I’ve been sorting through some old files and folders, and I came across a paper I’d written in 2017, about how community media is faced with structural issues and tensions that need to be resolved in order to face and deal with the promise of participation and genuine social engagement. In the paper I argued that there needs to be a
“Shift in the expectations that underpin the existing models of community media, both in terms of the literacies and skills practices that are built-in to community media focused projects, and the policy expectations and the resource priorities of the bodies that fund, support and validate community media practices.”
It’s been useful to reread this paper, as I’ve been concerned for some time with the limits of the mainstream model of communication, and the need to articulate a pragmatically grounded, experiential and participative model of media development. These issues have been thrown into sharp relief with the pandemic and the social lockdown that we have experienced over the last six months.
The paper can be read as a PDF here: Community-Media-Development-Problems-001-2017-03-27