It has been over 4 months since we hosted Scotland’s hub in the first ever International Community Media Day. What did we learn?
International Community Media Day was an event hosted in twenty-five different countries on November 4th 2013 for the very first time. The event stemmed from a community media week curated by a community media consultancy called Citizens Eye in Leicester – who were the central location for the day. They offer regular community media cafes and training in the Leicester area and has been running since 2008.
King Lambie Production hosted Scotland’s hub for International Community Media Day, working in partnership with Citizens Eye. A new company set up in May 2013, King Lambie Productions has already done research into community media across Scotland and secured funding from O2 Think Big to help with the costs of International Community Media Day.
The ideology behind the event was to give different community media organisations across the globe the opportunity to share what it was that they were doing on that day and network with others doing similar things.
Looking at Scotland’s hub in particular we can pick out many organisations who took part such as Summerhall TV, Plantation Productions and Mindwaves along with many more who had input such as Camglen Radio, Sunny Govan and Awaz FM. We had volunteers at the event, many of whom came from journalism, media and communication backgrounds – they came for the experience, the training and the chance to use their skills in social media, photography and discussion.
Why was the event beneficial?
Since the 1960s the notion of community media has grown significantly in the UK. This new sector of media brought way to community radio, television, film and newsletters for example, all of which serve a community of geographical or interest groups. In 2014 there are a number of community media organisations located in most towns and cities, and even some rural communities. A sector which was known for strong links between professionals and communities, now no longer seems to have any collaboration inside the sector, never mind with the mainstream media.
The organisations who took part in our survey after the event were already all linked with community media umbrella organisations such as the Community Media Association – however had never took part in an event like this one.
International Community Media Day was a way to bring everyone together, promote collaboration and encourage discussion and in its early days we believe we were able to meet some of these aims. We got those at the event to write up why they had come and what they thought the day was about…
“Help promote wider awareness of the benefits and developments of community media”
“Linking in with other organisations working in the same sector, sharing good practice & experiences, to discuss challenges faced in the sector, etc”
“ALL GROUPS WORKING TOGETHER AND PASSING INFO.”
What comes next?
International Community Media Day has the potential to grow and become a highly successful annual event with the backing of the community media sector. Across the event we had people involved who worked in radio, film, television and digital media – in the future we would want to make sure print and photography were also included in the schedule.
We found that the groups we worked with didn’t know very much about the community media landscape in their area, we hoped that we have give light to the groups round about them and they will soon learn to communicate and work with one another.