99 Acts of Revolution in 2012: #6 Occupy the Airwaves


As part of my New Year’s Resolution to commit myself to committing 99 acts of revolution (big & small) in 2012, I bring you to my latest act of rebellion #6: Occupy the Airwaves

In Grand Rapids, MI we have a local not-for-profit radio station called Public Reality Radio 95.3 FM & 1680 AM. On PRR they have a ton of politics focused talk shows. Local issues, labor rights, social justice and current events are the main focus, though they do have some shows that get into atheism, secular ethics, environment, science and other edgy topics. They’ve really caught fire lately with the birth of the Occupy movement, the battle for labor rights in Wisconsin and Michigan, and events surrounding the Arab Spring of 2011.

As a member of Occupy Grand Rapids & Move To Amend; Grand Rapids I have been actively using the opportunities to get my voice on the air that PRR extends to the community.

On several occasions I’ve called in on shows to discuss what Occupy GR  was doing, providing details about upcoming protests,  promoting events, and making sure that our message reached the people. I have been called on several times to get involved in the discussions on air as well, to let people know what Move To Amend was doing in Grand Rapids.

West Michigan Labor Speaks and PaleoRadio are the two currently running shows that I have participated in the most, but before the recent schedule change (January 2012) I made several calls to other shows to contribute relevant information.

Here is a link to Catalyst Radio’s interview with PaleoRadio‘s Jeremiah Bannister & JD Sullivan

To keep myself from forgetting my main talking points, or from getting sidetracked within the discussions, I always try to take the time to create a brief outline of talking points. This is especially helpful if you are uncomfortable talking on air, or tend to overload your listeners with more than they can process (like me)

  • a short list of main points ( 3 is a good number)
  • a couple factoids about each point
  • a relevant quote
  • event details (time, place, website)
  • contact info for the group I am representing

Less than one page is all you need, you don’t want to bore the audience. Also, try to work the talking points in organically, since the last thing you want to do is sound like a pre-recorded message. Keep it short and simple to prevent yourself from getting into a situation where you run out of steam (always leave them wanting more!) or airtime.  Accept the fact that you won’t get to discuss everything that you want to, after all, its not your show. Finally, make sure to thank your hosts for their time and for giving you the opportunity to share your message. A little gratitude goes a long ways.

About analogmutant

art, music, food, movies, citizen journalism, activism, and whatever else i am into at the moment...
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