Alameda Community Radio: Our city, Our voices, Our media

Alameda Community Radio: Our city, Our voices, Our media

Susan Galleymore

Alameda Community Radio (ACR) is a new media community center on a mission: enhance community dialog and participation through the broadcast and dissemination of information, ideas, and artistic expression.

In other words, ACR modifies standard clichés and responds, “yes, we can all get along” and “new media is the message.”

Moreover, instead of competing, ACR collaborates with Alameda’s existing media outlets to extend our city’s communication channels.

ACR incorporated last year as a non-profit public benefit corporation organized under the Non-Profit Public Benefit Corporation Law for public and charitable purposes. It plans to take advantage of the Local Community Radio Act, passed by Congress in 2010 and signed into law in early 2011, and apply to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) for a Low Power FM radio broadcast license.

The FCC originally expected to open its application window by the end of 2012 although recent reports suggest delays until at least mid-2013, perhaps later. ACR’s growing team, however, is not waiting for the FCC’s green light.

Instead, ACR’s radio hosts, producers, and engineers enact the organization’s tagline, “Our city, our voices, our media,” and invite Alameda residents to grow with this venture and ensure its success. For, even as ACR’s passionate and energetic volunteers apply myriad skills to building this not-for-profit organization they recognize the many challenges they face.

One challenge is ACR’s current incarnation as an Internet-only entity: potential users must have access to the Internet via a computer, a smart phone, or similar device.

Another challenge is a lack of physical space in which residents can drop by, meet neighbors, and enjoy the simple pleasure of chatting face-to-face with people interested in discussing the many issues facing our city.

Yet another challenge is the thoroughly grassroots nature of the enterprise. ACR began with an idea – create a new media community center in our city – and the passion to implement that idea. The practicality of implementing it, however, depends on whether residents will fund the enterprise.

So, while the FCC’s delayed application period is disappointing it also offers advantages: ACR has more time to seek solutions.

Accordingly, it is varying and improving its programming: News & Views presents news talk, Alameda Oldies plays music from the 1960s through the 1980s, Blues with an Alameda Feeling plays many shades of blues, and Revolting airs punk music. Upcoming shows include poets and poetry, political commentary, zydeco music, even a show offering insights into relationships and sexuality.

Anyone wishing to propose a show can do so from ACR’s website that also offers opportunities to volunteer, send in PSAs, post events to the community calendar, and, most importantly, get in on the ground floor and contribute to this community enterprise.

Meet the ACR team at Angela’s Bistro and Bar on Monday August 20, from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m., and share a delicious mojito while listening to the Byrd of Paradise’s selection of Blues with an Alameda Feeling.

Alameda Community Radio may lack material riches but it is determined to enrich its community with opportunities to express its creativity.

Susan Galleymore is board president and managing director of ACR. Contact her at alamedacommunityradio@gmail.com.

Comments

Mpomeroy's picture
Submitted by Mpomeroy on Fri, Aug 17, 2012

How about a show on the Neediest people in our community, people who are facing unemployment or foreclosure as a result of the recession.