The future of radio and ICTs

Kassim Sheghembe is an enterprising youth, who is working at the forefront of innovation in radio as FRI’s information communication technology (ICT) officer in Tanzania. He works with broadcasters to push radio beyond a one-way communication tool. Through this work he has seen the potential of radio. Check out this video to learn more about how Kassim is transforming radio.

“The main thing I do at Farm Radio is to integrate ICTs with radio and the radio program so that broadcasters at the radio station can get as many feedback from listeners because radio is a communication tool,” he explains. “It’s a one-way communication media, but linking it with ICTs makes it more powerful in the sense that listeners are able to give feedback, so it can become a two-way communication media.”

Integrating cell phones and radio allows broadcasters to hear from their listeners, learning what they want to hear, what questions they have and if they are learning from the program.

Even more exciting, however, is pushing radio beyond cell phones — pushing radio into a new generation, with a new generation of listeners.

I am excited about the mental health project because we are more involved with the young people and most of them live in cities and use things like Facebook and Twitter, so I will be getting chances to explore these online tools with radio. … I can see the full potential (of radio).”

Looking forward, Kassim sees radio not just sparking a conversation but facilitating it — allowing experts, broadcasters, government officials, farmers, marketers and anyone else to participate in a conversation despite distance.

“In the future, when I visualize radio, because I am trying to integrate ICTs and radio, I see it as a communication media. We have this terminology radio 2.0 in which we get a lot of feedback so a lot of the contents are user generated… that’s what I see. Radio as a two-way communication media where people can talk and discuss things through radio.”

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