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KALW’s Community Story Gathering Project Hits NFCB

KALW Hear Here Exhibit

KALW Hear Here Exhibit at NFCB conference (Photo: J. Waits)

For the editorial crew at Radio Survivor (Matthew Lasar, Paul Riismandel and myself), it’s a labor of love. Much like many non-commercial radio practitioners, we are reporting on radio because we are radio fans. We care about radio history, we monitor the current state of the medium, and we are hopeful that there’s a bright future for radio. It’s always great to hear that people are reading our articles and that there’s an audience out there that is as passionate about radio as we are. Because of that, it was gratifying to see some kind words about Radio Survivor in the KALW newsletter this week. In a feature about “Five Places to Discover Great Radio,” the KALW staff cites Radio Survivor as one of their “favorite on-line resources to connect with what’s happening in non-commercial radio.”

It’s nice to get this recognition, especially from a non-commercial station in San Francisco (where Matthew and I both live). Lately I keep hearing about more and more intriguing projects being put forth by KALW and it’s a shame that I still haven’t visited the station for my radio station field trip series.

Last week’s National Federation of Community Broadcasters (NFCB) conference was a good reminder to me about the variety of things that KALW is up to. At a reception sponsored by the public radio station, a couple of interactive exhibits were on display, highlighting the station’s pop-up radio project Hear Here. The two displays were basically cardboard tunnels fashioned out of large letters and lined with San Francisco Bay Area maps. One could point a cell phone at special codes placed throughout the maps in order to hear stories about different neighborhoods in San Francisco and Oakland. Many of these tales were recorded at public libraries.

KALW’s Hear Here project is part of the larger Localore initiative being spearheaded by the Association of Independents in Radio (AIR). Other projects include an Austin music map, a look at the North Dakota oil rush, and an interactive documentary about Chinese carryout restaurants.

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