Sunday, February 28, 2010

WRGW: Is Anyone Listening?

In the past few days, a back and forth occurred between two writers for this blog about WRGW's coverage of the Student Association election candidates. Eric (a supporter of Xochitl Sanchez) asserts that the radio station unfairly favored Jason Lifton. Alex (the Assistant News Director for WRGW) shot back, defending the organization and his colleagues.

I'm here to say: It doesn't matter.

It would only matter if WRGW's coverage actually swayed anyone to vote for Lifton. And for that to happen, people would have to have listened to WRGW, or read their blog. And nobody really does. I'm not sure exactly what their audience is, but it can not be very large. I have never met anyone not affiliated with WRGW who listens to the radio station. It seems as though the staff of WRGW is very dedicated and impassioned about creating content...for themselves. As for the blog, there are no comments on any of the stories currently on the home page, and the YouTube videos embedded in one post have about 45 views each.

The Student Association allocated about $2,400 to WRGW for this school year for your operational expenses. That is more than was allocated to Allied in Pride, any of the major drama production groups, and the Muslim Student Association. I am 100% confident that the audience of Recess, Forbidden Planet Productions, and Fourteenth Grade Player shows is much more than the annual audience of WRGW.

Why does WRGW still exist as an organization? Why does it receive so much funding from the Student Association? Why does it occupy a large and valuable space in the Marvin Center. And why do people get so worked up about allegedly biased reporting by a news organization with an audience smaller than the capacity of an average Corcoran Hall classroom?

9 comments:

Nicole said...

It exists because we have a somewhat prominent school of media and public affairs that would be a veritable joke if we didn't have a radio station. While their presence on campus is definitely a little lacking, I do think they've made some progress promoting their programming. The funding and their effect on the SA elections are another story but I don't think it's fair to suggest that they're entirely irrelevant.

Anonymous said...

You can blame Trachtenberg for taking away GW's radio tower to make a few bucks...

Anonymous said...

Btw, this class is such an utter joke; the University is humiliating itself by giving college students credit for posting such inconsequential and unacademic crap.

Sean said...

I think WRGW should produce some stats about it's listenership. If no body is listening, it should either be reformed, or shut down. Otherwise it's a failed medium getting too many resources.

And I doubt taking away the radio tower mattered. Who even has a radio anymore...

Anonymous said...

Anyone will a car has a radio

Sean said...

Any GW student with a car has an iPod/iPhone adapter. Or an XM satellite radio. The percentage of people who listen the radio has fallen 30 percent in the past 10 years.

Neha said...

i don't think most people care about SA elections, so who really cares if the itty-bitty radio station alleged bias. Plus, GWU is full of small departments/organizations that get lots of your tuition money, so I think it's a bit unfair to pick on the radio station. If we can have a "early modern european studies" minor or a "Space Policy Institute" we can have a radio station.

Anonymous said...

So should any organization that isn't famous be eliminated? What about the Student Association? No one goes to their meetings; should we abolish the SA?

The radio station has literally hundreds of members if you include all of the departments; if that many people enjoy being a part of the radio station, it deserves some of the funding that goes to student orgs. And unlike the College Democrats and Republicans, the radio station doesn't charge its members to join, so we need to get our funding from somewhere - we barely have enough money to keep the station running as it is.

Anonymous said...

nice post,thanks for share.