Leith FM is going nastily mental again. Really odd some of the other board members behaved suddenly towards me, since Friday, there is a nasty email exchange going on. And I haven’t even started it, which is very unusual.
Suddenly after a year of silence they seem to gang up on me. They behave like they would want to bully me out before having their AGM so there would be no danger of me saying something critical about them in public, with some of the unemployed volunteers doing the dirty work for the mighty man in the background. Who knows what they conspired up to at the last board meeting. However, I am wondering how the more intelligent people on the board of this community radio station behave- they are most likely passively ignoring any bullying mob, like they have before during any conflict.
The whole trouble starting some years ago, when I was trying to find a radio station in Edinburgh which would broadcast audio pieces on social justice and human rights issues, such as did Radio Z, the best radio station in the world.
After first landing on Fresh Air FM, where I first missed the technology introduction session and then found out they would not broadcast issue-based interviews and talks as they focussed at that time much more on the club scene and music presentations as well as had been fined for swearing live on the microphone in the past, I moved on to find a different radio station. I tried to get my foot into the internet-based comedy radio station which was based downstairs at the Forest called Dilated Radio, but for some strange reason I never managed to get in contact and they gave it up apparantly some months later. Fresh Air FM has now changed to only broadcast on the internet, too, as they have troubles finding enough money for the temporary license. Anyways, the Community Media Association people and others recommended Leith FM, so I went down there.
Since then, there has been a constant conflict really with some people who encourage reporting about social issues, human rights and critical news reporting and the crowd who seemed to start Leith FM as an addition to promote and feature the Leith Festival to a wider audience. One of the main editorial restrictions is that many members of the station see Leith FM only reporting about issues based in and only directly concerning the local community, with a disregard to any international and wider issues. There is also a disrespect against anything slightly political, with the Ofcom guidelines being the main argument as well as advertising and financial panic. So for example they refused to broadcast anything about the G8 last summer, and the interview with one of the African community radio journalists about G8 debt and World Bank, IMF and structural adjustment programmes had to take place in the toilet under severe time pressure, as they did not want to actively support it.
So, at the start it seemed Leith FM would be a suitable outlet to broadcast a Scotland Indymedia radio show on, but the first trial already brought on major difficulties, so I decided for myself that it would not be worth the hassle and effort to continue to be involved, despite that I had been voted on the board before in a more optimistic moment.
Basically Starbucks complained to Ofcom about a really well edited story (not mine though) about a protest of IWW workers and Zapatista supporters against Starbucks because of the court case featuring the union members getting sacked in the US and the hostility of Starbucks against union membership and unionising. Ofcom said they can not do anything and the only thing Starbucks could do would be to pull the funding. But Starbucks – naturally – never funded the radio station in the first place, so they could not pull any funding, at least not their own. So they tried to persuade other funders to pull their funding.
This alarmed the programming director for this broadcast, Tony Leach, who has put a lot of his own money and time and energy into the project, and he pulled the next community radio show which would have featured mainly and comprised of reports and live interviews with four guests about landfill, waste, receycling and rubbish and the communities living beside the waste dumps. As destiny has it, though one of the main issues coming up now for the Leith community are covered-up plans to create a waste dump/landfill site near the docks, see the Edinburgh Evening News reports. [ 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 ]
After subscribing to the JournoBiz forum after finding it on Holdthefrontpage I stumbled over or into an argument with Journalism.co.uk and one or more of its contributors (The other side of JournoWimps 11.04.2006).
I find it totally insignificant but interesting. However, there are constant references to the hard discussions on the Journalism.co.uk email list, and it seems impossible to me to subscribe, as there is a constant “bad confirmation string” for the email address or it doesn’t send out the password if requested and it doesn’t allow a login into the members archive.
But I am so curious!
Actually I just found another journalist news forum called “newsmonkey” from Les Hacks Blog. However, at the moment it seems my skin depth has to increase tremendously before being able to contribute to the discussion.
There is another forum on UKPress, but it does not seem to be so active.