A very significant impression that commercial radio in Asia makes is the strength of commercial radio in the region through the years, especially in comparison with other multi-media platforms. Before the era of the internet, the tri-media through sociological aspects have directly or indirectly created a balance that made the relationship of the three media platforms evenhanded.
There are advantages and disadvantages found in print, television as well as in radio, even when there are times that social factors alter the balance temporarily, like the television ad ban and newspaper ad limitations set in Indonesia before which favored commercial radio, income-wise (Anderson, 1984, p. 180). For radio, as well as for the rest of the other forms of media, they managed to thrive by making the most out of their advantage over the other forms. Radio’s advantage rests on the accessibility and mobility of information through use of radio as well as the presentation of more real-time information compared to television and print.
This is one of the particular strengths commercial radios demonstrated in Asia, the reason why many of its patrons remained loyal to radio despite the improvement in television and print and the entry of the internet. Asia is one of the regions that serve as hotbeds of radio even when in many places radio patronage have dwindled because of the change in sociological factors affecting media use and impact. This can be attributed to the fact that most Asian countries are still comprised heavily by rural areas that have not fully embraced modern technology, relying on the more traditional means, particularly the cheap and accessible radio.
In these rural areas, print media finds it difficult to thrive because of socio economic and political reasons, and television is mostly reserved in living rooms, for those who are fortunate to have one. Most people in the rural areas of third world or lower class countries in Asia can only manage a radio for their source of information and this advantage is being used to the hilt by commercial radio owners and operators. The demand created by social conditions are favoring commercial radio immensely even today, particularly in Asia, and for its part, commercial radio has not abandoned its responsibility to those who depend on it.
Another significant impression made by commercial radio in Asia is the new role that it plays in modern day culture. While there are factors from the past that still affect or characterize commercial radio today like the traces of previous commercial radio cultures like dependency on commercial radio for new songs and top of the charts lists radio listeners from India and other Asian countries (Kasbekar, 2005, p. 134), radio and its role in modern day culture no doubt transformed and metamorphosed, proving that radio is indeed characterized by “timeliness (Applegate, 2004, p.
120)” as well as timelessness. Before, the design was one-way information channeling, radio anchors and disk jockeys provide information and entertainment which the listeners consume, and the focus, particularly of AM stations, are largely political. “A vital part of the cold war between Taiwan and China is radio broadcasting (Wood, 1999, p. 163). ” Today’s radio (despite the handicap of absence of visuals) manages to incorporate interactivity in its scheme of things.
DJs and anchors interact more with listeners and callers, making the relationship more personal. Because of the shift in age demographic, commercial radio is enjoyed by different age brackets and has involved itself more in lifestyle and culture. Besides news and music and radio programs, the content now include sports, gossip, entertainment, lifestyle, and a wide range of other interests, allowing radio to be appreciated in a new light. Commercial radio has also been an important proof of the change in lifestyle, both in rural and urban places in Asia.
Political and social changes lead to change in culture and attitude, and how individuals continued supporting commercial radio is proof of this change. “The number of local youths listening (in Asia) listening to the radio primarily because it is a foreign-language station is testament to its attraction in this regard (Shoesmith, Rossiter, 2004, p. 57). ” This shows that the strength of commercial radio and its success rests largely on its ability to adapt to new environment and culture.
Bibliography Anderson, M. H. (1984) Madison Avenue in Asia: Politics and Transnational Advertising. Fairleigh Dickinson University Press. Applegate, E. (2004) Strategic Copywriting: How to Create Effective Advertising. Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc. Kasbekar, A. (2005) Pop Culture India! : Media, Arts and Lifestyle. ABC-CLIO, Incorporated. Shoesmith, B. , Ned R. (2004) Refashioning Pop Music in Asia: Cosmopolitan Flows, Political Tempos, and Aesthetic Industries. Taylor & Francis, Inc. Wood, J. (1999) History of International Broadcasting, Vol. 2. Institution of Engineering & Technology.
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