researchers across Asia.