Community Media/MARAA/Community Radio/Conceptual Clarity/Radio roleplay
This is an interesting session because a local media channel needs to be sensitive to local situations and contexts and needs to act accordingly. Usually, by now, the participants have got an idea that community radio stations are used just to disseminate information and that's the end of the story. We try and complicate the situation for them by giving them a participatory exercise. :) Here, again the participants are divided into groups and each group is given a local situation. That group is supposed to enact that local situation as it happens in reality. We tell them that they are not supposed to enact solutions or give advice on resolution but just enact the situation. For example, one group was asked to enact the problem of blind faith in superstitions. While one group is acting out the situations, the rest of the participants have to think of themselves as representatives of their radio station and frame a response to this situation. So they are reporters who are doing a field visit and happened to see this situation. They now have to answer three questions:
- Will they respond to this through the radio station? If yes, how, and if no, why?
- How will they respond?
- What is the reasoning behind that particular response?
After all the groups have acted out their situations and all the groups have responded to the situations, we take stock of situations and discuss responses. Usually, the complexity of media response comes out through this. Sometimes a community radio station has to play the role of creating awareness. At other times, they have to be objective and cannot take sides. Sometimes, they have to play the role of resolving local conflicts. Usually, the participants say that they will respond through a radio drama or an interview with an expert. Now they have started thinking about formats of radio, and the time is ripe for the next session!!
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