Since the proclamation was made at the United Nations 36th Session, February 13 has been delineated as World Radio Day. Why February 13? Because that was the day the United Nations radio was established in 1946. It is a day to celebrate radio and the impact it has had on people’s lives and culture. The objectives of the day are:
- “to raise greater awareness among the public and the media of the importance of radio;”
- “to encourage decision makers to establish and provide access to information through radio;”
- “to enhance networking and international cooperation among broadcasters.”
Is radio still relevant today?
Especially in cultures where there is a prevalence of converged technology and social media, many persons ask if radio is still a relevant part of modern world. The answer is a resounding yes. The UN’s official website for World Radio Day provides greater clarification:
“Radio is the mass media reaching the widest audience in the world. It is also recognized as a powerful communication tool and a low cost medium. Radio is specifically suited to reach remote communities and vulnerable people: the illiterate, the disabled, women, youth and the poor, while offering a platform to intervene in the public debate, irrespective of people’s educational level. Furthermore, radio has a strong and specific role in emergency communication and disaster relief.” (www.diamundialradio.org)
Interesting facts about radio
- Ninety-four per cent of adults listen to radio weekly
- In 2016, more people listened to radio than watched TV or smartphones
- There are more than 800 million radios in developing countries
- 3.9 billion people – half the world’s population – are still not connected to the Internet, making radio the most accessible medium.
Internet resources for more information on World Radio Day: