Champions of community-driven media celebrate massive growth in podcast delivery
PRESS RELEASE — July 10, 2019
The rise and rise of the podcast has been a defining feature of the media landscape in recent times – and New Zealand’s CAMA [Community Access Media Alliance] stations have been at the forefront of this trans-media delivery.
Ten of the twelve New Zealand Community Access stations collaborate on a podcasting project called AIR – Access Internet Radio, which delivers over 8,500 episodes of hundreds of radio shows/podcasts to niche communities reflecting the Access sector’s key priorities – women, children and youth, migrant and refugee communities, health and disability issues, religious and ethical issues and any interests not catered for by the mainstream media.
This month, AIR partner stations are celebrating a milestone with over 1.8 million podcast hits in the July to June project year, an increase of 77% over the 2017/18 year.
Speaking at last month’s Power of Audio conference in Auckland, AIR Project Leader [and manager of Hamilton’s Free FM] Phil Grey spoke about the power in delivery of such niche content. Hosting podcast episodes of diverse content by, for and about former refugees, the LGBTQI community, mental health advocates and service users, and other often-ignored micro-audiences was not simply “catch-up radio”, he said.
“It’s a massive kete of in-depth conversations as we face Islamophobia, xenophobia, otherisation, systemic racism, unconscious bias and more.”
Especially notable was the success of OAR FM Dunedin who were the highest contributor to the overall results, crossing the half-million threshold with content consumed 541,000 times. Plains FM in Christchurch followed closely behind, with their podcasts accessed on more than 519,000 occasions.
“But every AIR project partner saw growth. Even our stations based in smaller centres are reaping the benefit of leading-edge delivery of our content”, Grey said.
Invercargill’s Radio Southland, Nelson’s Fresh FM, and Kapiti’s Coast Access Radio had all grown podcast audiences by at least 80%, he said, and the project’s growth was projected to exceed 2 million podcast hits in 2019/20.
The Access Internet Radio Project provides streaming and podcasting services for Community Access media organisations, and is supported by NZ on Air.
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